The MacPherson Institute is proud to offer Teaching and Learning Certificates of Completion for graduate students and postdoctoral fellows. Throughout their studies, students and fellows may earn one, or both, of two certificates of completion offered.
The Teaching and Learning Certificates of Completion program as a whole has been accredited by the Educational Developers’ Caucus (EDC) according to the EDC Accreditation Framework.
Course registration generally opens one month before the beginning of each term (ie. on August 1st, December 1st, April 1st). Course registration for graduate students takes place each term via Mosaic. Postdoctoral fellows may register each term by emailing the MacPherson Institute and requesting that their name be added to a class list. Registration is on a first come, first served basis; there are a limited number of spaces in each course. There are no wait-lists maintained for the courses.
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Teaching and Learning Foundations Certificate of Completion (36 hours)
- EDUCATN 600: Essential Skills in Teaching and Learning (I)
This zero-unit graduate course involves both in-person and online components. Students select and complete six workshops from a list approved by the MacPherson Institute. The workshops are focused on key foundational themes in teaching and learning in higher education. Students are also responsible for completing workshop evaluation forms, engaging in online discussions, and writing a series of reflections. [No prerequisites.]
September 10 – December 10, 10:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m., MacPherson Institute Classroom
- EDUCATN 650: Peer-Evaluated Teaching Experience
This zero-unit graduate course is offered in a small group setting and is designed to enhance teaching effectiveness. During the 3-4 day course (full attendance is mandatory to earn a pass), students design and conduct three lessons and receive verbal, written, and video feedback from the other students who have been learners in the lessons. Using an intensive experiential learning approach, students are provided with information on the theory and practice of teaching adult learners, the selection and writing of useful intended learning outcomes with accompanying lesson plans, techniques for eliciting learner participation, and suggestions for evaluation of learning. Reflection and examination of one’s teaching practices are encouraged. [No prerequisites.]
* In addition to this course counting towards the Teaching and Learning Foundations Certificate of Completion, it also earns individuals the internationally recognized “Instructional Skills Workshop” certificate.
September 18, 20, 25, & 27, 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. daily, MacPherson Institute Classroom
- EDUCATN 700: Essential Skills in Teaching and Learning (II)
This zero-unit graduate course involves both in-person and online components. Students select and complete six workshops from a list approved by the MacPherson Institute. The workshops are focused on key scholarly themes in teaching and learning in higher education. Students are also responsible for completing workshop evaluation forms, engaging in online discussions, and writing a series of reflections. [Prerequisite: EDUCATN 600]
September 12 – December 12, 1:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m., MacPherson Institute Classroom
- EDUCATN 750/751: Principles and Practices of University Teaching
This graduate course can be taken as a three-unit (EDUCATN 750*) or zero-unit (EDUCATN 751) graduate level course and is offered up to three times per. The focus is on honing essential pedagogical and practical teaching skills. This includes sessions on curriculum design, teaching strategies (e.g., Inquiry and Problem-Based Learning), assessment strategies, developing a teaching dossier, and research on teaching and learning. [No prerequisites.]
* Graduate students should ask their department/school whether they have permission to take EDUCATN 750, and if so, whether the course will contribute to their degree requirements.
September 12 – December 12, 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m., MacPherson Institute Classroom
- EDUCATN 760: Self-Directed Study
In this zero-unit graduate course, students will engage in a self-directed study on a teaching and learning topic of their choice. Students will be able to choose whether they wish to undertake a project with a research focus (e.g., literature review and research proposal, literature review and grant proposal), or an applied focus (e.g., develop and facilitate a workshop, develop and distribute a resource). The work will be supported via peer feedback and mentorship from the course instructor. All students will be expected to identify a venue through which they will share their work. They will also be expected to present their work to their peers during the final class meeting. [Prerequisites: EDUCATN 600 and EDUCATN 650]
September 16, October 28, & December 9, 12:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. daily, MacPherson Institute Classroom
- Graduate students and postdoctoral fellows do not incur any fees for taking the courses.
- EDUCATN 600, EDUCATN 700, and EDUCATN 750/751 include both online and in-person components
- All five courses will be offered each Fall and Winter term. Only EDUCATN 650 and EDUCATN 760 will be offered each Spring term.
- All courses are Pass/Fail and appear on graduate students’ transcripts.
- Certificates of completion are printed and awarded at the end of each term.
Teaching and Learning Scholar Certificate of Completion (100 hours):
The two Teaching and Learning Foundations Certificate of Completion Courses (described above) in addition to the following three courses:
Testimonials from previous earners
Firat, PhD Candidate in the Faculty of Business, Foundations Earner
“I would strongly recommend taking the EDUCATN 600 and 650 courses and earning the Foundations Certificate of Completion. Taking these courses will allow you to establish a solid pedagogic foundation. You will also have [a] competitive advantage in the academic job market with this Certificate of Completion which demonstrates your teaching skills.”
Gwendolyn, PhD Candidate in the Faculty of Science, Foundations Earner
“I have thoroughly enjoyed the EDUCATN courses within the Teaching and Learning Certificates of Completion Program. The course content is both relevant and beneficial to my current and future teaching experiences in post-secondary education. … The graduate-level courses offered through the MacPherson Institute’s Teaching and Learning Certificates of Completion Program are a hidden gem at McMaster University, and I would encourage graduate students from all faculties to take advantage of the opportunities they provide, especially if they have interest in teaching.”
Sujane, MSc Graduate in the Faculty of Health Sciences, Foundations Earner
“The Teaching and Learning Foundations Certificate [of Completion] … has been a benefit to my academic journey and career development. I was able to not only learn very specific ways to improve student engagement (e.g. in a tutorial), but also had the opportunity to consciously reflect upon what kind of instructor I aspire to be. I think having a space dedicated to 1) exploring better teaching strategies within a university setting and 2) building a supportive community for those who hope to or are already teaching is what allows McMaster to stay ahead and continue to grow.”
Andrea, PhD Candidate in the Faculty of Health Sciences, Scholar Earner
“The … Teaching and Learning Certificates [of Completion] Program provides graduate students with an exceptional opportunity to gain formal instruction in higher education teaching and learning. I particularly like the inter-disciplinary nature of the program and having the opportunity to meet and learn from graduate students across the university. The interactive nature of the program allowed us to share teaching experiences and learn from both students and instructors. The program broadened my teaching knowledge and skill set, as well as complemented my practical teaching experiences throughout my graduate studies. I highly recommend the program to all graduate students with an interest in teaching.”
Megan, Former Postdoctoral Fellow in the Faculty of Engineering, Scholar Earner
“In addition to offering practical techniques and resources, the teaching and learning classes offered at the MacPherson Institute offered me the valuable opportunity to reflect and consider my approach to post-secondary teaching. The guided support in self-assessing my personal teaching and communication practices really benefited my confidence and ability to implement new and more effective teaching methods.”
Angela, PhD Candidate in the Faculty of Humanities, Scholar Earner
“The Teaching and Learning Certificates of Completion Program supported me in the redesign of a course, the earning of a Teaching Fellowship sessional contract for teaching the course, and the skills to evaluate the outcomes of the redesigned course; earning my PhD comprehensive with this teaching and learning research project. Curriculum design, implementation, and evaluation are important transferrable skills that are sure to expand my future employment opportunities.”