Introduction to Annual Report ...................................................................................................................... 1
Background ................................................................................................................................................... 1
Goals of the CIRTL Network ....................................................................................................................... 2
CIRTL Learning Communities at Network Universities .............................................................................. 3
University of Colorado at Boulder ........................................................................................................... 3
Howard University: Preparing for STEM Undergraduate Service Courses ............................................. 6
Michigan State University: Changing the Culture of Graduate Education .............................................. 7
Texas A&M University .......................................................................................................................... 12
Vanderbilt University ............................................................................................................................. 17
University of Wisconsin–Madison: Preparing Research Mentors and a Global Faculty ....................... 23
Cross-Network Initiatives ........................................................................................................................... 28
Distance Learning Courses ..................................................................................................................... 28
Online Community Center - The CIRTL Café ....................................................................................... 30
CIRTL Network Exchange Program ...................................................................................................... 31
STEM Education Scholars Program....................................................................................................... 32
CIRTL Network Seed Grant Program .................................................................................................... 33
Enhancement of Diversity in STEM ...................................................................................................... 33
Preparing STEM Faculty to Prepare K–12 STEM Teachers.................................................................. 34
The Transition from Future Faculty to Current Faculty ......................................................................... 36
Evaluation ................................................................................................................................................... 36
Evaluation Liaisons ................................................................................................................................ 37
Cross-Network Evaluation Collaboration .............................................................................................. 37
Institutional Portraits .............................................................................................................................. 39
National Dissemination .............................................................................................................................. 39
Management ............................................................................................................................................... 40
Appendices (Needs to be updated) ............................................................................................................. 42
Bob - Goals of the CIRTL Network
Bob CIRTL Learning Communities at Network Universities
Laura University of Colorado at Boulder
Wayne Howard University: Preparing for STEM Undergraduate Service Courses
Rique Michigan State University: Changing the Culture of Graduate Education
Bob Texas A&M University
Tom Vanderbilt University
Don University of Wisconsin–Madison:
Bob Cross-Network Initiatives
Kitch Distance Learning Courses
Kitch Online Community Center - The CIRTL Café
Kitch CIRTL Network Exchange Program
Tom STEM Education Scholars Program
Bob CIRTL Network Seed Grant Program
Tessa Enhancement of Diversity in STEM
Natasha Preparing STEM Faculty to Prepare K–12 STEM Teachers
Transition from Future Faculty to Current Faculty
Mark Evaluation Liaisons
Don Cross-Network Evaluation Collaboration
Justin? Institutional Portraits
Kitch National Dissemination
Kitch Appendices (Needs to be updated)
Introduction to Annual Report
Formally, the project, The CIRTL Network: Shaping, Connecting, and Supporting
the Future National STEM Faculty, has been underway for only a half-year, having begun in
January 2008. In reality, the project has been underway for over five years, being the seamless
continuation of the Center for the Integration of Research, Teaching, and Learning (CIRTL), one of
two National Science Foundation (NSF) Centers for Learning and Teaching in higher education
which began in 2003. That first grant created, planned and initiated the CIRTL Network during the
period 2005-07, and indeed continued to support initial operations in 2008 through a no-cost
As such, for this first annual report it is difficult to separate the activities of the first CIRTL grant
from those of this project, and indeed any effort to do so would greatly understate actual activities
of the CIRTL Network. Thus instead, in this first annual report we provide primarily a status report
on the CIRTL Network rather than an activity report. This document will provide the foundation
for the annual reports of the upcoming three years.
Graduate students at research universities will shape the future of science, technology, engineering,
and mathematics (STEM) undergraduate education in the US. These graduate students, 80% of
whom are trained at only 125 research universities, flow into the STEM faculties of all
undergraduate institutions, dispersing among more than 4,000 research universities, comprehensive
universities, liberal arts colleges, and community colleges. Equally important, future faculties will
be engaged in all forms of STEM education for diverse learners, including college classrooms and
laboratories, distance learning, K–12 preservice preparation, and informal education. Thus, the
graduate schools of research universities are a critical leverage point for the improvement of
national STEM education.
The CIRTL Network is using graduate education as the leverage point to develop a national STEM
faculty committed to implementing and advancing effective teaching practices for diverse student
audiences as part of successful professional careers. The goal of the CIRTL Network is to improve
the STEM learning of all students at every college and university, and thereby to increase the
diversity in STEM fields and the STEM literacy of the nation.
The initial CIRTL (2003-2007) partner universities - the University of Wisconsin–Madison (UW),
Michigan State University (MSU), and the Pennsylvania State University (PSU) - developed,
implemented, evaluated, and institutionalized a prototype CIRTL learning community at UW, the
Delta Program in Research, Teaching and Learning. In 5 years, more than 1,500 STEM graduate
students, postdoctoral researchers, and faculty (hereinafter graduates-through-faculty) participated
in the Delta Program learning community to improve their teaching abilities. This large number
shows that the national need is felt at the grassroots of a research university. The prototype
demonstrated that a major research university will prepare STEM grad students and postdocs to be
both forefront researchers and excellent teachers, and that STEM faculty will provide and support
The core ideas of CIRTL are teaching-as-research, learning community, and learning-through-
diversity. CIRTL seeks to engage graduates-through-faculty by integrating the improvement of
teaching and learning within a STEM research model, and embedding professional development
within a learning community of and for graduates-through-faculty. The teaching-as-research idea
integrates research, teaching, and learning by guiding STEM educators to engage in their teaching
as they engage in their research—know prior work, hypothesize, implement, collect data, analyze,
and improve. Development of graduates-through-faculty is fostered in an interdisciplinary learning
community that engages and connects all participants in improving their teaching. The diversity of
such learning communities promotes understanding that learning of all is enhanced through
The CIRTL Network is a learning community of diverse research universities mutually engaged
in teaching-as-research activities to prepare future faculty in teaching and learning for all students.
The CIRTL Network comprises six diverse research universities—the University of Colorado at
Boulder (CU), Howard University, Michigan State University (MSU), Texas A&M University
(TAMU), Vanderbilt University (VU), and the University of Wisconsin-Madison (UW). The
diversity of these institutions—private/public; large/moderate size; majority-/minority-serving;
geographic location—is by design. Building on the strengths of each institution, we are creating
CIRTL learning communities both local to each university and across the Network.
Goals of the CIRTL Network
The goals of the CIRTL Network are to:
Establish interdisciplinary learning communities at every Network university, each founded
on the CIRTL core ideas and each effectively preparing graduates-through-faculty to use
and improve best practices in STEM teaching and learning with attention to diverse student
Establish a cross-network learning community by which graduates-through-faculty across
the Network are better prepared for teaching as a consequence of the diversity of the
Foster transitions from the Network learning communities into faculty positions that sustain
the concepts, practices, and attitudes developed while graduate students or postdocs;
Enhance graduate education in teaching and learning at universities beyond the CIRTL
The long-range goal is to produce a national cohort of STEM graduate students and postdoctoral
researchers who are launching new faculty careers at diverse institutions, demonstrably succeeding
in promoting STEM learning for all, and actively engaging in improving teaching and learning
CIRTL Learning Communities at Network Universities
The Delta Program demonstrated that a graduate-through-faculty learning community built on the
CIRTL pillars is an effective approach at a research university both to improve preparation for
teaching and to promote institutional change. (See pillars in Appendix A.) Each member of the
CIRTL Network is creating an interdisciplinary learning community for STEM graduates-through-
faculty, each centered on preparing future faculty in teaching and learning and founded on the
CIRTL pillars. The diversity of the universities provides a diversity of approaches toward realizing
professional development in teaching and learning. The collective outcomes include the
enhancement of teaching and learning in the disciplines; an emphasis on effective teaching in
STEM service courses; a predictive framework for professional development; integration of the
learning sciences; development of skills for inquiry-based learning; and preparation of effective
research mentors. The needs served by these diverse approaches are common to all research
universities; the CIRTL Network allows the lessons learned at each university to be shared by all
universities, within the Network and beyond.
University of Colorado at Boulder
The University of Colorado at Boulder (CU) is a flagship research university of the Rocky
Mountain Region. It has long been a leader in preparing future faculty, as evidenced by its
nationally recognized Graduate Teacher Program (GTP) that develops Lead Graduate Teachers
(LGTs) in all STEM departments. The CIRTL ideas and network build on this strong foundation to
enhance and extend STEM future faculty preparation at CU. Specifically, CU has created the
CIRTL-based Teaching Institute for Graduate Education Research (TIGER) under the leadership
of Laura Border (GTP) and Patricia Rankin (Physics) and is:
extending the training of STEM Lead Graduate Teachers to include the CIRTL pillars and
working with STEM Lead Graduate Teachers develop graduate pedagogy courses in STEM
departments to broaden the preparation of CU graduate students as future STEM faculty;
engaging STEM graduate students in the CIRTL Network through distance learning
courses, the Network exchange program, and seed grants;
During the 2007-08 academic year 23 TIGER workshops were held on a variety of topics. Recent
workshop titles include ―Pedagogical Strategies for the Effective Use of Clickers: Active Learning,
Question Types, and the Attendance Monitoring Issue,” ―Conceptual Understanding Versus
Algorithmic Learning‖ and ―Teaching with Questions: Or, How to Make Students Love a Quiz.‖
Of the 141 workshop participants, 89 were from 15 STEM departments. The average rating for the
workshop sessions was 5.03 out of 6.
Professor Michael Klymkowsky, (Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology), is developing
a Network course ―Teaching Science and Math: Changing Student Misconceptions‖ that will be
offered as a distance-learning course to the entire Network in Fall 2008. Professor Noah Finkelstein
(Physics) is developing research-based materials for the CIRTL Network Preparing STEM Faculty
to Prepare K–12 STEM Teachers initiative.
