About Our Local CIRTL
The University of Iowa joined the Center for the Integration of Research, Teaching and Learning (CIRTL) - established in 2003 with support from the National Science Foundation - to improve teaching skills and increase the diversity of future university faculty in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields. The UI is among 43 members. All of CIRTL’s members commit to developing local learning communities that promote proven teaching and mentoring techniques for graduate students. As a new CIRTL member, the UI has developed its own programs built on the CIRTL core ideas: Teaching-as-research, learning communities, and learning-through-diversity. CIRTL at UI is open to all graduate students in any academic discipline, not just STEM disciplines. CIRTL stresses the use of successful, evidence-based strategies proven to promote active learning and to help students from all backgrounds succeed and complete their degrees. Teaching strategies include: connecting classroom topics to real-world situations, promoting inclusive learning, encouraging teamwork through shared projects and study groups, continually assessing student progress, and using research skills to advance effective teaching practices.
Become a CIRTL Member
All University of Iowa graduate students and postdocs are eligible to become CIRTL members. Interested participants only need to email firstname.lastname@example.org to join our local CIRTL community and create an account on the national CIRTL Network website, and you can access any of the online programming that is available.
Do you want to learn more about UI CIRTL? Click to book a CIRTL Introduction Appointment.
Pathways to Associate, Practitioner and Scholar Levels
A CIRTL Associate can describe and recognize the value of the CIRTL Core Ideas. Participation at this level involves participating in workshop, seminars, and classes to learn about existing knowledge around issues in teaching and learning within a discipline or more broadly. The Associate Level can be completed in as little as one semester or workshops can be taken over the course of several semesters.
To achieve Associate Level:
- Participate in a minimum of 5 CIRTL activities or programs. These 5 activities may include local as well as CIRTL network activities but at least one activity must be local.
- To see the University of Iowa local CIRTL approved workshops and CIRTL network events for the current semester, visit https://www.grad.uiowa.edu/cirtl and click on the “Programs and Events” tab
- Complete a full-length course focused on teaching. This can be through the CIRTL network (full courses or MOOCs) or an approved UI course. Many UI pedagogy-based courses can be used to fulfill this requirement. Some examples of currently approved UI courses are below. If you have taken a different course you can email email@example.com with the course name/number and description to see if it qualifies.
- EDTL/EPLS/GRAD/RCE/PSQF:7385 Teaching and Learning in Higher Education 3 s.h.
- GRAD/PSQF:6217 Seminar in College Teaching 3 s.h.
- SOC:7010 Teaching Sociology 3 s.h.
- PSQF:6205 Design of Instruction 3 s.h.
- PSQF:6211 Universal Design and Accessibility for Online Learning
- PSQF:6215 Web-Based Learning 3 s.h.
- PSQF:6216 Tools and Utilities for Online Teaching 3 s.h.
- CLAS:5100:0001 Practicum: College Teaching for TAs 1 s.h.
Participants are required to submit an application summarizing the activities comprising the Associate Level requirements and reflecting on their experiences
Practitioners exercise the knowledge they gained at the Associate level. They understand how to develop and implement a Teaching-as-Research project. The Practitioner Level certificate takes approximately 2 semesters to complete. The semesters do not have to be consecutive. It can also be completed in a spring semester and summer term.
To achieve Practitioner Level:
- Have attained an Associate Level certificate
- Participate in a TAR prep cohort and attend 5 workshops designed to prepare students to propose and implement a TAR project (1 semester)
- Propose a Teaching as Research (TAR) project (culmination project of TAR prep cohort)
- Implement a “Teaching as Research (TAR)” project (1 semester or summer term)
- Attend bi-weekly Implementation cohort meetings during the semester (or summer) they implement their project
- Present reflections on their TAR project experience at a UI CIRTL capstone event
Participants who successfully complete the TAR prep cohort series and propose a project will receive $250. Participants who successfully implement their project and participate in the Implementation cohort will receive an additional $250.
Want to learn more about TAR projects or talk through your TAR project ideas? Book a TAR Project Appointment here
CIRTL Scholars add to community knowledge about teaching and learning and disseminate their findings at a regional, national, or international venue.
