This essay describes and critiques the creation and evolution of Teaching Circles, small groups of teachers meeting regularly to discuss curriculum and pedagogy, as a vehicle for teacher development in the composition program at the University of Miami. Included in the essay are comments from several of the full-time lecturers who participated in these discussion groups as both members and leaders. The essay makes visible the competing tensions inherent in fostering professional development through such a structure, especially the complications involved in turning lecturers into teacher educators as they take on responsibility for mentoring beginning teachers. The essay and the comments from the lecturers note the challenges inherent in making such an institutional structure productive over time and suggest that sustained critical reflection, willingness to revise, and attention to the scholarship of teaching teachers are important components of keeping any structure of professional development relevant.
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Margaret J. Marshall; Teaching Circles: Supporting Shared Work and Professional Development. Pedagogy 1 October 2008; 8 (3): 413–431. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/15314200-2008-003
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