The Certificate Program

The Certificate Program

The CIRTL@UCLA certification pathway (Associate, Practitioner, Scholar) will give you amazing training in teaching and professional development that will prepare you in whatever field you are going into, making you more competitive for faculty and industry positions.

There are three levels of certification for the CIRTL program: CIRTL Associate, CIRTL Practitioner, and CIRTL Scholar. Each level has unique learning outcomes:

  • Associate level: recognizes the role of the CIRTL core ideas in effective teaching and learning
  • Practitioner level: addresses scholarly teaching using the CIRTL core ideas to demonstrably improve learning of students by completing a teaching-as-research (TAR) project
  • Scholar level: advances teaching and learning, and makes the results from TAR project public.

CIRTL program outcomes conceived in this way permit anyone to enter the CIRTL Network learning community from a wide variety of disciplines, needs, and past experiences, and to achieve success as a teacher at a wide variety of engagement. One way to achieve CIRTL Scholar level is to participate in the STAR program (discussed below) but this is not the only way, and requirements can be discussed with the Communications Coordinator, Katie Dixie (, on an individual basis.

CIRTL@UCLA Associate:

  • Complete LS 495, TAC Summer Academy or Grad PD 496A, (An Introduction to Evidence Based Teaching), or the equivalent pedagogy courses in the Graduate Certificate in Writing Pedagogy.
  • Complete 20-25 hours of additional CIRTL-approved training.
  • Write a draft of a teaching statement 

CIRTL@UCLA Practitioner:

  • Complete Teaching as Research  courses (Grad PD 496B and 496C)
  • Develop and implement Teaching As Research  Project
  • Engage consistently in campus learning community (e.g., CEILS Journal Club/Ed Talks)


  • Present project in on-campus forum or online CIRTL network
  • Complete Teaching Statement 
  • Career Readiness Inside and Outside the Academy course (optional)


Grad PD 496A, An Introduction to Evidence Based Teaching (Associate Level)

A learning community focused on Scientific Teaching, based on the CIRTL MOOC: An Introduction to Evidence Based Teaching. This is a 10-week, 2-unit course and includes instructor mini-lectures and peer-to-peer interactions in class (1.5 hours/week), selected readings and videos outside of class (2.5 hrs/week), and weekly reflective writing and responding on discussion posts (1hr/week). Additionally, there will be a culminating written assignment that will require students to apply the course’s pedagogical principles to a lesson plan they develop using backward design to sequence learning activities that represent inclusive practices.  Students will get feedback from instructors and peers on these lesson plans.

This course is designed to provide students with foundational knowledge on the large body of educational research that supports effective teaching strategies. This is a fully flipped S/U class, with online videos each week and an in-person learning community comprised of graduate students and post docs who are committed to teaching inclusively. Open to ALL disciplines and you are not required to be teaching concurrently. This course also counts toward CIRTL Associate Level and is a pre-requirement for the Teaching as Research course taught in winter.

For more information or questions, contact Dr. Katie IngrahamDixie at

Grad PD 496B, Planning your Teaching-as-Research Project Teaching as Research (Practitioner Level)

Planning your Teaching-as-Research Project is an is an interdisciplinary course open to graduate students and postdoctoral scholars as well as research staff interested in teaching. This is an intermediate-level 10 week course designed for students who are ready to plan a Teaching-as-Research project. Students are expected to have a working knowledge of, and experience with, evidence-based teaching methods. You should have completed a course that covers the basic knowledge of evidence based teaching practice and have achieved  these CIRTL Associate-level learning outcomes:

  • Describe and recognize the value of realistic well-defined, achievable, measurable and student-centered learning goals.
  • Describe several known high-impact, evidence-based effective instructional practices and materials and recognize their alignment with particular types of learning goals.
  • Describe several assessment techniques and recognize their alignment with particular types of learning goals.

For more information or any questions please contact Dr. Rachel Kennison at

Grad PD 496C, Implementing a Teaching as Research Project (Practitioner Level)

Offered in spring/summer. This is a learning community that provides you with support while you are iterating and implementing your project, analyzing your data and planning to present. This course should be taken directly after Grad PD 496B.

You can complete Associate Level requirements according to your own timeline, depending on where you are in your graduate degree progress. Some students may start in the fall with one of the evidence based teaching courses (required) but may not be ready or have time to do a teaching as research project. This is fine! Your can wait until the next year to take the Teaching as Research course, which is a bigger larger time commitment.


For more information or questions, contact Dr. Katie IngrahamDixie at

 Optional: Mol Bio 497: Career Readiness Inside and Outside the Academy (Any Level)

Offered by CIRTL@UCLA

We know that time and structured opportunities for career focused professional development are scarce for graduate students and postdoctoral scholars. Co-taught by STEM and Humanities faculty, our goal is to build a community that provides you with support and guidance to explore any possible career paths, expose you to a variety of options and give you the tools to pursue them in a systematic way.

This 2-unit course is offered to Graduate Students and Postdoctoral Scholars across all disciplines who want to be part of a community supporting individualized professional development and a systematic approach to career exploration. 

-It is recommended that graduate students are advanced to candidacy

For more information or any questions please contact Dr. Katie IngrahamDixie at or Dr. JoAnn Roberts at

Courses and Events Offered by Our Campus Partners (Associate-Level)

The Entering Mentoring Training Program seeks to develop a mentoring ethos by providing leadership, mentorship, and diversity sensitivity training to graduate students and postdoctoral scholars. This course is specifically for those who directly mentor trainees working on STEM research projects. The seminar is based on a curriculum developed by the Wisconsin Program for Scientific Teaching titled “Entering Mentoring: A Seminar to Train a New Generation of Scientist”. This course is supported by the NIH Diversity Program Consortium.

Please contact the Program Director, Dr. Diana Azurdia, at for questions.