A Discussion with Bill Watson, Life University’s Director of the Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning (CETL)

Training and Supporting Life University’s (Life U) Faculty & Staff

Bill Watson is the Director of the Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning (CETL) at Life University (Life U) for the past six years. You will hear that this area of learning and education is actually pronounced see-till, not kettle.

Watson is originally from Florida but lived for seventeen years in Texas before coming to work at Life U. As the CETL Director, Watson is “responsible for overseeing the implementation and management of all our various initiatives and programs”. The main goal of CETL is to be the learning bridge and support to faculty so that they can be successful in teaching our students.  CETL is the epicenter of university resources for learning and education to all faculty and is the main resource center providing many educational tools. If the CETL staff receive a request and do not have the answer directly, they will research and locate the proper resources a faculty member will need.

CETL supports Life U faculty through a variety of ways including offering training courses online, in-person and answering specific questions from a faculty member. These resources through CETL are “the primary resource for faculty development on campus”, said Watson. He and the center’s staff work with faculty on a daily basis to facilitate workshops for the faculty and ensures that faculty have the resources, skills and training they need. Through the Faculty Staff Development Program (FSDP) CETL also supports the staff in training and Watson as the Chair of the FSDP Committee helps the committee to select the programs and courses offered at each FSDP. CETL services and resources are also available to staff who may be interested in developing skills that will prepare them for adjunct teaching positions.

A major resource within CETL is the MAGNA Digital Library. The license for this software was purchased two years ago to add as another way to support faculty. The MAGNA Digital Library offers hundreds of on-demand professional development seminars and one of the newest additions to be offered soon through CETL are the MAGNA seminars on teaching faculty how to teach online.  This is especially important as the Life U College of Online Education (COE) steadily grows and as the College of Chiropractic transitions some of their courses online.

“This new program will allow faculty to develop skills for teaching online,” said Watson.

He would like Life U faculty to know that this will be available to them soon. In his Director of CETL position, Watson has a major goal.

“It always needs to be about the student. If we always try to weigh our decisions on what’s best for the student, I think things will work out in the end”, said Watson.

 

 

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