In category: Teaching and Mentoring Programs
The Postdoc Teaching Certificate is offered through the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs to provide teaching preparation and practice to postdoctoral scholars. Teaching is integral to the professional development of many postdocs, especially those seeking academic careers. This certificate has been developed to provide a framework on which to build your skills, practice new techniques, and reflect on the experience. The certificate requires approximately 100 hours to complete, and can be completed in one year, or over the course of several years. The preparation, practice, assessment, and reflection will be complied to serve as the basis of your teaching portfolio, the capstone piece of the certificate.
Participation in the teaching certificate program is voluntary and must be approved by your faculty sponsor. We recommend discussing your plans in the context of your Individual Development Plan. Also note postdoc policy on teaching.
The teaching certificate is comprised of 3 parts. Approximately 2/3 of your effort should be dedicated to teaching preparation and training. The remaining 1/3 is devoted to teaching and developing your portfolio.
|At least 70 hours of teaching training, including:||
|Approximately 20 hours of teaching practice, including:||
|Approximately 10 hours toward preparing a teaching portfolio:||
There is no required order to the components, although we recommend specific skills development before practice (e.g. take a course in curriculum design before designing your curriculum).
Sign up for the Postdoc Teaching Interest email list at if you haven’t already. Any opportunities we hear of that would count toward the Teaching Certificate will be sent out via that email list. (http://bit.ly/PTC-Mail)
Begin taking part in activities that will count toward the Teaching Certificate, as outlined below. If you have questions about whether an activity would be applicable, please email email@example.com.
OPA Staff responds to inquiries in the firstname.lastname@example.org mailbox on a bimonthly basis. Postdocs desiring a response in less than two weeks are encouraged to include Urgent in the subject of their email to email@example.com to request an expedited response.
The form requests the following information: Name of Workshop, Institution/Organization, Name of Instructor(s), Date(s), Email contact, URL (if available), 3+ Learning Goals or Key Takeaways, and Reflection. Be sure to email yourself a copy of your responses, as this will be helpful as you create your Teaching Statement.
Begin collecting materials for your Teaching Portfolio.
You are required to complete a total of 70 hours of teaching training, combining the following 3 types of training activities. Only in-class hours for teaching training activities may be counted toward your total hours (do not count time for homework or other engagement/preparation). Please note, workshops solely on mentoring, like OPA's Mentoring in Research, are not eligible for the teaching certificate.
A comprehensive teaching training workshop that provides a holistic foundation for teaching improvement and/or pedagogical theory is required, this is one of two that fulfills this requirement:
The number of courses required depends on the number of in-class hours total among all types of teaching training, totaling a minimum of 70 training hours. These may be workshops on aspects of teaching preparation; specific teaching techniques; diversity, equity, and inclusion, etc.
In addition to workshops hosted by OPA (many listed below), the following partners frequently offer teaching training opportunities open to postdocs:
You are required to teach at least 5 hours in a classroom. The 5 hours is in-class time and does not include preparation time.
This will likely include a combination of multiple opportunities.
Each Teaching opportunity must include:
Upon completion of your required hours, you must submit a teaching portfolio for review. Your portfolio must include a teaching philosophy statement. This UM CRLT site has compiled a lot of great resources on writing a teaching philosophy statement.
You may also submit any combination of other portfolio pieces, including but not limited to:
*Teaching Portfolio annotations assist a hiring committee in assessing your portfolio items. Information to provide may include: