At Boston University, we take seriously the importance of helping our doctoral students learn to be effective teachers of language, literature, and film. Our cycle of pedagogy classes provides students with cutting edge training in language instruction, and our weekly coordination meetings ensure that students receive support throughout their teaching experience at BU.
Our students have the opportunity to teach classes from the introductory level up through advanced third year topic-oriented classes, such as French Popular Culture. Students who wish to do so may also earn a pedagogy certificate.
Training in the Art of Teaching
Students do not teach during their first year at BU, but they do begin their training in pedagogy. In the spring semester of year one, students register for the first in our cycle of pedagogy classes, GRS LL 690.
GRS LL 690 Proficiency-Based Language Teaching 1
Introduces students to current language teaching methodologies and effective proficiency- and standards- based instruction. Students develop their own pedagogy projects with appropriate assessment parameters addressing all four language skills.
In their second year at BU, students start teaching one class per term, beginning with the first-year language classes, LF/LS 111 or LF/LS 112 (First/Second Semester French/Spanish).
Each week, students gather for a coordination meeting with the course coordinator for the class level they are teaching, along with other students and faculty teaching at that level. These meetings provide students invaluable guidance as well as a supportive community of fellow instructors as they develop and perfect their teaching skills.
In addition, students may register for the second of our pedagogy classes, GRS LL 691 Part A, during the fall semester. (LL 691 is required for French students, optional for Spanish students).
GRS LL 691 Proficiency-Based Language Teaching 2 Part A
Fosters professional outlook on language teaching and learning. Students deepen their knowledge of instructional technologies, further develop proficiency-based pedagogy projects for their own courses, and prepare teaching philosophies, conference presentations, and other portfolio materials.
Year Three and Beyond
In years three and four, students teach one class each semester, progressing through the sequence of language instruction classes. With the exception of the spring term of their fourth year, students do not enroll in a formal pedagogy class after year two, but they do continue participation in weekly coordinator meetings.
In the spring semester of year four, students may register for our final pedagogy class, GRS LL 691 Part B. (LL 691 is required for French students, optional for Spanish students).
GRS LL 691 Proficiency-Based Language Teaching 2 Part B
A sequel to LL 691 Part A, this is a professional development seminar for literature/film and language instructors. The course includes guidance on developing a CV as well as examples of teaching performance and materials (such as video clips of class and syllabi), mock interviews, and other preparation for the job search.