Engineering GSI Teaching Orientation

New Winter 2021 engineering graduate student instructors (GSIs) are REQUIRED to fulfill teaching orientation requirements.

The Winter 2021 Engineering GSI Teaching Orientation (EGSITO) will be an online offering that is separated into 2 parts.

Part 1 of EGSITO is in a Canvas course available to new GSIs starting January 6, 2021 and the modules must be completed by January 20, 2021. This part will contain the following mandatory modules:

  • Overview of Teaching in the College of Engineering
    • Teaching Policies
  • Best Practices for Teaching & Learning
    • Introduction to the Science of Learning
    • Inclusive Teaching
    • Effective Lesson Planning
    • Teaching Engineering Primer
    • Teaching in Remote Contexts
  • Resources (including information about the Graduate Employees’ Organization)

Part 2 of EGSITO will consist of participation in new GSI/IA learning cohort communities that meet after orientation. New GSIs and IAs will sign up for their learning cohort and select their meeting times based on their availability. All 3 meetings are mandatory and will be within the following time frame:

  • Meeting 1: Introductions & Inclusive Teaching (during the week of Jan. 31)
  • Meeting 2: Building Your Online Learning Community (during the week of Feb. 14)
  • Meeting 3: Troubleshooting Classroom Challenges (during the week of Feb. 28)

For questions about requirements, please email Any new GSI who does not complete the training requirements will not be allowed to serve as a College of Engineering GSI in future terms.

Winter 2021 Orientation Details

Date: January 6 – January 20

Time: Asynchronous

Location: Virtual Canvas Course

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Where is EGSITO located?

A: Engineering GSI Teaching Orientation is held online, within a virtual Canvas course.

Q: Am I required to attend EGSITO?

A: All new College of Engineering GSIs are required to attend EGSITO. Any new GSI who does not complete the training requirements will not be allowed to serve as a College of Engineering GSI in future terms. Returning College of Engineering GSIs who have already attended orientation do not need to attend.

Q: How do I access the Canvas course?

A: The Canvas course is not yet available. If you do not get an invite to the Canvas course by January 6, 2021, please email

Q: How can I receive accommodations?

A: If you would benefit from accommodations, please let us know by emailing We will do our best to provide appropriate accommodations in order to facilitate full participation in the orientation. See the Michigan Services for Students with Disabilities website for more guidance.

Q: What tools will I need?

A: Before you begin, please make sure you have:

  • An internet connection capable of streaming video clips (for some, but not all, modules).
  • Writing materials: You may choose to write out your reflections in a journal or notebook, type them on a computer or mobile device, or record yourself speaking aloud. Whatever the method, we strongly encourage you to actually record your thoughts when doing the reflections and activities, as this will help you develop your thinking as you work through the modules at your own pace. You may find your notes especially helpful to reference as you plan for your upcoming course, discussion section, or lab.
  • The syllabus and any other information you have available to you about your GSI/IA role and responsibilities for your upcoming teaching appointment, as this will be a helpful reference to you as you work your way through the orientation.
  • A thinking partner: Several modules will encourage you to find a thinking partner, as there is considerable benefit to discussing your reflections with someone else and providing critical feedback to one another. A thinking partner could be another GSI or IA you happen to know who is also completing this orientation, another member of your teaching team, someone from your department (e.g. your advisor), or even someone you live with (or from another context) who is willing to talk to you about your teaching. If you are unable to find a thinking partner, there are also opportunities to post and interact with peers on discussion forums.