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Services and Resources Available at CPI

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Teaching Assistants celebrate their achievements in 2007-08
Teaching Assistants celebrate their achievements in 2007-08

[edit] Mandate

The mandate of the Centre for Pedagogical Innovation (CPI) is to support, promote and advance the quality of teaching at Brock University. The Centre is administratively independent of any faculty.

[edit] Programs

[edit] Teaching Development Sessions

CPI offers a variety of workshops designed to meet the needs and interests of faculty members and teaching assistants. These workshops explore issues related to teaching in higher education such as developing a teaching dossier, leading effective seminars, or teaching large classes. We encourage all new faculty as well as mid-career and established senior faculty to attend workshops related to academic responsibilities at Brock. Meeting colleagues from other disciplines is essential to establishing a learning community that can assist you in balancing the demands of your professional and personal life. Our sessions coincide with concerns associated with specific times in the semester (eg, grading protocols before mid term assignments; assessment considerations before exam creation, and so forth). New faculty will also have opportunities for discipline specific facilitation.

[edit] Instructional Skills Workshops

The Instructional Skills Workshop is a 25 year old, peer based, experiential instructional development program and is one of the most successful approaches to pedagogy in post secondary institutions across North America and other parts of the world. Held over three days, the ISW is designed to enhance the effectiveness of both new and experienced educators. The CPI offers the ISW to both faculty and TAs. More information can be found at

[edit] Faculty Certificate Program

The Faculty Certificate Program is an opportunity for faculty members to engage in a self-paced, option friendly, relevant program of academic development in teaching, scholarship, communication, educational leadership or a customized integration of these. The certificate program includes options from each of professional development, critical self-reflection and application components, and culminates in a philosophy of practice statement and a dossier documenting experience, insight and strategies.

[edit] Teaching Assistant Workshop Series and Certificate Program

TA Awards
TA Awards

The Centre offers a series of workshops throughout the year specifically designed for teaching assistants, seminar leaders, lab demonstrators and interested university staff. Past topics have included leading effective seminars, motivating students, rights and responsibilities of TAs, cross cultural awareness and using multimedia for instructional delivery. The workshops are offered monthly and are free of charge. Participants in the Workshop Series can earn credit towards either the Basic or the Advanced TA Certificate in Teaching and Learning in Higher Education. It is also possible to earn credits by attending training workshops hosted by individual departments in conjunction with the Centre.

[edit] Upcoming TA Workshops

[edit] Graduate Teaching Assistant Practicum

The Centre offers a Graduate Teaching Assistant Practicum which is a self-directed program of professional development in university teaching.

[edit] Educational Technologies Series

This series offers workshops in technologically assisted instruction, such as using Isaak/Sakai as an adjunct tool in course delivery.

[edit] Events

[edit] Tribute to Teaching

This event is held in December each year and celebrates the contributions and successes of the University’s teaching award winners. New faculty are invited to attend.

[edit] Best Practices Day

Best Practices Day is a full day professional development event open to all interested individuals across the institution. Held in May each year, this day is organized around themes related to teaching and learning. 2005 had a focus on Inquiry-based learning; 2006 examined curriculum reform across disciplines.

[edit] TA Day

A full day orientation event and training for teaching assistants, seminar leaders and lab demonstrators.

[edit] Resources

[edit] Publications

[edit] Web Page

The Centre’s web page contains links to other sites devoted to higher education and adult learning. It also has information about programs and workshops offered to teaching assistants and faculty. Visit the site at

[edit] Podcasts

The University Teaching Podcast is the CPI's podcast that features presentations given at various events centred on teaching. Delivering these presentations via podcast has given them a new audience, reach and currency. The CPI has also become the de facto podcasting resource on campus and has consulted with a number of parts of the university that are interested in podcasting.

Brock is in the process of creating our iTunes U presence and will soon be distributing audio and video podcasts to teachers, learners and the public via iTunesU.

[edit] Resource Topics related to Teaching & Learning available at the CPI

The CPI has teaching and learning related library books available for borrowing, in addition to an extensive resource collection of articles organized by topic.

Many of these articles can be found online.

Resource articles related to Teaching and Learning by topic

[edit] Liaison

[edit] Advisory Groups

CPI has the privilege of being advised by a number of groups with various pedagogic and scholarly specialties. These include:

Teaching Council is comprised of representatives from each Faculty and meets monthly to advise, consult and discuss teaching related issues.

Educational Technologies Advisory Group (ETAG) meets once a month and has broad representation and excellent consultation across ITS, Registrars Office, online course delivery (FOE, FMS, FOH). Several successful projects this year included the development of a UPC protocol for online courses, more streamlined processes for support of online courses, and broader consultation on issues relating to grade entry and identity management.

The Best Practices Recognition Advisory Group (BRAG) meets twice each term and focuses on communication and liaison regarding Academic Integrity, International Students, Students with Disabilities, and Human Rights and Equity. This group also oversees the Best Practices awards.

The Room Modernization Committee is a campus-wide committee and has representation from broader constituencies of staff and students. The group meets on a monthly basis and addresses issues of liaison, communication, faculty development and the learning culture at Brock University.

[edit] Senate Committees

CPI sits ex officio on the Senate Committee on Teaching and Learning and consults with the Senate Committees on Graduate Studies, Undergraduate Student Affairs, Undergraduate Program Committee and Information Technology and Infrastructure. The Centre liaises with the Teaching and Learning Committee in the adjudication of the Brock Distinguished Teaching Award.

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