University of Colorado at Level of Stage Estimated Evaluation Plan
Boulder Engagement (Early, annual # of
(Low, Med, Mid, participants
TIGER Workshop Series (7- LM EML 50 Post Survey, Michelle
8 workshops per semester) has prepared a report (#
(2-16 participants, ave 6) of participants and
STEM Leads 2009-10 H L 24 (stem Exit interview w/
lead grads) CIRTL questions
(e.g.use materials - web
site, diversity materials,
TAR workshop) Lead
manual includes CIRTL
pillar info and activity
STEM Lead TA workshops: Each lead has own plan
for dept. workshops
range from 0 to 32 in
number. Looking for
leads who do a
workshop on a CIRTL
pillar. Will identify # of
workshops related to
CIRTL pillars offered.
ideas, but not
conducting a formal
Anthropology LM E 10
Applied Math LM E 30
APS LM E 15
ATOC LM E 15
Chemistry LM E 30
EE Biology LM E 30
Environmental Studies LM E 10
Geology LM E 10
MCD Biology LM E 20
Physics LM E 80
SLHS LM E 10
IPHY LM E 10
Aerospace Engineering LM E 30
Chemical & Biological LM E 20
Civil Engineering LM E 20
Computer Science LM E 20
Education LM E 15
Electrical & Computer LM E 15
Mechanical Engineering LM E 15
Fall Intensive TA/GPTI LM EM 150 Did 4 science
Teacher Training STEM workshops. Feedback
Participants collected. One session
on SoTL in the sciences,
teaching labs, problem
solving in Engr (related
to CIRTL), preparing
faculty for sciences
(Mike K.'s, related to
CIRTL ideas, but not
conducting a formal
from SoTL and teaching
science workshops will
provide interesting data.
Would need to modify
IRB. CU team will need
to determine if they can
fit this into their work.
Graduate Teacher H ML 10 Michelle may be able to
Certificate: STEM Students update the eval data
from this activity. (bean
STEM Department Want to integrate
Pedagogy Course Project CIRTL ideas into these
(developing courses ) courses 81-87. (Goal for
2010 +) These need to
be evaluated. These are
central to the CIRTL
Applied Math M EML 20
APS M EML 15
ATOC M EML 15
EE Biology M EML 20
Environmental Studies M EML 10 Grad student developing
(new) syllabus for this course
to include pillars.
MCD Biology (Bill M EML 20
Physics M EML 15
Teaching and Learning 8 CIRTL Common eval
Science (Klymkowsky) form for cross-network
courses. (May Lee
interviewed spring 08,
participants. She is now
trying to follow up w/
CIRTL into COPFF (School Zoomerang post-visit
of Mines & ….) survey
Howard University: Preparing for STEM Undergraduate Service Courses
CIRTL-at-Howard, led by Folahan Ayorinde, Professor of Chemistry, and William Eckberg,
Professor of Biology and Associate Dean of the Graduate School, is focusing its activities on
preparing future faculty to teach STEM undergraduate service courses. To this end, Howard has
developed a new 3-credit graduate course, Effective Use of Technology in Teaching and Learning
(ETTL), modeled on a similar course developed for the Delta Program. The course was first offered
in Spring 2008, and drew on expertise throughout the Network through distance-learning
techniques; some classes were led by faculty from UW (Moses, Blanchard), the UW Center for
Biology Education (Wolf), and CIRTL Central (Barnicle). Student participants developed teaching-
as-research projects designed to improve high-impact undergraduate courses at Howard. For
example, one graduate student studied the impact of "Clickers" on student performance in an
undergraduate physical chemistry class; another student examined the impact of robotics
technology in motivating students to pursue science careers.
CIRTL-at-Howard needs assessments show that there has been minimal synergy between various
professional development programs on campus. Thus a primary goal is to develop a learning
community that maximizes cooperation and interaction between the Preparing Future Faculty
(PFF), Alliance for Graduate Education and the Professoriate (AGEP), and the Center of
Excellence in Teaching, Learning, and Assessment (CETLA) programs and participants to advance
the training and preparation of graduate students at Howard.
The ETTL course will be offered again in Fall 2008 and will target about 10 students primarily
from the departments of biology, chemistry, chemical engineering, mathematics, and physics.
CIRTL-at-Howard will also integrate distance-learning pedagogies into its new ETTL course in
order to enable cross-network interaction of students, thus providing learning-through-diversity
opportunities and a wider range of courses for students at all campuses.
In May 2008 a proposal was submitted to the Institute of Education Sciences (IES) seeking funds to
support the proposed Student-Led Team Learning (SLTL) project at Howard, of which the ETTL
course is the first component. This will provide additional funding and increase the number of
graduate students involved in CIRTL-at-Howard. A critical component of the SLTL will be
introducing STEM graduate students and postdocs to new teaching practices developed through
major NSF investments in these disciplines.
Howard University Level of Stage Estimated Evaluation Plan
Engagement Early, annual # of
Low, Med, Mid, participants
Preparing Future Faculty Medium Late 50-60
AGEP Program High Late 25
ETTL Course (Local) High Mid 10
ETTL Course (Network) High Early 13 CIRTL Common Course
(post-ETTL) TAR Projects
At Howard University, we have long since taken as a responsibility the dedication to a broader
perspective on the role of graduate education in preparing students for diverse challenges in their
With respect to those graduate students who envision a career in the Professoriate, we have
committed substantial resources in developing experience in teaching and learning strategies in
preparation for futures as professors.
As one example, Howard initiated its Preparing Future Faculty program over 15 years ago, and to
date over 300 doctoral students have completed the four semester program. Howard has also been
engaged in numerous other initiatives in the renewal of graduate education including the Ph.D.
completion project, the Carnegie Foundation initiative on the doctorate, AGEP, graduate certificate
programs, professional science masters programs, and our own Pre-Faculty Internship.
Thus it is in this spirit that we have embraced the CIRTL concept and its drive to infuse the CIRTL
network with an important perspective on the integration of research, teaching and learning.
Undoubtedly our most active contribution to CIRTL has been the development of a graduate
course, ―Effective Use of Technology in Teaching and Learning‖ (ETTL) that has now been
offered for the past three years.
ETTL is a course offered to Howard University graduate students; the course instructor/facilitator
is Dr. Folahan O. Ayorinde, Acting Chair of the Department of Chemistry, who has invested
enormous efforts in developing and offering this course. ETTL is offered within the context of the
Center for the Integration of Research, Teaching, and Learning at Howard (CIRTL@Howard) in
collaboration with the CIRTL Network. To date, 23 Howard graduate students have taken the
ETTL’s main objective is to train graduate students on the use of instructional technologies in
enhancing teaching and learning. Successful participation will provide students the ability to do the
following: Choose appropriate technological tools based on learning needs, design and complete
independent project in the effective use of learning technologies such as interactive web
applications, streaming video, clickers, and course management tools, use technology to solve
learning problems through Teaching-as-Research, use technology to solve learning problems
through Learning communities, and collect data that demonstrate the impact of technology on
learning outcomes at Howard. In spring 2009, CIRTL-at-Howard and CIRTL Network jointly
conducted the ETTL instruction to HU and UW-Madison students simultaneously at both campuses
via web casting and forum postings.
In the past year at Howard, 13 Graduate students enrolled in ETTL: 4 from Preparing Future
Faculty (PFF); 6 from Alliance for Graduate Education and the Professoriate (AGEP); and 3 from
other programs. All 13 students are doctoral students, representing several HU Graduate school
departments including: biology, chemistry, education, communication, social sciences and
A set of assessment questionnaires were developed to evaluate the effectiveness of the ETTL
course offering. These questionnaires evaluated how well the course objectives were met and what
needs to be improved in course offering to align course objectives, course shortcomings, and
challenges students faced. From the assessment, we have learned:
What is clear is the ETTL participants had more positive understanding towards teaching-
as-research, learning communities and learning-through-diversity and infusing technology
in classroom instruction as they progressed through the program. The survey findings
produced some evidence that HU doctoral students, particularly those who participated in
ETTL are more inclined to collaborate with HU faculty members to improve instructional
delivery and are more comfortable with using instructional technology in their own class
However, in general, HU doctoral students’ perceptions of ETTL objectives improved
considerably by the end of the semester. In addition ETTL participants’ interests in
conducting research; to improve the learning environment was well observed and
documented in their research project design and findings. They exhibited a better
understanding of using research to improve student outcomes, the three CIRTL pillars, and
their survey responses indicated a better understanding of the role of instructional
technologies and the desire and willingness to integrate specific instructional technology
tools which they identified to improve instruction and learning outcomes.
In conclusion, findings derived and analyzed from ETTL participant responses indicated
support for the CIRTL core principles, and that the course likely has an impact on doctoral
students’ teaching and learning. As a result of their participation in the course, they are
more willing to integrate technology in classroom instruction.
Additional CIRTL activities at Howard included:
We offered the ETTL-Network course in spring 2009. Thirteen students were enrolled and
they executed final projects in line with the cross-network faculty seminars from the
University of Wisconsin
The spring ETTL course included contributions from Drs Akinyele, Jones, and Redd from
Howard; and Drs. Barnicle, Patton, Blanchard, and Moses from Wisconsin.
The spring ETTL course was also used to test the efficacy of the Wisline Online
presentation across the CIRTL Network.
Two ETTL alumni and one STEMES student were sponsored to the June 2009 STEMES
conference in Vanderbilt University to present their projects that were submitted at the end
of the spring ETTL course. With the exception of the one STEME student from biology, the
alumni projects were the final projects produced from the ETTL course.
Michigan State University: Changing the Culture of Graduate Education
CIRTL at Michigan State University (MSU) is led by Professor Henry (Rique) Campa, Assistant
Dean of The Graduate School and Professor of Wildlife Ecology. CIRTL opportunities in teaching
and learning at MSU are embedded within a broader graduate student professional development
program called PREP (Planning, Resilience, Engagement, and Professionalism;
www.msu.edu/user/gradschl/cpd.htm). In Fall 2006, MSU implemented the interdisciplinary FAST
(Future Academic Scholars in Teaching) Fellowship Program, (http://grad.msu.edu/fast/), modeled
after the highly successful Lilly Teaching Fellows Program for Faculty Development at MSU.
FAST is a learning community of STEM graduate students preparing for academic positions. The
FAST program provides opportunities for a diverse group of graduate students to participate in
mentored teaching-as-research experiences.
The 2008-2009 academic year will be the third year of the MSU FAST Fellowship Program. This
program comprises a learning community of 10 STEM doctoral fellows for an academic year,
joined by previous FAST Fellows who have not yet graduated and their mentors. Students selected
for this one-year program participate in group meetings, workshops with other fellowship
recipients, outside speakers, and/or faculty members to discuss topics related to teaching and
learning. Fellowship recipients also propose and conduct a defined, small scholarly teaching-as-
research project on a topic they select. Assistance with projects is provided by a mentor, selected
by each fellow, and MSU CIRTL Steering Committee Members. Fellows are encouraged and
supported to disseminate project results on websites, at conferences, and/or in peer-reviewed
Michigan State University Level of Stage Estimated Evaluation Plan
Engagement (Early, annual # of
(Low, Med, Mid, participants
FAST Fellowship Program High Early, 10 Pre/post surveys;
Mid interviews; assess TAR
Career Selection and Low Early, 250 Pre/post surveys; focus
Professional Skill Mid, groups with participants
Development Series (Ph.D. Late (1/2010 - grad will look
Job Search Workshop at participation data,
Series) build template to assess
Teaching Assistant Low Early, 800 Kevin working on IRB
Program-Orientation and Mid, for demo data.
