Topic outline

  • Themes of the course include:

    • Teaching culture at Aalto University
    • Approaches to learning
    • Planning and practicing for a teaching session
    • Developing your own teaching and teacher identity
    • Working in a multidisciplinary group

    The contents of this course may vary depending on the specific needs and objectives of each group. Teaching and learning methods on this course include introductions to new topics, group work (partly online), experimentation through practice, demonstrations, case examples and peer feedback. Participants are encouraged and expected to have an active role in the learning process.

    Teachers: Jukka Välimäki (Aalto CHEM, teacher in charge) and Riikka Evans (BIZ)

  • Write a short description of your conception of learning and teaching.

    Describe in your own words:

    • How would you describe learning?
    • What is your role as a teacher in your student's learning process?
    • What are your strengths as a teacher?

    Focus on handling the phenomenon from different perspectives and try to give arguments supporting your perceptions. Please submit your pre-assignment in MyCourses at latest by Monday afternoon 13.1.2020.

    Please take a paper (or electronic) copy with you to the first contact session (15.1.2020) and be prepared to discuss about your conceptions with other course participants.

  • Classroom of the session: Otakaari 1, Y229

  • Classroom of the session: Otakaari 1, Y346

  • Classroom of the session: Rakennus- ja ympäristötekniikka, 266

  • Classroom of the session: Otakaari 1, U264/K-ryhmä

  • Classroom of the session: Väre, Q103

    Group presentations (based on the group work during the course).

  • During the first contact session:

    • Pick a name for your peer group and list members and give to course teacher: you will get your group’s wiki.
    • Define your group topic/theme/question and write down your group’s common objectives on group’s wiki.

    For your peer group meetings:

    Make a plan for the meetings in order to further your objectives. For instance:

    • 1st meeting: clarify objectives, divide tasks, planning of how to report the outcomes...
    • 2nd meeting: discussion about found answers, new viewpoints, new ideas and integration of viewpoints as well as planning the presentation of group objectives, process and outcomes for the last face-to-face teaching session
    • Write a summary of each meeting & the final outcome on MyCourses (agree on who in your group does this) on your groups discussion area.

    Peer groups are presenting a group work/findings/outcomes at the last contact teaching session 4.3.2020

    • Plan and implement, as a group, about 20 min (+10 min for discussion) "teaching session" to the whole group in order to teach the others something you have learnt.
    • Familiarize yourselves with different kinds of teaching methods (for example Hyppönen & Linden: Handbook for teachers - course structures, teaching methods and assessment pages  34-55) and choose an appropriate method for your session.

    Targets (three-fold)

    • To activate and teach your peers in the course, but hopefully not "one-direction way = you/your group speak, others are passively listening"
    • To offer your peers new learning experiences on a topic they would not know so much/ OR with your presentation wake up their interest to use something new in their own teaching
    • To learn about some new (pedagogical topic) yourselves and to utilize that knowledge (or materials) later on in your own teaching, when usually you would  not have so much time to get acquainted with teaching methods/pedagogical issues. Take advantage of this time in the course!


    • The topics, which were in the walls, were quite large - you as a group decide  & can make your topic more narrow (hopefully based on your group's mutual decision).
    • You can include, for instance, a list of references into your presentation, = a list of those articles/books/internet links ETC. which you used when preparing this.
    • Afterwards, the list is a good help for you and all of your peers in the course when you have some time to go back to these topics (e.g. when renewing your own course's methods).

  • Submit your individual teaching plan here! - to the box below these instructions

    The course includes a short teaching practice on the fourth face-to-face session. The teaching practice consists of three parts:

    1. a written plan,
    2. teaching according to the plan, and
    3. verbal and written peer feedback.

    The written task is to plan a single 20 minutes teaching session for a small group of 3-5 persons. The session may be a part of your own current course, a part of an imaginary new course or some other teaching situation that is relevant to your own field or a teaching topic that is not in your field, not even “academic”. Take into account the participants' background knowledge, which is usually quite heterogenic in this course. After each teaching practice, the teacher and the peer group members will give written feedback and have a feedback discussion with you. The teaching practice is a good opportunity to try a new teaching method or some other new ideas in teaching.

    Read: Get Inspired. A guide for successful teaching. Chapters 4 and 5, pp. 27-49.

    Write a plan for your teaching practice, including:

    1. Intended learning outcomes

    Define the targets for your teaching session and write them in the form of intended learning outcomes. When you plan the learning outcomes, remember that the length of the session is only 20 minutes!

    2. Teaching methods and motivation for them

    Use as the starting point your intended learning outcomes and choose teaching method(s) that support them. Aim at trying a method that challenges you to something new. However, the main point is that the method supports the learning you are striving for. You can find different teaching methods e.g., in Hyppönen's and Lindén's Handbook for Teachers ( If needed, you can bring along items or gear that support your teaching.

    3. Assessment of learning

    How could you find out what the students have learned, and how would you assess the learning? You may not have time to assess the learning outcomes during your teaching practice, but nevertheless keep it in mind. Your choice of teaching methods also has an effect on the amount of feedback you get from your students during your teaching.

    4. Timeline (or "rhythm of teaching”)

    It is worthwhile to make a timeline for the teaching practice in order to realize how much (or little) content and action you can include in 20 minutes. Consider the situation from the participants' perspective and try to make the learning experience as rewarding as possible.

    Submit your plan on MyCourses on 18.2.2020 at the latest.

    In addition, bring along four to five (5) paper copies to the teaching practice on the 4th face-to-face session. The submission can be done through the "Upload a file” function below.