Teaching Scholars Credentialing Program for Teaching Assistants and Grad Students

The University recognizes the important contribution made by teaching assistants and graduate students to its instructional course offerings in collaboration with the University’s academic departments and graduate programs, the  Teaching Scholars Credentialing  (TSC) program, offered by the Centre for Teaching and Learning (CTL), provides opportunities to advance graduate students’ pedagogical, academic, and professional progress.

The purpose of the credentialing program is to develop the skills of Teaching Assistants at UBC’s Okanagan campus so that they can begin their teaching careers as TA’s using known and tested effective strategies.

Why Earn the Credential?

Time spent refining one’s reflective teaching practice makes one more confident and skilled as a teacher and is valuable preparation for an academic career. For graduate students and teaching assistants, the Credential is a demonstration of their tangible commitment to teaching.  This can be of great benefit in today’s increasingly competitive academic job market, where colleges and universities routinely ask applicants to provide evidence of teaching effectiveness.

The Centre for Teaching and Learning wishes to recognize your dedication and desire to improve your teaching.

Two certificates of completion may be earned:

Foundations Certificate Recognizes your successful participation in the Instructional Skills Seminars, micro-teaching, supplementary workshops, and your reflection upon these experiences.
Practical Experience Certificate Recognizes your successful TA practical experience.

The Foundations Certificate contains the following components:

1. Pedagogical Discussion and Training
Participants will attend the instructional skills seminar.

UBC Okanagan Instructional Skills Seminar (ISS) is a 12 hour program. Each ISS ideally is comprised of 4-6 participants. Participants review basic ideas about teaching and learning and are encouraged to try new instructional strategies within the safe environment of the group. The ISS is a developmental activity and involves peer and self-evaluation.

During the ISS, students have an opportunity to work closely with peers to improve each other’s teaching and practice a variety of instructional techniques. They will practice using learning objectives, plan and conduct short lesson plans, and give and receive constructive feedback.

In the ISS, each participant takes on the roles of both instructor and learner. Each participant prepares and conducts 2 ten minute mini-lessons and when delivering the lesson becomes the instructor. When someone else in the group is the instructor, the other participants are the learners. Immediately following each mini-lesson, learners  feedback on the effectiveness of the mini-lesson.

2. Participants will attend three CTL – approved teaching workshops.

The Practical Experience Certificate contains the following components:

  1. Participants must complete at least two semesters as a teaching assistant or equivalent.
  2. Observation and Review. Participants must have a full teaching session observed, videoed, and reviewed with a member of the CTL staff. They must also receive an endorsement from their supervisor.
  3. Participants must provide evidence of either peer feedback or student evaluations.
  4. Participants will undertake appropriate study and practice within their area of expertise as designed by their parent faculty.


Foundations Certificate

Participants will attend the BOPPPS seminar followed by two micro-teaching sessions on the following two days.

Practical Experience Certificate

Participant in this credentialing section will schedule individual session with the coordinator. (John Parry)