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Integrative Learning: Course Design Institute

Resources and updates from the Integrative Learning Steering Committee.

The Integrative Learning Grant sponsored faculty in participating in a course design institute.

About the Institute

Designing Courses for Significant Learning: Online Professional Development Course Provided by Dee Fink & Associates

The workshop features an approach to what Fink calls “integrated course design.”  In this approach, faculty members learn how to design courses in a way that will enhance student engagement and motivation through the use of active learning techniques.  In addition to demonstrating the course design process featured in Fink’s book Designing Significant learning Experiences, the workshop will also be beneficial for participants who wish to undertake an effective, but relatively limited instance of online instruction.  Additionally, the workshop addresses both in-person and online instruction.  Several Castleton faculty members have participated in in-person workshops with Fink, and eleven of us undertook the workshop last summer with good results.

Please send any questions or inquiries to Chris Boettcher, IL Steering Committee chair  (



Participants will agree to design a new course or redesign one of their courses to be offered during the upcoming academic year.  The main commitment will be to participate in the online workshop Designing Courses for Significant Learning offered by Dee Fink and Associates. The workshop will be offered during late May/early June (TBD). Participants must agree to work daily over the two weeks of the online workshop, about 40 hours at most, but they will not be required to meet in person in Castleton during this time. The Integrative Learning Project will pay the fee for this workshop. 


The IL project can support 12 members with differing levels of commitment. 

All participants will work together in the workshop during two weeks in late May or early June (TBD).  The workshop will consist exclusively of Castleton faculty members. They will agree to submit syllabi and a brief narrative of their work at the end of the summer.

1.   The project will support six members who simply wish to  design a new course or redesign ANY course that they teach.  Fink’s ideas about course design for active learning will benefit any faculty member who wishes to undertake course design or redesign (especially if they wish to reflect on their teaching).  The project will support informal meetings of these faculty members before and after the online workshop and will assist with providing opportunities for collaboration.

2.   The project will support six members who wish to design a new course or redesign an existing course AND agree to a more intensive collaboration as a cohort to implement their courses.  This cohort will cooperate with the IL Project to imagine and experiment with techniques that are consistent with the project’s goals of supporting integrative learning on campus. 

This second cohort will be made up of faculty members who will offer courses in the Frames of Reference and who wish to work closely with the IL project on course and program design.  Essentially, these faculty members will develop more intensive "integration" in their courses as a way to experiment with IL principles currently under consideration for our curriculum.  Preference will be given to full-time faculty members who will offer a Frames course in the fall semester.  Participants in this cohort will be compensated for attendance at two half-day meetings, one before and one after the workshop, and will be provided with lunch for monthly meetings to be held throughout the year. Please direct any questions or inquiries about the cohort to Chris Boettcher. 

For the purposes of assessing the value of the offering and in the event of needing to make selections, a brief proposal form is provided. 

The deadline for application is January 22, 2018.