Graduate Student Online Teaching Certificate (GSOTC) Program Introduction and Registration

Thank you for your interest in the Graduate Student Online Teaching Certificate (GSOTC) program. The GSOTC has four requirements:

  1. You must have a valid Penn State email address;
  2. complete the five-week online noncredit course;
  3. participate in a live webinar with a written assignment (you will choose one of three times to participate). We estimate that it will take you four to seven hours to complete each week’s work;
  4. complete the course and instructor evaluation.

The program is intended to support graduate students who currently have or plan to have teaching assignments (including teaching assistant assignments) within the next few calendar years. During the five-week program, you will be introduced to the basics of effective online, asynchronous instruction and the experience of being an online student. Topics include effective management of discussion forums, developing instructor presence, giving and receiving feedback, incorporating higher order thinking skills, understanding the online learner, and creating your own professional development plan for improved teaching. The course is taught asynchronously week-by-week, in a cohort with a Penn State faculty instructor. Two to three assignments are due each week, and a group project is due at the end of the five-week course. You can expect to be in a course section with 20 students. We often have seven or more sections to accommodate the 150+ students who enroll each term.

This noncredit course is free of charge to Penn State graduate students and postdocs. Upon successful completion, you will earn a certificate issued by Penn State World Campus Online Faculty Development. While there is no penalty for dropping the course once you get started, we strongly recommend that you do not enroll unless you have the time and commitment to complete the course. If you cannot complete the course, you can re-enroll at a future date and start from the beginning.

Can you commit to devoting four to seven hours per week to this certificate? If so,

Enroll in the Fall 2019 Program