Documenting Your Teaching

Documenting Your Teaching

If teaching is part of your position responsibility statement (PRS), it is important to maintain a record of your teaching efforts, accomplishments and aspirations. This documentation can serve many purposes such as being included in promotion and tenure reviews, annual performance evaluations and in preparation for teaching award nominations.  

One of the best ways to document teaching is by developing a teaching portfolio. In brief, a teaching portfolio brings together select materials that document your experience as a teacher. It usually contains some standardized material, such as student evaluations of teaching, but should also contain information unique to your teaching efforts (e.g. syllabi, assignments, exams, student work, peer evaluation of your teaching, a teaching philosophy statement). The strength of a teaching portfolio lies in the way it integrates many different kinds of information, rather than relying on a single measure of your teaching efforts.

When possible, connect your teaching efforts such as course design, teaching materials, and student achievement of learning outcomes to the national (and international) expectations of your discipline or profession. This illustrates the relevance of your teaching efforts in regard to preparing students for a career in the discipline. Ultimately the process of creating a portfolio provides an avenue to identify teaching goals, describe teaching strategies, and contemplate your work as a teacher. The reflective practice of creating and maintaining a teaching portfolio can also be an effective tool for improving your teaching.

As a starting point, review Section 5.2.3 of the Faculty Handbook which describes the contents that should be included in the teaching section of the Promotion and Tenure portfolio. The Recommended Teaching Portfolio Contents page includes a more detailed list of items that can be included to create a comprehensive portfolio.