Teaching Certificate


Essentials of Teaching and Learning

This workshop series provides a foundation in important aspects of teaching and learning in higher education. Faculty, graduate students, and academic support staff seeking to earn the Essentials of Teaching and Learning Certificate should attend each of the five workshops in this series and also complete one peer observation by visiting a TOP Course.  The program has been designed so that the certificate can be earned in one semester but there is no time limit. Please see the CTL Calendar of Events to see the workshop schedule and to register for the workshops.

  1. Syllabus 101: Roadmap to Success (1.25 hours for f2f; 3 hours for online): Your course syllabus is one of the most important documents you create for your class. It serves as an agreement between you and your students about your goals for the course and your expectations for your students, plus it conveys a first--and lasting--impression with your students. This session will provide information about the important components of a syllabus, ways in which you can enhance your course syllabus, and strategies for using your syllabus as a learning tool.
  2. Introduction to Learning Objectives and Backward Design (3 hours): This workshop clarifies the use of learning objectives and provides concrete steps to write objectives for your course. This is a one-week, fully online course in Canvas that is facilitate by CTL Instructional Designers.
  3. Using Feedback to Improve Teaching and Learning (3 hours): Feedback is integral to the teaching and learning process. Providing students with feedback can motivate and guide behavior change that translates into student success. Soliciting feedback from students allows faculty to make changes in their instructional strategies that also lead to student success. This workshop provides an overview of tools and strategies for giving and receiving feedback – both traditional and technology-based – that can be easily incorporated into any course.
  4. Inclusive Teaching and Learning  (1.25): Any workshop from the Inclusive Teaching and Learning series will fulfill this requirement.

    4a. Difference in the Classroom: The real-life implications of implicit biases can create invisible barriers to opportunity and achievement for some students -- a stark contrast to the values and intentions of educators and administrators who dedicate their professional lives to their students' success. This workshop will focus on understanding our lens, and dissecting implicit bias and its effects in the classroom. (Facilitated by the Multicultural Resource Center)
    4b. Enhancing Cultural Awareness:  The session leaders will present an overview of the common definition and assessment of culture at UNC Charlotte and explore cultural dimensions based on theory and research. Participants will receive resources for sample assignments and a mapping exercise to enhance student cultural awareness. (Facilitated by the Office of International Programs)
    4c. Viewpoint Diversity & Civil Discourse in the Classroom:  College is designed to teach students how to think--not what to think.  An inclusive classroom must provide opportunities for students to form and express diverse viewpoints while respecting differing viewpoints of others. Teaching students how to engage in civil discourse can ensure that diverse viewpoints are discussed without offending others or disrupting the class. This workshop will provide techniques and resources to help faculty engage students in safe and respectful discussions around diverse viewpoints and perspectives. (Kim Buch and Jules Keith-Le)
    4d. Using Cognitive Empathy in the Classroom:  Adversity outside the classroom has always seeped into the classroom via multiple pathways. However, in today's environment, it is impossible to ignore how life challenges instructors' ability to educate and students' ability to learn. In this workshop, Dr. Jeanette Bennett, Associate Professor of Psychological Science, leads a 60 min virtual workshop on what is and how to incorporate use of cognitive empathy to strengthen the learning environment of the classroom, whether traditional, 100% online, or somewhere in between. The workshop includes multi-methods: short lectures, group discussions, and other activities. Please join us for an active session where everyone will (hopefully) learn something new. (Jeanette Bennett)

    1. Getting Started with Active Teaching and Learning: Active learning requires students to be engaged in their learning rather than being passive listeners. To enhance learning, students must speak, write, think deeply, and collaborate with others about the content and concepts presented in class. This workshop provides an introduction to active teaching and active learning strategies that can be used during class.
    2. Complete a Peer Observation of Teaching (1.75 hours)The Teachers Observing Peers Program provides UNC Charlotte faculty members with an opportunity to observe peers representing a variety of disciplines implementing interactive methods in a live classroom setting. Whether you are an instructor who has been using interactive methods for years or are trying to get ready to teach your first class, you are likely to benefit from the classroom observation by getting new ideas for effective practice and reflecting on your own practice.  
      1. You must complete ONE observation, which consists of both observation and debrief within the same semester
      2. Please view the TOP Program page and fill out a request form


    1. I am not a faculty member - can I pursue and earn this certificate?
      • Yes! The CTL recognizes that many academic support staff are in roles where professional development related to instruction would be valuable and we welcome their pursuit of the certificate.
    2. Do I have to complete all the requirements in a single semester or year?
      • No! You may take as long as you like to earn the certificate.
    3. I took workshops towards this certificate during the 2017-2018 academic year but don’t see them on my transcript. Will I get credit for these workshops?
      • Yes! In August 2018, the CTL began using a new workshop registration tool. We still have a record for workshop attendance prior to August 2018 and are actively monitoring progress towards the certificate for faculty who took workshops during the 2017-2018 year​