Nov. 19, 2019

Applications open for the Academic Staff Certificate in University Teaching and Learning

Apply now for the winter 2020 course offering

Are you an educator looking to expand your knowledge about teaching and learning practices? Applications are now open for the winter 2020 session of the Academic Staff Certificate in University Teaching and Learning offered by the Taylor Institute. This program provides you with an opportunity to acquire evidence-based teaching expertise, reflect on your practice and develop your teaching dossier.

Through the program, you’ll become part of a cohort of scholars as you develop skills and confidence in supporting student learning, success and engagement. You’ll also document your understanding of teaching and learning into a robust dossier that reflects your evolving experience, goals and skills.

This certificate will enable professors, instructors, lecturers and other academic staff at different stages of career development to gain essential teaching skills and knowledge in order to excel in competitive academic environments.

Fall 2019 cohort feedback

The first cohort of participants in the Academic Staff Certificate program are already more than halfway through the fall 2019 session of the Teaching and Learning Practices, Theories and Assessments course, and many have expressed their appreciation for the content that has been covered so far.

Lisa Ann Silver, LLM, is an assistant professor in the Faculty of Law, and has over 10 years of teaching experience. She identified the Academic Staff Certificate program as an opportunity to strive for excellence in her teaching practices, to learn from others, and to challenge herself to be the best educator she could be for her students.

“A key takeaway from this course is that teaching requires thought, preparation and reflection. Also that teaching matters and excellent educational practices take much work and effort. I have also learned the importance of teaching as a reiterative process in which the instructor (me) must continually assess and re-assess teaching and learning practices. Often, as educators, we approach teaching in one tried and true way – this course made me think of teaching as a work in progress that allows for creativity and open-mindedness,” explains Silver.

One of the main reasons that Silver would recommend the program to other academic staff is for the opportunity to learn best educational practices while reflecting on your own approach, and being able to share and connect with other colleagues.

Why should you apply?

Dr. Carol Berenson, PhD, is one of three program instructors who are very excited to be working with engaged and committed educators who care deeply about student learning.

“The certificate provides formal recognition for professional learning as it relates to teaching, which can be important for individuals for numerous reasons in many contexts,” explains Berenson. “Beyond the credential however, the certificate offers faculty members the time and space to reflect on teaching and learning, explore and delve into connections between theory, research and practice, develop or enhance practical aspects of their teaching, and, perhaps most importantly, connect with colleagues and build relationships around a passion for teaching and learning,” she says.

Berenson also notes that feedback so far indicates that the resources offered in the course are proving to be relevant and helpful, which is excellent given that the current cohort comes from a range of disciplinary backgrounds and teaching experiences. Ongoing feedback will continue to shape the course in alignment with the needs and contexts of its varied participants. 


Completion of the Academic Staff Certificate is a blended (online and in-class) format that requires approximately 3-4 hours per week, and could take around 6-9 months to finish. The Teaching and Learning Practices, Theories and Assessments course is required, after which participants can choose between two courses to complete the certificate.

Applications for the winter 2020 cohort close on Dec 10, 2019, and are evaluated on an ongoing basis. Space is limited, so it is recommended that you apply early. Learn more, or apply now.

This certificate is for academic staff at the University of Calgary who are actively teaching. Certificates in University Teaching and Learning for graduate students and postdoctoral scholars are also available. If you are a current graduate student or under a postdoctoral scholar contract, please learn more about those certificates here.