Center for Teaching

The Center for Teaching (CFT) addresses the needs of faculty members both as teachers and as professionals.

A primary activity of the Center for Teaching is to create informal and formal opportunities on campus, as well as at the system-wide level involving all 12 Connecticut Community Colleges for discussing issues related to teaching and learning. It promotes interaction of faculty—both full-time and part-time—from different divisions and from different colleges. These professional development opportunities are coordinated at MCC by the college’s Teaching and Learning Consultant (TLC), Leonard Dupille.

Committee Membership:

Len Dupille, Chair and Teaching and Learning Consultant
Sharon Gusky, Chair, Center for Teaching Steering Committee

Carla Adams, Kathleen Peters, Andrew Sottile, Kimberly Hamilton Bobrow, C.K. Pai, Deborah Boyle, Stacy Giguere, James Gentile

Center for Teaching System-wide Initiatives

The system-wide Center for Teaching sponsors the following events. Each of these events is aimed at a specific audience in the community college system and participation is limited. Specific information about each event, as well as application forms will become available throughout the semester.

Save the Dates

Barnes Seminar *
May 11-20, 2020
Incarnation Center, Ivoryton, CT
This two-and-a-half day workshop allows faculty to share teaching challenges and successes and, in the process, to identify innovations in teaching.

Schwab Institute for Academic Leadership *
March 27, 2020
This one-day workshop, directed at department chairs, program coordinators, division directors and those who aspire to a leadership position, features a keynote address and workshops focused on managerial and leadership issues.

Pathways for Teaching Success*
Fall: October 25, 2019 and November 22, 2019
Spring: February 28, 2020
This program addresses the professional needs of early career faculty members. Pathways has both fall and spring sessions; faculty may attend as many sessions as they would like.

Spirit of Teaching *
Fall: September 27, 2019
Spring:  March 6, 2020
Holy Family Retreat Center, West Hartford, CT
Centered on the work of Parker Palmer, this one-day event focuses on helping faculty members to reconnect with and strengthen their inspiration for teaching.

Instructional Skills Workshops (ISWs)*
Dates to be Announced
ISWs are intensive teaching workshops during which participants learn the basics of constructing an effective lesson including a plan for each class integrating a Bridge, Objectives, Pre-Assessment, Participatory Learning, Post-Assessment and Summary (the BOPPPS model). Participants also participate in workshops on issues such as learning styles, the learning process, assessment and general best-practices. Finally, participants present mini-lessons and receive intensive feedback from one another on their teaching styles.

* These Center for Teaching events and programs are open by registration. Several are directed at specific members of the community college system. Information about the programs is sent by email.

Ongoing Center for Teaching Initiatives

Narrative Teaching

What is narrative teaching? How can it help you discover new directions for the classroom? How can it help you grow as a teacher?

Narrative Teaching is a program in which journaling is used to explore one’s teaching and to identify areas for growth. It is modeled after programs currently in place in many medical institutions and has been used on several college campuses.

In the past, small groups of faculty and staff from different disciplines met regularly to discuss their teaching experiences. Currently, we are looking to form a new group of interested participants. Participation in this project requires two things:

  • a willingness to reflect at least once a week in writing on your teaching
  • a willingness to meet with other participants formally once a month as a group, informally more often in self-determined groups

For information about registration, email Len Dupille.

The Teachers’ Bureau

An Opportunity for Faculty Collaboration

  • Visit the classroom of a colleague
  • Explore the challenges of teaching another discipline
  • Learn about teaching methodologies adaptable to other disciplines
  • Discover opportunities for collaborative teaching

The Teachers’ Bureau acts as a registry for faculty—full-time and part-time—interested in visiting the classroom of a colleague. The Center for Teaching committee coordinates this registry so that an interested faculty member can visit a colleague’s class once (but we imagine that some faculty will want to establish a longer series of visits). We ask that the two faculty members meet after the visits to discuss what they learned, to offer feedback to one another and to identify areas of possible growth.

For an application, go to Teachers’ Bureau Application.

The Teachers’ Café

The Teachers’ Café is sponsored jointly by Academic Affairs, the Center for Teaching and Library and Educational Technology. It is a regularly scheduled event where faculty and staff can come together, socialize and be involved in presentations and discussions of issues related to teaching and learning. The Teachers’ Café is held several times each semester, typically on Wednesday from 3:30 to 4:45 p.m. Each Teachers’ Café will provide light refreshments and the first fifteen minutes is reserved for enjoying these refreshments and socializing. Presentations will begin at 3:45 p.m. Those interested in attending are invited to come with teaching tips or challenges related to the topic to be considered. These discussions are attended by both full-time and part-time faculty, administration, staff and students.

Case Studies

The case studies initiative evolved out of an awareness that much of what faculty know about teaching and learning occurs directly through their work in the classroom as well as through their discussions with colleagues. Case studies offer an opportunity akin to talking with a colleague or colleagues informally around the campus and provide a time for reflection and exchange and thus for professional development. Among those who attend are full-time and part-time faculty, librarians and counselors.

  • Help us plan our case studies for the upcoming year.
  • What types of cases would you like us to discuss?
  • What classroom issues would you like to explore with colleagues?

Perhaps you’ve struggled with a student who does not want to work collaboratively, or perhaps you’ve gone to a class only to discover few students are prepared for that day’s work, or perhaps an assignment you thought was so well-designed was either too easy or too difficult or perhaps your students are struggling to balance homework and class work. You may also have encountered challenges working with colleagues that you would like to explore.

Please write us with your ideas.  A brief description of the issue you faced or a brief narrative of the event of the student is all that you need to provide. Names and identifying information of those involved will not be used.

Send your ideas to Len Dupille.


Does your department or program want to host a speaker, start a discussion series or create another professional development activity, but lack of funding has limited your ability to do so?

Mini-grants offer an opportunity for a department or program to host a speaker, start a discussion series or create another professional development activity. The Center for Teaching committee offers mini-grants (limited to approximately $200) to fund in part or in whole such projects. We are especially interested in activities that might be of interest to faculty and staff outside of the sponsoring department or program as well as those within it.

For an application, go to Mini-Grant Application.

Fall and Spring Luncheons

The Center for Teaching committee sponsors a luncheon or dinner every fall and spring. Each event is centered on a presentation which addresses a timely and important teaching and learning related issue.

Fall Luncheon
Date to be determined

Spring Luncheon
Date to be determined

All Center for Teaching events and programs are open to both full-time and part-time faculty.