Teaching Support

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Teaching Support wordmarkOur Teaching Support unit’s primary goal is to help make you a successful teacher. Most Pitt faculty are already doing an outstanding job of teaching their students – and if that’s you, congratulations! Sometimes even the best teachers may struggle with one or two in their practice, or perhaps there’s a concept in your course that many students regularly struggle to understand. Collaborating with Instructional Designers and Instructional Technologists in the Teaching Center may help you conceptualize, design, and implement a new approach. Whether your goal is to update your teaching practice to better engage your students, to improve the learning outcomes of your students, or to simply raise your teaching survey scores, we have several ways we can help. When you work with us, you are never required to implement any of our suggestions. In addition, your consultations are confidential. We offer consultative advice based on research and our own decades of teaching experience but we will never tell you how to run your class or your course.

If you feel a little nervous about working with us, or you’re not sure we can help with the particular challenge you face, give us a call or e-mail us to discuss your goals. If your needs fall outside of the scope of our services, there’s a good chance we can help you find the right person at Pitt who can help you. You’ll find a list of some of the things we offer below; however, the list is not exhaustive. The best way to look at your teaching is to start a conversation with us. We look forward to hearing from you.

Workshops

Please see a list of our scheduled workshops. We find that workshops are often most effective when customized to address a specific need in your program, department, or school. All the workshops we offer are based on research. You’ll find a list of some of the most common topics below. We are also happy to perform a needs assessment to see what teaching and learning challenges exist in your department:

  • An introduction to teaching and learning: Fundamentals
  • Student engagement in large and small classes
  • Interactive Teaching and Learning (Active Learning Design)
  • Assertion-Evidence Slide Design
  • Leading Effective Class Discussions
  • Collaboration: Group Assignments that Work
  • Best Practices in Online Teaching
  • Designing Effective Writing Assignments
  • Motivating Students to Learn
  • Course Gamification
  • Integrating writing, speaking and collaborative assignments
  • Applying teaching strategies to CourseWeb (Blackboard)
  • Using Student Evaluations to Improve Teaching
  • Using Rich Media to Enhance Learning
  • Using simulations and experiential learning

Services

Individual Consultations

We work one-on-one with individual faculty on anything related to the improvement of their teaching practice. This includes:

  • Designing or redesigning a traditional, hybrid, or online course
  • Developing effective activities, assignments, assessments, and rubrics
  • Reinvigorating your course
  • Integrating Blackboard, clickers, video, and other technologies
  • Making sense of student evaluations and other student data
  • Making the best audio or video recording of your lecture or other events
  • Improving any aspect of your teaching

Consultations are confidential. It’s not uncommon for consultations to continue over multiple semesters. If you are curious if we can help, please reach out and ask. For more information, e-mail us at teaching@pitt.edu