On August 26th and 27th, several hundred TFs gathered at Sever Hall for the Bok Center’s Fall Teaching Conference, a staple in the pedagogical training of many graduate students in FAS. The first day of the conference focused on bringing new TFs up to speed with the fundamentals of teaching by providing training aimed at equipping them with the knowledge, strategies and tools they needed to get off to a good start as they began teaching for the first time. TFs participated in one of two Fundamentals of Teaching tracks facilitated by Departmental Teaching Fellows, Preceptors, and Bok staff, one designed for TFs in the humanities and qualitative social sciences and the other designed for TFs in STEM and the quantitative social sciences.
On the second day of the conference, a mix of experienced and new TFs participated throughout the day in a wide array of concurrent sessions aimed at TFs with varying degrees of teaching experience. Popular sessions ranged across topics as varied as responding to student writing, advanced discussion leading, active learning in STEM classes, academic integrity, professional conduct, issues of race and gender in the classroom, developing a teaching portfolio, and developing effective communication skills. The day culminated with a teaching resources fair and ice-cream social outside Sever Hall, providing TFs with the opportunity to talk informally with representatives from Harvard organizations that work with TFs, including the Harvard Writing Program, Title IX, the Harvard Museums, the Bureau of Study Counsel, the Harvard Libraries.