Chair of Excellence in University Teaching

The Chairholder will receive a three-year non-renewable appointment, an annual fund of $20,000, and the Chairholder's Faculty will provide one assistantship.

Vision and Mission

Since 2012, the Chairs in University Teaching have underscored the University of Ottawa's commitment to teaching excellence. The Chairs program aims to:

  • promote teaching and learning practices that will benefit the entire university community.
  • recognize the value of leadership and excellence in university teaching
  • support faculty who are committed to advancing research in teaching and learning to impact practice across the University.

As part of the Transformation 2030 strategic plan, the Chairs are committed to

  • Promote inclusive, engaging, innovative and effective teaching and learning practices;
  • exploring new pedagogical approaches and emerging technologies
  • fostering approaches to student engagement and the quality of their post-secondary learning experience
  • promote student well-being and the valuing of diversity.

The Chairholder will receive a three-year non-renewable appointment and an annual fund of $20,000. To highlight the significance of this appointment, the Chairholder's Faculty will provide one assistantship (130 hours per year). During the appointment, the Chairholder will join the Research Unit for the Advancement of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (ASoTL) housed within the Teaching and Learning Support Service (TLSS) and work collaboratively with fellow Chairs to play an active role in the promotion of teaching excellence and the enhancement of student learning in all sectors of the University community.

The Chairholder will lead a three-year research program with implications for the broader University teaching and learning community, which will relate to:

  • Significant transformation of teaching and learning practices in their field; and
  • Scholarly development and research in the field of university teaching and learning.
  • The Chair in University Teaching will also serve as a keynote speaker at TLSS and University of Ottawa events, which may include: the New Professor Orientation Program, the annual Perspective Symposium, and TLSS lecture events. In addition to submitting an annual progress report, the Chairholder will disseminate the results of their scholarly work (via conference presentations, articles, and the TLSS website) and give a public presentation in the final year of their program.

Re-focusing on the enhancement of campus-wide pedagogy and the promotion of leadership in educational change (whether disciplinary or institution, faculty or program level), the competition for the 2023 Chair in University Teaching will take into account applications in two distinct profiles. The profiles aim to support a broader spectrum of capable Chair in University Teaching candidates and allow submissions to each profile to be evaluated against recommendations from similar contexts.

 Profile A

  • Tenured or tenure-track teachers

 Profile B

  • Full-time faculty in Continuing Special Appointment (CSAP)
  • Part-time Faculty - Long Term Appointment (LTA)
  • Regular Laboratory Coordinator or those on a contract of three years or more

Emphasis on Boyer's definition of research, either discovery, integration, or/and application. *

Emphasis on Boyer's definition of research as application and teaching and learning (SoTL).*

Distinct criteria

  • Research record
  • Funding of previous research
  • Examples of SoTL
  • Letter of support indicating employment at uOttawa over the next three years

Common criteria

  • Detailed description of the project
  • Evidence of teaching excellence (A reports)
  • Contributions to program development or development of teaching and learning initiatives and resources
  • Evidence of ability to partner and collaborate with peers internal and external to uOttawa
  • Evidence of ability to manage large-scale projects
  • Demonstration of impact from past projects

For more detailed information please consult the "selection" tabulation

Common Applicant Contexts

  • Tenured or tenure-track professors
  • Full-Time Continuing Special Appointment Professors (CSAP)
  • Part-Time Long-Term Appointment  Professors (LTA)
  • Laboratory Coordinator

*Boyer (1990) proposes that scholarship include the following four categories:

  • The scholarship of discovery  includes original research that advances knowledge (i.e., basic research);
  • The scholarship of integration  involves a synthesis of information across disciplines, across topics within a field, or across time (i.e., inter-professional education or science communication);
  • The scholarship of application  goes beyond the service duties of a faculty member to those within or outside the University and involves the rigour and application of disciplinary expertise with results that can be shared with and evaluated by peers; and
  • The scholarship of teaching and learning involves systematically studying teaching and learning processes. It differs from scholarly teaching because it requires a format allowing public sharing and the opportunity for application and evaluation by others.