Setting Expectations and Low Early, 1,000 Pre/post surveys; focus
Resolving Conflict Series Mid, groups
AGEP Low Early, 35-40 participation and
Mid, demographic data
Building Capacity for pre/post survey (Rique
Learning-Through-Diversity checking on follow-up)
in Graduate Education
Center for Research in
College Science Teaching
and Learning Postdoctoral
The Graduate School (GS) at Michigan State University (MSU) continued to offer or co-sponsor
programs to support the career and professional development needs of graduate students and post-
docs. These programs included: 1) Career Selection and Professional Skill Development
Workshop Series, 2) Conflict Resolution Program, 3) Teaching Assistant Program, 4) Ph.D. Job
Search Workshop Series, 5) Future Academic Scholars in Teaching (FAST ) Fellowship Program,
and 6) NSF sponsored Alliance for Graduate Education and the Professoriate (AGEP) Program.
These programs are organized in the career and professional development model developed by the
GS known as PREP (http://grad.msu.edu/prep/) (developed in 2005-2006). Each program targets
PREP skills to help participants throughout their graduate and professional careers. In addition,
PREP programs allow MSU to illustrate the importance and application of CIRTL pillars for the
development of future faculty. The Conflict Resolution Program, Career Selection and
Professional Skill Development Workshop Series, the FAST Fellowship Program, and the
Responsible Conduct of Research Program (provides some exposure to CIRTL pillars) have
evaluation components approved by MSU’s Institutional Review Board (IRB).
Attendance in PREP programs remains high. These programs are obviously important to graduate
students and post-docs since most programs fill within 48 hours of open registration. For example,
over two years, 5,816 participants (M.S. and Ph.D. students, and post-docs) took advantage of
PREP programs. In program evaluations, students and post-docs continue to comment that they
appreciate the openness of diverse presenters and the opportunity to interact with other graduate
students and post-docs from other fields. The opportunities presented through PREP are not
available to many students and post-docs through their colleges or with mentors, especially those
programs focused on learning through diversity and developing teaching-as-research projects.
During March, 2009 the fourth cohort of FAST Fellows (10 Ph.D. students) was selected for 2009-
2010. Dr. Claudia Vergara is interviewing fellows to determine the impacts that participating in
the program has had on their professional development. The 2008-2009 academic year was the
third year for the FAST Program. Students in the program continue to appreciate the opportunity to
interact openly with the diversity of faculty leading the program, guest presenters, and their peers.
MSU’s FAST Fellows continue to transition into tenure track or fixed-term faculty positions (e.g.,
Lansing, Community College, North Carolina State, Univ. of Michigan, Univ. of Toronto).
Based on FAST Fellow post-program surveys and post-program interviews (conducted in 2008-
2009) and PREP post-workshop evaluations, students comment that they are better aware of the
expectations and skills required to compete for and be successful in academic positions in the
future. Graduate students participating in PREP programs have opportunities to gain a greater
understanding of the transferable skills that they need to take into their professional lives.
Preliminary evidence from evaluations indicates that these programs are being effective in meeting
this goal. Four years ago, graduate students had fewer opportunities to enhance their understanding
of topics such as assessing teaching and learning in the classroom, expectations for tenure and
promotion at various types of academic institutions, how to interpret academic job ads, achieving
work-life balance in a professional position, and how learning is enhanced through diversity.
Today, students have multiple opportunities to learn about these topics in programs that require
relatively low levels of engagement to those that require more time. During 2009-2010, Drs.
Campa and Stoddart will analyze data and develop a manuscript highlighting the development and
impacts of the Career Selection and Professional Skill Development Workshop Series on the
professional preparation of graduate students.
MSU is collaborating with the Univ. of Colorado and the Univ. of Wisconsin to evaluate the
similarities, differences, and potential impacts of the capstone programs (FAST, Delta Interns,
Graduate Teachers) each institution has for doctoral students to enhance their effectiveness in
conducting teaching-as-research. A manuscript will be submitted during fall 2009.
Drs. Judith Stoddart and Karen Klomparens are leading MSU’s Ph.D. Completion Grant from the
CGS. As a result of this grant, there are numerous departments that are developing and integrating
new professional development activities into their training and orientations for graduate students.
These departments meet periodically to discuss planning and implementation activities. Another
component of the grant is to mentor cohorts of graduate students through MSU’s Certification of
College Teaching Program (CCTP). The intent of this program is that by having students work on
activities (e.g., a teaching portfolio) as a learning community (with faculty) there will be more
students completing the certification program in a timely manner than if they were pursuing it
individually. During 2008-2009, Drs. Stoddart and Campa met with 12-15 students in the program
to assist them develop teaching portfolios. Dr. Gillen-Daniel (Univ. of Wisconsin) and Drs. Campa
and Stoddart have discussed the possibility of developing a cross-institutional study investigating
the similarities and differences between certificate programs and evaluating teaching portfolios at
the two institutions (using a common rubric).
Drs. Campa, Klomparens, and Stoddart have IRB approval to implement a new data base and
online workshop registration system in the GS to better evaluate who is participating in PREP
programs. Demographic data collected through the registration system will be instrumental for
evaluating the CIRTL Network and developing the CIRTL predictive framework for doctoral
The GS Staff at MSU’s has completed ―Plan Your Work and Work Your Plan: Essential Career
Competencies for Ph.D.s‖. The guide highlights the transferable skills that new Ph.D.s must
develop, as graduate students, to make them competitive for future positions. Supporting evidence
for skill development is provided by professionals who were interviewed for the guide.
In 2009, CIRTL will be an integrated set of activities related to MSU, GS’s most recent NSF grant:
I-Cubed (Institution, Innovation, Integration) - Center for Academic and Future Faculty Excellence
(CAFFE) to help prepare future faculty. CAFFE will be an integration of all professional
development programs available at MSU focused on the preparation of future faculty (CIRTL,
AGEP, PREP, Office of Faculty Organizational Development, and Post-doc Training in Plant
Biology). CAFFE will use a ―train-the-trainers‖ model to build capacity for professional
development in departments.
Texas A&M University
CIRTL at Texas A&M University (TAMU) is led by Robert Webb, Professor of Physics and
Interim Graduate Dean and Bruce Herbert, Professor of Biogeochemistry. TAMU has a
longstanding interest in improving learning outcomes and graduation rates for a diverse
undergraduate population in the STEM disciplines. A current high-priority university initiative is to
bring inquiry-guided learning into STEM undergraduate classrooms (http://qep.tamu.edu).
Educational research has shown that inquiry-based learning is one of the best pedagogical practices
to support student development of important skills and competencies including learning with
understanding, knowledge transfer, metacognitive strategies, problem-solving, and decision-
making. Adapting and developing instructional materials that support inquiry-based learning for the
university’s diverse student audience, and integrating them successfully into courses, will require a
coordinated effort of graduates-through-faculty learning community that is based upon the CIRTL
TAMU is developing a three-tiered local learning community. The first tier builds on and extends
the Graduate Teaching Academy (GTA), a long-standing graduate-student-created learning
community. The second tier comprises more specialized workshops, seminars or courses on
inquiry-based learning offered locally or through the CIRTL network, while the third tier will be
small graduate-through-faculty workgroups focused on specific objectives such as inquiry-based
instructional materials development through teaching-as-research. TAMU CIRTL is being led out
of the Office of Graduate Studies in collaboration with Center for Teaching Excellence. Work in
the first year is focused on developing and supporting the first and second tiers of the learning
community; the first programs will be launched in Fall 2008.
Texas A&M University Level of Stage Est. annual Evaluation Plan
Engagement (Early, # of
(Low, Med, Mid, participants
GTA Steering Committee Medium/High E,M,L 10 to 12 We are influencing the
(GTASC) (typically top Committee to come up
performers who go on to the with an eval plan for their
next level) Leadership, own program. Charita
and Madhu working with
setting goals, developed new
GTASC on evaluation of
learning outcomes GTA program
Graduate Teaching Low E,M,L 40-45 that GTA offers weekly
Academy /Medium/High complete seminars related to PD
the in teaching skills.
(additional participants may program Satisfaction survey sent
after each session. At
attended only a few (GTA
end of semester eval
seminars) Fellows) instrument focused on
program outcomes sent
to all participants.
International TATEP ( and Low Early 200-300 Extends TATEP
Forum) workshop for
(e.g. cultural issues,
teaching in TX)
Teaching Assistant Training Low Early 500 Bring CIRTL to program
Evaluation Program run by CTE,
(TATEP) collaborating with D.
Fowler. Participants in
these programs could
become participants in
other CIRTL activties.
CIRTL can provide
connections through the
GTA workshops. Adding
TATEP students to
mailing list. CTE may
data but there is no
College Alignment Medium E,M,L 12-15 total, Discipline or college
Collaboration(CAC) more gs based program based on
Name comes from Debra than faculty TAR. Aiming for
Fowler at CTE. She practitioner outcome
level. (e.g. workshop
emphasizes LC model.
w/in chemistry dept.)
Alignment w/ learning Market to college and
outcomes. Workshops dept. level. Looking for
aligned with discipline faculty leaders who
needs. would lead the courses
for grad-fac teams. Have
Semester long courses, a cohort of about 60
taken by teams, 1 hr a week, STEM faculty to recruit
project based courses, TI, from. Charita and Bruce
inquiry different in each working on evaluation.
NIs developing rubrics to
discipline, similar to Delta
assess TAR projects.
IMD course. Madhu putting (Does institutional
together guidebook. mission affect
participation in CIRTL?
start 1/10 (geoscience) - Mission is changing.
Bruce teaching, 7 faculty and This will be a
a few post doc/grad teams. complicated question to
Marketing team approach. try and answer.)
Some using young
Post doc professional Medium Late 10 Coordinating existing
development program Post doc activities and
aligning them with
CIRTL will help us meet
some of the funding
Series of workshops
over coming year. (eg.
