What the Best College Teachers Do by Ken Bain
West Texas A&M gave this book to all of its new faculty members at the beginning of the semester (along with some other pretty cool swag).
Ken Bain has spent decades in higher education. He discovered early on that great teachers have a profound impact on how their students actually learn, but there was no study of what they do or how they do it. This is what this book is about.
At many colleges, research is king. What the Best College Teachers Do seeks to elevate the craft of teaching to the same level. The best teachers, Bain argues, realize that knowledge is constructed, not absorbed. His primary thesis is that teachers must learn about their students and how they learn. That’s when knowledge acquisition becomes possible.
I liked it. A lot. In fact, I not only made margin notes but also wrote down ideas in a notepad that I keep near when I’m reading. I plan to start implementing some of its ideas next semester. I’d recommend this for all teachers, especially those who teach at the college level.