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Advancing Your Teaching in the Humanities and Social Sciences

Are you seeking to advance your teaching in your discipline? The CTL offers programs and services throughout the academic year to help graduate students connect to a diverse array of resources that will help them improve their teaching and their students’ learning; apply conceptual frameworks and emerging technologies to innovate their teaching; engage with the scholarship of teaching and learning within a community of peers invested in teaching; and refine their teaching practices and prepare for the job market by participating in the CTL’s teaching observation and individual consultation services.

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Advancing Your Teaching

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CTL Seminars for Graduate Students

Graduate students can apply to participate in multi-day, immersive seminars that run every semester at CTL. Rotating programs include the Inclusive Teaching Seminar, the Collaborative Learning Seminar, the Innovative Course Design Seminar, and the Assessing Teaching and Learning Seminar. All programs develop a supportive community of practice through a series of connected modules, workshops, and discussion groups, and help participants develop teaching artifacts such as an original syllabus, innovative assignment, assessment plan, or action plan for inclusive teaching. Learn more.

Teachers’ Lounge

In Teachers’ Lounge, graduate students and CTL staff informally converse over pizza about teaching approaches, drawing from research and one another’s classroom experiences. Previous topics included grading and assessments, inclusive teaching, and international perspectives. Learn more.

Advanced Topics in Teaching

The CTL offers workshops on various advanced topics in teaching for graduate students looking to acquire new pedagogical frameworks and to innovate their teaching. Topics include inclusive teaching strategies, syllabus construction, visual thinking strategies, and effective teaching observations. Learn more.

CTLgrads Learning Communities

By participating in these deeper multi-session discussions of the teaching literature with other graduate student instructors, you will develop new frameworks to innovate your teaching. Past CTL grads Learning Communities have discussed metacognition, activism in the classroom, feminist pedagogy, anti-racist pedagogy, and interdisciplinary approaches to teaching. Learn more.

Lead Teaching Fellow Workshops

Lead Teaching Fellows (LTFs) are experienced graduate student instructors who develop departmental workshops specific to the teaching and learning needs of their departments and can help support you and your peers in your teaching. Check the LTF directory to connect to an LTF in your department.



Practice Teaching (Microteaching) Sessions

Practice Teaching sessions are offered once a month and provide a venue for you and other instructors to practice your teaching with a small group of peers. Try out new tools and approaches, and receive immediate feedback from peers and a trained facilitator. Learn more.

Mid-Course Reviews

The CTL offers Mid-Course Reviews (MCRs) with trained peer consultants who can help solicit feedback from your students on what they find to be the most helpful and the most challenging aspects of your course. CTL Mid-Course Reviews are confidential, formative, and designed to support you in your teaching practices. Learn more.

Teaching Observations

Teaching Observations give you an opportunity to receive confidential feedback on your classroom instruction by a trained peer consultant graduate students. As you start out teaching at Columbia, sign up to be observed leading your lab or section. Learn more.

Individual Consultations

The CTL meets with graduate students seeking consultation at all points in their graduate teaching career. This includes consultations on teaching statements, professional development, preparing for the job market, and general teaching-related support on a first-come, first-served basis. Learn more.



Teaching Development Program

CTL’s Teaching Development Program (TDP) allows Columbia doctoral students to cultivate, document, and articulate their teaching development across the arc of their graduate school career. Graduate students can participate in the TDP program on either of two tracks: Foundational or Advanced. Completion of a TDP track earns a letter outlining track competencies and certifying completion from the Center for Teaching and Learning. Learn more.

Lead Teaching Fellowship

The Lead Teaching Fellowship (LTF) program is a year-long development opportunity for doctoral students to develop mentorship and liaison skills while producing teaching development activities for their peers. Details about activities and stipends can be found on the CTL website. Learn more.

Teaching Observation Fellowship

The Teaching Observation Fellowship (TOF) program offers a stipend to a select cohort of graduate student instructors to assess and reflect on their own teaching through classroom observations. Learn more.

Teaching Assessment Fellowship

The Teaching Assessment Fellowship (TAF) program offers a stipend to a select cohort of graduate student instructors who partner with faculty and CTL staff to conduct targeted assessment of Provost-funded teaching innovations. Learn more.

Looking Forward

The CTL also provides support as you approach the job market. While the programs listed above will prepare you to reflect on and speak to your teaching experiences in applications and interviews, you can click here to find workshops and services that specifically target the development of your application materials.

The CTL is here for graduate students.

The Columbia Center for Teaching and Learning provides an array of support for graduate students in both their current and future teaching responsibilities.