Faculty Development Center
109 Bruce T. Halle Library
Eastern Michigan University
Ypsilanti, Michigan 48197
What is the Bruce K. Nelson Faculty Development Center?
The FDC provides a centralized PLACE for faculty (full-time and part-time) to support their teaching/learning, research and service.
Functions of the FDC
The FDC is responsible for designing, implementing and evaluating a comprehensive program of support for all instructional faculty across a broad range of professional practice domains:
- Enhancing excellence in teaching through demonstrating and assessing significant student learning outcomes
- Promoting scholarly inquiry and/or creativity
- Providing professional development opportunities, including leadership and organizational development
- Incorporating the effective use of technology
- Actively promoting and facilitating awareness and sensitivity to issues of culture and diversity and community-building/service activities that support faculty excellence
Guiding Principles for the FDC
The FDC is based on a number of principles of practice that support and guide our actions and decisions. The FDC:
- Recognizes and champions faculty in their multiple roles (e.g., as teacher, scholar, professional, community member) and acknowledges the broad range and depth of their varied accomplishments;
- Reflects an awareness of the variety in faculty growth and development and offers comprehensive, on-going, developmental, and flexible support programs;
- Supports and promotes teaching/learning strategies that promote meaningful, higher-order learning for students, e.g., active or collaborative learning;
- Involves faculty in reflection and critical self-evaluation of their academic practices, and assists faculty in transforming their practices into scholarship.
- Encourages cross-departmental, school and unit interactions and fosters collaboration among faculty with shared interests and professional development goals;
- Creates opportunities for discipline-specific, as well as cross-disciplinary shared learning and experimentation emphasizing transferability of knowledge;
- Encourages and appropriately supports faculty in undertaking new roles and responsibilities and in skill development, with emphasis on instructional technology and cultural competence;
- Recognizes that individuals who seek our services do so voluntarily;
- Maintains confidentiality for all who are served; and
- Models actions and practices that are non-judgmental, respectful, trustworthy, collaborative and cooperative.
About Our Name
Bruce K. Nelson began a long and distinguished career of services at Eastern Michigan University in 1954. He was the director of the EMU lab school and superintendent of Lincoln Schools. He quickly assumed the role of Vice President for Instruction (equivalent to the current Provost position) and served in that capacity for 21 years. During this time, Dr. Nelson played a major role in shaping the academic structure of the University and helped facilitate the creation of the College of Education. He was responsible for registration, advising, and developing expanded class offerings to make more classes available for students.
Dr. Nelson also shepherded the building of the then "new" library, which has now been transformed into the Porter Building. In 1975, Dr. Nelson returned to his professorship in the Department of Educational Leadership. He retired in 1981.
In tribute to Dr. Nelson's work and in particular his devotion to the needs of faculty, the Faculty Development Center was renamed "The Bruce K. Nelson Faculty Development Center" at a large and successful celebration of Dr. Nelson's life and work in March 2005. The funds raised in connection with this event have provided for a renovation of the space that the center occupies in the Halle Library. The renovation makes it possible to provide small group technology instruction, flexible seating for small group meetings, and a quiet study/reading area for faculty. The EMU Foundation, a large number of emeritus faculty, and the Provost's Office have graciously made this renovation possible.