Our Approach Is
Learner-centered We put student learning at the center of the teaching process, helping faculty, postdocs and graduate students to develop course objectives, assessments, and instructional activities that together support and promote student learning and performance.
Educational We help faculty members, postdocs and graduate students gain a deeper understanding of the principles that underlie effective learning and teaching so that they can make appropriate teaching decisions for their own courses. We do not simply dispense teaching tips.
Collaborative We work closely with faculty, postdocs and graduate students to help them identify their strengths as teachers and to jointly devise strategies for course improvement and educational innovation.
Constructive We focus on providing constructive and practical feedback to help our colleagues succeed as educators. Our role is to support teaching, not to judge performance.
Data-driven We help faculty members, postdocs and graduate students to identify and address the sources of their teaching problems by collecting information from classroom observations, student focus groups, and examination of teaching materials.
Research-based We distill, synthesize and apply research integrated from a range of disciplines to help faculty and graduate students design and teach more effective courses. We also help faculty colleagues to conduct educational research in their disciplines where gaps in the literature exist.
We Work With
All faculty members and postdocs who teach (e.g., tenure-track, teaching-track, visiting, adjunct) and graduate students (e.g., teaching assistant, instructor, and future faculty) who want to reflect on and improve their teaching. This includes those who are:
- new to Carnegie Mellon and want to calibrate to our students and the institution.
- experienced and successful teachers who want to try new techniques, approaches or technologies.
- encountering difficulties in their courses and want help identifying and addressing problems.
- new to teaching and want help getting started (including graduate students who anticipate pursuing an academic career).
Strictly confidential We do not disclose any information from our consultations. This includes the identities of those with whom we work, the information they share with us, and data we gather on their behalf via classroom observations and interactions with TAs and students.
Documented for faculty and graduate student purposes alone We provide written feedback to the colleagues with whom we consult that summarizes and documents the consultation process. We do not write letters of support for reappointment, promotion or tenure, but faculty can choose to use our documentation as they see fit.
Voluntary We do not seek out faculty or graduate students, but we are happy to meet with anyone who contacts us.