People with books and a plant

Lesson 6: Review and summarize

Congratulations, your dossier is almost complete! Now is the time to add to your introduction, summarize your dossier, ensure alignment throughout and consider what you have included as evidence (and identify what you still might need). Review as necessary and if appropriate invite a colleague or supervisor to provide feedback.

Summary and goals

The summary serves as a brief reflection to summarize and highlight the information presented in the dossier, how this information best demonstrates your beliefs, strengths, and accomplishments, what you have learned through this process, what it has meant to your growth and development as a teacher and how you hope to further grow and develop.

Though you likely included a description of your future goals throughout your dossier, it is a good idea to summarize this in your dossier. This also demonstrates your commitment to continuous improvement. You can include both short and long-term goals that are related to your practice and scholarship of teaching and student learning.

Now is also the time to add in your appendices. This section includes complete documentation and letters of support from others that support the information presented throughout the teaching dossier. You can also direct the reader to view the appendices throughout your dossier where including the full document would interrupt the flow of the document. Ensure you label and describe each of the appendices.

Complete documentation

Full documents to support statements of accomplishment included throughout the dossier as indicated above (e.g. course outlines, assignments, course materials, examples of student work, course evaluation results, peer observation reports, SoTL publications, certificates, awards, posters – you can be creative). Hint – if you are provided details on the content and length of your dossier, follow the specifications exactly.

Letters of support

Signed letters from students and peers that complement or elaborate on your teaching beliefs, strategies, and accomplishments. Quotations from these letters may be integrated throughout the dossier to provide further evidence of effectiveness.

Regularly review and update

You’re nearly there! Now is the time to go back through your dossier to review for alignment and clarity.

These guiding review questions will help you enhance your philosophy statement and dossier and can also be used in the peer-review process.

  • Is the dossier strongly grounded in a teaching philosophy statement that summarizes core beliefs about teaching and learning, and the key claims about practice?
  • Does the philosophy statement provide a strong framework for the presentation and organization of the dossier?
  • Is evidence provided from multiple perspectives (e.g., self, instructors, peers,) to substantiate claims made throughout the dossier? Are the sources of evidence appropriate given the context of the author’s teaching roles, responsibilities, experiences, and expertise?
  • Can strong alignment be seen between the evidence provided and claims made throughout the dossier?
  • Are links to scholarly literature provided throughout the dossier where appropriate?
  • Is the dossier grounded by a critically reflective narrative that puts the evidence into context, highlights key learning, and describes how the author’s teaching and learning approaches have developed and evolved over time?
  • Does the reflective component make connections between the philosophy statement and evidence, and across sources of evidence?
  • Is the author’s voice evident, authentic, and consistent throughout the dossier?
  • Is the dossier presented as a clear, succinct, and integrated document?
  • Is the dossier presented in a way that is appropriate for the intended audience and purpose and given the author’s teaching roles, responsibilities, experience, and expertise?
  • Is the dossier organized in a way to direct and guide the reader?

(Source, Kenny et al., 2018, p. 31)

Lesson checklist

  • Create a summary and share your future teaching goals
  • Assemble the appendices
  • Review for alignment, format and update as needed

More lessons

Person sitting with books and laptop

Lesson 1: Organize and identify your purpose

Woman on computer screen

Lesson 2: State your teaching philosophy

People standing in front of books

Lesson 3: Situate your teaching context