For Graduate Students & Postdoctoral Scholars
CRLT offers programs and services designed to support graduate students and postdocs in all stages of their teaching careers from training for their first teaching experiences through preparation for the academic job market. CRLT's services are generally open to all graduate students and postdocs, whether or not they are teaching. For information about other programs on campus to support graduate students in all aspects of their work, visit the Rackham Graduate School website for current students.
Welcome! There is a lot to read and explore on the CRLT website. This section highlights a few resources that may be particularly helpful for new graduate student instructors or postdoctoral fellows.
- The Vital Role of Graduate Student Instructors: This statement from the executive director of CRLT, Matthew Kaplan, is about the importance of GSIs and how CRLT can assist GSIs.
- Campus-wide Graduate Student Instructor (GSI) Teaching Orientation: This page contains information about CRLT’s orientation for new GSIs, including links to registration, the agenda, frequently asked questions, and materials (e.g., handouts, slides) from the various sessions.
- Engineering GSI Teaching Orientation: New engineering GSIs attend a teaching orientation specific to the College of Engineering. Click here to find out more, to register, or to access resources from the training.
- Preparing to Teach: This page presents various categories of teaching materials and resources, such as course design, syllabus design, and lesson planning. New instructors may find the icon for “Preparing to Teach” an especially useful place to start. This section also contains links to Academic Policies at University of Michigan and a directory of Campus Resources.
- Teaching for Equity and Inclusion: This page provides resources such as handouts, blogs, and other materials that define inclusive teaching, provide strategies for practicing inclusive teaching and handling difficult moments in the classroom.
- Teaching Strategies for International GSIs - This article on CRLT’s website identifies a range of strategies and resources useful for GSIs who were previously educated outside the U.S. This publication from Carnegie Mellon University, while framed primarily as a resource for teaching students who were educated outside the U.S., contains valuable guidance for instructors who are new to teaching in a U.S. context. For a broader set of campus resources for international graduate students, see the International Center website.
- You may find the following campus resources especially helpful for you and your students:
- Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS): CAPS provides student counseling and psychotherapy, preventive and educational programming, and consultation and outreach.
- Division of Public Safety and Security (DPSS): Many GSIs have requested guidance about how to respond to an active attacker situation, should one arise. An active attacker situation can cause panic and disbelief. Knowing what to do in advance increases your chances of surviving and your reaction matters. DPSS recommends that all instructors, including GSIs, view this video and refer to active attacker guidance on the DPSS website.
- Science Learning Center (SLC): Sponsored by the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts (LS&A) to support teaching and learning in the natural sciences.
- Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD): The campus office dedicated to helping students with disabilities register for academic accommodations.
- Sexual Assault Prevention and Awareness Center (SAPAC): SAPAC provides free and confidential crisis intervention, advocacy, and support for survivors of sexual assault, intimate partner violence, stalking and sexual harassment who are University of Michigan students, faculty and staff.
- Spectrum Center: Provides a variety of resources and programs for GSIs including education consultations and panel requests, the MaPPS mentorship program, and the opportunity to volunteer at the Spectrum Center.
- Sweetland Center for Writing: A comprehensive writing center that supports student writing at all levels.
- U-M Library Faculty Guide: The Library offers a great collection: vast electronic resources in all disciplines, millions of books and other print resources, primary source and archival materials, and much more. This guide introduces an array of Library services and expertise—some new, some you might not be familiar with—that can support and advance your research and teaching.
- ELI/CRLT Courses: Click here for more information about ELI 994, a course for LSA graduate students whose undergraduate education was not English-medium and who have been nominated for GSI appointments in LS&A.
- Questions Frequently Asked by U-M GSIs: This page lists commonly-asked questions by instructors and includes contact information and advice.
- U of M Acronyms Decoder: An online tool to define or decipher acronyms that the University of Michigan uses for its buildings, locations and programs.
This section provides an overview of some of our resources found under the "Resources" tab on our website that might be especially helpful for GSIs and postdocs.
- Teaching for Equity and Inclusion: Handouts, blogs, and other materials for inclusive teaching, handling difficult moments in the classroom, and the CRLT Players.
- Teaching and Technology: Resources for getting started, choosing technologies, and technological support.
