McGill Pilots New Teaching Project for Post-Docs

By: Sam Garnett

January 18, 2017

McGill University Post-Doc Association and PGSS are looking for post-doc applicants for a new pilot program geared to help post-doctoral fellows gain teaching experience. From the notice:

A pilot project is being launched in the departments of Mathematics, Chemistry, Biology, Physics and Psychology to enable postdocs to get teaching skills and experience. The PDFs will teach courses consist of more than 100 students (for example a service course). The idea is that they will provide instruction for 1-2 units of the course (2-4 weeks) or teach one section of a team-taught course. Secondly, they will receive mentorship from the course supervisor or course for their own personal development. As such, meetings with the course instructor/coordinator and the PDF would be required before and throughout the teaching. The PDF would also sit in on 1-2 classes prior to their teaching slot in order to gain an appreciation of the classroom dynamics, and teaching environment. The PDF would be required to contribute to the creation of exam questions pertaining to the section that was taught by the PDF, for holding appropriate office hours during their teaching/answering emails and/or participating in discussion forums (or other such activities). The supervisor/course coordinator would be encouraged to provide constructive feedback to the PDF as well as some sort of a written evaluation of the PDF’s teaching (i.e., a maximum 1-page assessment that the PDF could keep for his/her records). The organisers are looking for 5-6 postdocs who would like to enrol in the pilot project and to teach in the Fall of 2017. If the launch is successful, more postdocs will be able to take part in this initiative. Please email if you are interested to

We welcome the development of the program and look forward to seeing it progress. Participants at SPE’s STEM working group event suggested that programs like this would be extremely useful to help develop hard skills to enter the workforce with.