Doctoral Student Courses & Teaching Certificate

Doctoral students at CEU have multiple opportunities to develop their knowledge and practice of teaching. In addition to workshops, lectures, consultations, and other informal opportunities, formal teaching preparation takes place in two cycles. The first cycle comprises the course, Foundations of Teaching in Higher Education, a Teaching Practicum, and associated workshops. The second cycle comprises additional courses, building on these introductory experiences, and leading to a full Certificate of Teaching in Higher Education.

Course details and times can be found here.

Overview of Foundations/Teaching Practicum & Teaching Certificate

The first cycle of teaching preparation involves, in most cases, the completion of a Teaching Practicum and the course, Foundations of Teaching in Higher Education. The Teaching Practicum is similar to a teaching assistantship, with an emphasis on developing teaching skills in partnership with a faculty member in the classroom. It is organized by doctoral programs, while the Elkana Center provides Getting Started workshops in fall and winter to introduce TAs to the experience and key tasks. Foundations of Teaching in Higher Education is a 3 US credit course, consisting of a seminar (YELC 6101) and practicum (YELC 6103). Depending on the doctoral program, Foundations is optional or required; paid teaching assistantships (subsequent to the teaching practicum) are preferentially awarded to those who have completed Foundations.

The Certificate of Teaching in Higher Education provides interested early-career academics an opportunity to develop their knowledge, skills, and traits required to effectively teach in higher education institutions and to facilitate the learning of their students. It builds on Foundations of Teaching in Higher Education, which is the first course in the longer sequence, as well as students' teaching experiences, for example, in their teaching practicum.

New Certificate Requirements (CEU Doctoral Students)

In August 2022, new Certificate requirements for doctoral students came into effect. The revised program is designed to better support students with their teaching assistantships and to better prepare them for academic job applications and initial teaching appointments. These changes also align the program more closely with CEU scheduling practices, other CEU certificate programs, and international standards (e.g., the UK Professional Standards Framework).

A brief summary of Certificate requirements for CEU doctoral students follows:

  • Foundations of Teaching in Higher Education (YELC 6101 and 6103). 3 credits. Students are required to enroll in and complete both the seminar and practicum.
  • Learning by Design (YELC 6105). 2 credits.
  • Electives worth 2 credits in total (either two, six-week courses, or one twelve-week course)
  • Creating a Teaching Portfolio (YELC 6107). 1 credit
  • Evaluation of a teaching portfolio. Components are created during the Certificate courses and revised during YELC 6107. Please see the handbook for details.

Graphic representation of the certificate requirements.

Course Registration (CEU Doctoral Students)

Students should generally register for courses through the normal SITS registration process. Course registration is open during the normal registration periods, and students who have general restrictions on their general registration in SITS will need to resolve these. Elkana Center courses can be found in the SITS menu under Extracurricular Courses (YELC - Yehuda Elkana Center for Teaching, Learning, and Higher Education), as they do not count towards the total credits required for the doctoral degree program (though they may be required for TAships). Please consult your departmental coordinator in programs where Elkana Center courses count as mandatory courses or as electives.

Students Who Began Courses with the Previous Certificate Structure

Prior to Fall 2022, the Center for Teaching and Learning organized courses with the CTAL course prefix, within the Program for Excellence in Teaching in Higher Education for Doctoral Students (henceforth, previous program structure). Students who completed 6 credits - specifically, CTAL6007 (3 credits), two 1-credit electives, and the one-credit CTAL6004 (Starting Your Teaching Portfolio) - and submitted a teaching portfolio, were eligible for a certificate. 

CEU doctoral students who completed CTAL-prefixed courses receive credit for the equivalent course in the new program structure. 

Furthermore, CEU doctoral students who successfully completed CTAL6007 (Foundations of Teaching in Higher Education) prior to July 2022 may elect to follow the previous certificate program structure (6 credits, instead of 8).  

  • Eligible students do not have to enroll in the two-credit, Learning by Design (YELC 6105), though they may take it in place of electives.  
  • The number of elective credits remains the same. Previously taken CTAL-prefixed electives count towards their two-credit, elective requirement in the new program structure. Any missing credits should be taken among the YELC electives.  
  • Eligible students should enroll in the revised Capstone Portfolio course (YELC 6107) if they have not taken CTAL6004.  
  • Eligible students may choose to omit the following from their teaching portfolio: observation of teaching session and associated materials, as well as assessment instructions and rubric. The other requirements for the teaching portfolio apply.  

Students who completed other CTAL-prefix courses, such as electives but not CTAL6007 (Foundations), must follow the new program structure. Students who have not yet completed any CTAL-prefixed courses are similarly required to follow the new program structure. 

Program Handbook

Please find the complete details of the revised Certificate of Teaching in Higher Education in the program handbook, below, including detailed information for all three tracks, as well as for students who began coursework in the old Certificate format.