ACPA’s Institute on the Curricular Approach (formerly the Residential Curriculum Institute) is the source for learning about applying curricular structures to your work. As a former and current Institute faculty member myself, and working for a company that is the official software sponsor, I strongly believe in the mission of the Institute and the effectiveness of its work.
One of the key features of the Institute is the “Showcase” sessions. Showcases are presentations from individual schools that have adopted the curricular approach. Functioning similar to case studies, these showcases dive into one institution’s work with the model and the challenges and successes they’ve had along the way. Sometimes these showcases can be about an institution or department’s entire journey and sometimes they focus in on one or two aspects of it.
Having previously showcased at the Institute, I recognize a lot of benefits to institutions that choose to share their journeys. For one, preparing to showcase is an excellent opportunity for a school to reflect on their work and synthesize it. This can pay dividends in ensuring staff develop a common understanding of where they’ve been and where they’re heading in the future. The actual presentation itself also provides showcasing schools with the opportunity to receive feedback and critique from other members of the Institute learning community. A school can also network and make connections with other schools who may share a similar institutional profile or whom have some of the same challenges.
When the call for showcase institutions is extended, I encourage you to consider applying for this amazing opportunity. It’s common that many schools feel they may not be ready to showcase, as there is always work to be done, but remember that this is a journey of learning. It’s highly likely that you have some knowledge to share, and even more to gain from the opportunity.