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Certification

GTP Teacher Certification | Professional Development Certification


Graduate Teacher Certification

Overview
Requirements for Certification
A. Classroom Teaching
B. GTP Workshops
C. Discipline-Specific Workshops
D. Videotape Consultation
E. Observation and Evaluation
F. Teaching Portfolio
G. Final Assessment
International Graduate Teachers
Time Commitment
Registration Information

Forms: (also available at the GTP office, 201 ATLAS)

Personal Attendance Tracking Form for GTP Certification (.pdf)
This form contains the requirements for certification.

Outline for the Teaching Portfolio Requirement (.pdf)
This document explains how to create your Teaching Portfolio for the Graduate Teacher Certificate


Overview
The Graduate School of the University of Colorado at Boulder considers the employment and training of graduate teachers to be a professional apprenticeship that shapes the professoriate of the future. To recognize and reward graduate teachers who devote time to improving their teaching, the Graduate School offers a Graduate Teacher Training Certificate through the Graduate Teacher Program. Although this certificate is not officially recognized at the state or national level, graduate students report that it is an asset when pursuing employment in postsecondary institutions.

Requirements for Graduate Teacher Certification
The Graduate Teacher Certification Program encourages graduate students to examine their interest and fitness for teaching, to improve communication and teamwork skills, to understand various teaching and learning methods, and to develop as professionals in their fields. Participation in teaching enhancement activities offered through the Graduate Teacher Program and through academic departments is required. To qualify for Graduate Teacher Certification, graduate teachers must complete the requirements detailed below. For your records, we recommend that you keep track of your attendance at workshops toward certification using the Personal Attendance Tracking Form.

A. Classroom Teaching
To qualify for and participate in Graduate Teacher Certification, graduate students must teach for two full semesters; this includes courses, recitations, and laboratories.

B. GTP Workshops
Certification requires the completion of 20 Graduate Teacher Program workshops. Workshops address the needs of beginning and experienced graduate teaching assistants and instructors. Graduate teachers should choose activities that are appropriate for their personal level of experience. Workshops cover topics from the following areas:

  • general pedagogy (beginning and advanced)
  • personal and professional development
  • multicultural and gender issues in teaching and course design
  • academic policies (sexual harassment, academic ethics)
  • assessment and evaluation (self, course, and student)
  • preparation of teaching portfolios
  • technology and teaching

A variety of experiences are available: the Fall Intensive, Friday Forums, Monday Workshops, Spring Conference, Summer Series, PFF sessions, and occasional special workshops. Make sure you sign in at each workshop you attend, otherwise you will not get credit for attendance.

C. Discipline-Specific Workshops
All graduate teachers wishing to be certified will complete credits on teaching in their discipline. Departmental activities, courses on teaching, workshops or regular meetings with the faculty supervisor, faculty mentor, or lead graduate teacher may fulfill the discipline-specific requirement. A minimum of 20 hours of discipline-specific work is required; however, the department may require more. If the department does not provide enough discipline-specific training, potential certificants can substitute additional Graduate Teacher Program Workshops.

D. Videotape Consultation
Two videotape consultations (based on recitation sections, laboratory sections, or courses the graduate teacher is teaching for a full semester) are required for certification. The graduate teacher, in consultation with a Graduate Teacher Program staff consultant or lead graduate teacher, develops a plan for improvement based on video self-assessment. The first videotape consultation should be completed early in the program; the second at least three months later. Consultations are confidential and non-evaluative. Public speaking engagements, talks in colloquia, or single lectures given in the place of a faculty member may not be used to complete the videotape consultation portion of Graduate Teacher Certification.

E. Observation and Evaluation
A faculty member from the home department observes and evaluates each candidate for certification during a regular class, recitation, or lab session. To qualify for certificates, candidates must meet departmental standards for proficiency in teaching. Faculty may consider evidence of content knowledge, general pedagogical proficiency, and pedagogical content knowledge as well as evidence of biased teaching, use of technology, and academic ethics. The faculty member may decide to recommend the graduate teacher for certification or may request that the graduate teacher attain a higher level of proficiency and undergo a follow-up evaluation prior to certification. A written observation and evaluation report by a faculty member must be sent to the Graduate Teacher Program office: 362 UCB. A copy should also be kept in the graduate teacher's department file.

