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Notre Dame joins Carnegie program to improve higher education

Author: Arts and Letters


The Carnegie Academy for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (CASTL) has selected the University of Notre Dame, along with 86 other higher education institutions and networks worldwide, to participate in a program to improve undergraduate and graduate education. Notre Dame’s area of focus will be on enhancing undergraduate research.

The CASTL Institutional Leadership Program is a three-year partnership between Carnegie and selected colleges, universities and organizations with a strong commitment to the examination of teaching and learning. Participants were selected for their ability to influence work in 12 areas, ranging from assessment and accountability to undergraduate research.

All selected institutions have developed and implemented innovative strategies to strengthen teaching and improve student learning on their own campuses. Through participation in the Carnegie program, they will collaborate with other institutions to further examine that work and expand activities in those same areas.

“Our participation in the Carnegie program provides a wonderful opportunity for us to explore and document the distinctive value that undergraduate research adds to a Notre Dame education,” said Dennis Jacobs, Notre Dame vice president, associate provost and professor of chemistry and biochemistry, who was named the Carnegie U.S. Professor of the Year in 2002.

Notre Dame offers numerous effective undergraduate research programs, including laboratory research projects within science and engineering, the UndergraduateResearch Opportunity Program (UROP) in the College of Arts and Letters, community-based research, and international study grants that allow students to pursue abroad a line of scholarly inquiry in collaboration with Notre Dame faculty.

New University goals include developing consistent ways to measure how many students are engaged and in what kinds of research, increasing the level of participation of undergraduates in research, assessing and enhancing the quality of student learning within various types of research experiences, and collaborating with and learning from other institutions.

Program participants will gather for the first time Nov. 8 at the annual conference of the International Society for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning in Washington, D.C.

Founded by Andrew Carnegie in 1905 and chartered in 1906 by an act of Congress, The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching is an independent policy and research center with a primary mission “to do and perform all things necessary to encourage, uphold, and dignify the profession of the teacher.” The foundation, located in Stanford, Calif., fulfills this mission through its contributions to improvements in education policy and practice.

CASTL represents a major initiative of the Carnegie Foundation. Launched in 1998, the program builds on a concept of teaching as scholarly work. It supports the development of a scholarship of teaching and learning that fosters significant long-lasting learning for all students, enhances the practice and profession of teaching, and seeks to reward teachers with the recognition afforded to other forms of scholarly work.

Contact: Barbara Walvoord, Institute for Educational Initiatives,

Originally published by Shannon Chapla at on October 06, 2006.