From the Caltech Center for Teaching, Learning, & Outreach
Center for Teaching, Learning, & Outreach
CTLO Newsletter Faculty Edition
We hope the 2016-17 academic year is off to a great start! In CTLO’s first three years (2012-13 through 2014-15), we’ve had the honor of working with over 200 faculty across all ranks and divisions and over 830 graduate students, along with many postdocs and undergrads! We now provide over 1600 services per year, ranging from individual consultations to talks, workshops, and events and look forward to seeing you soon.
Highlights from the Summer at CTLO
4th Annual Teaching Conference

2016 Teaching Conference Opening Session
Over 300 graduate students, postdocs, staff, faculty, and other members of the Caltech community participated in Caltech’s fourth annual teaching conference on September 21st, 2016. With 20+ unique sessions offered, there was something for everybody to get their pedagogical feet wet. Attendees responded that they “loved the range of topics and perspectives it covered,” that “hearing from current TAs about their past experiences and how they dealt with them was incredibly helpful" and that they “enjoyed how the teaching conference modeled so many of the active learning techniques that it was trying to teach (i.e. various activities, think-pair-share)”. Schedule, Materials, and More Info.
Faculty Summer Short Course: (Re)Designing Your Class

Faculty Summer Short Course
17 Caltech faculty and two head TAs participated in the CTLO’s first Faculty Summer Short Course taught by Dr. Jennifer Weaver. This course, entitled (Re)Designing Your Class, involved four lunchtime sessions with lively debate and discussion of pedagogical strategies used at Caltech for engaging our students in class and explanations of the latest research on active learning activities, assessment and course design. We had faculty representation from all six divisions! One faculty participant commented that “It was a wonderful, supportive and open environment in which to re-evaluate my own approach to teaching.” For more info please contact Jenn Weaver.
Outreach on Campus

Project Scientist Summer 2016
As you may have noticed if you were on campus this summer, our camps and outreach programs for K-12 students were extremely popular. Over 900 young scientists and engineers, from four year old girls in Project Scientist to high school students in our Summer Research Connection, participated in programs on campus this summer. Over 125 campers were on full or partial scholarship and over 225 were enrolled in programs specifically for girls. More Info on Outreach Programs.
Teaching and Learning Research in a nutshell

Inclusive Teaching: applying new and familiar methods

Disproportionate representation in science, technology engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields, whether by gender, race, or socio-economic background, is a well-known problem. But did you know that many of the same methods that enhance all students' learning play an especially important role for underrepresented students in classes? CTLO has collected a short guide to teaching for inclusion and diversity with STEM-specific examples and links to additional references.
Kelsey Boyle and Rebekah Silva


What is the Caltech Project for Effective Teaching?

CPET (Caltech Project for Effective Teaching) is a group of graduate students and post-docs dedicated to improving our own teaching skills and helping others to do the same. Each year we host quarterly seminars and workshops by the some of the best STEM Professors in Southern California on topics related to higher education. We also host a monthly journal club on interesting and emerging fields in higher education and we offer two Teaching Certificate programs to help participants become more knowledgeable and effective future faculty.

To get involved…

CPET Journal Club  
The CPET Journal Club is a group of graduate students and postdocs interested in educational practices and pedagogy. We meet once a month to discuss interesting and emerging topics in the field of higher education with the aim of developing our teaching knowledge and skills for our future positions as educators in academia, industry, and beyond. CPET Journal club is open to all Caltech graduate students and postdocs who are interested.

