Teaching basic lab skills
for research computing

Clarification about December Instructor Training

Since we announced that the applications for December Instructor Training we have received many questions. We are now amending the announcement to clarify some things that have come up.

We are very excited to see the strong interest in this training opportunity and the enthusiasm for getting large groups together for this training.

First, we would like to emphasize that this program is a pilot to evaluate techniques for delivering instructor training to multiple groups at a larger scale. We should have made this more clear when we first announced the instructor training reboot and we apologize for that. This pilot is a change of strategy in how we deliver online instructor training. it is our hope that the new approach can to begin to address pent-up demand for instructor training in our community.

We've made commitments to Partners and Affiliates to provide training and help build communities of instructors at their institutions but we also want to do this effectively so we ask that you be patient with us if you are not selected for this round. If you have questions, Jonah will be happy to answer them.

In the past we have spent significant time and resources only for a large fraction of our potential instructors to never finish the requirements. We've found through a few pilots with partners that two-day online training has a much higher completion rate and we're trying to test if and how this does and does not scale to a larger cohort of new instructors. Hence this pilot.

Some points of clarification from FAQs:

  • Group consideration: For this pilot, we will continue to consider all groups equally, so we know how this format works for different types of organizations. In the next rounds of instructor training, to be announced early in 2016 Partners and Affiliates will be prioritized, and based on the outcome and effectiveness of this approach, it will be delivered either as an individual online version or in this group format.
  • Group size restrictions: When we first thought about group sizes for this pilot, our concerns were mainly that we would end up with groups that were very small. The interest that this pilot has garnered caught us a bit by surprise. Hence we are now having to restrict this pilot to 10 people from each organization. If your group size is over 5, you will need to commit to running two workshops after the training to ensure every new instructor has an opportunity to teach after the training. These requirements are meant to ensure that we are able to give high quality instruction to all involved, that the students have a good chance at teaching soon after completing training.

    We look forward to seeing your applications for this training, and welcome your feedback along the way! If you have any further questions, please don't hesitate to contact us.

    Dialogue & Discussion

    You can review our commenting policy here.