News Archives

November 2: The Task Force on Teaching and Learning has reviewed the feedback on its draft recommendations. The recommendations were revised and a summary document submitted to the VP Academic, by the Task Force's Chair. The VP Academic has approved the action plan described in the document as per his email to the University Community on October 30. Members of the Task Force are writing a full report and associated FAQ in response to some key concerns and questions which were posed by respondents. We expect these documents to be available on this webpage in a few weeks.

October 9: Thank you to members of the University Community for your feedback. Task force members are reviewing and revising their recommendations and related documents. The final report will reflect substantive revisions and will be available in November along with an FAQ in response to key points raised by the Community. To view an archived video of the public event see:

September 25: A reminder to join University Community Members at the public event to discuss the proposed recommendations. The event is on Wednesday, September 30 from 2:30 to 4:00 at IRMACS ASB10900.

The public forum will be accessible online: 
To submit questions or comments use the form that will be on the webpage. Your response will enter a queue, be read at the forum and responded to as soon as possible. (Note: To test your web browser prior to the event, view any of the files here: 

We look forward to seeing you there or hearing from you.

September 8: Your input as a student, instructor or staff member who supports teaching and learning are integral. Email, join an online forum or attend our upcoming public forum. See the draft recommendations and details on how to be heard.

July 21: Version 1.1 of the discussion document is now available and includes a minor amendment. See Draft Recommendations.

July 16: The Task Force has completed its draft recommendations discussion document. SFU Community members are encouraged to review, comment and discuss these proposed recommendations. See Draft Recommendations for details.

June 15: Thank you to all the people who volunteered and formed the Working Groups. The groups did a tremendous job in working with key issues over the past few months. These issues were identified through various existing SFU documents and the fall information gathering phase. Please refer to the interim report for the identified issues.

A point of clarification about the Working Groups Document which was posted this spring. This is not a final report from the groups, but a document that was created at the start of the process, as the groups worked through the issues and identified their proposed directions. There were many iterations and the final version was posted after receiving information from all groups as the groups were at different stages. The intent was to document proposed directions and to inform the university community. As the groups progressed in their work, some directions or the expected level of detail changed. This is not to say that identified issues will not be addressed in the future, but will be added to an ongoing list for continued work as there are dependencies or involvement with a greater range of stakeholders needed. Over the past year, it has become evident that supporting quality teaching and learning at SFU requires much phased work over time, collaboration by all stakeholders and continual efforts.

Working Group "reports" were submitted in May. To focus on the issues and solutions, groups were requested to document their recommendations with the understanding that they would be reviewed and edited to form a consolidated draft recommendations report. Thus, the groups focused on key ideas rather than providing a polished piece. Based on these documents, Task Force members are now drafting a set of recommendations for review and discussion by the University Community. 

Information about the public event will be posted shortly.

May 5: The four working groups that were formed after the January and February public events focus on the:

1) Evaluation of teaching, rewards, expectations and obligations
2) Coordination and representation of teaching issues and programs
3) University community and policies around teaching and learning, and
4) Student learning experience.

The groups finalized their terms of reference and deliverables at the April Task Force meeting. These details, membership and chairs may be found in the Working Group document.

To date, it has been an intensive past several weeks for the Working Group Members. Remarkable efforts have been made by Members in examining issues, seeking consultation and models, discussing possibilities, meeting and drafting documents. The groups are now working towards finalizing and submitting high-level recommendations this week. These will be integrated and synthesized into one draft Task Force Discussion Document that dovetails with current academic planning directions. From the end of May to the end of June, the Task Force will refine this document and any additional details stemming from the Working Groups will be appended.

To elicit and encourage dialogue and feedback by all SFU Community members, public events will be held in September rather than this summer. Information about these events and the availability of the Task Force’s Discussion Document will be released on our website and via email. Shortly after the fall public events, the Task Force's Recommendations Report will be finalized and formally submitted to Jon Driver, VPA.
January 27: A second Community Participatory Event is scheduled for Wednesday, Februry 4 from 3 to 5 pm in room 126, Halpern Centre (Burnaby campus). Join other SFU Community members in providing feedback on our interim report and discussing key issues. We look forward to seeing you there.

January 19: The Task Force's Interim Report is now available. SFU Community Members are encouraged to review this report and engage in discussions at our upcoming Community Participatory Events that are being held on January 23, 26 and 27. Or contact with comments or questions. Notes from the events and additional summary documents from our fall information gathering initiative will be accessible via this page in early February. Join our maillist for alerts (see below).

December 10: Season's Greetings. The Task Force recently completed its information gathering exercise. Results are being compiled, documentation is being prepared, and a report is being drafted. In the span of a few weeks, 315 members of the Faculties (Instructors and Administrators) participated through interviews, questionnaires and surveys. Additionally, dozens of staff members added to our inventory of current teaching supports. To inform the community and solicit feedback we have organized a participatory event at each of the three campuses: Friday, January 23 from 10:00 to 12:00 in (room 126, Halpern Centre, Burnaby campus), Monday, January 26 from 1:30 to 3:30 (room 2945, McLean Lab, Vancouver campus) and Tuesday, January 27 from 10:00 to 12:00 (room 5380, Surrey campus). The forums will begin with a short overview and then proceed to small group activities focused on discussing specific questions of interest that arose from the data gathered. We hope to see you there. More details will follow with another update in early January. Enjoy the holiday season and see you next month!

October 21: Interviews with Deans, Chairs and some Instructors are underway by Task Force members. SFU's high-level Teaching page has been launched and includes a recent message by President Stevenson about the importance of teaching and learning at SFU and encourages community participation in working with the task force. All Instructors are now invited to participate in the Teaching Support online survey. The link and details are being sent through each Faculty today. Once information gathering is completed over the next two weeks, an interim report will summarize the findings and identify task force priorities and working groups. This document will be posted on this site for university community members.

September 26: A maillist has been ceated for SFU community  members to join if you'd like news and updates as they are posted. See instructions above.

September 25: Communications are underway, as seen through a recent message from Jon Driver, VP Academic to the university community, by Bill Krane, Associate VP, Academic at the Chairs/Directors and Deans' meetings and soon, if not already, by other Task Force members. Many ideas are in the hopper to get spread the word and invite participation.

Much documentation and data about teaching and learning at SFU have been compiled and reviewed. However, more information is needed about student and instructors' experiences, support within the Faculties and departments and support by Service Units. Over the next few weeks, we are gathering additional information from stakeholders to gain a more comprehensive picture. (Instructors = Faculty Members, Lecturers, Sessional Instructors, Teaching Assistants, and Tutor-Markers). 

Once the data is analyzed and incorporated into a discussion paper for the university community, there will be opportunities for commentary from the university community, including by students, staff, and instructors.

September 12: The task force reconvened on September 5. Currently we are working on a vision statement (Terms of Reference #1) and establishing the scope, underlying principles, goals and related questions to gather information from stakeholders. During the first step of our information-gathering process and over the next few weeks, members of stakeholder groups within the Faculties will be invited to participate in identifying existing and desired teaching support and support for teaching.

July 30: Our inaugural meeting took place at the end of June with two subsequent meetings in July. Current activities include gaining an overview of teaching and learning, and available support and services at SFU and establishing goals, milestones and a schedule for the task force. Group meetings resume in September.

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