Course in College Teaching

This highly successful six-week course provides an opportunity for faculty and graduate student instructors from all disciplines to share ideas and strategies for successful teaching. The course will be taught via Zoom and will have 3 synchronous meetings and three weeks asynchronous work. The Course in College Teaching (CCT) is a free, non-credit course that includes discussion and practice based on information drawn from the teaching and learning literature, as well as from the teaching experiences of individual participants. The course is designed to allow participants to collaboratively explore successful teaching and learning.

The CCT is open to Penn State faculty, graduate students, and post-docs with previous teaching experience*. Those without prior experience should take the Instructional Foundations Series. Those who have successfully completed the Instructional Foundations Series are eligible to take the CCT.

The course is not designed to meet the needs of first-time teachers. The CCT draws heavily upon participants’ own teaching experiences to generate discussion and resource sharing. Participants are expected to be able to connect their previous teaching experience to the new material.

If you have questions about course fit, please contact one of the Fall 2021 CCT course facilitators Beate Brunow, Deena Levy, or Adam Smith.

Course Objectives

Upon successfully completing the course, participants should be able to:

  • apply effective principles of course design and planning to their own contexts;
  • integrate teaching and assessment strategies to enhance student learning; and
  • reflect on and articulate personal beliefs and practices about teaching and learning by referring to their own teaching experiences.

Participant Eligibility

*Teaching experience is defined as developing instructional plans and/or materials and using those plans/materials to reach multiple learners at once.

The following are examples of teaching experience:

  • serving as a teaching assistant (as a graduate student or an undergraduate student) responsible for planning and leading a lab or discussion section for a course (online, hybrid, or face-to-face)
  • serving as an instructor or co-instructor for a course, including college or K-12 courses (online, hybrid, or face-to-face)
  • providing supplemental instruction for groups of students in which you conduct review or discussion activities (e.g., serving as a learning assistant or supplemental instruction facilitator)
  • developing and delivering outreach programs for groups of learners (e.g., extension service, informal learning courses, serving as a docent).


The Fall 2021 CCT will be taught via Zoom and will have 3 synchronous meetings and three weeks of asynchronous work. During weeks with synchronous meetings, 1-2 hours per week of asynchronous work expected.

Schedule of course:

  • September 29 through November 3
  • 3 synchronous sessions on Wednesdays from 2-4pm , and 3 asynchronous weeks
    • Synchronous meetings will be on 9/29; 10/13; 10/27

To earn the CCT completion certificate, participants must meet all of the requirements listed on the syllabus.

Reading Materials

Readings will be assigned from a variety of sources and will be readily available through the University Libraries or publicly online.

Professional Development Benefits

This course does not result in an official certification, it does provide evidence of professional development around teaching. Most graduate students include a line for this course on their CV, but you may earn a certificate of completion as evidence of participation in the Course in College Teaching. This certificate may be included in a teaching portfolio as evidence of instructional development.

PLEASE NOTE: The certificate for completing the Course in College Teaching is different than the Graduate School Teaching Certificate. The Graduate School cannot answer questions about the CCT! Please visit the webpage above before emailing the Graduate School

To Apply

CCT Application

The Fall 2021 CCT application deadline is on September 3, 2021.

Participants reading.

Participants writing on whiteboard.