Explore College Teaching Track

This track is solely for graduate students trying to earn the Explore College Teaching Certificate. It is designed as a shorter track, allowing graduate students to complete it in less than two years, before they graduate from university. This certificate is awarded by earning 5 engage level badges (4 required badges and 1 badge of choice). Participants in Explore can expect to develop a foundation for understanding college teaching and identify resources available to instructors at USU.

Why participate in Explore?

Participating in ETE10 and earning an Explore College Teaching Certificate can offer a number of benefits for graduate students, including: 

  What are graduate students saying about Explore?

My work with ETE10 has set me apart from other applicants when landing a job after earning my degree. They were impressed with the work I'd done with ETE and I've been able to bring a unique perspective due to what I'd learned.

Jocelyn Cuthbert, PhD - Animal, Dairy and Veterinary Sciences Department

ETE is the core of my professional development as a graduate student instructor. The ETE10 program has exposed me to so many opportunities and resources I was not aware existed and normally would not have had.

Zack Gibson, Physics Department

Prior to engaging with ETE, the knowledge I had about being an instructor was limited to the experiences I had as a student. I lacked the knowledge, experience, and community necessary to be an effective teacher. Luckily, ETE provided me with the knowledge, tools and community necessary to become a successful instructor.

Mike Vakula, PhD Student, Department of Kinesiology and Health Science

Required badges for explore track 

Ready to get started? 


Step up a "Plan Your Pathway" meeting with ETE

In your Plan Your Pathway (PYP) meeting, an ETE staff member will introduce you to the ETE10 Canvas course, where you earn your digital badges. They will discuss your specific personal and professional goals with you and suggest the best strategy for completing the Explore College Teaching Certificate in a timely manner. To set up your PYP, please send an email to empowerteaching@usu.edu indicating that you want to have a PYP.

Enroll in ETE10

ETE10 is the Canvas course where you submit a short reflection assignment to earn each of the five badges necessary for Explore. To access ETE10, you need to join the course. You can do that by clicking here.

Engage in the required badges

There are four required badges for the Explore certificate:
  1. Explore Course (Engage):
    Description: The Explore course is a four-module Canvas course that presents you with the foundations of college teaching. During this course, you are required to watch 4 videos that range in length from 7-15 minutes each. After watching the video, you answer three short questions about what you learned. 
    Time to complete: <2 hours
    When to register: You can start the Explore course anytime without previous registration. 
  2. Plan Teaching Excellence Pathway (Engage)
    Description: In the Plan Your Pathway (PYP) meeting, you meet one-on-one with an ETE staff member to answer your questions about ETE and the Explore Certificate. During this meeting, you'll learn about ETE and the Explore track and discuss how ETE can best help you accomplish your personal and professional goals related to college teaching. 
    Time to complete: 1 hour
    When to register: You can set up an PYP meeting at any time, emailing empowerteaching@usu.edu 
  3. ETE Conference - 1st (Engage)
    Description: Every year, ETE holds a conference where you can learn more about current scholarship and trends in teaching and learning. The ETE conference also provides a great opportunity for networking with other instructors. 
    Time to complete: 1 day 
    When to register: Registration usually opens in July for the conference, which is held every August. Check out the ETE Conference website for the most up-to-date information on when and how to register. 
  4. ETE Learning Circle - Explore College Teaching (Engage)
    Description: Every semester, ETE runs a number of learning cirlces, where 8-9 instructors and/or graduate students get together to discuss a book related to pedagogy or college teaching. Some learning circles are specifically designed for Explore track participants. You can expect to meet with your learning circle 4-5 times a semester. 
    Time to complete: 1 semester (4-5 one-hour meetings)
    When to register: Registration usually opens 2-3 weeks before the start of each semester. Check out the learning cirlces website to find out what circles are coming up and to sign up. 
To earn the Explore College Teaching Certificate, you must also earn one other badge of your choice. There are over 100 digital badges currently available through ETE. During your PYP meeting, you can talk about which additional badge might best fit your personal and professional goals. Feel free to email empowerteaching@usu.edu for guidance or advice about which badge might work best for you.

Submit badge assignment to ETE10

After you have engaged in the content of a badge (for example, once you have complete the Explore course), you should submit the badge assignment in ETE10. To submit a badge, navigate to that badge in ETE10 and click on "Start Assignment" at the top right of the screen. To submit the badge, you will be asked to respond to a reflection prompt indicated in the badge assignment. Make sure that you respond to the prompts for the Explore College Teaching track.

Track your progress in Pathways

After you submit a badge to ETE10, an ETE staff member will read through your reflection and either award you the badge or ask for additional information to award you the badge. If additional information is needed, the ETE staff member will indicate what information to add in a submission comment and ask you to re-submit the assignment. Once you have been awarded the badge, you can track which badges you've earned and which badges you still need using the "Pathways" tab in the ETE10 course.

Still have questions? 

Email us at empowerteaching@usu.edu