The Teaching International Students (TIS) micro-credential program, offered through the Center for Teaching & Learning in collaboration with International Student Academic Success – Office of Undergraduate Education, prepares faculty, graduate students, and teaching staff to provide better academic experiences for international students in the United States. Participants will gain an understanding of the unique experiences of international students and their needs, as well as explore how to apply this knowledge to course and assignment design, teaching and mentoring practices, and fostering success inside and outside the classroom. This program addresses intercultural communication, inclusive pedagogy, and international education coursework. In addition, program participants will engage with workshops on supporting international students and inclusive pedagogy, and a capstone project.

The TIS program is designed to be completed over one academic year. Participants must be teaching during the term of the program to fulfill all requirements (as instructor of record or as a TA). 

After completing this micro-credential, participants will be able to: 

  • Analyze the experiences of international students at CU Boulder, including how current events are affecting them,
  • Critique common practices when teaching and/or mentoring international students at CU Boulder, and
  • Design strategies to improve international students' academic experience at CU Boulder.

Participants successfully completing the Teaching International Students program will receive a digital micro-credential badge issued via CU Boulder's micro-credential program

Program Components 

Participants will cultivate knowledge about the international student experience in the U.S. and examine how our educational system and academic culture affect students’ learning and success. This program is designed to promote meaningful and well-informed discussions and reflections with the goal of developing knowledge, skills, and attitudes that support international student success.

  1. Completion of an asynchronous Canvas course, required submission of reflections, and participation in discussions, or
  2. Participation in at least 6 meetings of a CTL learning community and submitting homework assignments

Completing the foundational work via either the asynchronous course or through learning community meetings will take participants approximately 15 hours

Participants will attend at least three workshops focused on international students and submit a reflection. A template with formatting guidelines and reflection questions will be provided.

    Participants will attend at least two workshops focused on inclusive pedagogy and submit a reflection. A template with formatting guidelines and reflection questions will be provided. 

    Participants will identify and apply new pedagogical practices to support international students and submit a report describing the practice, how it was used and the achieved results, and adjustments for future uses when applicable, based on readings, discussions, and/or workshops. 

    Participants will have the opportunity to meet individually with program facilitators to discuss any aspect of the program. Individual meetings are optional and highly encouraged.

    International Student Support Action Plan: Based on the readings, discussions, and workshops, participants will design an action plan that addresses the needs of international students at their classes, department, college, or at CU in general.

    Alignment with CU Boulder's IDEA Plan

    International students constitute a large portion of students currently enrolled in U.S. higher education. CU Boulder alone hosted 2123 international students in the spring of 2021. This micro-credential provides professors, graduate students, and teaching staff with knowledge and skills to offer international students an equitable academic experience. By publicly displaying the digital badge awarded upon successful completion of this program, faculty, graduate students, and teaching faculty will communicate their qualifications to support international student learning, which also signals the intent to promote an inclusive environment. The micro-credential program is grounded on concepts of inclusive pedagogy, universal design for learning, and intercultural competence as these apply to the international student experience. These content areas have been the focus of several initiatives across campus, which allows participants in this program to take advantage of resources already available to our campus community. This program aligns with one of the campus diversity and inclusion plan's (the IDEA Plan) action areas, which aims to "cultivate success for a diverse undergraduate and graduate student body with new financial resources and programming" (p. 9). Departments/primary units will be able to effectively measure international-student-focused professional development.