Teaching Days

Teaching Days

Get inspired! Discover teaching practices to spark your students' curiosity, build your confidence and energize your classroom this fall.

Join us for three days of teaching development workshops

Taylor Institute Teaching Days provides a meaningful and concentrated opportunity for instructors, graduate students, postdoctoral scholars and staff to prepare for the upcoming academic year, connect, reflect and strengthen teaching and learning practices across campus. 

Teaching Days 2024 will be held on August 20, 21 and 22. 

This is a free event but registration is required. This event will be held online with the exception of an in-person lunch (additional registration required) and an in-person roundtable discussion at the Taylor Institute for Teaching and Learning on August 22. 

Learning outcomes

  • To prepare for teaching in the upcoming academic year
  • To connect and network with teaching colleagues
  • To strengthen teaching practices and expertise while reflecting on your practices and approaches

Day 1: Tuesday, August 20, 2024

TimePresenter(s)Session TitleSession Description
9 - 10:15 a.m.Christine MartineauDecolonizing Teaching and LearningIn this workshop, participants will explore what it means to decolonize teaching and learning in higher education and in alignment with ii’taa’poh’to’p.  Following, we will engage in discussion and activities aimed at beginning or continuing the process in one or more of their courses in small groups. The workshop will be a mix of lecture, discussion, and hands-on work with participants’ own teaching and learning resources and materials. Topics will include elements of course design, topic selection, resource evaluation, and assessment of learning.
10:30 - 11:45 a.m.Jean-Yin Tan, Robyn Mae Paul, Yuen-ying CarpenterCreating inclusive classroomsHave you ever felt like you were not quite like your classmates? Have there been times where you didn’t look like the others, preferred to work alone rather than with others, processed things differently or at a different pace, disagreed fundamentally with the concepts presented, or just felt like you would get the concept if the teaching style was just a little less traditional? Fostering inclusiveness and a sense of belonging in the classroom can facilitate learning by breaking down barriers and allowing people to feel valued and respected. In this interactive workshop we will model inclusive teaching strategies while facilitating discussion surrounding various classroom scenarios. 
12:30 - 1:45 p.m.Gbenga Adejare Initiatives and actions for positive changeAt the heart of postsecondary teaching, or any kind of teaching, is the burden of care and constructive response to the ever-changing landscape of teaching and learning. Post-covid19, there is a vast gap between available resources and learners’ stretchy needs. Teaching for positive change, thus, entails deliberate efforts on the parts of instructors to not only appropriate existing educational resources to equip learners but also curate new ways of addressing teaching challenges. This session provides insights into the tapestry of thoughtfully researched creative ideas and processes that underlie teaching contexts in a postsecondary setting. It centres the creativity that goes into planning, designing, executing, and evaluating teaching resources and processes. Among other things, sustainable approach to creative teaching and learning, in and outside the classroom, will be the main focus of the session.  
2 - 3:15 p.m.Chelsea RozanskiReflexivity through Creative Expression: A Digital Collage of who we are as Teacher-Learners Reflexivity is the ongoing, systematic evaluation of one’s assumptions, beliefs, and practices. It is a back-and-forth examination of who we are, why we believe certain things, where those beliefs come from, and how they shape our teaching, learning, scholarship, and interactions. In Higher Education, instructors can teach reflexivity by modeling it; by consistently being open to reflecting on and adjusting praxis based on student feedback; and by building in opportunities for students to challenge their own presuppositions. For this session, we will deepen our understanding and practice of reflexivity through examples of creative expression, including storytelling, dance, painting, food, song, and sewing. Participants will reflect on their assumptions and practices in teaching, and share learning tools for creative expression. To model reflexive creative expression, we will end the session by co-creating a digital collage that represents who we are as teacher-learners. 

