Assessing Teaching & Learning Seminar

The Assessing Teaching & Learning Seminar (ATLS) is an online intensive offered by the CTL to help participants create a plan to assess teaching and student learning in the classroom. Over the course of these four modules, participants gain an understanding of Teaching as Research (TaR) by defining an original research question and developing their own TaR project proposal, drawing on the support of an online community of peers and the instructor. Along the way they learn about relevant data collection and assessment tools, both quantitative and qualitative, and complete a methods and data analysis section. The seminar culminates in the presentation of fully developed TaR proposals.

For those enrolled in the Teaching Development Program (TDP), this seminar satisfies the Advanced Track seminar requirement.

How to join this seminar

This seminar last ran in Spring 2020. To be alerted to when we will offer it again, join the CTL email list. For more information about this seminar, contact Christopher Chen.


Columbia University graduate students and postdocs who are interested in…

  • Understanding the role of Teaching as Research (TaR) in evidence-based pedagogy
  • Exploring educational research literature
  • Learning about data collection and assessment tools pertinent to teaching and learning
  • Defining and developing an original TaR proposal


Click on the toggles below to read the session descriptions.

Module 1. What is Teaching as Research? Assessing Teaching and Learning

In Module 1, learn about the iterative process of Teaching-as-Research (TAR) as a means to help you decide how to go about assessing your teaching and your students’ learning. After gaining an introduction to TaR in context with other educational assessment terms, you will discuss sample TAR research questions to help you develop an original research question to help guide your own assessment work.

Module 2. Defining & Refining Your Teaching as Research Question

In Module 2, learn how to contextualize and refine your drafted TAR question by looking into the research of teaching and learning in your academic discipline and beyond. After reviewing TAR questions and literature reviews by other participants, you will draft an introduction that puts into context your refined research question.

Module 3. Teaching & Learning Data Collection and Analysis

In Module 3, learn how to select the data collection and analysis methods that may be appropriate for assessing your research question. To do so, you will see examples of some common methods, and dive more deeply into a few methods of greatest interest to you. At the end of the module, you will draft a methods section that discusses the fit of your assessment approaches and analyses to your TAR question.

Module 4. Proposing Your TaR Project

In Module 4, learn how to put all of the parts of your proposal together, and get direct feedback on a complete draft of your assessment plan. Drawing from and completing your peer reviews, you will draft a final proposal for your project, and create a short five-minute pitch that summarizes your goals and approach – a pitch similar to what you could use if you were talking about this project in an interview.


Seminar Objectives

By participating in this seminar series, participants will be able to:

  • Explain Teaching as Research (TaR), its role in the spectrum of the scholarship of teaching and learning (SoTL), and its usefulness in the students’ own teaching
  • Define and refine a TaR research question.
  • Select appropriate methods for data collection and analysis for a TaR project.
  • Draft a proposal to implement a TaR project.


Email with any questions about this seminar.