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Teaching Portfolio Award for Graduate Students

Whether you already have a strong Teaching Portfolio or want to develop one, here’s a great opportunity for you. ITLAL’s Portfolio Award Program offers you the chance to get individualized feedback and consultation in the development of your portfolio.

What is a Teaching Portfolio?

A Teaching Portfolio is a purposeful collection of artifacts that demonstrates your accomplishments in the classroom, your growth and development as a teacher, and your reflections on your teaching experience. The foundation of a portfolio is the Philosophy of Teaching Statement, which is a brief narrative statement explaining your conception of teaching and learning. The other elements of a portfolio will vary according to discipline, but they might include sample course syllabi, sample assignments or projects from your classes, student evaluation data, samples of student work, or evidence of your efforts at improving your teaching. There are many other possibilities as well; a teaching portfolio is an individualized piece that demonstrates who you are as a teacher.

Why create a Teaching Portfolio?

Effectiveness in the classroom is increasingly important to getting that first faculty position, and a strong teaching portfolio is an important way to show this. A 2006 study showed that at least half of hiring institutions, including research institutions, requested that applicants submit at least a statement of teaching philosophy (an essential component of a teaching portfolio) at some point during the hiring process. 1 A strong teaching portfolio lets a prospective employer learn who you are as a teacher and whether your values match with those of the institution. It can also provide the foundation of what will eventually be a tenure portfolio, so you have a head start once you land that first faculty job. Even if you aren’t asked for a teaching statement or a full portfolio during your job search, the experience of articulating your philosophy of teaching and compiling evidence related to your teaching will help you prepare for interviews, where you will inevitably be asked to discuss your teaching.

When should I create a Teaching Portfolio?

Given the importance of teaching in most academic positions, it’s never too early to begin assembling materials for your portfolio. Even before you teach, it can be useful to start developing a Statement of Teaching Philosophy. As you gain more experience, that philosophy will evolve, and you will have evidence to show how your teaching values materialize in your classroom practice. Most importantly, if you start assembling materials for your portfolio now, you will save yourself time once you start applying for faculty positions. Starting early can also give you the opportunity to begin collecting some of the important artifacts that will allow you to present your effectiveness as a teaching, including samples of student work, data about student learning in your classes and solicited and unsolicited comments from students about your teaching.

What are the benefits of participating in ITLAL’s Teaching Portfolio Award Program?

Developing a teaching portfolio is a task best accomplished with feedback and guidance, and ITLAL’s Teaching Portfolio Award Program is designed to give you both. This program provides you access to consultations with ITLAL staff as you develop your portfolio. All portfolios that are submitted for consideration will receive detailed feedback and suggestions for improvement. This gives you the opportunity to put your portfolio through a careful process of consideration before a job search committee sees it.

In addition, top award winners will receive a Kindle Touch or NOOK Simple Touch.

How do I participate in the program?

First, indicate your interest by completing this short survey by March 2, 2012. After we have received your information, an ITLAL staff member will contact you to set up an appointment so you can begin tailoring the consultation process to fit your needs. Then submit your portfolio for consideration by March 23, 2012.

If you do not wish to go through the consultation process but still want to submit a Portfolio, please contact Billie Franchini at bfranchini@albany.edu or 442-4850 for more information.

What are the criteria for judging?

Because the specific components of a Teaching Portfolio may differ across disciplines, there will likely be a great deal of variation in the contents of your portfolio. Each portfolio, however, must contain elements of the following:

Where can I find out more about Teaching Portfolios?
 
Some guides to creating a Portfolio:

 http://www.cs.tufts.edu/~ablumer/portfolio.html#Appendix%20C
 http://www.brown.edu/Administration/Sheridan_Center/docs/teach_port.pdf  
http://faculty.ksu.edu.sa/mahmoud/DocLib8/preparing%20Teaching%20Portfolio.pdf

Some sample portfolios:

 http://msenux.redwoods.edu/wagner/Teaching_Portfolio.html
 http://www.mech.uwa.edu.au/NWS/NWS_Teaching.html