Environmental Sciences and Policy

Environmental Sciences and Policy (ENVSCI) Doctoral Program Collaboration

The CTL was invited in the fall of 2011 to join faculty members in ENVSCI in re-thinking how best to mentor doctoral students in regard to their future teaching as university professors or as educators in other arenas. ENVSCI faculty and TA teams work with CTL faculty to develop course strategies, teaching activities, and collaborative approaches to student assessment. The teams meet with the CTL on a course-by-course basis. CTL faculty members confer frequently with doctoral student teaching assistants about their teaching and the progress of their specific projects. When appropriate, CTL faculty attend class sessions and participate in formal observations. The CTL documents the process and discusses with the faculty director of the doctoral program in Environmental Sciences and Policy suggestions and plans for this ongoing collaborative work.

The collaboration has expanded to include intensive coursework and working groups with all ENVSCI doctoral student teaching assistants, their mentor teachers, and the faculty director of the doctoral program.

Collaboration on the e-Portfolio Project

CTL faculty have launched a project in collaboration with the Environmental Sciences and Policy to pilot the integrative use of an electronic portfolio system to document their first-year doctoral students’ academic progress. The CEU e-portfolio, which has been developed by CTL is a platform where both doctoral students and their supervisors can share and reflect on students’ academic progress on a regular basis. Flexibility, various in-built options, and the community-based character of the e-portfolio system are important aspects designed to support doctoral students’ and their supervisors’ ongoing intensive work.

Goals for the pilot include strengthening the mentoring process; fostering an intellectual learning community among beginning and advanced doctoral students, alumni, faculty, and staff; and assisting the career development of doctoral students through teaching portfolios, CVs, and other material that can be shared with potential research partners and employers.