Optometric Education

The Journal of the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry

Optometric Education: Volume 46 Number 3 (Summer 2021)

Guest Editorial

Introducing Educator’s Toolkit,
a Teaching Resource for Optometric Faculty

Keshia S. Elder, OD, MS, MS, FAAO

Keshia S. Elder, OD, MS, MS, FAAO

As optometric educators, we are not necessarily trained as teachers. Rather, we are subject matter experts who are expected to effectively teach. As most of us know, this is challenging. We tend to focus on maintaining our clinical competencies, which leaves less time to spend advancing our instructional competencies. Although I am formally trained in secondary education, in my 14 years in optometric education I have often found myself wondering what I can do to improve my teaching effectiveness.

To help all of us fulfill our dual responsibility to be doctors and teachers, Optometric Education is launching a new feature called “Educator’s Toolkit.” To achieve our essential learning outcomes, we must have knowledge of sound teaching theories and methods. Sometimes the hardest part of acquiring and implementing such knowledge is just getting started. This is where Educator’s Toolkit comes in. It is meant to serve as an information and resources hub. Educators can use it to stay abreast of current trends in higher education pedagogy and to access ideas and useful tools that can be applied to optometric teaching.

We begin Educator’s Toolkit in this issue of the journal by exploring principles and techniques for eLearning, a topic, which, thanks to COVID-19, is more relevant than ever.

Dr. Elder [kselder@uab.edu], an Associate Editor with Optometric Education, is an Associate Professor at the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Optometry, where she also serves as Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and Director of the Externship Program.