- Preparing to Teach: Models for instructors preparing to teach, including course design, syllabus design, and lesson planning. Also includes information on academic policies and campus resources.
- Teaching Strategies: Resources for teaching, including general information, engaged learning, common challenges and solutions, and teaching contexts (e.g., labs, discussion sections, office hours).
- Testing and Grading: Materials on best practices for grading exams and lab reports and strategies for assessing student writing.
- Evaluation of Teaching: Information about data collected in the classroom, from colleagues, and through CRLT consultations.
- Teaching Philosophies and Statements: Resources related to developing teaching philosophies, including best practices, publications, and models.
- Student Learning: Resources pertaining to best practices and research for student learning, including information about grants for pedagogical and curricular innovation.
- CRLT Occasional Papers & Other Publications: Various papers and publications on research and best practices related to teaching, GSIs, and CRLT.
CRLT offers a number of opportunities for graduate students and postdoctoral fellows to pursue additional instructional training or receive one-on-one consultation. Review the links below for more information.
- Seminar Series: You can consult the schedule of CRLT workshops or register for a training session.
- Consultations: You can sign up for individual, confidential consultations with a CRLT consultant on a range of topics related to teaching and learning. This page also allows instructors to sign up for a Midterm Student Feedback (MSF) session.
- U-M Graduate Teacher Certificate (GTC): Find out more about CRLT’s graduate teacher certificate, which provides an opportunity to document professional development as instructors and prepare for a faculty job search.
- Preparing Future Faculty seminar (PFF): This seminar is a nationally-recognized program designed to help prepare doctoral candidates for the academic job search and success in faculty positions. Graduate students have priority for registration, but postdocs are welcome to apply.
- Preparing Future Faculty Web Resources: This webpage provides resources about types of academic jobs, how to navigate the academic job market, and strategies for success in the academy. You may also want to check out archived video resources like the “What’s It Like...” panels, which discuss faculty worklife at different kinds of institutions.
- Postdoctoral Short-Course on College Teaching in Science and Engineering (postdoctoral scholars only): This course prepares advanced postdoctoral scholars from a variety of disciplines in the sciences and engineering to teach effectively as future faculty members.
- Diversity and Inclusive Teaching Seminar: This advanced 5-week seminar is for graduate students and postdoctoral scholars who are interested in developing classroom and leadership skills around inclusive teaching. It is offered once a year during the Winter term. To apply, please visit the link above.
For graduate students and postdocs looking for opportunities to work with new instructors or gain experience at a university teaching center, CRLT employs experienced GSIs to consult with graduate student instructors across campus about their teaching.
- Practice Teaching Opportunities: CRLT offers experienced GSIs and postdocs opportunities to facilitate practice teaching sessions for fellow instructors. If you are interested in becoming a practice teaching facilitator, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Graduate Student Instructional Consultants (GSICs): This group of experienced GSIs and postdocs work with CRLT to consult with other instructors, conduct classroom observations and Midterm Student Feedback sessions, and participate in a regular teaching circle.
- Engineering Teaching Consultant Program (ETC): The ETC program employs experienced GSIs to serve as consultants and teaching mentors to the rest of the GSI and IA population in the College of Engineering.
Graduate student mentors (GSMs) are hired by departments at U-M to help train and advise GSIs. GSMs contribute to departmental GSI training and support in a variety of ways. For more information about what GSMs do at U-M, please check out Graduate Student Mentors (GSMs): What Are They?
GSMs can also schedule a consultation with CRLT. Consultants can review pedagogy materials, help plan seminars, identify methods for evaluating a GSI program, coordinate focus groups with GSIs and GSMs for departmental training programs, record classes for use in GSI training, develop multicultural training programs, and facilitate large course feedback sessions.
If you are currently a GSM, training GSMs for your department, or a faculty coordinator of GSI training, please also check out these resources:
- Workshops for GSMs and Faculty Coordinators of GSI Training: This page provides a list and schedule for upcoming workshops and seminars for GSMs and faculty coordinators of GSI training. Annual topics include training GSIs, consulting with GSIs, and conducting classroom observations.
- To request a consultation about supporting GSI training and development in your department, submit a request for consultation on our website.