The next journal club meeting is Thursday, November 3, from 3-4 pm at the CLTO (3rd floor, Center for Student Services). The topic of discussion will be “Massive Open Online Courses” (MOOCs). Please check our website for the latest updates. We look forward to seeing you there! Coffee, tea, and snacks will be provided.
CPET Certificates
We have recently expanded our programming, and now members of the Caltech community can work towards earning a Certificate of Interest or a Certificate of Practice in University Teaching through CPET.
  • The Certificate of Interest program aims to inspire participants to develop as educators through the submission of reflective journal entries addressing the content and application of teaching workshops and seminars.
  • The Certificate of Practice program aims to provide knowledge of teaching pedagogy and best practices to participants and help them apply their knowledge to their own teaching experiences with regular support and feedback from CPET and CTLO staff. Students completing the Certificate of Practice receive a special notation on their transcript recognizing their efforts and commitment to improving university teaching. If you are thinking about completing a Certificate of Practice during your time at Caltech, please contact CPET as soon as possible.
Contact us for more information!

James Maloney and Julius Su


Goodbye James and Julius
The CTLO bid farewell to James Maloney and Julius Su at the conclusion of our summer programs this year. James is now a faculty member at PCC and Julius is focusing his full time efforts on development of his SKIES Collaborative Learning App. Though no longer officially part of CTLO, we are confident that they will both continue to be part of Caltech’s innovative teaching, learning and outreach efforts for years to come.
FYI For Your Information

Broader Impacts

Whether you are at the proposal or implementation stage, CTLO can help you develop and implement effective educational outreach and "broader impacts" models. We have collaborated on a number of successful grant applications recently. If your plans involve hosting or working with minors on campus, please review Caltech’s Guidelines for Programs with Minors. You may also contact Mitch Aiken,  / 395-4641 for assistance in developing and implementing your plan.  
Fall Events


Improving STEM Education in Research Universities
October 26th, 12pm and 3pm

Meet our guest speakers from the American Association of Universities (AAU)—a coalition of 62 of the nation’s top research universities—and find out what our peer institutions are doing to improve undergraduate STEM education!
12:00 – 1:00 pm – Talk by Emily Miller, AAU Associate Vice President for Policy, in Beckman Institute Auditorium, “Leading Cultural Change to Improve Undergraduate STEM Teaching and Learning at Research Universities: The AAU STEM Education Initiative.” More info and RSVP; lunch provided.

3:00 – 4:00 pm – Discussion with Toby Smith, AAU Vice President for Policy, “Using NSF's "Broader Impacts" to Improve Undergraduate Education and Instruction.” More info and RSVP.

Feynman Prize Winner Ellen Rothenberg
November 7th, 12-1pm, Beckman Institute Auditorium

Ellen Rothenberg, the Albert Billings Ruddock Professor of Biology, is the 2016 recipient of the Richard P. Feynman Prize for Excellence in Teaching. This prize honors "a professor who demonstrates, in the broadest sense, an unusual ability, creativity, and innovation in undergraduate and graduate classroom or laboratory teaching." 
Please join us for a special teaching seminar, "Making molecular biology come to life" in which Professor Rothenberg will speak about her experiences teaching molecular biology here at Caltech. More info and RSVP; lunch provided.
The ABCs of Course Design: Short Course for Graduate Students, Post-Docs and Faculty
November 15th, 22nd and 29th, 4-5:30pm, CTLO

Are you hoping to be the instructor of record for a course in the next few years or interested in course design? This November, Dr. Jennifer Weaver, Assistant Director of the CTLO, will be teaching a 3-session short course primarily aimed at graduate students and post-docs. We’ll walk through the process of “backwards design” from start to finish, including designing learning outcomes, incorporating active learning activities, developing assessments, and building the overall class structure. By the end of this short course, you will have the main tools you need to design a great class of your own! More info and RSVP 

January 17th-20th
Caltech TeachWeek is back! Save the dates for our second annual TeachWeek, January 17-20, 2017. This week will include panels, seminars, and workshops, with guest speakers including Dr. Mary-Ann Winkelmes speaking about the national Transparency in Learning and Teaching Project, Dr. John Pollard discussing “chemical thinking” and designing new types of classrooms, and, of course, will feature ‘Open Classes’ to give you an opportunity to sit in on a Caltech class with your favorite professor or on a topic of special interest to you! Check for details!

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