Proposal writing) joining
with VP for research
office will add follow up
practices, connect to
GTA and CTE. Could
add workshop on setting
goals and conflict
resolution. Look to post
doc group for ideas for
other workshops. 4-5
workshops that will likely
morph into more formal
post doc mentoring
program through VPR
office. Diversity and LC
will be part of the
workshops. TAR may be
a bit harder to
incorporate. Will show
post docs that teaching
is not necessarily
different from research.
Participants will be
surveyed after each
session. Mark can work
with Mahdu. (Rique has
Graduate Teaching Academy (GTA):
The GTA is a student led organization focused on graduate student professional development in the
area of college teaching. TAMU CIRTL, along with the Center for Teaching Excellence (CTE),
worked with the Graduate Teaching Academy (GTA) program’s steering committee members, in
the development of GTA program outcomes. TAMU CIRTL also aligned GTA program outcomes
with CIRTL learning outcomes at the fellow level. GTA program goals were most closely aligned
with the learning community and learning-through-diversity CIRTL pillars.
TAMU CIRTL in its interaction with GTA has been able to help GTA transform into a learning
outcomes based professional program with specific goals. Also, as a result of the interaction, the
structure of the program has changed from random professional development workshops to a more
structured approach with four categories of seminars offered throughout the year. The categories of
professional development outcomes are career path, teaching methods, assessment and
pedagogy/technology. Each category consists of 2 seminars by prominent faculty followed by a
third week of group discussion facilitated by well known faculty on TAMU campus along with a
group leader trained to facilitate the session. This new structure of programming has enabled the
development of a learning community as the participants share their learning experiences during
the discussions throughout the year in small groups and further also share their learning with the
larger group. These interactions between and among participants also has the diversity component
interwoven into its fabric.
TAMU-CIRTL developed a GTA program evaluation plan to assess progress toward the
achievement of program outcomes. The evaluation plan includes weekly and end of semester
assessments of participant satisfaction and knowledge gains.
Graduate Teaching Academy (GTA) II – Inquiry Based Learning Community:
GTA II represented a senior fellows program that focused on inquiry-based learning (IBL). In the
GTA II program, fellows developed the skills needed to utilize inquiry in existing curriculum.
Participants developed artifacts and implemented projects designed to bring inquiry into an
undergraduate course at TAMU. TAMU-CIRTL supported the GTA II workshop by working with
CTE to develop a curriculum for the workshop. We are using the work completed for this
workshop as the basis for the new College Alignment for Collaboration program.
We are also in the process of building a workbook based on the information from the IBL to be
shared with the CIRTL network.
Two informational brochures were developed to assist with the marketing and publicity of TAMU
CIRTL. One brochure focuses solely on the purpose and pillars of the CIRTL Network while the
other brochure takes an integrative approach and provides information about TAMU CIRTL, the
CTE and the GTA. The color brochures are three fold and contain information about program
goals, available resources, and contact information.
Working with the Center for Teaching Excellence, we mapped CIRTL program outcomes to
outcomes that TAMU stakeholders seek to achieve in their professional development programs.
The work sought to define stages of outcomes that are consistent with the CIRTL Fellows,
Practitioner and Scholar levels.
* PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT IN PROGRESS
College Alignment for Collaboration (CAC):
The College Alignment for Collaboration (CAC) is a new discipline-based professional
development program for graduates-through-faculty that will be customized for departments and
colleges. This new program offers good opportunities to incorporate CIRTL network activities as
well as take advantage of the diversity of the network. This program and its activities are rooted in
the GTA II program. In the coming semester we plan to deliver one workshop focused on teaching-
Post-Doc Professional Development Program:
Given the new emphasis on providing post doctoral researchers with a quality mentoring
experience as a condition of receiving funding for such positions through either NIH or the NSF,
there has emerged a target of opportunity on the TAMU campus to assist in providing some central
resources for such activities and in so doing to incorporate the CIRTL pillars as part of the
program. TAMU CIRTL is collaborating with the Office of Proposal Development (OPD), Office
of Graduate Studies (OGS) and Office of Vice president for Research (VPR) to develop this
professional development program for post-docs in STEM disciplines.
This program will consist of three components:
1. Teaching and learning: A set of workshops will be put together using renowned faculty on
campus, and also collaborating with CTE and GTA if and when required.
2. Grant writing and proposal development: Workshops offered by the Office of Proposal
Development will be incorporated into the program to avoid duplication.
3. Conflict management and professional practices
CIRTL at Vanderbilt University (VU) is led by Thomas Harris, Professor of Biomedical
Engineering. VU is a private research university with over 1,000 STEM graduate students. VU
brings a wide array of research in STEM learning, including the Learning Sciences Institute (LSI),
the NSF-funded Vanderbilt-Northwestern-Texas-Harvard/MIT (VaNTH), Engineering Research
Center, the Center for Teaching, and the Center for Science Outreach in the Medical Center.
The Vanderbilt team is developing a VU organization (tentatively labeled the Vanderbilt Institute
for STEM Education –VISTEME) to support CIRTL and related initiatives in the STEM
disciplines at VU. This will be a provost-level organization with representation from Engineering,
Medicine, Arts and Science, Peabody College and the Center for Teaching. The executive
committee will represent each school and will act as liaison to the deans of the respective schools.
They will leverage CIRTL support to identify funding for VISTEME activities from the schools
and from the central administration. One resource has been identified and an internal proposal for
support will be developed shortly.
Vanderbilt-CIRTL is recruiting local graduate-through-faculty participants. STEM departments are
being contacted in order to create a database of core STEM faculty, fellows and students interested
in VISTEME activities and engage them in cross-network activities. They will seek to identify
subgroups that can organize around themes or disciplines. One such group on laboratory
instruction is now functioning.
Stacy Klein, Professor of Biomedical Engineering, is developing a multi-school graduate course in
STEM teaching methods that is based on VANTH and CIRTL principles. This course will use
distance materials from the CIRTL Network as well as local materials. Vanderbilt will hold
additional workshops for local faculty, fellows and students based primarily on VaNTH approaches
to STEM education and educational technologies. Finally, Vanderbilt will engage graduate students
and fellows in teaching-as-research projects based on the teaching methodologies developed by
Vanderbilt University Level of Stage Estimated Evaluation Plan
Engagement Early, annual # of
Low, Med, Mid, participants
BME TA Workshop Low E 12 Held at start of semester.
Covers several areas
related to effective
teaching. HPL. First
year gs, assigned as Tas.
- classes and labs. Pre-
dates CIRTL, emphasize
gaps in CT programs.
TAR students joined the
group on 3rd day. Pre &
post test of knowledge
in specific areas.
Participant data also
STEM TA Workshop Low E 15 Fall 2008, Tas for labs, 1
day workshop, covered
learning theory, helping
students recognize their
own interaction patterns,
thinking. (May have had
pre-post test data)
CFT TA Orientation Low E 110 Took place in Fall 2009.
Provided lunch to STEM
Tas. Tom & Jean gave
CIRTL orientation and
promoted events. Panel
of people who had done
event to recruit new
students and an
opportunity for TAR
participants to "teach".
(May have helped filled
the classes. Students
were very interested.)
STEM Education based Low E, 50 Bob M. presented in
Seminars M,L January 2009 (CIRTL
event). Tom and Bob
R.? Gave a seminar in
BME. New chair is
trying to start the year
off with a teaching-
Occasional series - if
Tom presenting, he
mentions CIRTL. If
others speak, CIRTL
promotes events. (No
specific evaluation) Do
CIRTL Forum Low M,L 40 January event, poster
40 - signed the sign in sheet session. TAR
at this venue. People
"grade" the poster using
TAR Projects High M,L 8 Project assessed with
Fall 2008-8 project rubric,
Fall 2009 - 8 interviews with fellows,
(in collaboration with CFT interviews with mentor
future faculty prep program) professors. CFT is
students. Derek meets
weekly with these
workshops to get the
students started. CFT
model - 3 tiered. Alene
interviewed Fall 2008
participants. Looking for
interviews. Derek is
pushing students to get
IRB approval. Two
students from fall 2008,
continued in spring
2009. They were
mailing list. Students
must apply for program.
Students get $3000 for
the semester as salary.
Lab Instructors Meetings Medium E,M,L 10 Lab instructors and Tas
invited to meetings, once
a month, discuss
issues. Diversity issues
came up in the last mtg.
Derek and Jean attend
and Ken Schriver. About
Keivan Stassen Course Medium M, L 20 3-4 students typically
take the online CC
course. Includes general
ideas with specific cases
designed for physics
students. Offered every
Stacy Klein Course Medium M,L 12 Includes general ideas
with specific cases
designed for engineering
students. This course
designed with pillars in
mind. Students develop
a teaching module
during the course.
Expects to offers the
course once a year.
Courses evaluated as all
courses at Vanderbilt.
Stacy has rubrics on
what she is trying to
assess. Alene will follow
up with Stacy.
Outreach activities: Community College in
STEMES, workshops at Grand Rapids MN.
other campuses, UTPA UTPA, University of
Texas- Pan America.
Training 80 faculty
Center for Science Outreach Medium E,M,L 15 Ginny Shepherd's work.
– Scientist in the Classroom (CIRTL Project)
I. History and Background of the Program
Vanderbilt joined the CIRTL Network because it offered a method to continue our campus focus
on issues in STEM education and faculty (future and current) development. A number of activities
in STEM education were existing at Vanderbilt. These included the Center for Teaching charged
with the improvement of teaching in all undergraduate disciplines; the Vanderbilt-Northwestern-
Texas-Harvard/MIT (VaNTH) Engineering Research Center for Bioengineering Educational
Technologies, a major research center in engineering education funded by NSF; the Center for
Science Outreach, a effort to transfer scientific expertise from university to K-12 contexts; a major
Research Experience for Teachers program and a number of individual efforts aimed at improving
STEM education. VU faculty endorsed the CIRTL pillars and found significant overlap between
them and other reforms that were underway on our campus, especially instructional reform in
challenge-based instruction and applications of learning technology. VU found the CIRTL
emphasis on graduate education and future faculty to be especially appealing. In addition, the
concept of a larger network was compatible with our earlier work in VaNTH and offered a venue
for dissemination of VU ideas and the reception at VU of ideas in STEM education developed by
the network members.
II. VU Plans to Develop Current and Future Faculty
The key elements of the VU CIRTL program are as follows:
Establishment of a steering committee for continued development of STEM education plans
including research and development activities funded by outside agencies.
