When: Taught at least twice a year, usually in the Autumn and Spring quarters. A pre-registration survey is sent via our listserv during the quarter prior to that when the course will be offered. It is generally offered on Fridays, 1:30-3:30pm.
Who: Open to all graduate students and postdocs, and aimed at those who are looking to design and teach a course of their own (either as a graduate student instructor or as you are preparing to transition into a new faculty position). Ideally, students in this course already have some TA or Intern experience to reflect on, and it is certainly not appropriate for first-time TAs/Interns (the CCT offers a number of other programs aimed at that population).
Course Description and Learning Objectives
The aim of this course is to help graduate students and postdocs from across the disciplines prepare to teach in the college classroom. Over the course of the term, we read literature on teaching and learning and use that scholarship to reflect on our own teaching practice. We start at the beginning by thinking first about how people learn, and exploring how to create an inclusive and welcoming learning environment. Next we turn our attention to course design and consider what kind of structure will help us promote learning in our students. We then consider assessment: how do we know students are learning, and how can the work we assign them promote meaningful engagement with course material? We then think about how to actively engage students by exploring different teaching methods, and what can be said for (and against) them.
Alongside this process of reading, reflection, and discussion, students are also engaged in designing a course of their own. This endeavor takes the form of a course design project, which should serve as the foundation for a course you plan to teach soon, either in the College, at a Chicago-area institution, or in your first year as a faculty member. Students also produce a statement of teaching philosophy that articulates their approach to teaching.
In sum, this course aims to help students be able to:
- Reflect critically on and improve their teaching practice.
- Design an inclusive and well-conceived course, based in meaningful learning objectives, with teaching methods and assessments aligned with those objectives.
- Articulate a meaningful, student-centered approach to teaching, expressed in a statement of teaching philosophy.
- This course is offered P/F fulfills a central requirement for the College Teaching Certificate offered by the CCT.
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