Realizing Promising Educational Practices in Academic Public Health: A Model for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning

Leah C. Neubauer*, Cheryl Merzel, Elizabeth M. Weist, Jaime Antoinette Corvin, Allan Forsman, Jacquie Fraser, Heather L. Henderson, Leslie J. Hinyard, Karin Joann Opacich, Miryha G. Runnerstrom

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


This paper presents a conceptual framework and critical considerations for the scholarship of teaching and learning (SoTL) in academic public health. Academic education for public health has undergone significant transformation over the last two decades as the demand for responsive and innovative public health pedagogy and training for preparing graduates to deploy an increasing array of skills has grown. The authors suggest that the role of schools, administrators, faculty, and educational staff in developing promising practices for teaching and learning in public health involves an articulated conceptual framework to guide the development and dissemination of scholarly, pedagogical innovations. Building on seminal philosophical foundations of SoTL, the authors conceptualize SoTL from the foundational belief that knowing and learning are communal tasks and that faculty are both scholars and learners in the practice of education. The paper advocates for SoTL as a form of engaged practice and scholarly inquiry that exists in contextually rich, diverse educational environments that abounds with uncertainty. SoTL is guided by an educational philosophy, values, and learning theories that envision educators critically examining themselves, their teaching practice, scholarly literature, and students' learning to improve their teaching, enhance learning, and promote further inquiry. The authors suggest that SoTL involves the search for multiple forms of evidence and fosters dialogues on multiple interpretations and perspectives of the most promising practices of teaching and learning. The authors advocate for the term promising practices as an outcome of SoTL that supports and nurtures ongoing scientific discovery and knowledge generation, instead of supporting the search for best-ness in teaching and learning endeavors. SoTL should occur across formal, informal, and nonformal education.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number750682
JournalFrontiers in Public Health
StatePublished - Jan 31 2022


  • SoTL conceptual framework
  • academic public health
  • faculty
  • pedagogy
  • substantive topics
  • teaching and learning

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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