Center for the Integration of Research, Teaching, and Learning (CIRTL)

We are a national leader in preparing our graduate students for academic careers.

In 2006, Howard decided to join the Center for Integration, Research, Teaching and Learning (CIRTL) network as another means of expanding the number of professional development opportunities available for students interested in pursuing a career in the the professoriate.

The Network brings several new opportunities to our campus. Five new CIRTL sponsored classes have been added to our growing repertoire of Preparing Future Faculty Course offerings. These classes not only explore new and effective pedagogies, but also create a unique situation where students from Howard, in a virtual classroom setting, interact with peers and faculty from across the nation.

Additionally, students can engage in Teaching as Research (TAR) Projects. These Projects can be used to fulfill the Teaching Field Experience required for the Certificate in College and University Teaching. Students conducting TAR projects receive a small stipend for their efforts.

For additional information on the CIRTL Network Alliance and the CIRTL Pillar, Teaching as Research, please visit the CIRTL website. View a comprehensive list of Network Institutions.

CIRTL @Howard Mission

To enhance the Professional Development of Howard University Graduate Students and develop a national faculty committed to advancing effective teaching practices for diverse student audiences based on the 3 pillars of Teaching-as-Research, Learning-through-Diversity, and Learning Communities

CIRTL @Howard Program Objectives

  • Participants will gain skills that will help them identify, investigate, and propose solutions to their learning and teaching environment.
  • Apply research skills to improve teaching and learning.
  • Develop a lasting learning community with other faculty members across the CIRTL Network
  • Teach through diversity by acquiring skills to teach to the diverse learning styles, culture, age, gender, academic capacity and disciplines, and interests.
  • Develop confidence in creating effective learning and teaching environments.
  • Provide synergy between the existing professional development programs that are focused on preparing future faculty such as PFF, AGEP, Bridges to the Doctorate.

CIRTL @Howard Goals

  • Prepares graduate students, post docs, and new faculty for successful careers integrating excellent research and superb teaching.
  • To use the diversity of the CIRTL Network to prepare future science, engineering and math and other graduate students become faculty members who are both excellent researchers and teachers.
  • Support Howard University initiatives (PFF, AGEP, etc.) to infuse courses with inquiry-based pedagogies.
  • Support faculty development in CIRTL pillars and inquiry-based pedagogies.

CIRTL @Howard Program Offerings

The CIRTL program offers Howard University graduate and postdocs the opportunity to gain critical skills to enhance their instructional delivery, research capacity, hands-on instructional technology skills and extensive professional development opportunities – our offerings are built upon well developed scientific research methodologies.

Funding Source

CIRTL is funded by the National Science Foundation. (

CIRTL @Howard program is open to all doctoral students in good academic standing in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) or in the Social, Behavioral and Economic Sciences(SBE).

The CIRTL Office is located in the Graduate School, Annex III, Room 301. 

CIRTL Courses

The College Classroom

In this CIRTL Network course, students will learn the basics of effective teaching as well as ideas in the forefront of college education. Students will explore their teaching philosophy, design a course curriculum, learn how to monitor and investigate the effectiveness of the learning environment, and learns what it means to create an inclusive classroom environment that engages all learners. An emphasis on a learning centered classroom will provide students with a perspective that highlights the interconnected cycle of teaching, assessment and learning such that they become reflective practitioners.

Developing a Classroom of Computational Thinkers

This CIRTL Network course is being piloted at Howard University. Registrants of this Course study various tools which are both necessary and available to solve computational problems in many disciplines. Some of the tools and software which will used in this class include: commercial software such as Excel, Computer Algebra Software such as Maple, Mathematica and Matlab, High Performance Computing (HPC), computation on the web, and collaborative computational research. (Dr. Wayne Patterson, Department of Computer Science, Howard University)

Diversity in the College Classroom

This CIRTL Network course considers the complex issues of diversity and how to address them in your classroom practice. Current graduate students and faculty are recognizing that we must consider that the way we teach differentially impacts the success of all our students. Participants in the course will take a critical yet practical look at how we define diversity and for what purposes and discuss the ways different definitions of diversity might influence what and how we teach our disciplinary topics.

Effective Use of Technology in Teaching and Learning

This CIRTL Network course is designed for students who desire new approaches to the effective use of instructional technology in their teaching practices. The goals of the class are 1) Provide participants with a foundation for choosing appropriate technological tools based on learning needs 2) Give participants hands-on experience, through class sessions and an independent project, in the effective use of learning technologies such as interactive web application, video/audio lectures, clickers and various course management tools 3) Promote the importance and scholarship of the evaluation of instructional technology efficacy.