To achieve Scholar Level:
- Have attained both Associate and Practitioner level certificates
- Present their TAR project research and results at a regional or national conference either in their discipline or a Teaching and Learning-related conference
- Publish an article in a peer-reviewed journal about their TAR project research and results (either in a discipline-specific journal or a teaching and learning journal)
- Participate in the CIRTL Network Exchange Program and present a talk on their TAR project at another CIRTL institution
Participants who complete the Scholar level will have the opportunity to mentor graduate students who are designing and implementing TAR projects.
Winter Break CIRTL-Sponsored Workshop:
Friday January 10th from 1:30-4:00 pm
In the STEAMprov workshop participants will learn techniques to talk about research to a variety of audiences and to feel more comfortable making presentations and answering questions through playing simple improv theatre games. Dress comfortably and come ready to “yes…and” your way to improved communication skills.
Teaching As Research Project Prep Cohort Information
Requirements for Participation:
- Be a current UI graduate student or post-doc in any discipline
- Have earned the CIRTL Associate level certificate
- Any graduate students or post-docs who would like to join this cohort, but have not yet earned the CIRTL Associate Level certificate will need to meet with the CIRTL Coordinator (firstname.lastname@example.org) to discuss their prior pedagogical experience.
The winter break bootcamp cohort is currently full. If you are interested in joining our spring semester 2020 cohort, please email Lisa Kelly (email@example.com).
- Participants do not have to be a TA or be teaching a class during this semester. Ideally they will be a TA or instructor in a future class so project implementation is possible. Projects can also center around a question related to academic support or a departmental teaching concern and data sets available through university offices or departments, so classroom teaching is not required for proposal or implementation.
Teaching as Research Project Prep Cohorts (hosted fall, spring, summer semesters)
The Iowa CIRTL Program (Center for the Integration of Research, Teaching & Learning) is recruiting graduate students and post-docs who are interested in creating Teaching as Research (TAR) projects.. A TAR project is an opportunity to use your disciplinary research skills to develop a research question relating to teaching and propose a project that would allow you to investigate this question with a class you are teaching or a TA for, or a data set available through your department or other university offices or departments. These projects can be small or large scale and can help you develop your reflective teaching skills. A project also is a great talking point on a resume or CV and in a job interview. If you are close to graduating and will not be able to implement a project, the work of designing and proposing a project is by itself a worthwhile endeavor.
Examples of Recent Projects:
- Accommodating Student Learning Preferences in Online Classes
- Increasing Lecture Effectiveness Through Including Active Learning Activities
- The Impact of Discussing Diversity in Constructing Identity for Freshmen Engineering Students
- Increasing Student Motivation Through Enhanced Assignment Design
- Student Perceptions of Expository Approach to Mathematics
Everyone who attends all sessions and submits a proposal will receive a $250 stipend. Those that implement the project in a future semester will receive an additional $250 and the CIRTL Practitioner certificate. The workshop schedule is listed below.
If you are interested in joining a future cohort, please email Lisa Kelly (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Prerequisites: Graduate students and post-docs from any academic discipline who have taken a graduate level teaching-related course (at UI or elsewhere) or 5 teaching-related workshops (from the Center for Teaching, your department, the Graduate College, another academic department, etc.) are eligible to participate. If you have questions about whether a course or workshops you have taken fit, please email Lisa Kelly (email@example.com) with information about the course or workshops.
TAR Prep Cohort workshops offered (spring dates/times will be available at the start of spring semester)
- Intro to Teaching as Research
- Evidence-Based Teaching Methods
- Finding Library Resources
- Methods and Assessment
- Applying for IRB
- Proposal feedback workshop
Participants who successfully attend all workshops and complete a project proposal will receive $250 and a CIRTL badge for their CV.
Participants who are able to implement/assess this project in a future semester will receive an additional $250 and earn the CIRTL Practitioner certificate.
|Jen Teitle, PhD, Assistant Dean, Graduate Development and Postdoctoral Affairs|
Lisa Kelly, Program Coordinator, CIRTL at UIOWA
Want to learn more about CIRTL or talk about your Teaching-As-Research project? Book an appointment here
The steering committee will meet regularly and will act as an advisory group for the local CIRTL network. The steering committee will be consulted on programming both locally and cross network and for assistance with outreach to the local CIRTL community. The steering committee will consist of the following faculty and students from STEM fields and with expertise in education and assessment. Several students and postdoctoral associates will be invited to participate in the steering committee to provide a student perspective and insight.
