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ND Learning News

Summer Teaching and Learning Opportunities

April 21, 2023
ND Learning

By Jamie Trost

As another semester comes to a close, students and instructors alike work to wrap up classes and transition into final exams and projects. For many, the summer provides a well-needed pause from the bustle of a busy semester and an opportunity to focus on other priorities.  You can use this summer break to deepen your pedagogical engagement beyond the classroom and in preparation for the Fall!

Notre Dame Learning and the Kaneb Center partner with departments across campus to offer several teaching development opportunities for graduate students and postdocs.

Below, find information about:

  • Graduate Education (GRED) Courses
  • Summer Reading Groups
  • Summer Consultations
  • Self-Guided Resources
  • Brainstorming Your Course Design for Next Year

GRED Courses

Available to all graduate students, Graduate Education (GRED) Courses offer credit-bearing courses centered around teaching and learning topics. Students can use these opportunities to deepen their professional and instructional abilities, receive feedback from instructors and peers, and think critically about applications of common pedagogical approaches.

This summer, the following courses are being offered:

  • Inclusive Teaching (T/Th, 3:00PM-4:30PM, Online)
    • In this introduction to inclusive pedagogy and equity-oriented curricula, we will begin by critically reflecting on how our perspectives and experiences with diversity inform our approach to teaching and learning. Additionally, we will discuss practical strategies for fostering community within the classroom, equitable grading and assessment, diversifying course content, and more. 
  • Preparing for an Academic Career in Physics, Math, and Engineering (6/27-6/30, 9:00AM-12:00PM, 4 Day Bootcamp)
    • This course will cover major issues in teaching and career development for students in science, mathematics, and engineering. Topics to be discussed include preparing for an academic career; course and syllabus design; and how to engage students in the classroom.
  • Preparing for an Academic Career (T/Th, 9:30AM-11:15AM, Online)
    • In this practical, discussion-based course, students will develop skills and perspectives for  applying to, interviewing for, and  navigating within academic jobs. Students will reflect on their experiences, strengths, and goals; develop and receive feedback on their application documents; learn and practice interview skills; and discuss how to succeed in academic life.

Courses are listed at, under the subject designation “Graduate Education.” Students should register for these courses on InsideND and are encouraged to apply for a Summer Tuition Scholarship to cover course costs.

Summer Reading Groups

The Kaneb Center purchases books on teaching and learning in higher education for small, informal reading groups. This program is available to Notre Dame instructors including faculty, graduate students, and postdoctoral scholars. We invite you to organize your own cohort and sign up as a group. Iff you don’t have a group, you can sign up as an individual and we will organize a group based on book selection and availability. 

  1. Select – Check out the our recommended summer reads below, or propose a different title for your group

Small Teaching: Everyday Lessons from the Science of Learning

James Lang

Lang offers quick, approachable interventions that can be applied easily in any course to enhance student learning. A longtime Kaneb Center favorite, now in its second edition.


Inclusive Teaching: Strategies for Promoting Equity in the College Classroom

Viji Sathy & Kelly Hogan

Written by professors of neuroscience and biology, Inclusive Teaching offers concrete strategies for instructors looking to close equity gaps in courses of any size or discipline.


Life of the Mind Interrupted: Essays on Mental Health and Disability in Higher Education 

Katie Rose Guest Pryal

In a book of personal essays by a professor of law and creative writing, Pryal explores how faculty and students with disabilities navigate higher education and offers strategies for making courses more accessible for all students. 

Overcoming Student Learning Bottlenecks: Decode the Critical Thinking of Your Discipline

Joan Middendorf & Leah Shopkow

Middendorf and Shopkow offer an innovative pedagogical approach to fostering critical thinking across disciplines. They provide faculty a method and strategies for teaching the most challenging topics to students.  

  1. Sign Up – Sign up as an individual and we will put you in a group – or, if you are an existing group’s facilitator, sign up for the group and provide the participating members’ ND email addresses. We will purchase and distribute the books. Sign up by April 27th to allow time for ordering and distributing books.

  2. Read and Discuss – The facilitator will contact the group to determine reading goals and arrange meetings. Groups may meet several times with specific reading goals or they may meet once, upon completion of the book. We recommend 2 to 4 meetings for optimal discussion.

  3. Submit – Once the group has finished, the facilitator will provide a short summary (1 page or less) of the group’s impressions of the book.

Summer Consultations

The Kaneb Center is open during the summer for individual consultations related to course design, inclusive teaching, and the academic job market. We are available to provide feedback on teaching ideas, course materials (including syllabi), teaching statements/portfolios, and DEI statements. Please contact to set up an appointment.

Self-Guided Resources

If you would prefer to explore pedagogical materials at your own pace, Notre Dame Learning provides a plethora of self-guided resources, strategies, and supports to guide instructors as they create and develop their instructional communities and experiences. We encourage you to explore the many workshops and modules available, including but not limited to:

Each link provides useful information, examples, and additional resources for those interested in exploring further.

Brainstorming Your Course Design For Next Year

Are you planning to teach in the Fall? It’s never too early to begin planning your upcoming course. By dedicating time during the summer to draft and workshop your course, you can begin the semester with comfort and ease. Institutions such as the Kaneb Center, The University of Washington Center for Teaching and Learning, and the Vanderbilt University Center for Teaching provide step-by-step guides to creating and designing effective syllabi that will increase course transparency and support student learning. In addition to tips and strategies for composing your own syllabus, these resources provide sample policy language and outlines that present options for students struggling to create these documents on their own.

Feel free to contact if you’d like to schedule a consultation; we’re happy to talk through ideas and provide feedback on your syllabus.


Whether on your own or alongside a group of eager peers, there are many upcoming avenues for maintaining your pedagogical interests during the summer break.