Day 2: Wednesday, August 21, 2024

TimePresenter(s)Session TitleSession Description
9 - 10:15 a.m.Maria Victoria GugliettiBeyond the “master-apprentice” relation: Making room for collaboration in undergraduate supervision This session will discuss my personal journey as undergraduate supervisor, from traditional and vertical supervision experiences to more horizontal approaches that emphasize students’ personal and academic growth. I will focus on two instances of supervision that forced my reconsideration of undergraduate supervision practices: the introduction of arts-based undergraduate research experiences in class and an ongoing student-faculty curricular development partnership. My contention is that those instances of “undergraduate research through other means,” where traditional research protocols are challenged, offer a unique opportunity to build more horizontal and enriching undergraduate research experiences. The session will offer participants a description of undergraduate supervision practices that contribute to foster a more autonomous and enriching relationship with undergraduate students. 
10:30 - 11:45 a.m.Cari DinFeedforward: Multiple ways of collecting student comments and improving our teaching practice. In this session, we will reflect on, discuss, and consider the influence of student perspectives on our teaching. Through dialogue with each other and the facilitator, Cari Din, participants will think critically and creatively about the role of formative feedback in teaching. We will explore the differences between feedback and feedforward and how each influences the environment we create in our classroom. We will learn about and discuss the impact student comments can make on our pedagogical learning. Multiple options for questions modalities will be shared. We will explore ways of interpreting, communicating, and applying student feedback. This is a practical session, and participants will finish prepared to create, collect, interpret, and apply student feedback in ways which strengthen their teaching practice and enrich student learning in the upcoming semester. 
12:30 - 1:45 p.m.Ayesha Mian AkramCritical Pedagogies in Large Enrollment Classes: Considerations and Strategies 

Educators who embrace critical pedagogies in the classroom--which attend to exploring complexities of power relations, structural inequities, and social justice--invite students to embrace introspection and an evaluation of their selves in relation to the world around them. Pedagogically, this requires a close relationship between the student and the educator, to be able to provide necessary guidance and support through potentially challenging moments of discomfort arising from introspection.  

What happens, though, when one is teaching a large enrollment class with hundreds of students? What are the opportunities and challenges for critical pedagogy in large enrollment courses? In this workshop, the instructor will share their experiences, challenges, and strategies in doing so and will invite participants to collectively reflect on critical pedagogy in their own teaching practices. 

2 - 3:15 p.m.Greta Heathcote, Rachel Huh Neurodiversity in Higher Education: How student experiences can inform best practices Students’ lived experiences of neurodivergence in post-secondary can inform our teaching practices, student support services, and transitions to and from higher education. In this session, we will discuss neurodiversity on campus by exploring a composite student journey compiled from conversations with students as part of the Work-Integrated Learning for Neurodiverse Students Initiative. We will outline Universal Design for Learning frameworks, share best practices from current literature, and connect participants with resources to support diverse learners in a variety of classroom settings including experiential and work-integrated learning. 

Day 3: Thursday, August 22, 2024

TimePresenter(s)Session TitleSession Description
9 - 10:15 a.m.Dora Tam, Soroush Sabbaghan, Sarah Eaton, and Mohammad Keyhani,Integrating Generative AI into University Teaching: Opportunities and Challenges This panel session will explore the integration of Generative Artificial Intelligence (GenAI) into university teaching, focusing on opportunities and challenges faced by educators. Drs. Soroush Sabbaghan, Sarah Eaton, and Mohammad Keyhani will share insights on how AI can enhance meaningful learning at the higher education level. The session will be moderated by Dr. Dora Tam and will include a discussion on the practical applications of GenAI in classrooms, maintaining academic integrity, and the essential GenAI skills needed by students and faculty. Attendees will have the opportunity to engage in a Q&A, share their challenges, and suggest guidelines for institutional support. 
10:30 - 11:45 a.m.Nazario Robles Bastida Experiential learning in the digital age This session will discuss experiential learning in the digital age. Both challenges and opportunities for students’ engagement with this teaching method, in a time when many of use are heavily co-opted by echo-chambers and digital enclaves, would be addressed. It is proposed that critical experiential learning, with a focus on EDIA and critical thinking, constitutes a viable pedagogical technique for assisting students in navigating the post-truth digital world. 
12 - 1 p.m. Lunch

Connect with colleagues over lunch at the Taylor Institute for Teaching and Learning. 

Additional registration is required and spaces are limited.  

Location: Taylor Institute for Teaching and Learning

1 - 2:30 p.m. In-person roundtable discussions 

Wrap-up Teaching Days with meaningful and engaging in-person discussions. You will have a chance to chat with experts on the following topics through roundtables. 

- Small groups in large classes: A lesson in inclusion, Glenn Dolphin 

- Creating courses and assignments with student and instructor well-being in mind, Kim Johnston 

- Ungrading, Derritt Mason and Morgan Vanek 

- Rethinking Assessment, Fabiola Aparicio-Ting and Nickie Nikolaou

- Student assessment and exemplars, Kimberley Grant

Location: Taylor Institute for Teaching and Learning