Harnessing the Power of Community in Education: Navigating the Future with AI Together

MarisaBluestone
Community Manager
Community Manager
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Whether in a social or professional context, community plays a critical role in our lives. It creates a support system, offers opportunities for networking and allows people to connect based on shared values. For educators, being part of a vibrant, collaborative community is not just beneficial—it's essential for growth and innovation. 

Community in education goes beyond mere networking; it's about building a shared space where experiences, insights, and challenges can be exchanged openly. At Macmillan Learning, we’ve seen the impact that a strong and engaged community of educators can have. We’ve witnessed firsthand the impact that our peer consultants have had on instructors across the country through knowledge sharing and the power that ideas carry when instructors can engage freely and openly with their colleagues. 

Understanding the importance of community and peer learning, Macmillan Learning recently launched The Institute at Macmillan Learning. The new venture aims to build and support a community of instructors, provide practical knowledge, and empower educators to meet modern teaching challenges with confidence. 

The first course “Teaching With Generative AI: A Course for Educators”, was designed to create a community of practice with asynchronous and synchronous components, interactive workshops, and platforms for discussion and collaboration. During the two month course, attendees improve their abilities, keep up with the latest in technology, and discover ways to leverage artificial intelligence to create enduring benefits for their students and institutions.  Importantly, they’ll participate in an active and accountable community with their peers. 

Simply put, we designed the Institute not just to educate on a topic, but to connect educators from various backgrounds, disciplines and institutions to create a rich tapestry of knowledge and experience. 

Building a Community of Instructors

At the heart of The Institute is community. We want educators to engage in meaningful conversations, explore current educational topics, and collectively seek solutions to contemporary challenges in education. This approach is not only about imparting knowledge; it's about fostering a collaborative environment where every instructor feels heard, valued, and empowered to contribute. And AI is just the beginning.

The Institute’s community offers a private online space where instructors can ask and reflect on the complex questions that have been keeping them awake at night. There’s more than one way to take on a challenge, and we believe that hearing perspectives from across disciplines and institutions from both seasoned educators and those newer to teaching offers unparalleled access to insights. In addition to the learning and synchronous parts of the course, feedback and reflection within this community will forge both personal and professional development and, importantly, help facilitate a culture of continuous improvement in AI pedagogy. By participating in this community, educators not only gain access to a wealth of knowledge and resources but also become part of a larger movement in shaping the future of education. 

The Institute's focus on collaboration and community building is a testament to Macmillan Learning’s commitment to enhancing the educational landscape, not just for students, but the instructors who inspire them. It will be a place that provides practical knowledge, meaningful community, and opportunities for educators to showcase newfound expertise.

About “Teaching with Generative AI: A Course for Educators”

Teaching with Generative AI: A Course for Educators is a two-month course that offers a blend of asynchronous and synchronous learning, including hands-on experience developing a course policy around AI, designing assignments with considerations for AI, and navigating conversations with students about the use of AI. Each week will delve into a new topic designed to deepen participants' pedagogical practices, enhance their comfort with and understanding of AI, provide practical assignment blueprints for classroom use, and build a vibrant community of practice for professional growth and innovation in education. The course will be delivered in Macmillan Learning's courseware platform, Achieve. 

Participants who successfully complete the course will receive digital certification that can be easily shared with their institutions and with colleagues on platforms like LinkedIn. Registration begins on April 15, and the first 100 to sign up get a 60% discount. For more details, and for information on future courses, visit the Institute’s website.