Teaching Resources

The IntroSems Program offers both financial and pedagogical resources to support faculty in creating active, engaging, and vibrant small seminars.

Pedagogical Support

IntroSems is organized around faculty teaching small seminars comprising first and second year students. IntroSems faculty often remark that witnessing/fostering students’ excitement, new perspectives, and emerging disciplinary/research skills is the most rewarding part of teaching IntroSems. And, faculty often note that frosh and frosh and sophomores are at a unique stage in their learning. (For example, depending on when the IntroSem is offered, enrolled first year students might have celebrated their proms only months prior!)

To support faculty—many of whom are making the transition from large course to small seminars and from lectures to active learning via their IntroSems course—in building on the strengths of these budding learners, IntroSems offers a range of pedagogical development opportunities, including:

  • ONE-ON-ONE CONSULTATIONS: IntroSems faculty may consult throughout the quarter to discuss topics ranging from planning a syllabus to determining how to use course enhancement funds, to debriefing course evaluations.
  • STAND-ALONE WORKSHOPS: Offered exclusively to IntroSems instructors, these workshops are designed to address the specific needs of IntroSems faculty, and feature topics such as designing appealing course descriptions, planning active learning activities, navigating unexpected classroom conversations, and
  • ONGOING WORKSHOPS: Throughout the year, IntroSems offers workshop series in which small communities of IntroSem faculty participants engage around a particular theme. Topics include: a scholarship of teaching and learning reading and research group, a learning community on identity in the classroom, and a peer observation community.

For more information on consultations and workshops, please contact introsems@stanford.edu.

Academic Technology Support

A specialist in academic technology is available to work with IntroSems faculty on a wide range of projects, including designing interactive on-line discussion forums to implementing video annotation software to creating digital projects, such as podcasts and web pages. Examples of IntroSems projects that have incorporated innovative uses of technology may be found at the online Student Project Gallery. For more information about developing instructional technology tools, contact the academic technology specialist.

IntroSems Faculty Handbook

Introductory Seminars Faculty Handbook, 1st Edition

The handbook provides an overview of the mission and goals of the IntroSems program along with specific strategies and recommendations for designing and teaching a small seminar for first- and second-year students.