9 Developing a Teaching Portfolio
A teaching portfolio is a curated document that showcases your approach to teaching and your impact on student learning. For tenure- and teaching-track faculty, a teaching portfolio is required as part of the documentation you submit when applying for tenure and permanence. If you are a sessional instructor, and particularly if you are on the academic job market, a teaching portfolio is often required in job applications. In both cases, and for tenured faculty, a teaching portfolio can act as a tool that allows you to evaluate, reflect upon, and document your teaching strengths, areas of development, and impact.
For tenure-track or teaching-track faculty, teaching portfolios for the purposes of tenure, promotion, or permanence are expected to align with the requirements of the SPS B2 Teaching Portfolios policy. This document outlines the main sections of the teaching portfolio and lists the specific components required in each, including a description of teaching responsibilities and experiences, a description of teaching philosophy, and evidence of effective teaching. For more information on developing a teaching portfolio that aligns with the McMaster SPS B2 policy, see the MacPherson Institute guidebook on Preparing a Teaching Portfolio.
For sessional instructors who may be searching for academic positions beyond McMaster, a teaching portfolio can help you demonstrate your teaching accomplishments and expertise. Teaching portfolios, and especially the teaching philosophy and evidence of teaching effectiveness components, are frequently required by hiring committees. Rather than adhering to the McMaster-specific SPS B2 policy, you may wish to create a more expansive portfolio that offers more detail about your approach and impact. You may also find the MacPherson Institute useful. If you would like feedback on a draft of your portfolio, please feel free to contact us to set up a consultation.