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Learning Communities

CFT Learning Communities LogoThe CFT hosts a number of learning communities, intended for members of Vanderbilt’s teaching community interested in meeting over time to develop deeper understandings and richer practices around particular teaching and learning topics. See below for information on the CFT’s 2021-22 learning communities.


Queer Teaching, Queer Thriving:
A Learning Community on Inclusive Teaching for All Educators

Teaching, Difference, and Power

The Center for Teaching and the K.C. Potter Center for LGBTQI Life are proud to offer a 2021-2022 learning community about ways campus educators may help LGBTQI students to thrive academically and socially. Open to all faculty, graduate students, and staff of any background, the learning community will discuss a wide variety of issues: the needs of LGBTQI+ students and faculty on campus, the complexities of gender and sexual identities, inclusive course design and teaching practices, queer pedagogies, building LGBTQI+ community, as well as educator wellness and self-care. The formats of the meetings will vary, including pedagogical colloquia, panels, and workshops, among others. As a learning community with multiple, thematically-linked events that inform each other, we hope participants attend as many as schedules permit.  If you are interested in attending any or all of the learning community events, please register here and we will contact you as the events develop.


Online Teaching

This faculty learning community is for Vanderbilt faculty, staff, or grad students who want to dig deeper into online and hybrid course design principles in order to create excellent socially-distanced courses. In our working group, we will explore principles of effective online teaching as described in research literature, expert accounts, and personal perspectives. As a group, we will work together to develop public-facing web pages for the Online Course Development Resources (CDR) site to support our own professional development and provide resources that can benefit other Vanderbilt instructors’ digital pedagogy.

Meetings will take place monthly beginning in September. You can register for this group using this form.


Learning Assistant Instructors

Learning assistants, or LAs, are undergraduates who serve as peer educators in courses that they have previously taken. Supported by training in pedagogy, they extend the reach of faculty members implementing active learning components in a course and help provide personalized experiences that increase students’ sense of belonging. In this learning community, faculty who are currently working with LAs or are considering doing so in the future will meet regularly to discuss challenges, successes, and the approaches they are trying. If you are interested in joining this learning community, email Cynthia Brame (

Internal Teaching Grants: Learning Community

Idesk full of post-it notes and markersn Spring 2021, the Provost’s Office introduced the Course Improvement Grant and the Educational Advancement Fund programs. Recipients are invited to participate in a learning community that will provide an opportunity for grant recipients to collaborate and support each other as they develop their projects. There will be opportunities for recipients to share their goals and approaches, consider how they will assess their success, and report on their progress and challenges.

For information, contact Cynthia Brame ( or Julaine Fowlin (