Teaching Innovation Projects


Students and instructors often approach office hours with an equal lack of enthusiasm. For students, office hours can be inaccessible due to scheduling conflicts or feelings of intimidation when approaching their instructor. For instructors, many report that students do not show up and when they do the visits are brief and linked to assessments. Despite this ambivalence, this workshop argues that office hours are an untapped and significant pedagogical tool to support student-faculty interactions and improve student outcomes.

Substantial research highlights the benefits of student-faculty interaction outside the classroom. In the literature, office hours are the predominant form of communication and informal faculty-student interactions have been shown to support students’ academic performance and personal growth. Researchers have found that the frequency of informal interactions that focused on academic topics had a significant positive influence on students. Studies also note that structured interactions have a greater impact than those that were more casual in nature. Additional research has highlighted that it is not necessarily the frequency but the quality of the interactions that supports positive student outcomes.

The purpose of this workshop is to provide participants with strategies to increase opportunities for teaching outside the classroom, and specifically during office hours.

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Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.