Teaching Development

Academic search committees often ask applicants to provide evidence of teaching development efforts and teaching effectiveness. During the ensuing interview process, candidates may be asked to discuss their teaching strategies and philosophy as well as their research skills and interests. The Teaching Development Program (TDP)—one of the graduate student professional development services offered by the Office of Graduate Studies—helps graduate students teach better now and in the future, and prepares them for the academic job search process by helping them document their teaching development efforts.

To request a classroom visit, complete the scheduling form. Classroom visits are conducted between the 5th and 8th week of each semester, and are scheduled on a first-come, first-served basis. To arrange an individual teaching consultation without scheduling a classroom visit, write us.

The Teaching Development Process

The TDP offers you an early opportunity to reflect on the link between teaching and student learning outcomes and to develop formal documentation of your teaching development activities. The process occurs typically in five stages, but may be customized to your needs.

  1. TDP Request
    Request a classroom visit from a teaching consultant. Classroom visits are conducted between the 5th and 8th week of each semester. If you're teaching online courses or not currently teaching, but have a teaching related question, write us.
  2. Initial Interview (optional, except for online courses)
    It’s most productive to begin with a short interview to help the consultant understand the level of your course and work with you to design a plan for documenting your teaching. You might send a copy of your syllabus or the day's lesson plan to provide additional background.
  3. Student Feedback and Observation: Data Collection
    On the date you specify, the consultant will visit to observe your classroom and administer a short questionnaire to get your students’ views on your relative teaching strengths and development needs. Video recording is available also upon request. All information collected is confidential and belongs to you.
  4. Individual Consultation: Data Review and Analysis
    You'll meet with the consultant to discuss student feedback as well as your perspectives about your current teaching performance and your students’ motivation and effort. The consultant will also help you set goals and design strategies to meet those teaching objectives.
  5. Evaluation and Documentation
    At the end of the semester, you should document the development process you engaged in by producing a written reflection for your teaching portfolio. You might include changes in your teaching perspectives, interactions with students, adjustments to teaching techniques, your response to received student feedback, goals you set, successes (or failures)—whatever it is you experienced. The consultant can also provide a formal documentation letter upon request.