The Centre for Teaching Support & Innovation’s (CTSI’s) Peer-2-Peer (P2P) Faculty Mentoring for Teaching program paired 32 continuing stream University of Toronto faculty (eight tenure stream and 24 teaching stream) in a cohort and reciprocal mentorship program, whereby instructors were matched in dyads based on campus location, identified stream (teaching or research stream), and compatible but different disciplines.
The purpose and goals of the P2P pilot program include:
- to increase reflection on one’s teaching and gain a better understanding of students’ learning needs
- to build leadership capacity and mentoring opportunities for faculty at U of T whereby methods and approaches that support effective teaching can be shared (PATS Guide, 2011)
- to provide a “structured framework for ongoing improvement of a [course] and learning practice with input, assistance and guidance from faculty teaching leaders” (PATS Guide, 2011: 2)
- to improve the quality of a course and student learning experiences within that course through a focus on quality teaching and through analysis of student course feedback
The pilot included: 3 workshops; a resource book, When Mentoring Meets Coaching, focusing on mentor-coaching practices; two CTSI’s guides: one on gathering and implementing mid-course feedback, Gathering Formative Feedback with Mid-Course Evaluation and a second on observing peers in the classroom and giving feedback: Peer Observation of Teaching: Effective Practices; mentor-mentee meetings; and, a follow-up research study including focus groups and a post-program survey. The program was well received and highly regarded by participants. The program format, length and activities effectively supported the development of meaningful mentor-mentee relationships and faculty development. The research results will inform a second iteration of the program to run in 2017-2018, and continued assessment will expand our understanding of what creates effective mentorship for teaching at U of T.