Everybody involved in teaching has questions about the success of their practice. We deal with some of the questions informally all the time. In other cases, we seek to formalize our enquiry by doing research, and that is what the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL) is about. After reviewing the Key Characteristics of the SoTL video (also below), think about which experiences are similar to your own.

To Do:

  1. Identify 3 key characteristics of SoTL that resonate with your professional experience and practice.
  2. Add your name and three keys to the bottom of the editable document (Keys of SoTL Google Doc).
  3. Compare your SoTL keys to ones listed by your colleagues in Keys of SoTL Google Doc. Add comments to other responses that strongly align with yours in the document.
  4. In your response for this activity:
    • Upload a screenshot of your contributions to the google doc as evidence of completion.
    • Optional: Include any additional ideas you gain from the ones that your colleagues identified.
  1. After you make your submission, save the web address to your response (found in the green confirmation box) so you can use it later for your badge submission form.

This video features several educators defining SoTL in the context of their own professional practice. The educators in this video express multiple experiences about SoTL.


This activity is part of the What is the scholarship of teaching and learning (SoTL)? section of the Scholar Module.

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71 Responses for this Activity

  • Three Keys of SoTL
    by Pamela LeBrun (@PamLeBrun)

    My Three Keys of SoTL. (The shared doc would not open for me, but I have uploaded a screen shot and the three keys here as a reply) Asking Interesting Questions about Learning and Teaching– As a professor I am always curious. Curious about my students’ learning and curious about how to improve my teaching more… »

  • Three Resonating Keys of SoTL
    by Jessica Joy (@jessica.joy)

    Choosing only three key characteristics of SoTL was a challenge; I found many to resonate with my current teaching practice as well as where I imagine my approach to be in the future. The attached image presents my attempt to narrow down my choices to three, and provides a brief explanation for each.

  • Tania Killian
    by Tania Killian (@tkillian)

    Tania Killian   Keys Always question Try new things-even if you are not sure how they will work Reflect and reinvent and retry   Motivations Better student outcomes Increase my passion/excitement for teaching,  Building networks/pathways

  • Three Keys
    by Caitlin Cull (@ccull)


  • Three Keys of SoTL
    by Wendy Tseng (@wtseng.tw)

    Inquiry – Ask questions and be curious Use the right methodology to gather data Analysis of the data to identify the effectiveness of teaching & learning

  • Three Keys of Sotl
    by John Colling (@johncolling)

    This document summaries the 3 keys of SoTL that I identified.

  • Three Keys of SoTL
    by John Colling (@johncolling)

    My three keys of SoTL were  Reflective practice and Inquiry  Culture of Enquiry  Surveying students

  • Three Keys of SoTL
    by John Colling (@johncolling)

    My three keys of SoTL were  Reflective practice and Inquiry  Culture of Enquiry  Surveying students

  • SoTL Keys
    by Melissa Sherrer (@MSherrerRN)

    Keys A critical look at opportunities for improvement or understanding; what is the question you want to know the answer to or the problem you want to solve? Developing an individualized methodology for solving the question Exploring the concept from multiple perspectives (students, faculty, colleagues, your PLN)

  • 3 Keys of SoTL
    by Lori Strauss (@lstrauss)


    2 Resources for this Activity

    • 3 Key SoTL Characteristics
      shared by Christopher Rowe (@ChristopherRowe)

      This was interesting. I like the concept behind this approach to teaching… to approach it from a scholarly perspective and to apply an inquiry to one’s practice.

    • 3 Keys of SoTL
      shared by Lori Strauss (@lstrauss)


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