This is a large-scale, multi-author collaborative autoethnographic study exploring the concept of building a tangible teaching commons on the example of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL) Commons Conference. The project organizers sought to provide a big tent and extended an invitation to attendees to respond to a series of writing prompts about their conference experience. Collaborative writing took place asynchronously over an approximately 60-day period following the close of the conference and generated ≈ 20,000 words. This corpus became the basis for a three-stage emergent coding process, conducted by the four-member steering commit-tee, which led to the identification of three primary themes from the collective experiences of the 2023 SoTL Commons Conference attendees: SoTL as pedagogy, SoTL as a community of scholars, and SoTL as scholarship. Despite some limitations to what the sense of commons represents, the project highlighted the respondents’ spirit of appreciative inquiry, a signature mindset of SoTL and engaged participants who were new to the field. We argue that it acted as a form of academic hospitality itself; enabling the sharing of practice, deepening of reflection, strengthening of research skills, fostering of social connections, and, by extension, the advancement of the field as a community of scholars.

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