Preparing a teaching dossier for contract renewal and tenure
A teaching dossier helps promotion and renewal committees learn about your major teaching accomplishments. It is a tool for self-reflection and a means of documenting your evolution as a teacher.
What does a typical teaching dossier include?
The range of items to include in a dossier varies greatly among faculty members and between departments so be sure to consult with your department chair, colleagues and promotion/tenure committee for specific instructions. More details about requirements for each faculty can be found on our Teaching Dossier page on Carrefour.
- Introductory narrative describing your achievements, date of hire and number of years of service (2 - 3 pages).
- Personal teaching statement (1 page).
- All teaching assignments (term, code, name, level, number of students).
- All statistical student evaluation results for each course section.
- All course outlines and sample assignments, examinations, projects.
- Original course materials (new course packs, curriculum contributions, etc.).
- Descriptions of new teaching techniques you have tried, and the results.
- Published textbooks.
- All tutorial and thesis supervision.
- Teaching awards and honours.
- Other evidence of teaching excellence, i.e. the recognition of peers, your presence in the media and the facilitation of teaching workshops.
The CUFA Collective Agreement (section 14.01.3) also outlines what is reviewed when assessing teaching performance.
How to Organize your Teaching Dossier
Generally, it is recommended for a teaching dossier to consist of a narrative about your achievements (5-10 pages) and appendices to support that narrative. We suggest that you create the following six components.
- List all courses taught by year (code, name, level, number of students) with the most recent listed first.
- Include all tutorials and student supervision (undergraduate and graduate) with the title of any thesis or research papers.
- List any student committee participation.
- Summarize teaching positions before Concordia.
- What are the priorities, beliefs and convictions that drive the way I teach?
(try to limit yourself to a few only) What motivates me to learn (this subject)?
- Is this what motivates my students? How do they prefer to learn?
- What learning outcomes do I expect from teaching?
- What kind of student teacher relationship do I strive for?
- What habits, attitudes or methods characterize my achievements?
- What values do I impart to students?
- What specific examples can I describe in support of these claims?
- What supporting data will I include (and references) in the appendices?
If appropriate, include letters from DPC and FPTC and respond to advice.
Refer to our Writing a teaching statement page for more information and guidance.
- Sample course outlines, handouts, etc.
- Innovative materials (not too many!) that you devised or adapted, (e.g., course packs, web-based resources).
- Examples of tests and exercises that you gave students (show how you give students feedback on their progress and performance).
- Development of new courses.
- Involvement in curriculum development.
Tips and strategies
- Don’t assume that everyone knows you and what you have done. Write a 2-3 page narrative about your achievements and refer to evidence in appendices.
- Be as complete and well organized as possible. Use a Table of Contents and separators to make the dossier easy to consult.
- Seek feedback from tenured colleagues, CUFA representatives and/or the CTL Teaching Consultants.
- If appropriate, attach letters of contract renewals from the Department Personnel Committee (DPC) and the Faculty Personnel and Tenure Committee (FPTC). Any advice or restriction should be answered in the narrative).
- Attach complete CV.
- Always keep a copy.
For assistance or feedback in developing your dossier, contact the CTL for a consultation.
Goodyear, G. E., & Allchin, D. (1998). Statements of teaching philosophy. To improve the academy, 17(1), 103-121.