Pedagogy Program

The Department of Philosophy Pedagogy Program is for Philosophy PhD students. It is a non-credit program designed to enhance participants' pedagogical preparedness, specifically in the field of philosophy. The program involves a number of components. It will be run each year by a graduate student coordinator and the department administrator.

Required Elements:

The following Pedagogy Program elements will be requirements for students in the PhD Program (beginning in 2017-18):

Participation Once in the Chicago Center for Teaching (CCT) CA Training (this comprises one section of the CCT's "Teaching at Chicago" event, conducted each year during orientation week): Ideally, students should participate in this event in Autumn Quarter of their third year in the PhD program.

Attendance at a Department of Philosophy CA Training (featuring the Director of Undergraduate Studies and past CAs): Ideally, students should attend this training, which is usually held in either Autumn or Winter Quarter, in their third year in the PhD program.

Attendance at a Department of Philosophy Classroom Climate Workshop (featuring the Department of Philosophy Outreach Coordinator and/or department faculty or personnel from the CCT): Ideally, students should attend this in Winter Quarter of their third year in the PhD program.

Participation in the CCT Seminar on Course Design: Ideally, students should attend this in Winter Quarter of their fourth year in the PhD program. It may be possible to take the seminar in the Spring Quarter of the fourth year, but it must be completed before teaching the tutorial in the fifth year.

Optional Elements:

The following Pedagogy Program elements are optional, but all PhD students are encouraged to participate in them.

Participation in Course Visitations and Peer Consultations: The Pedagogy Program offers graduate students the opportunity to team up and discuss practical and pedagogical issues related to their teaching. In a quarter where one of the students is teaching, two other students will attend her class or discussion section and provide her with feedback about her teaching through a joint written report and a subsequent face-to-face conversation. To that end, the graduate instructor will provide the observers with a report crafted through subsequent stages that will facilitate their observers' visit and their subsequent feedback. The graduate student coordinator will facilitate the schedule for these visits.

Attendance at Two Presentations by Departmental Alumni: At least one of these presentations will be held each academic year. Each presenter will make available to participants a syllabus for a course they have recently taught at their home institution and will lead a discussion of the design of this course in the context of the kind of institution, level of student preparation, pedagogical aims, and so forth, appropriate to that institution.

Attendance at Two Faculty-Led Discussions on Pedagogical Topics: At least one of these discussions will be held each academic year. Suitable topics include: teaching in specific areas of the discipline (e.g., logic, history of philosophy, contemporary philosophy); lecturing versus leading discussions; gender and the philosophy classroom; writing essay prompts; and so forth. Faculty presenters may provide materials for students to read in preparation for these meetings.


Students who wish to obtain credit for attending a Pedagogy Program event are normally expected to attend the entire event, from scheduled beginning to scheduled end. If conflicts with other departmental obligations (such as teaching or attending class) require you to miss a part of a session, you must discuss this with the Department Administrator in advance of the event if you wish to receive credit for your attendance. Students who fulfill both the required and the optional elements will receive a departmental certificate (which can be noted on their CV) stating that they have officially completed the Pedagogy Program. There is no time limit for finishing these requirements.