The Future Faculty Development Certificate (FFD) is designed to target the needs of graduate students and postdoctoral scholars who wish to pursue careers in academia. This certificate provides them with the opportunity to expand their understanding and appreciation for faculty careers in postsecondary institutions. This certificate requires no coursework, and is free to obtain. 

About the Future Faculty Development Certificate

Participants pursuing this certificate complete a project under the mentorship of a faculty member, attend workshops, and complete a Socratic Portfolio. 

Identify a project mentor and a teaching and learning project in consultation with a Professional Development Lead in the CTL. Typical projects cover topics related to course design, educational research, co-designing and teaching a course, or new program implementation in a department. The faculty mentor must agree to work with the graduate student to develop the mentorship and agree to meet over the course of the mentorship. 


The FFD project mentor can be the participant’s research advisor (primary investigator), or a committee member, departmental discipline-based educational researcher, CTL staff member, or off-campus faculty at another institution. This should be discussed with a Professional Development Lead within the CTL before reaching out to the potential mentor. 

What are the Requirements for Completion of the FFD?

Download and complete the FFD Mentorship Plan to complete a mentorship with a project mentor from the CTL website. Email your FFD Mentorship Plan to


Complete 20 workshops that include workshops on teaching or professional development.

  • Requirements include 10 CTL teaching workshops
  • 10 professional development workshops in the CTL, Career Services, CRDDS, Graduate School, Office of Postdoctoral Affairs or the participant’s home department or institute. 

A professional development workshop is any career-oriented workshop that is not strictly a teaching workshop. 

Participants should keep track of all workshops they attend outside CTL workshops using the FFD Attendance Tracking Form, which requires the facilitator or CTL Lead Graduate Teacher’s signature for each workshop attended. As of summer 2023, all participants should download the Personal Attendance Tracking form and log each workshop/event attended. When all 20 are completed, please send to for filing.

Please note: If a participant is pursuing two certificates, attendance at any given workshop can count toward only one certificate (i.e., one workshop cannot count for both the CCT and the FFD).

Site Visits

Site visits are a chance to experience the academic culture of other institutions. Graduate students, undergraduate students or postdocs interested in gaining exposure to a different type of faculty and campus environment, are encouraged to join a site visit. Each individual will be matched with a faculty member on the host campus for lunch and a departmental visit. The Center for Teaching & Learning works to have a site visit trip twice a year. Participants can utilize this opportunity to collaborate on their mentorship with the faculty member they are paired with.

Work with the Professional Development Lead in the CTL to discuss your ideas, and a potential site, for your mentorship, and your draft Mentorship Plan.

It is best to email to set an appointment to meet with a Professional Development Lead. 

Develop a revised Mentorship Plan that can be shared, along with your CV, with potential project mentors.

Once a project mentor has been established, certification requires the mentorship be conducted in the time required to complete the project. (The CTL Lead Network fellowships fulfill these requirements.) 

For the required talk, the project may be presented as the creator wishes to an audience of his/her choice (colloquium, workshop, community presentation, etc.), but the project mentor must be there to evaluate the presentation. The project mentor will evaluate the participant’s performance via a written evaluation sent to the CTL at

Completion of the mentorship and Socratic Portfolio will fulfill the mentorship requirement of the Future Faculty Development Certificate.

Once your mentorship is set up, be sure to agree on and write up a final Mentorship Plan in coordination with your mentor. You may use the Mentor Interview questions to communicate with your faculty mentor once the mentoring relationship is set up. Make sure the final Mentorship Plan includes all items that are required by the CTL.

Upon completion of the mentorship, the mentor should complete a written evaluation of your work taking into account the goals of the mentorship, the project, the presentation, and your accomplishments during the mentorship. The mentor’s evaluation should be submitted with the student's files to the CTL office via email to and will help to determine if the student should be granted the certificate. A project mentor must be present and see the observation, so that they can evaluate it. 

The participant submits a Socratic Portfolio that includes:

  • An introduction to the portfolio which situates the mentorship in the context of the participant’s personal and professional development (why did they do a mentorship, how did the experience fit into their preparation for their degree and for a future career). No more than one page.
  • Well-formulated documents that include: a teaching statement/philosophy, a research statement, a service statement and a CV.

The appendix of the portfolio should contain all appropriate documents such as:

  • The participant's letter of application to the FFD.
  • An updated FFD Attendance Tracking Form (each item listed, including the list of the teaching and professional development workshops completed, will be cross-checked and signatures verified for accuracy).
  • The participant’s FFD Mentorship Plan.
  • The final Mentorship Plan created with the project mentor.
  • Documents completed during the mentorship.
  • An outline of the participant’s presentation.
  • The mentor’s evaluation.
  • Other existing evaluations of the participant’s work.
  • The revised final resume that incorporates knowledge and skills gained during the mentorship.
  • Any other artifacts that the participant deems important to demonstrate their proficiency and completion of the mentorship.

Please submit a PDF of the Socratic portfolio for approval by the Center for Teaching & Learning Director to Further questions can be directed to the CTL Professional Development Lead.

Once the participant’s file is complete and approved by the CTL Director, the participant will fill out an online exit survey (link delivered via email). Once the exit survey is completed, the certificate will be printed using the participant’s name as stated on the application form.

The certificate, signed by the Director of the Center for Teaching & Learning and the Dean of the Graduate School, may be picked up in the CTL office or mailed directly to the participant. Please verify that the CTL office has updated mailing information on file for you.

If applicable, completion of the certificate will be noted on the participant’s transcript. 

Please note: To ensure your certificate is added to your final transcript, the portfolio should be turned in to CTL for review at least two weeks prior to the end of your final semester.