Sheridan Teaching Seminar

Program Description

In the Sheridan Teaching Seminar, members of the Brown teaching community aim to improve their students' learning and their own experiences as teachers through a reflective exploration of their own practices and beliefs about teaching. As the first of the Sheridan Center's teaching certificate programs, the Sheridan Teaching Seminar introduces a number of topics that will help you develop and refine fundamental, evidence-based teaching skills and strategies. Throughout the seminar, you'll reflect critically on your own teaching and learning experiences; consider how to establish inclusive learning environments that support the diverse students you'll encounter in your teaching; practice public speaking and communication skills; apply principles of learning design; explore methods of evaluating learning; and investigate how student engagement leads to lasting and deep forms of learning. Those who are new to teaching benefit from the program's focus on active learning, inclusive teaching, and classroom communication. Participants who have previous teaching experience or who have taken departmental pedagogy courses benefit from the program's opportunities for cross-disciplinary exchange and continued development of their teaching practice.

The seminar is organized as four separate modules. Each module contains a self-paced online component—consisting of videos, readings, and guided activities that lead to the module's assignment—followed by a synchronous Zoom workshop. The online portion of each module lasts for roughly two weeks, with Zoom workshops taking place during the third week. These workshops are a critical part of the program, giving you an opportunity to give and receive constructive peer feedback and to learn from the experiences of colleagues from across disciplines. To prepare for them properly, you should anticipate spending at least a couple hours reading, viewing videos, and completing the assignment in the preceding two-week period. Most workshop sections are facilitated by the Sheridan Center’s trained Teaching Consultants.

The four modules of the Teaching Seminar:

  • Module 1: Critical Reflection and Inclusive Classrooms
  • Module 2: Rhetorical Practice and Classroom Communication
  • Module 3: Learning Design
  • Module 4: Active Learning

Each program participant also participates in a formal Micro-teaching session. The Micro-teaching session allows participants to revise, extend, and receive feedback on a teaching experience they completed as part of the Certificate program.

Learning Objectives

Upon completing the Sheridan Teaching Seminar, participants will be able to:

  • reflect critically on your own teaching and learning
  • support diverse students in their efforts to learn by creating inclusive and respectful learning environments
  • identify the rhetorical choices you make as a teacher and develop your own goals for improving your efficacy and persuasiveness as a communicator
  • apply principles of learning design to plan courses, assignments, and other learning experiences, and to evaluate to the learning that results from them
  • employ your understanding of how people learn to create engaged and active learning opportunities


To receive a certificate upon completing the program, you must fulfill all of the following requirements:

  • Complete all seminar modules within a single semester, which entails completing all online components and assignments before your workshop date and participating in all assigned workshop sessions.
  • Participate in a formal Micro-teaching session within the academic year.
  • Submit responses to both the Pre and Post Feedback surveys in a timely manner.

If you are a graduate student, successful completion of the Teaching Seminar will appear on your Brown University transcript. For this reason, all of these requirements must be met in order to allow us to include the program in official records and transcripts.

NB: All requirements must be completed within the course of a single academic year.

Synchronous Online Workshop Dates

Workshop 1: September 26
Workshop 2: October 17
Workshop 3: November 14
Workshop 4: December 5

Please see the registration form for details on workshop time slots.

This Certificate is a learning community-based program, which means individuals will learn and work with with the same small group of participants in each Zoom workshop. For this reason, regular attendance in assigned workshop groups is required. Participants may only miss one synchronous workshop provided they attend the corresponding Zoom make-up workshop, generally held on the Wednesday after the session. Make-up workshop dates will be listed on the syllabus. Participants may not attend multiple make-up workshops in lieu of attending their assigned workshop with their cohort, nor may they attend a workshop other than their assigned workshop. Graduate students who are unable to attend all of the synchronous workshops are encouraged to participate in the Sheridan Center's fully asynchronous, self-paced online programs instead: Graduate TA Orientation; Creating a Teaching Portfolio.


Registration for the Fall 2022 Sheridan Teaching Seminar is fully subscribed.