A. Orientation to college teaching and student learning

Resource Title:
GTC: A. Orientation to college teaching and student learning
Course Type:
graduate teacher certificate orientation graduate teacher certificate learning graduate teacher certificate practice graduate teacher certificate mentorship graduate teacher certificate reflection
A. Orientation to College Teaching & Student Learning B. Learning About Teaching C. Instructional Practice D. Mentorship on Teaching E. Reflection on Instructional Practice


To gain an orientation to college teaching and learning at U-M, participants must complete at least 8 hours of training focused on pedagogy that includes practice teaching* and inclusive/equitable teaching sessions. Practice teaching involves: (1) teaching a 5-20 minute sample lesson or an office hours session to undergraduate or graduate students and (2) receiving positive and constructive feedback from the students and the session facilitator (a trained consultant or experienced instructor). *If you completed your orientation in Fall 2020 or Winter 2021, the practice teaching requirement does not apply since it was not offered during the pandemic.

There are three ways to complete Requirement A:

1. CRLT Graduate Student Instructor (GSI) Teaching Orientation or Engineering GSI Teaching Orientation

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For the purpose of the Certificate, completion of GSITO includes:

  • Modules 1-4
  • Practice Teaching session (and corresponding Module 5)
  • Two modules on teaching topics (selected from Modules 6-11)

For the purpose of the Certificate, completion of EGSITO (in Fall 2021) includes:

  • Modules 1-9
  • Ongoing professional development (Module 10-Practice Teaching)


2. A department-based GSI training that includes all of the elements described above

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When you submit documentation in the My Dashboard section of the Certificate web page, you must supply the name and contact information for the person coordinating the departmental GSI training. Do NOT submit a departmental orientation that did not include practice teaching and a session on inclusive/equitable teaching. You may submit documentation for departmentally-based GSI orientations attended prior to participation in the U-M Graduate Teacher Certificate program.


3. The LSA ELI 994 course for prospective international GSIs whose undergraduate education was not conducted in English

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The LSA ELI 994 course satisfies both Certificate requirements  A (orientation to college teaching and student learning) and B (learning about teaching.) Workshops from other GSI orientations or departmentally-based new GSI trainings do not fulfill requirement B (learning about teaching.)


Resources and Support

The following college- or campus-wide GSI orientation programs are available to GSIs at U-M:

GSI Teaching Orientation

  • sponsored by the Center for Research on Learning and Teaching (CRLT)
  • open to all U-M graduate students
  • Offered before the start of the fall and winter semesters

Engineering GSI Teaching Orientation

  • sponsored by the College of Engineering and CRLT in Engineering (CRLT-Engin)
  • open to all graduate students in the College of Engineering with a GSI appointment during the current semester
  • Offered before the start of the fall and winter semesters

LSA ELI 994 Course

  • co-sponsored by the English Language Institute and CRLT
  • open to prospective international GSIs from the College of Literature, Sciences, and Arts
  • 15-day workshop offered each August
  • 2-credit course offered each Winter Term
  • satisfies both Certificate requirements A (orientation to college teaching and student learning) and B (learning about teaching)

Departmental GSI Orientations

To find out what departmentally-based GSI training is available, check with the GSI Coordinator for the department in which you are teaching

CRLT provides the following additional resources for GSIs