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The Purpose of Teaching Dossiers

What is a teaching dossier?

A teaching dossier is "a compilation of materials that collectively suggest the scope and quality of a professor's teaching performance." (Seldin, 2004, as quoted in Chescheir, 2005).  An effective dossier contains approximately 6-10 pages, not including the Appendices.  Canadian universities employ the term "dossier" rather than portfolio, as dossier is used both in English and French languages. Unlike a CV, a teaching dossier contains material related only to educational activities.

A teaching dossier:

  • Demonstrates other aspects of your professional work that contribute to your teaching.
  • Demonstrates your effectiveness as a teacher
  • Contains evidence of your achievements, plans, and growth.

Why is a teaching dossier useful?

Professionally:

  •  To aid in promotion and tenure*
  •  To apply for bonuses, scholarships, or grants
  •  To document the quality and quantity of your professional development

Personally:

  •   Assists in preparation for interviews and applications by highlighting experiences, etc.
  •   Provides an opportunity to reflect on your teaching
  •   Document evolving expertise in teaching and teaching methods
  •   Focus on future goals, based on evidence of success and setbacks

Practically:

  •   To organize your experience and learning
  •   To be a resource and collection

What is the difference between a teaching dossier and a CV?

A teaching dossier represents material related only to teaching. Other accomplishments related to research or clinical work, unless these activities are educationally focused, should be included on a CV.  Also, whereas a CV provides a list of accomplishments, a teaching dossier should provide the reader with an overview of your development as a teacher including planned areas for future development.

(adapted from Portfolio Preparation Guide, Florida State, http://www.career.fsu.edu/experience/document/portfolio-guide.html)

* At Queen's University:
For Clinical Faculty going forward for Renewal/Reappointment/Tenure or Promotion
a teaching dossier is required:

  • For faculty covered by Queen's University Faculty Association Agreement (QUFA) Article 29 .2  describes the need for a teaching dossier in relation to annual Performance Review, Renewal, Tenure, Continuing Appointment, Reappointment and Promotion.