Establishment of outreach programs to future STEM faculty in the forms of local courses,
CIRTL Network courses, workshops and seminars aimed at presenting the elements of
modern STEM learning science and technology to future faculty members.
Establishment of a program of Teaching as Research projects for future faculty in which
they undertake a semester-long course improvement project under the supervision of STEM
faculty and with the advice of CIRTL and Center for Teaching STEM education experts.
Coordination of K12 outreach programs for STEM graduate students and faculty.
Participation in the larger CIRTL community through the CIRTL internet portal and other
III. VU CIRTL Network Team
The VU CIRTL Network Team consists of the following:
Director, Thomas R. Harris, Orrin Henry Ingram Distinguished Professor of Engineering
Emeritus and Research Professor of Biomedical Engineering.
Alene Harris, Research Assistant Professor of Education, Assessment liaison and learning
Jean Alley, Program Administrator and network liaison.
o Allison Pingree, Director Center for Teaching
o Keivan Stassun, Associate Professor of Physics
o Stacy Klein, Associate Professor in the Practice of Biomedical Engineering,
Associate Dean of Engineering
o Virginia Shepherd, Professor of Pathology
o Kenneth Schriever, Instructor in Physics and Director of the Undergraduate Physics
o Participating Faculty and Graduate Students
IV. Highlight Feature
TAR projects : Last year a group of 8 students worked on TAR projects. They finalized the semester’s
work with a report of the project and a poster presentation. Students presented their posters at a Forum
held in January. This was advertised to all STEM departments via several means. Bob Mathieu came at
the guest speaker for the seminar. A total of 45 people attended the poster presentations and seminar.
Two of the students were selected to continue their projects into a second semester. These continuations
allowed the students to make adjustments to the methods tested during the first semester and see if the
changes brought better results. This semester a second group of graduate students and 1 post-doc are
participating in semester-long TAR projects that are aimed at improvements in existing STEM courses.
The group will meet once a week to discuss and facilitate work on their project. The projects will be
presented on-campus to other faculty, graduate students and post-docs. This works towards CIRTL
goals 1 & 3 and pillars 1, 2, &3 (diversity of programs).
University of Wisconsin–Madison: Preparing Research Mentors and a Global
The University of Wisconsin-Madison (UW) is expanding the Delta learning community in three
directions. First, a frontier in the preparation of STEM faculty is training to be research mentors;
such training is ever more vital with the increasing emphasis on undergraduate research throughout
higer education. Furthermore, enhancement of undergraduate and graduate research experiences
will increase the recruitment and retention of diverse students in STEM. A mentor-training
program in the biological sciences has been developed, implemented, and evaluated by the Howard
Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI)-funded Wisconsin Program for Scientific Teaching1. Funded by
a Course, Curriculum, and Laboratory Improvement (CCLI) grant, the CIRTL team at UW is
adapting this mentor-training program to serve future and current faculty in all STEM disciplines.
In addition to these disciplinary adaptations, the team is infusing issues of diversity throughout the
training program to develop cultural competency in the mentors, and to help them develop it in
their mentees. The broadened program will become an integral, ongoing part of the Delta Program
in Research, Teaching, and Learning.
Since the Fall of 2007, a multidisciplinary team of faculty and staff from 7 disciplines (biology,
chemistry, physics, mathematics, astronomy, psychology, and engineering) created mentor training
materials to address key topics in mentoring such as establishing expectations, developing good
communication and addressing diversity. These materials were piloted in the summer 2008 through
Delta. Over 50 graduate students and postdocs mentors from a range of disciplines including
biology, chemistry, astronomy, physics, and engineering participated in 8 weeks of research mentor
training. In Fall 2008, the materials for math and engineering will be piloted with faculty mentors.
An external evaluator is studying the effectiveness of the prototype materials and implementation.
The UW is also addressing diversity in a new direction by creating and evaluating a course called
International Students, International Faculty. In the spirit of learning-through-diversity, this course
is designed for both US and international students and has as its preparing US future faculty to
teach international students, preparing international students to teach US students, and preparing all
students to teach in the new globally connected world. The course was offered in the Spring of
2008. There were 15 participants, including 2 post-docs from 13 departments (Horticulture,
Psychology, Computer Science, Biochemistry, Oceanic and Atmospheric Sciences, Medicine,
Astronomy, Engineering Physics, Physics, Center for Neuroscience, Dairy Science, Geology &
Geophysics, and Environmental Chemistry and Technology. The course syllabus can be found in
UW-Madison Delta Level of Stage Est. annual Evaluation Plan
Engagement Early, # of
Low, Med, Mid, participants
High Late 2008-09
Roundtable Dinners Low E,M,L 316 End of season eval -
survey sent to all
attendees at end of year,
w/ focus on how dinners
promote LC - is the
dinner a connection
Teaching Adventures and Low E,M,L 100 End of event evals -
Outcomes Brownbag mostly satisfaction
Writing NSF Broader Low E 43 End of event evals -
Impact Statements - mostly satisfaction
graduate workshop based
Developing an Excellent Low E 14 End of event evals -
Education Plan for your mostly satisfaction
CAREER proposal based
workshop for faculty
Writing Teaching and Low M,L 39
Learning Philosophies End of event evals -
workshop mostly satisfaction
Understanding, Designing Low M,L 40 End of event evals -
and Creating Teaching mostly satisfaction
Portfolio workshop based
Creating a Collaborative Med E,M,L 8 (rows 11-15) Mid-
Learning Environment b course and end of
semester eval (some do
pre-course eval) all post
evals include 4 common
Expeditions in Learning Med E,M,L 8
Research Mentor Training Med E,M,L 79
Courses c Med E,M,L 138 (ave 12 Post on-line survey
per course) (perhaps pre- as well?)
2 or more Delta courses d High E,M,L
Teaching-As-Research Med-High M,L 14 Pre/post on-line survey
Internship (interns are in cross-
Certificate in Research, High M,L 14f Post on-line survey
Teaching and Learning e
a NOTE: An individual may be counted more than once in the grid.
b CCLE was not offered between Summer 2008 and Spring 2009; number of participants reported
represents attendees in an earlier year.
c Delta Courses include, but are not limited to, the following:
(1) The College Classroom = 17; (2) College Classroom: Teaching in the Liberal Arts = 11; (3)
Effective Teaching with Technology = 10;
(4) Informal Education - Engage Children in Science = 2 grads; (5) Informal Science Education for
Scientists: A Practicum, Teaching in
Science and Engineering = 12; (6) Instructional Materials Development = 15; (7) Diversity in the
College Classroom = 16;
(8) International Students, International Faculty = 10; (9) Graduate Seminar in Teaching Large
Classes = 17;
(10) Teaching Statistics in the Classroom = 10; (11) Teaching Biology = 16
d Indicates the number of students who took a second Delta course during the year. Students more
often than not took their first Delta course in a different year.
e Note: the following activities are required of Delta Certificate candidates:
(1) Two Delta courses
(2) Participation in the Learning Community (eg. CCLE, EL, Mentor Training Seminar)
(4) Create and defend Teaching & Learning portfolio
f Note: From 2004 through 2008, approx. 14 students received their Delta Certificates. In 2009 we
switched to a cohort process; 7 students completed their certificate in each of two cohorts in the
year. We anticipate similar numbers of students in the future.
Institutionalization of the Delta Program
In spring 2009, the University of Wisconsin-Madison (UW-Madison) Provost Office and Graduate
School extended their support of the Delta Program in Research, Teaching and Learning (the Delta
Program or Delta) with funds for Delta’s core staff and operational budget. The decision by campus
administration to extend Delta’s funding was influenced by an internal report that detailed the
impact of the Delta Program on undergraduate education at UW-Madison. Through its more than
1800 participants, Delta has improved the capacity of current and future faculty to enhance STEM
undergraduate education at UW-Madison. This internal report (available upon request) includes
evidence and specific examples of the ways in which Delta: (a) improves undergraduate education,
(b) enhances faculty and staff professional development in teaching, (c) advances the UW-Madison
teaching and learning mission, (d) contributes to the UW-Madison research mission, (e) supports
the institution’s diversity strategic goals, and (f) embodies the Wisconsin Idea through
collaborations with near-by colleges and universities.
Participation in Delta continues to grow
Participation in the Delta Program continues to grow with increases in the number of individual
participants, expansion of disciplinary representation, and broadening of participation across career
stage. For example, between Fall and Summer 2009, Delta had 188 participants enrolled in
semester long courses and programs, with an additional 585 instances of participation in
workshops, roundtable dinners and seminars. This semester (Fall 2009) Delta has 55 graduate
students, 19 faculty members, 3 academic staff and 2 post-docs, from 35 different departments,
enrolled in full-semester courses and programs. Fifty-seven percent of these participants are from
the Biological Sciences, 21% from the Physical Sciences, 13% from Engineering, 4% from
Mathematics and 5% from the Social Sciences/Education. Similar to previous semesters, Delta
programming continues to operate at capacity with many courses filling with a wait list. Fall
marketing has become an effective leverage point for the Program in terms of campus visibility.
For example, Delta staff gave more than 20 presentations at new and current graduate student
orientations and teaching assistant trainings across campus in Fall 2009. Delta also distributed over
1000 flyers to 30 different campus departments for distribution to their students. Delta also markets
to prospective graduate students during their campus visits. Anecdotal evidence, in the form of
student comments, indicates that increasing numbers of graduate students are coming to UW-
Madison, in part because of Delta.
New Courses and Programs Offered at UW-Madison and Across the CIRTL Network
Courses at UW-Madison
Over the last year Delta staff have created and offered several new courses; in addition, they have
integrated some pilot offerings into Delta’s core curriculum: • In Summer 2008, Delta developed
and taught a course entitled: the College Classroom: Teaching in the Liberal Arts, UW System and
Technical College Classroom. This 8-week summer course provided students with foundational
knowledge across a range of pedagogical theories, ideas and practices, as well as an opportunity to
explore different local college and university campuses and examine teaching and learning through
the lens of varied campus cultures and missions. In summer 2009, exploring faculty life at diverse
campuses was adapted to the program Expeditions in Learning: Academic Institutions. Delta now
offers the College Classroom: International Students, International Faculty course annually. This
course is for graduate students and post-docs, both international and domestic, who want to become
effective teachers in the global college classroom. Participants in this course explore cross cultural
teaching and learning in international contexts with the goal of enhancing the international
understanding and perspectives of future faculty. During Fall 2009, Delta is partnering with the
UW-Madison’s Center for the First Year Experience to offer a specialized version of Expeditions
in Learning. Participants in this small group program read about and explore the experiences of
first year students first hand.
