CU-Boulder Graduate Teacher Program Wins $25,000 Award

first_imgThe University of Colorado at Boulder’s Lead Graduate Teacher Network, a training and professional development program for graduate student teaching assistants that has been emulated by Harvard University, has been awarded the 2006 TIAA-CREF Theodore M. Hesburgh Award. Interim Chancellor Phil DiStefano, network director Laura Border and graduate student Lauren Saenz received the award and a $25,000 cash prize for the program at the American Council on Education’s annual meeting in Los Angeles Feb. 13. The Hesburgh award was given in recognition of the CU-Boulder program’s impact on student teaching and learning. “Working with our energetic lead graduate teachers is exhilarating,” Border said. “They share novel ideas, encourage each other and have literally changed some departments on campus.” John Stevenson, associate dean of the Graduate School and associate vice chancellor of graduate education, said Border and the program have long been national leaders in preparing graduate students for productive, successful careers both in and out of the classroom. “The Hesburgh Award recognizes what we in the Graduate School have known a long time: The GTP is one of the jewels in the Boulder campus crown,” Stevenson said. Border created the CU-Boulder Lead Graduate Teacher Network in 1992 to provide advanced training to a select group of graduate students chosen by their departments to act as mentors to other teaching assistants. After training in May, the lead graduate teachers help improve course instruction in undergraduate courses and labs. They work with network coordinators to share ideas and offer discipline-specific workshops for other teaching assistants in their departments. The group of about 50 lead graduate teachers is supervised by lecturer Brian Klocke and anthropology graduate student Carol Conzelman. “The Lead Network not only facilitates an interdisciplinary community of scholars but provides practical training, such as videotape consultation, to improve teaching and undergraduate student learning,” Klocke said. Lead graduate teachers perform better on their Faculty Course Questionnaires after their training, and students in 10 courses taught by lead graduate teachers achieved higher average grades than in courses taught by other teaching assistants, according to program organizers. The CU-Boulder Lead Graduate Teacher Network had already been listed as a “Best Practice” by the Woodrow Wilson Foundation. Faculty and graduate students from Harvard, the University of Liège, Belgium, and the University of Michigan have attended lead graduate teacher training at CU-Boulder to learn about the program. Harvard adopted a model of the program in 2005. The Lead Network is part of the CU-Boulder Graduate Teacher Program, which provides teacher assistant training and professional development to graduate students from all schools and colleges at CU-Boulder. Training activities take place year-round, and the program also acts as a forum for faculty to share ideas and innovations in teaching. For more information on the Lead Graduate Teacher Network, visit http://www.colorado.edu/gtp/lead/index.htm. TIAA-CREF is a financial services company for academic, medical, cultural and research industry employees. For more information about the company, visit http://www.tiaa-cref.org. Share Share via TwitterShare via FacebookShare via LinkedInShare via E-mail Published: Feb. 12, 2006 last_img read more

Continue Reading