Boyer, E. L. (1990). Scholarship reconsidered: Priorities of the professoriate. Princeton University Press.

First Round

Applications submitted for the first round of selection (Expression of Interest for screening) must include:

  • a completed PDF application form, which will contain a one-page description of the project and a description of potential contributions to a research unit on Advancing Knowledge in Post-Secondary Teaching and Learning (ACEAPS) and enhancing the student experience across the Ottawa university community
  • A current curriculum vitae of no more than 4 pages (SSEC format);
    • Contributions to program development or development of teaching and learning initiatives and resources
    • Evidence of an ability to partner and collaborate with peers internal and external to uOttawa.
    • Evidence of ability to manage large-scale projects
    • If applicable, for Profile A, please highlight in the resume:
  • If applicable, for profile B, please highlight in the curriculum vitea :
    • Examples of SoTL
  • A copy of the A report (course evaluations) for the last 3 years (Until fall 2022)
  • For profile B only: Letter of support indicating employment at uOttawa for the next three years

Download the PDF application form.

The deadline to submit an Expression of Interest is March 1st, 2023 at 4:00 pm.

To apply, send a complete statement of interest (submission form, CV, copy of A report) in PDF format to

TLSS will contact the successful candidates (two or three candidates will be selected for the second round) during the week of March 20 to inform them of the selection committee's decision. Successful applicants will be provided with the necessary information to assist them in preparing a complete application for the second round.

Second Round

Following the selection of applications, the committee will contact the selected candidates. Successful applicants will be required to submit a full proposal which must include (details on each section below will be provided in a submission guide that will be shared with successful applicants)

  • The title of the project
  • a detailed description of the proposed project (6 pages + 1 page reference)
  • a 4-page curriculum vitae (focusing on the last five years)
  • a 5-page teaching dossier (see FAQ section for relevant details)
  • a letter of recommendation from the dean
  • two additional letters of recommendation
  • a more detailed description of potential contributions to the University of Ottawa academic community and the Advancing SoTL Research Unit.

Please consult the second-round guide and evaluation grid by clicking on the links below.

The deadline for this second round is May 15, 2023. Following the second round, the committee will contact the candidate and the new chairholder will be able to begin the project as early as July 1, 2023.

For more information, please contact the Teaching and Learning Support Services (TLSS) at

An informal information session on the Chairs in Academic Pedagogy program will be held on January 12, 13, 19 and 20, 2023 at noon via Zoom. Topics will include:

  • information about the roles and functions related to the Chair;
  • expectations of the Chairholders; and
  • the selection process.

For the registration in any of these sessions please click below to access the registration page on Eventbrite. Under the "date and time" section you have a "more option" button. Click on "more option" to choose your preferred date.


The Zoom link to attend the information sessions on January 12, 13, 19 and 20 at noon is :


For any inquiries, please contact  Dr. Banafsheh Karamifar.

Frequently asked questions (FAQ)

Is the Chairs in University Teaching Initiative related to the TLSS Teaching and Learning Grants Program?

No. While both initiatives encourage innovation in University teaching, they are separate programs. Chairholders are first and foremost ambassadors of instructional excellence and play an active role in promoting innovative teaching and learning practices across all sectors of the University community. Chairholders are expected to undertake projects that go beyond the course level and have a more significant impact on their Faculty and University community.

As the term is three years in length, Chairholders are expected to contribute to the scholarly development of university teaching through the dissemination of their research, involvement in the Centre for University Teaching’s faculty development programming and/or the development of resources.

Current and past chairholders

Andrew Sowinski (2022)

Project description

Photo of Andrew Sowinski

In today's technological world, megadata and data-driven decision making have become integrated into almost every facet of life. In higher education, megadata and its uses are sometimes referred to as "learning data." Learning data can generally be thought of as the use of institutional and instructional data to improve student retention and the quality of the student experience. Some applications include using the data to identify at-risk students, to suggest specific interventions, and to guide course and program design.