CIRTL Network On-line courses
The Delta Program, in partnership with the CIRTL Network, has offered an on-line version of the
College Classroom course annually since Fall 2006. During Spring 2009, the Delta leaders adapted
and offered two new on-line courses to participants from across the CIRTL Network: • Diversity in
the College Classroom: This course challenges participants to explore what is known and theorized
about the ways that diversity affects learning; students create an action plan to help them as
educators develop practical classroom strategies that address diversity. This course enrolled
students from Howard University, UW-Madison, the University of Colorado at Boulder, and Texas
A&M University. Effective Teaching with Technology: Delta instructors partnered with Howard
University to offer an online version of this course. Students from each campus met both virtually
and as a cohort on their own campuses to explore how to use technology in the classroom to
promote student learning.
Research Mentor Training
With funding from the NSF, a multidisciplinary team of faculty and staff have adapted and
implemented a research mentor training program for use across STEM. More than 75 graduate
students and post-doc mentors, from a range of disciplines, which includes biology, chemistry,
astronomy, physics, and engineering, have participated in 8 weeks of this mentor training.
Moreover, 3 cohorts of faculty have engaged in mentor training. A website that will allow users to
develop their own research mentor training curricula is near completion.
Successful adaptation of Delta Programming at a Community College
In spring 2009, the Madison Area Technical College offered a version of Delta’s Expeditions in
Learning. Five MATC faculty from chemistry, biotechnology, mathematics and microbiology met
regularly to discuss innovations in teaching by other faculty on the MATC campus. In addition to
their discussions, these faculty went on expeditions to view other faculty in action; one expedition
was to UW-Madison to observe lecturing and active learning in a large classroom.
National Recognition of the Delta Program
The Delta Program achieved national recognition in a number of ways over the past year:
Delta was a 2009 recipient of the National Council for Continuous Improvement Award2.
Delta presented a white paper3 focused on the importance of future faculty professional
development to improve undergraduate STEM education at a National Academies of
Publication of a manuscript detailing how Delta staff work with faculty to leverage Delta
programming to address the broader impact requirements of their grant proposals to NSF4.
Publication of a book chapter describing Delta as a successful model for professional
development in teaching for future faculty5.
3 Mathieu, R.D., Pfund, C. and Gillian-Daniel, D.L. (2009) Leveraging the NSF Broader Impact
Criteria to Influence Institutional Change in STEM Higher Education. Change Magazine. 41(3):
4Austin, A.E., Campa, III, R., Pfund, C., Gillian-Daniel, D.L., Mathieu, R., and Stoddart, J. (2009)
Preparing STEM Doctoral Students for Future Faculty Careers. New Directions for Teaching and
Learning Monograph Series. Volume: Improving the Climate for Undergraduate Teaching and
Learning in STEM Fields, Roger Baldwin, ed. 117:83-95.
Distance Learning Courses
Distance learning creates opportunities for graduate students and postdocs around the network to
learn together about teaching, and through their diversity enhance each other’s preparation for
future faculty roles. The primary goal of the CIRTL distance-learning curriculum is to provide a
rich array of learning-through-diversity opportunities. Additionally, this approach will provide a
wider range of courses for students at all campuses, with the efficiency that every campus need not
staff every opportunity. These courses will be a powerful dissemination channel to inspire local
adaptations as well as serve as recruiting tool for the CIRTL Online Community Center.
Gillian-Daniel, D.L. (2008) The Impact of Future Faculty Professional Development in Teaching
on STEM Undergraduate Education: A Case Study about the Delta Program in Research, Teaching
and Learning at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. A White Paper prepared for the Board on
Science Education, Center for Education, National Research Council Workshop on Linking
Evidence and Promising Practices in STEM Undergraduate Education. October 13-14 2008.
Washington, D.C. URL:
Mathieu, R.D., Pfund, C. and Gillian-Daniel, D.L. (2009) Leveraging the NSF Broader Impact
Criteria to Influence Institutional Change in STEM Higher Education. Change Magazine. 41(3):
5 Austin, A.E., Campa, III, R., Pfund, C., Gillian-Daniel, D.L., Mathieu, R., and Stoddart, J. (2009)
Preparing STEM Doctoral Students for Future Faculty Careers. New Directions for Teaching and
Learning Monograph Series. Volume: Improving the Climate for Undergraduate Teaching and
Learning in STEM Fields, Roger Baldwin, ed. 117:83-95.
We have built on a successful prototype by expanding to an initial curriculum of four distance-
learning courses whose ―origins‖ are distributed around the Network. Fall 2008 courses include:
Teaching and Learning Science: Changing Student Misconceptions and The College Classroom.
Teaching and Learning Science is designed for STEM graduate students interested in exploring
how undergraduate students understand STEM disciplines. The course provides a forum to address
the identification and resolution of student misconceptions and conceptual gaps. Participants will
customize their work to their own academic area and engage in teaching-as-research to understand
undergraduate conceptions using the bioliteracy.net, Ed's Tools system. The College Classroom
course will help participants learn the basics of effective teaching as well as ideas on the forefront
of college education. These will include the core CIRTL ideas of teaching-as-research, learning
community, and learning-through-diversity. Participants will develop their teaching philosophy and
explore how it may impact their future students. Course participants will design a course
curriculum accordingly and learn how to monitor and investigate the effectiveness of the learning
environment. Spring 2009 courses include: Effective use of Technology in Teaching and Learning
and Diversity in the College Classroom. The course flyer for the 2008-09 academic year is
included in Appendix C.
The distance learning team is currently evaluating course management and web conferencing tools
that will support live interaction among participants and instructors during class. Students will be
joined together across the Network using voice (telephone or VoIP), video (webcam) and
interactive web-based tools. In addition to offering audio and video connectivity, these web
conferencing tools allow all participants to simultaneously view slides, documents, and web sites.
Instructors can also use these tools to poll students for instant feedback during class. Students can
use a text chat window to pose a question to the instructor or to the entire class. The web
conferencing tools currently under consideration are being evaluated on a number of factors
including ease of use, functionality, cross-platform compatibility, accessibility and cost. Acrobat
Connect, WebEx, Elluminate and Microsoft Live Meeting are currently under review.
Outside of class time, students and instructors may use Moodle, an open-source course
management system. Hosted at UW, Moodle will be available to all distance course instructors.
The CIRTL-hosted Moodle site lowers the administrative barriers often associated with giving non-
student access to university-based course management systems.
Distance technologies were also employed by CIRTL in a new way in April 2008. CIRTL partners
from across the Network were able to remotely attend end-of-semester student presentations in a
local, on-campus course at another Network campus. While end-of-semester student presentations
are common occurrences in CIRTL courses, ―bringing the Network to the course‖ had not been
attempted previously. In this instance, graduate students in the Howard University’s Effective Use
of Technology in Teaching and Learning presented while CIRTL partners from across the country
listened to the presentation via teleconference and viewed presentation materials via the web. The
remote session gave the students a wider audience with which to share there teaching-as-research
projects and exposed the CIRTL partners to more examples of teaching-as-research. Following this
initial success, plans are being developed to build remote access to student presentations into both
local and distance course offerings where feasible. Ideally, graduate students interested in taking a
CIRTL course or already enrolled in a local course on their campus will have an opportunity,
through these remote presentations, to hear first-hand what students are discovering about teaching
and learning on other Network campus. It is anticipated that a wide, cross-Network audience will
enrich the presenters’ experience as well as facilitate the sharing of ideas among participants.
In February 2008, representatives of the graduate schools from UW and MSU trialed a joint
professional development workshop through video conferencing. The session, Securing Academic
Positions: Planning, Preparation, and Interviewing for Success, was attended by approximately 40
graduate students from each institution. During the roughly 2-hour program, program facilitators
discussed how to interpret a job advertisement, how applicants could research positions and prepare
for interviews, and what to do and what not to do during an interview. To engage workshop
participants, students were randomly selected for "mock interviews" for fictitious positions that
were created by the workshop facilitators. After the interviews, students from both campuses and
workshop facilitators had an opportunity to point out strengths of each interviewee and "what could
be improved upon". The session ended with a question-and-answer period. Based on the
evaluation conducted at each institution, students were very satisfied with the program. Following
the success of this trial session, we are reviewing other professional development programs that can
be adapted to be delivered simultaneously to more than one campus. Such joint programs would
allow Network campuses to leverage off existing programs and resources at other campuses as well
as provide an added opportunity for participants to learn from the diversity of perspectives and
experiences at the other Network campuses.
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Online Community Center - The CIRTL Café
The CIRTL Network Online Community Center, named The CIRTL Café, is being built to promote
and support a highly interactive graduate-through-faculty learning community across the network.
The community center will foster four elements of a learning community: conversations, activities,
resources, and archiving. We envision a Web portal that will enable network-wide conversations,
collaborative teaching-as-research, joint creation and sharing of resources, and active participation
in CIRTL events at a distance. The community center will promote formal and self-organized
activities and permit synchronous and asynchronous interactions of graduates-through-faculty. This
community center will engage participants in a ―just in time, just for me‖ learning environment,
and provide broad access across the Network to professional development opportunities.
Technically, the community center will use existing tools available from Network institutions and
open source tools from the broader Internet community. Among the tools will be a learning
management system (www.moodle.org) to support distance courses, workshops, and seminars, as
well as group discussion forums and individual conversations; a portfolio system to support
participant reflection and aid academic careers; a collaborative workspace to support teaching-as-
research teams and cross-network internships; and Web conferencing, video conferencing, and
podcasting. The CIRTL Café also allow these community-generated products to be archived and
accessed by members, including those graduate students who have graduated and moved on to
academic careers at other institutions.
Drupal, an open-source content management system was chosen as the base platform for the
community center. The system provides a user friendly interface that allows all community
members to contribute content to the site. Using a content management system will allow members
of the community to easily add their own content to the site and form connections with other
community members. Rather than have content made available by a webmaster, the CIRTL Online
Community will be managed by a social networking guru with STEM credentials, most likely a
postdoctoral researcher with a combination of technical and community building skills. Dubbed a
―community catalyst,‖ this individual will mentor, guide and facilitate CIRTL community members
as they explore and engage in online activities that build upon the three central pillars of CIRTL:
teaching-as-research, learning communities, and learning-through-diversity. The community
catalyst will encourage new members to participate in the community's activities, promote
understanding of the portal tools, moderate online discussions, develop content focused on
integrating research and teaching, support mentoring and collaboration between members of the
CIRTL Network, and help develop additional Internet tools. A search is underway for the
community catalyst position.
