This Week for Graduate Students: How can we leverage what students already know? Join us on Wednesday!

by | Apr 5, 2021

Advanced Topics in Teaching

Identifying and Engaging Students’ Prior Knowledge 

All learning builds on prior knowledge. What might this mean for instructors teaching foundational courses in their discipline—or for instructors teaching in interdisciplinary settings? How might this support or challenge efforts to achieve learning objectives, and/or to foster an inclusive course climate?

Indeed, the ways in which instructors identify and engage students’ prior knowledge can have important implications for student learning. At times, instructors may choose to deliberately design learning experiences that extend, amplify, or resonate with the experiences, values, or knowledge students bring into the classroom. Yet at other times, instructors may seek to challenge these ideas in service of course learning objectives.

In this workshop, participants will consider students’ prior knowledge in their own teaching contexts and confront a range of questions about how and why engaging it matters.

Date: Wednesday, April 7
Time: 10:10 AM–11:40 AM

Careers in Educational Development

Curious about the field of educational development as a career trajectory? Come hear from the CTL’s Assistant Directors (ADs) and Learning Designers (LDs) about our recent paths to careers in educational development and early experiences in this field. 

Through a brief pre-session activity and informed in-session Q&A, participants will learn about a range of interests and pathways that led us to this career path, the kinds of opportunities we sought out along the way, and how we prepared for our transition into the field of educational development. Ultimately, this session can help graduate students interested in pursuing a career in educational development to identify steps they can take (or may have already taken) to prepare for this career. 

Date: Friday, April 16
Time: 1:00 PM–2:00 PM

Lead Teaching Fellowship: Applications Open!

The Lead Teaching Fellowship is a professional development opportunity for doctoral students who are committed to promoting pedagogical practices and conversations among their peers. LTFs must be in years 2-7 of a doctoral program at Columbia University as of Fall 2021. Applications for 2021-22 Lead Teaching Fellows are being accepted now through April 19, 2021.

As a Lead Teaching Fellow, you will:

  • Design workshops that respond to teaching-related needs and interests in your department.
  • Connect to resources, programs, and support at the CTL that can help you shape these workshops.
  • Cultivate peer connections within an interdisciplinary cohort of Columbia graduate students committed to advancing teaching practices.

LTFs receive stipends of $2000 ($1000 at the end of each semester) upon the successful production of teaching-related events in their home departments, and the completion of a series of activities promoting communication between the CTL, other Fellows, and faculty and graduate student instructors in their home departments.