F. Teaching Portfolio
Certificants are required to prepare a personal teaching portfolio. The portfolio includes a narrative describing their philosophy of teaching, a teaching biography, their experiences with assessment and evaluation, pedagogical training and professional development, and future teaching goals. The narrative should be supported by such relevant data as syllabi, reading lists, handouts, quizzes and examinations, and consolidated scores on the Faculty Course Questionnaire. Letters of recommendation on teaching effectiveness and selected student materials or comments may also provide useful supportive information. Certificants may consult with their home departments and/or with Graduate Teacher Program staff regarding the development of their portfolio. Portfolios must be approved by the Graduate Teacher Program.

G. Final Assessment
Upon recommendation from the department, the Graduate Teacher Program director reviews each candidate's file and portfolio and approves the candidate's certification. Before the candidate receives certification, he or she must complete a GTP exit survey at Zoomerang.com.

It is important that the candidate notify the GTP upon completion of the exit survey to receive a Graduate Teacher Certificate. To do this, send an email to gtp@colorado.edu once you have completed the survey.

International Graduate Teachers
To be certified, graduate teaching assistants (TAs) and graduate part-time instructors (GPTIs) from other countries have two additional requirements. First, they are required to attend one International Graduate Teacher Cultural Intensive which is held prior to the fall semester. Second, if their first language is not English, they must take a screening examination administered by Dr. Antonia Johnson, department of Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences and the Talk Mastery Center. Upon completion of the examination, Dr. Johnson will make a recommendation to the student and to the Graduate Teacher Program. For more information, please email Dr. Johnson at AntJohnson@aol.com or call (303) 499-5117.

Time Commitment
As learning to teach effectively is a developmental process, we suggest that graduate teachers complete the requirements over a minimum of two or more years. It is possible to complete requirements comfortably over a period or two years. Both the Fall Intensive and the Spring Conference take place before regular classes begin. Other workshops are held throughout the academic year and during summer school.

Registration
Graduate teachers (graduate part-time instructors and graduate teaching assistants) who teach recitations, labs, or classes in any department, school, or college on the Boulder campus may register for Graduate Teacher Certification. Graduate students who only grade or hold office hours do not qualify for Graduate Teacher Certification, but may request written acknowledgment of their participation in Graduate Teacher Program activities. However, these graduate students are invited to participate in the Professional Development Certificate.

Graduate students are automatically registered for certification when they attend their first GTP workshop. The requirements to complete the certification are as follows

A. Classroom Teaching (courses, recitations, or labs) 2 semesters
B. Core Graduate Teacher Program Workshops 20 workshops required
C. Discipline-Specific Workshops (can substitute GTP workshops if department does not have program) 20 hours required
D. Classroom Videotape Consultation (can be done by GTP or by home department) 2 required
E. Classroom Observation (by home department/faculty supervisor) 1 required
  Written Departmental Evaluation (by home department) 1 required
F. Teaching Portfolio required
G. Final Assessment by GTP Director (a letter of acceptance will be sent to you) required

The requirements for International Graduate Teacher Certification are as follows:

A. Classroom Teaching (courses, recitations, labs) 2 semesters
B. Core Graduate Teacher Program Workshops 20 workshops required
C. Discipline-Specific Workshops (can substitute GTP workshops if department does not have program) 20 hours required
D. Classroom Videotape Consultation (can be done by GTP or by home department) 2 required
E. Classroom Observation (by home department/faculty supervisor) 1 required
  Written Departmental Evaluation (by home department) 1 required
* International Graduate Teacher Intensive 1 day

F.

Teaching Portfolio required
G. Final Assessment by GTP Director (a letter of acceptance will be sent to you) required

If you have any questions regarding Certification, please email us.