The Online Community team, led by Bruce Herbert (Geology & Geophysics, Texas A&M) and
Kitch Barnicle (CIRTL Central), meets weekly via teleconference. Current and past participants in
CIRTL programs will be invited to join the online community in September 2008.
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CIRTL Network Exchange Program
The opportunity to present or do disciplinary research at another university is often a formative
experience in a graduate student career. We hypothesize that the same is true of teaching-as-
research, and indeed that disciplinary and teaching-as-research activities will each enhance the
other. Thus, we have established an exchange program for graduates-through-faculty throughout
the Network. The most frequent exchanges will be travel for colloquia and collaborations on
timescales of a few days to a week.
Christian Doerr, a doctoral student in Computer Science at the University of Colorado at Boulder
will be the first ―trial‖ exchange participant. He will be hosted by Professor Suman Banerjee, of the
Computer Science department at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the Delta Program.
During his visit to the UW, Mr. Doerr will present on both his disciplinary research in computer
science and his teaching-as-research.
[INSERT 2009 TEXT HERE]
STEM Education Scholars Program
In 2004, CIRTL adapted the (originally NSF funded) Science and Engineering Education Scholars
Program (SEESP) program to be more interdisciplinary and to integrate the CIRTL pillars. In June
2008, the STEMES program took place at Vanderbilt University. The program included, in part,
course and learning module design (Karl Smith, Purdue University), assessment strategies for
teaching-as-research (Diane Ebert-May, MSU), diversity issues (Sandy Courter, UW), Challenge
Based Instruction (Alene Harris & Stacey Klein, Vanderbilt University) and Teaching with
Technology (Richard Cyr, Penn State University).
Nineteen individuals from 12 universities participated in the 2008 STEM Education Scholars
program including 10 whose primary discipline was science and 6 whose primary discipline was
technology or engineering. In terms of career stage, there were 9 non-tenured faculty members, 3
post-doctoral associates, 3 academic-track graduate students, and 1 tenured international faculty
member. The workshop evaluations were positive with virtually all segments of the workshop
receiving an Above Average or Excellent rating. Attendees liked the size of the group, the variety
of topics covered and variety of methods in which the materials were presented. One challenge
participants noted was the difficulty translating concepts into usable classroom materials. Appendix
D includes a proposed outline for the 2009 workshop which more closely integrates each
The STEMES program will continue to move to a new Network location every 2 years—e.g., PSU
(2004, 2005), Howard (2006, 2007), Vanderbilt (2008, 2009)—both to allow participants to
experience the diversity of the Network and to provide high-profile CIRTL events on each campus.
STEMES participants are also encouraged to remain connected through the CIRTL Online
[INSERT 2009 TEXT HERE]
CIRTL Network Seed Grant Program
A measure of a vital learning community is the generation of new ideas and initiatives, particularly
by later-generation members. We have a funded Seed Grant program for development,
implementation, and evaluation of professional development ideas throughout the Network. These
grants will provide a relatively small amount of funds per project to support expenses ranging from
materials to a graduate student assistant for 6 months. In 2008 the first Seed Grant ($2500) was
provided to the University of Colorado to support materials development by Lead Fellows for
pedagogy courses in STEM departments. They hypothesis is that even relatively small amounts of
NSF funding will give the Lead Fellows credibility and legitimacy that will enhance department
support for their work.
Enhancement of Diversity in STEM
We are extending the CIRTL Diversity Resources by enhancing the already existing web resource
with concrete, actionable classroom practices that elicit learning-through-diversity. After
participating in Delta or interacting with the CIRTL Diversity Resources, graduates-through-
faculty are aware of the diversity of their students but feel limited in how they can act. This
resource will provide adaptable exemplars that graduates-through-faculty can use as models for
Learning-through-Diversity in Action (LtDA).
CIRTL partners from each Network campus serve as campus representatives and meet via
teleconference. By Fall 2008, the team plans to interview at least one faculty member at each
Network campus who has exemplified learning-through-diversity. These data will serve as the
basis for the development of prototype materials that can be used to show graduates-through-
faculty in and beyond CIRTL Network programs how STEM faculty have used techniques such as
intentionally constructed group works, inclusive syllabi and respect statements, and constructive
use of dissenting voices to promote learning-through-diversity.
Developmental and dissemination goals
Collect exemplars of LtDA from STEM faculty on Network campuses.
Convert these data into a concise, accessible format.
Publicize and disseminate the LtDA resource within and beyond the CIRTL Network.
Research and evaluation goals
Understand how the Diversity Institute Resources are being used and to elicit learning-
Demonstrate evidence that people have moved from awareness of learning-through-
diversity to LtDA.
Demonstrate evidence of the effectiveness of LtDA towards end learning goals.
Evaluate how LtDA resources are used and continue to tailor them to needs of the CIRTL
[INSERT 2009 TEXT HERE]
Preparing STEM Faculty to Prepare K–12 STEM Teachers
Many STEM faculty are involved, directly or indirectly, with K–12 teacher preparation. Directly,
STEM faculty shape the content understanding of preservice teachers. Additionally, STEM courses
provide preservice teachers with experiences that help shape their beliefs and attitudes about STEM
teaching as a practice and a profession. Yet, few graduates-through-faculty learn about this
important arena of their teaching.
This CIRTL Network Initiative seeks to address this need by developing and implementing
materials and programs to increase STEM graduate-through-faculty preparation for their roles in
K–12 teacher preparation. The initiative will design opportunities so that graduates-through-
• become aware (or more aware) of the important roles they play in K–12 teacher preparation;
• learn of strategies for increasing the learning of STEM content by preservice teachers; and
• learn of strategies for enhancing attitudes toward and interests in K–12 teaching.
There are three main components to the planned efforts:
1. Conduct a review of publications and reports from programs that have attempted to improve the
content preparation of K-12 teachers. The set of materials to be reviewed would include reports
from NSF-funded projects as well as other efforts. The goal is to create syntheses (and annotated
bibliographies) of what is known about the challenges and opportunities that exist in the content
preparation of K-12 teachers, especially those that directly involve colleges/universities. Much of
this work is discipline-specific, so, for example, Natasha Speer (Math Ed, Maine)6 would oversee
and help conduct the review of the mathematics publications and reports and Noah Finkelstein
At the time of the writing of the proposal, Prof. Speer was at MSU. As of Fall 2008, she has taken a professorship at
the University of Maine. This should not change her leadership role in this project significantly.
(Physics, CU) will take the lead on the physics-related materials. A faculty member at either UW,
TAMU, or both will take the lead on biology-related materials.
2. Develop, pilot, and conduct surveys of what STEM graduate students and faculty know about the
preparation of K-12 teachers and the roles that faculty can/do play in those efforts. One of the goals
of this component is to help inform the other work of the initiative and the other is to generate
data/findings that may be of interest to the education community more broadly. The survey would
include questions about the structure of teacher preparation generally as well as questions that are
specific to the state/local contexts in which the faculty reside. Some of the "general" questions
would be discipline-specific (the way that mathematics teacher preparation occurs is somewhat
different from physics teacher prep, for example). Again, Speer would take the lead in developing
the general questions for mathematics (that could serve as a model for the other disciplines) as well
as the prototype for the state/local context questions. Others would then customize the state/local
questions for their location and take responsibility for gathering information about the discipline-
specific context and developing those questions.
We suspect that STEM faculty and education faculty are not well aware of what the other group's
role is in the preparation of teachers. For example, some STEM faculty have the impression that
school of education faculty are in charge of various specific decisions in local schools (choice of
curriculum, approach to instruction, tests used for assessments, etc.). In some cases, this means that
STEM faculty believe that if they are to become involved in teacher-related work, it would mean
"taking on" their colleagues in education. In addition, faculty (both STEM and education) are not
necessarily aware of the varied roles they could be playing in teacher-related efforts, despite heavy
pressure from NSF and elsewhere for such collaborations to occur. By developing and conducting
surveys, we will know what the overall level of awareness is and we can then use that information
as we develop materials to help raise awareness and encourage faculty to participate in efforts.
3. Develop, pilot, and disseminate materials. These materials will include the syntheses of findings
from the reviews described in #1 above as well as materials we develop (informed by the survey
data) to help graduate students and faculty become more informed about how teacher preparation
happens at their university and in their state. These materials will include, as much as possible,
very specific, concrete things that graduate students and faculty can do in their teaching and other
In addition, the materials will include examples of ways that STEM faculty and education faculty
have collaborated on teacher-related efforts. These examples will come out of the review of
literature/reports as well as our own experiences. The goal is to provide people with concrete
images of what this kind of collaboration and work can look like with the hope that having such
images will make it more feasible for faculty to envision participating in the work (both locally and
There will also be descriptions of and findings from programs that already exist related to these
issues. For example, there are several efforts underway at CU, Finkelstein will distill information
about these programs and lessons learned from them and write up in ways that will be accessible to
STEM graduate students and faculty. This component might also include creating and
disseminating "instructor's manuals" for these programs/activities/courses if there are ones that
seem especially well-suited to the goals of this project and have been shown to be effective in
helping students/faculty engage more activity in teacher preparation efforts.
The literature/report reviews and the survey development will begin in Fall 2008. By Spring 2008
we will begin piloting of the surveys for further development and revision as needed. Broader
administration will begin in Fall 2009.
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The Transition from Future Faculty to Current Faculty
STEM faculty development in teaching and learning has been the focus of nationwide initiatives
for more than 2 decades. These initiatives, many funded by NSF, have been largely invisible to
graduate students and postdoctoral researchers at research universities. Our objective is to make
them visible to grad students and postdocs in the CIRTL Network, and then to smoothly transition
these future faculty into the national teaching and learning community of colleges and universities.