|Renee Cole - Associate Professor, Department of Chemistry, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. Professor Cole specializes in Chemical Education and is the PI of an NSF institutional grant focused on improving college teaching in STEM fields.|
|Andrew Forbes - Assistant Professor, Department of Biology, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. Professor Forbes is an active participant in Center for Teaching activities and has been a leader on campus in the development of a “Big Ideas” course delivered using Transform, Interact, Learn, Engage (TILE) methodology.|
|Darren Hoffmann - Assistant Professor of Anatomy and Cell Biology, Carver College of Medicine. Professor Hoffmann teaches a 9 week summer workshop focused on learning how to “teach your research.” This course has been very popular with biomedical sciences graduate students.|
|Keri Hornbuckle - Associate Dean, College of Engineering, Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering. Dean Hornbuckle is and has been instrumental in encouraging teaching innovation in undergraduate engineering courses.|
|Mark McDermott - Clinical Associate Professor, Department of Teaching and Learning, College of Education. Professor McDermott's are of expertise is STEM teaching and learning. One of his most recent publications surrounds the use of argument-based inquiry strategies for STEM-infused science teaching.|
|Mary Hall Reno - Professor, Department of Physics and Astronomy, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. Professor Reno was previously the Chair of Physics and has been involved in educational activities at many levels.|
|Mitchell Kelly - Clinical Associate Professor, Psychological and Quantitative Foundations, Director of Office of Graduate Teaching Experience. Professor Kelly oversees the Graduate Certificate in College Teaching.|
|Colleen Mitchell - Associate Professor, Department of Mathematics, Director of University of Iowa Sloan Center for Exemplary Mentoring focused on Underrepresented Minority (URM) graduate students in STEM fields.|
|Lori Adams - Co-Director, Iowa Bioscience Academy. Dr. Lori Adams is interested in enhancement of undergraduate biology education through research experience opportunities, effective mentoring, and the practice of scientific teaching.|
|Jean Florman - Director of the Center for Teaching. Jean leads the staff in creating and sustaining professional development opportunities for UI instructors.|
CIRTL Teaching-as-Research (TAR) Fellows (2017)
Ranthony Edmonds, Mathematics
Project Title: “A Partially Flipped Model for a College Trigonometry Course”
1. What is the effect of the instructional videos on student performance on course assessments?
2. What is the effect of the flipped instruction on students’ perception of their own learning?
3. What is the effect of flipped instruction on student attitudes towards the course?
Emily Hammond, Biomedical Engineering
Project Title: “The Effect of Reading Quiz Questions on Student Test Scores in a Flipped Classroom”
What is the relationship between the type of reading quiz questions and test scores in a flipped classroom environment?
Meaghan Rowe-Johnson, Counseling Psychology
Project Title: “Enhancing Graduate School Application Self-Efficacy for Underrepresented First-Generation, Low-income Students through Targeted Interventions in the Classroom.”
Do interventions in the “Applying to Graduate School” course increase Graduate School Application Self-Efficacy (GSASE) over the course of the semester?
Braden Krien, English Literature
Project Title: “Strengths-Based Writing in the FYC Classroom”
To what extent does the inclusion of strategies based on the StrengthsFinder assessment help to lower students writing anxiety and increase self-perceptions of writing effectiveness in the FYC classroom?
Yejun Bae, Science Education
Project Title: “Teaching from the Heart: Non-Threatening Learning Environments and Science Learning”
1. Why is creating non-threatening learning environments necessary for all students’ math and science learning?
2. What are the role of teachers’ knowledge and beliefs on multiculturalism in terms of creating non-threatening learning environments?
Caitlin Smith, Epidemiology
Project Title: “How Private is Our Genetic Information?”
Does Case-Based Teaching improve media literacy among public health students in the context of scientific research reporting?
Soumya Venkitakrishnan, Audiology
Project Title: “Effectiveness of Online MCQ Quizzes in an Undergraduate Audiology Course”
Does the use of online-MCQs based quizzes help in learning?
Tanja Roembke, Psychology
Project Title: “Increasing Student Feedback during the Semester to Improve Teaching and Learning Outcomes”
How does increased feedback by students influence teaching quality/ effectiveness, student and teacher satisfaction?