Searle Center for Advanced Learning and Teaching

  • NTAC Workshop Leader Program  The NTAC Workshop Leader program is an excellent professional development opportunity for NU graduate students to develop their presentation skills and discuss teaching and learning issues with graduate students across disciplines. The summer training combines discussion of learning theory with reflections on best practices in teaching. Participation in the summer training sessions as well as leading workshops in September give graduate students multiple opportunities to receive feedback and reflect on their teaching practice. Former Workshop Leaders often continue to participate in more competitive and long-term programs at the Searle Center such as the Teaching Certificate Program or as a Graduate Teaching Fellow.

  • Teaching Certificate Program  Reflecting on their teaching practice through a series of seminars, workshops, and small-group discussions, participants will develop a course design project and teaching portfolio by the end of the program. At the core of the Teaching Certificate Program are five seminars that focus on developing skills as a critically reflective instructor. Participants read literature on course design, assessment, student backgrounds, teaching methods, and evaluation. Participants also meet quarterly in small discipline-specific groups led by Graduate Teaching Mentors to discuss the development of course design projects and receive feedback on teaching philosophies.  Over the course of the year, participants attend at least two workshops offered by the Searle Center, as well as meet on a quarterly basis with a faculty mentor to discuss teaching and learning issues.

  • Graduate Teaching Fellows Graduate Teaching Fellows (GTF) are a select group of advanced graduate students with a demonstrated commitment to teaching excellence. The GTF program allows Fellows to further develop their own teaching and professional skills while contributing to the pedagogical development of other graduate students. Fellows work with the Searle Center to produce programming and resources that help to promote a vibrant culture of teaching and learning across Northwestern. Graduate Teaching Fellows are selected each spring via a competitive application process. Fellows are appointed for a full academic year, with the possibility of reappointment in subsequent years. The fellowship carries a $3,000 stipend. 

  • Graduate Workshops We invite all graduate students and postdocs to attend our highly interactive workshops that integrate the latest research and theory on student learning with the practices of the best teachers. Led by Searle Teaching Center staff and Graduate Teaching Fellows, these sessions help graduate TAs and instructors address key learning problems within and across their disciplines.  Workshops are offered free of charge, and locations vary. Registration is required; space is limited.

  • WCAS/TGS Teaching Fellowship  The WCAS/TGS Teaching Fellowship is granted annually to two graduate students who have displayed exceptional teaching skills at Northwestern. Fellows receive a $2,000 stipend to teach a WCAS Freshman Seminar in their department, and are mentored and supported by a designated faculty mentor and Searle staff prior to and during the teaching of the course in the spring quarter. With the support of the Searle Center, WCAS/TGS Teaching Fellows also create a teaching development event for other graduate students in the form of a presentation, roundtable, or workshop. Fellows are required to have completed the Searle Center's Teaching Certificate Program OR be enrolled in the program during the year of the fellowship. All applicants must receive approval from their department chair and/or director of graduate study to teach in their department. The Searle Center does not schedule courses.

  • CIRTL at Northwestern  The Center for the Integration of Teaching Research and Learning (CIRTL), is an national NSF-funded teaching and learning center working to advance the teaching of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) disciplines in higher education, particularly by providing programs for future faculty professional development.  Northwestern's CIRTL program, co-sponsored by the Searle Center for Teaching Excellence, The Graduate School, the Weinberg College of Arts & Sciences, the Feinberg School of Medicine, and the McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, will build a community of practice within and across the STEM disciplines — both locally and nationally — to address challenges in STEM teaching and learning. The Northwestern STEM community is encouraged to participate in the CIRTL Coffee Hour Series (online discussions facilitated by STEM faculty and staff across the CIRTL Network institutions) and the CIRTLCast Series (webinars to discuss issues in STEM teaching and learning).  Beginning in January, Northwestern will offer new programs such as a Teaching Colloquium Series for all interested graduate students, postdocs, and faculty. For more information, please contact Rob Linsenmeier (Professor of Biomedical Engineering and Neurobiology) or Nancy Ruggeri (Associate Director of Graduate Programs at the Searle Center for Teaching Excellence).