As a prototype for this idea, CIRTL will collaborate with Project Kaleidoscope (PKAL), a leading
national initiative for building and sustaining strong undergraduate programs in STEM. This
collaboration is in the planning phase, with likely points of activity being adapted PKAL
Leadership Institutes and mentoring through the Faculty 21 community. We note that PKAL
leaders and Faculty 21 members played a major and highly successful role planning and leading the
2008 CIRTL Forum.
We envision that the CIRTL Café will also play a major role in developing a national learning
community of faculty working with the CIRTL ideas. Given that much of the graduate learning
community across the Network will be via virtual connections, there is no reason why these
connections must necessarily break given changes in geographical location. The key is clearly
providing functional value to maintaining the community as faculty members. We are in the
process of working with an array of Delta ―graduates‖ now in faculty positions to identify needs
and to design an effective community. Ultimately we envision a major intergenerational component
to this community, as so effectively demonstrated by the Project Kaleidoscope and Faculty 21
Our evaluation plan includes two elements: (a) an Evaluation Team (ET; Ann Austin, MSU, and
Mark Connolly, UW) that plans, guides, and coordinates the collection of evaluation data, conducts
meta-analyses across institutional and program data, and develops evaluation findings; and (b) the
commitment of institutional leaders and leaders of cross-network programs to collect and report
data to the ET. Thus, the plan provides for data gathering from every institution and initiative, and
the distance, objectivity, and expertise of a designated ET. Described below are three activities that
are part of our evaluation efforts thus far.
CIRTL Network project teams look to each other for assistance with determining (a) whether their
programs are achieving important learning outcomes, and (b) which processes and activities best
promote those learning outcomes. These shared needs and interests provide an opportunity for
Network partners to engage in collaborative evaluation that is, working together not only to
establish common learning objectives but also to coordinate discussion about evaluation designs
and activities, sharing assessment instruments, and engaging in joint research studies. To encourage
capacity for program evaluation that will last longer than Network funding, the CIRTL Network is
supporting the appointment of Evaluation Liaisons (ELs) who will establish critical relationships
within and among CIRTL projects. The ELs are coordinated by Mark Connolly of UW.
Since January 2008, the evaluation liaisons have used periodic conference calls to discuss their
project evaluation plans, share resources, and ask each other questions. A subset of the ELs from
UW, MSU, and CU have been working on developing common assessment items. (See Cross-
Network Evaluation Collaboration below.)
At a CIRTL meeting in Boulder in April, a number of ELs met with Mark Connolly and Ann
Austin to discuss some of the challenges they were facing. As a result of this discussion, Austin,
Connolly, and Micomonaco (all CIRTL evaluators) are conducting on-campus consultations at
each CIRTL Network institution to help CIRTL leaders with coordinating their project goals,
activities, outcomes, and evaluation measures. The first such meeting was held in July at TAMU,
and the next planned meetings are with the CIRTL staff at Howard University and CU.
[INSERT 2009 TEXT HERE]
Cross-Network Evaluation Collaboration
The growth and development of the CIRTL Network brings with it an unprecedented opportunity
to study a range of existing and new professional development activities and approaches aimed at
preparing future faculty to be excellent educators and successful members of their academic
institutions. One collaborative evaluation effort is currently comparing the impact of three similar
programs: the Delta Internship Program7 at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, the FAST
Delta Internship Program (http://www.delta.wisc.edu/programs/internship/internship.html)
Fellowship Program (Future Academic Scholars in Teaching) at Michigan State University and the
Lead Graduate Teacher Network at the University of Colorado at Boulder. UW’s Delta Internship
Program gives participants practical experiences through which they can develop their skills and
interests in teaching and learning. Interns and partners define a teaching and learning problem,
devise, implement, and evaluate a solution, as well as create a product that will be incorporated into
their teaching portfolios. MSU’s FAST Fellowship Program provides opportunities for graduate
students in the sciences and engineering to have mentored teaching experiences and to gain
familiarity with materials on teaching and assessment techniques so that they gain the experience
and knowledge they need to be comfortable as faculty. CU’s Graduate Teacher Program provides
professional development for academic leadership positions by preparing future academic leaders,
and improving teaching assistant effectiveness and therefore the quality of undergraduate teaching.
The goal of this collaboration is to conduct a multi-institutional study that addresses the question:
"What are characteristics of programs that effectively prepare our graduate students for careers as
21st century faculty?" Specifically, the cross-network evaluation will do the following:
1. Describe how participation in CIRTL programs on individual Network campuses affects the
development of key teaching skills and competencies needed by 21st century faculty;
2. Evaluate whether participating students are exposed to ―insider knowledge‖ about multiple
aspects of careers in academia; and
3. Explore the role, if any, of teaching-as-research, learning communities and learning-
through-diversity in the above-mentioned change process for participants.
The team of collaborators—Don Gillian-Daniel and Mark Connolly (UW), Rique Campa (MSU),
and Laura Border (CU)--have met via teleconference, videoconference and in person at CIRTL
Network meetings. To date, the collaboration has produced: (a) a plan of action, (b) a comparison
of existing evaluation instruments that categorizes similar items and data, (c) a comparison of
programs across multiple characteristics, (d) a conceptual framework for comparing programs, and
(e) draft common items to be used across the Network campuses in pre- and post-surveys.
The collaboration will have two phases. During the first phase we will compare existing data about
participant learning gains and write a manuscript that provides a base-line comparison of these
three programs. The second phase will involve implementation and use of the common items
surveys that are currently under development. Data collection will begin during Fall 2008 with the
new cohorts of participants in the programs. Although this cross-institutional collaboration
currently involves only UW’s Delta Internship program, MSU’s FAST Fellowship program and
Colorado’s Lead Graduate Teacher Program, we are eager to include similar programs both within
and beyond the current CIRTL Network institutions during the project’s three year period.
[INSERT 2009 TEXT HERE]
FAST Fellowship Program (Future Academic Scholars in Teaching; http://grad.msu.edu/fast/)
Lead Graduate Teacher Network (http://www.colorado.edu/gtp/lead/index.htm)
The institutional portrait serves as an annual summary of campus activity related to the
advancement of both the CIRTL Network goals, and the philosophical pillars of CIRTL in the
development of future STEM faculty. Campuses will report summative demographic data about
each event, as well as indicate which CIRTL pillars are advanced by the activity. In addition, the
instrument provides institutions an opportunity to reflect on institution-specific goals, challenges
they face, and resources they anticipate needing as they plan for the future. The 2008 institutional
portraits are due September 30, 2008. Appendix E includes the current template for the annual
The goal of our multifaceted dissemination plan is to enhance the preparation in teaching and
learning of STEM future faculty through national use of our ideas, programs, and materials:
CIRTL Briefs. This new initiative will create four-page, easily accessible presentations of key
CIRTL outcomes and research findings. The primary target audience is graduate deans and staff.
The first CIRTL Brief, ―Improving STEM Graduate Education through the Integration of Research,
Teaching, and Learning‖ is included in Appendix F. See page 4 of the CIRTL Brief for a list of
future CIRTL Brief topics.
Presentations. Our primary initiatives during this grant will be to increase emphasis on disciplinary
dissemination and to expand the speaker base throughout the Network. Appendix G includes the
poster abstracts presented by graduate students, faculty and staff from CIRTL Network institutions
at the 2008 CIRTL Forum.
Publications. Our goal during this grant is to expand the points of origin throughout the Network of
papers based on project research, outcomes results, and teaching-as-research results.
CIRTL Web site. The CIRTL Web site (www.cirtl.net) provides access to CIRTL news and
resources, such as the CIRTL course and program guidebooks. We anticipate that the CIRTL
website will be merged with the CIRTL Online Community in the Fall of 2008.
Outreach products for prospective students and faculty advisors. Best practices for professional
development of graduate students will be developed into outreach materials, such as brochures
distributed to rising graduate students and made available on Web sites of Network universities.
We have also begun an initiative, inspired by the 2008 CIRTL Forum, to develop a website that
will introduce future faculty to the entire landscape of higher education institutions. Currently we
are surveying both the internet and published work to a) insure that such a site does not already
exist and b) to gather resource material to integrate with video from the forum sessions from which
to create the site. So far, the resource base seems rich while an accessible path to the key
knowledge therein has not been found.
[INSERT 2009 TEXT HERE]
The organizational structure of CIRTL comprises a director; project manager and central staff at
the UW Wisconsin Center for Education Research (WCER); institutional leaders with
responsibility for the local activities of each institution; initiative leaders for cross-network
activities; and an independent Evaluation Team. See Appendix H for a list of currently active
CIRTL partners. Mathieu, the CIRTL director, has primary responsibility for the project, including
management, budget, and accomplishment of the scope of work. He is advised by a Leadership
Team of the co-PIs, Campa (Institutional Leader, MSU) and Project Manager Barnicle. The
Leadership Team provides oversight of CIRTL work; ensures coordination of activities with each
other and with the project mission; identifies and implements improvements; and plans future
strategic directions. Appendix I describes the roles and responsibilities of CIRTL partners at each
Multiple layers of inter-institutional connectivity are essential to CIRTL’s success. Cross-network
communication occurs at weekly Leadership Team teleconferences, semi-monthly with graduate
assistants on each campus, and monthly CIRTL Network meetings of leaders and colleagues. In
addition, two face-to-face meetings with institutional leaders, graduate assistants and evaluation
liaisons are planned for each year of the project. The first CIRTL Network meeting of 2008 was
held at the University of Colorado at Boulder, April 2-3, 2008. The second meeting is scheduled
for October 29-30, 2008 at Michigan State University.
CIRTL has a National Advisory Board (NAB) of representatives from all types of institutions of
higher education and national higher education centers (See Appendix J). The NAB provides
external perspective on the project at annual meetings and contributes at other times in substantive
ways to the success of CIRTL. The 2008 National Advisory Board is scheduled for October 30-31,
2008 in conjunction with the Fall Network meeting.
Over the course of the past year, more and more project teams are taking advantage of new
internet-based communication and networking tools. In addition to using teleconference services,
teams are using wikis, web conferencing tools, and instant messaging tools to communicate and
share information across the Network.
[INSERT 2009 TEXT HERE]
Appendices (Needs to be updated)
Cross-network study instruments?
Pillar supplement request?
Mentoring Annual report?
A. The CIRTL Pillars
A2. Learning Communities
B. Course Syllabus for EPD690 Teaching in Science and Engineering
International Students, International Faculty
C. 2008-2009 Distance Course Flyer
D. Proposed Organization of the 2009 STEM Education Scholars Program
E. Network Institutional Portrait template
F. CIRTL Brief: Improving STEM Graduate Education through the Integration of Research,
Teaching, and Learning
G. 2008 Forum Network Poster Abstracts
H. The 2008 CIRTL Network Community
I. Formation and Early Operation of the CIRTL Network: Roles and Responsibilities
J. CIRTL National Advisory Board