Winter 2014 — what’s in store for faculty teaching development?

IMG_3681Welcome to January! This is a pretty special term for us here at CTE in that we have our new workshop spaces fully operational. We hope you’ll come round for our official Open House on January 20th between 10 and 2 to see the space and experience its features. More than that, we hope it will be your teaching development “home away from departmental home” when you want to join one of our many workshops and events this term. Most will take place in EV1 241 or EV1 242; an overview follows.

The Centre for Teaching Excellence offers workshops and events on a range of topics; we invite you to visit our Events page for the full listings of workshops for you, and for instructions on how to sign up (myHRinfo will be unavailable on Friday, January 10 for scheduled maintenance).

  • Getting Started with LEARN?  Check out the January sessions of LEARN for TAs, the quiz feature, the grades tool and timesaving tips in LEARN.
  • CTE642: Course Design Fundamentals (six hours) is offered on Monday, March 3 and repeated on Tuesday, March 4.
  • CTE908: Documenting Your Teaching for Tenure and Promotion Lunch and Learn for pre-tenure faculty being held in Needles Hall on Tuesday, March 25 from 11:45 am to 1:15 pm.
  • CTE601: Instructional Skills Workshop is scheduled over four days in February 2014.  Very limited enrolment for this 24-hours workshop on February 18, 19, 20 and 21.

Teaching Squares is a peer based program well suited to faculty interested in broadening their teaching perspectives by taking part in reciprocal classroom visits. Teaching Squares focus on the valuable take-away(s) made accessible by observing other teachers in action rather than on the potentially harsh critique of peer evaluation. The aim of the Teaching Squares approach is to enhance teaching and learning through a structured process of classroom observation, reflection and discussion (leading to a plan for revitalization of one’s own teaching). A square is formed by four instructors who visit each other’s classes over the course of one term. The visits are preceded by an organizational meeting and followed by a debrief meeting where the participants share their experiences (the positive aspects of what they have learned and how they might improve their own classes). The total time commitment over the term is approximately 6 hours. If you are interested, please send Monica Vesely an email ( indicating the term you would like to participate (this term – Winter 2014 or later in the year) and the course you will be teaching.

The sixth annual University of Waterloo Teaching and Learning Conference: Opportunities and New Directions (OND) will be held Thursday, May 1, 2014 with the theme “Rethinking and Reframing the Assessment of Learning”. We welcome research-based or practice-based submissions related to the theme.  We are excited that Dr. John Bean will be our Keynote Speaker. Proposals are due Friday, January 31, 2014. The call for proposals, as well as the proposal submission form can be found on the Conference website: . Even if you do not submit a proposal, we hope that you and your colleagues will join us for what we hope will be an enriching and exciting day!  For Conference-related questions, contact Julie Timmermans (

Upcoming Deadlines

OND Conference proposals:  Deadline Friday, January 31, 2014

LITE Seed Grants: Application deadline Saturday, February 1, 2014
Distinguished Teacher Award: Nomination deadline Friday, February 7, 2014

Amit and Meena Chakma Awards for Exceptional Teaching by a Student: Nomination deadline Friday, February 14, 2014

Waterloo’s 2014 Loving to Learn Day falls on Friday, February 14. Enter the contest by Tuesday, February 11, and win a book prize! “What makes a teacher a really GREAT teacher?”


As always, contact your CTE Faculty Liaison with any questions you may have about CTE services.

If you have difficulty enrolling using the myHRinfo system (most of us have, at various points), contact Verna Keller.


For confidential consultations about course ratings, classroom observations, or the like, contact Trevor Holmes or Jane Holbrook.

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As Senior Instructional Developer, Curriculum and Programming, Trevor Holmes plans and delivers workshops and events in support of faculty across the career span. Prior to joining the Centre for Teaching Excellence, Trevor worked at a variety of universities teaching courses, supporting faculty and teaching assistants through educational development offices, and advising undergraduates. Trevor’s PhD is from York University in English Literature, with a focus on gothic literature, queer theory, and goth identities. A popular workshop facilitator at the national and international levels, Trevor is also interested in questions of identity in teaching and teaching development.