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Reflective Teaching Seminar

Join a community of instructors at Columbia University to reflect on teaching experiences and explore pedagogical practices and beliefs in order to improve student learning and their teaching. Upon completion of this seminar, you will be able to:
  –

  • Engage in systematic reflection on teaching and learning
  • Apply what is known about the science of learning to your teaching
  • Articulate learning objectives and integrate them into course materials and lessons
  • Develop assessment strategies that align with learning objectives
  • Provide and integrate feedback into your reflective teaching practice

Apply here

Faculty and Staff
Deadline: January 20, 2017

Apply here

Graduate Students
Deadline: January 20, 2017

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Learn about the program below

There’s never enough time to step back and reflect on our teaching, to ask ourselves why we’re doing what we’re doing in the classroom and whether we can maybe do things better. The Reflective Teaching Seminar gives you that time.

Caroline Marvin

Lecturer in the Discipline of Psychology

Read more about Caroline's experience.

“Through carefully curated readings, purposeful assignments, engaging group activities, and thoughtful feedback from my colleagues, I had the chance to really consider what I want my students to learn and how I’m going to measure their learning, to brainstorm with colleagues about ways to create more inclusive classrooms, and to leverage findings in cognitive science to design more engaging learning experiences for my students. On the last day of the seminar, we each gave a five-minute teaching demonstration. At first, you think that five minutes isn’t enough time to teach anything. But I was so impressed by what my colleagues were able to accomplish. When you step back and reflect on your decisions and work to make your teaching more intentional and focused, you can make the most of every minute in the classroom.”

I found the Reflective Teaching Seminar to be extremely beneficial to my teaching practices.  The seminar offered a wide-range of flexible techniques that could be adapted and adopted to most teaching situations – whether you teach one-shot sessions or semester-long courses. The seminar helped situate and broaden my teaching practice overall.  

Elizabeth Call

Public Services Librarian, The Burke Library at Union Theological Seminary

Read more about Elizabeth's experience.

“Coming from the library and archives world I am very familiar with the pedagogy around teaching with collections, but found participating in this seminar helped flesh out my understanding of pedagogy overall and allowed for me to align my practices better – not to mention that it afforded me the opportunity to learn more about how others not in my field approach teaching. In my current position I am responsible for coordinating the library’s teaching program, with what I learned at this seminar I have created a stronger, more intentional teaching framework and have already found myself implementing some of the strategies into my sessions.”

I got big and small ideas to improve my classes, the seminar was designed so that the time commitment was manageable, and I appreciated being ‘forced’ to do some scholarly reading outside of my field. I think it’s good for teachers to occasionally revisit what it’s like to be a student!

Abigail Sporer

Lecturer in the Discipline of Biological Sciences

Read more about Abigail's experience.

“For me, the most valuable aspect of the reflective teaching seminar was the opportunity to discuss the readings and ideas with a diverse cohort of colleagues.  Thinking about the specific challenges faced by instructors in other disciplines gave me a new lens through which to consider my own. Even though I felt the semester was ‘too busy’ for me to add any more activities to my schedule, I’m glad I made time to participate.”

When and Where

This program enrolls a new cohort at the beginning of each semester. The deadline for submitting applications for the Spring 2017 semester is January 20, 2017.

Spring 2017 seminar meeting dates are scheduled from 3-5 pm on the following five Wednesdays in Butler Library: February 1, February 22, March 1, March 22, and April 5.

Who

Faculty, postdocs, graduate students, and staff…

  • …who have experience facilitating learning
  • …who are interested in reflecting on their teaching
  • …who are prepared to put reflection into action through intentional course design

Program Description

You will develop and refine teaching strategies and skills based on the scholarship of teaching and learning, as you reflect on your teaching experiences and put that reflection into action. The seminar embeds inclusive teaching and learning practices in each module. In every session, you will interact with colleagues from a variety of disciplines and give and receive peer feedback.

Upon completing the seminar, you will be able to:

  • Engage in systematic reflection on teaching and learning
  • Apply what is known about the science of learning to your teaching
  • Articulate learning objectives and integrate them into course materials and lessons
  • Develop assessment strategies that align with learning objectives
  • Provide and integrate feedback into your reflective teaching practice

The program takes places over one semester term and is organized into five modules. Each module contains a large group discussion, breakout session, readings, assignment(s), and written reflection. Topics include:

  1. How Learning Works
  2. Developing Student Learning Objectives
  3. Measuring Your Students’ Learning
  4. Engaging Your Students
  5. Giving and Receiving Feedback on Your Teaching**

**You will give a five-minute teaching demo in your breakout section and receive feedback on your teaching. You will also provide feedback to others as they complete their demos.

Each participant will also complete a CTL Teaching Observation to engage in collaborative discussion and receive formative feedback.

Contact

Email CTLReflectiveTeaching@columbia.edu if you have any questions or concerns.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the requirements?


Is this a credit-bearing university seminar?

No. The Reflective Teaching Seminar is a program offered through the CTL designed to further develop your teaching and learning.

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Questions?

Reach out to the CTL by email or phone.