Principles of Tutoring and Demonstrating

Provider business unit: Centre for Learning & Teaching »

What is PTD?

Whether you are a new or experienced educator, walking into a classroom to teach can be daunting. At the Australian National University, Principles of Tutoring and Demonstrating (PTD) is an introductory program to help you familiarise yourself with important aspects of learning and teaching, in the context of tutoring and demonstrating.

At ANU, in addition to knowing logistics like dates, forms, and policy, you will need to develop a sense of who you are as a teacher. How will you prepare and run your lessons? How will you make them engaging? What evidence informs your teaching and what resources will you rely upon? In PTD, we will address these questions and much more. The key aim of the program is to help you to be an effective and reflective teacher.


Who can participate?

Participants of PTD are usually:

  • New tutors and laboratory demonstrators
  • Experienced tutors and demonstrators looking to consolidate their understanding
  • Early career academics with teaching responsibilities or those new to teaching
  • Professional staff with learner-centred support roles

Please note that if enrolment numbers are high, priority may be given to those who are currently teaching.


Program Description

PTD comprises seven core modules and one elective module.

*You must attend T1 before attending all other core modules of PTD.*


Core Modules (T1 – T7)

T1 – Theories of Teaching

What does teaching mean to you? How does your sense of who you are as a teacher impact what you do in class? In this module we will compare different theories of learning and teaching and how they can be applied in the classroom.

T2 – Planning a Lesson

Not sure how to prepare for your first class or just want to learn more? In this module, we will cover effective lesson planning principles that can be used to design tutorial and laboratory activities.

T3 – Facilitation Skills

How do students learn and how do we engage them to learn? In this module, we will examine and practice essential facilitation skills that help you to respond to and interact with your students.

T4 – Facilitating Groups

How do you effectively teach groups of students? What are the benefits of learning in groups? In this module, we will develop small group and cooperative learning strategies you can purposefully utilise in your class to help students learn.

T5 – Dynamics and Diversity

What does diversity look like in the classroom, and how do we address this when teaching? This module will help you foster an inclusive learning environment and navigate the dynamic, interactive and social classrooms in which you will be teaching. We will examine the roles and responsibilities of the tutor and demonstrator, and the resources available to you and your students.

T6 – Marking and Feedback

Can feedback be meaningful, and how can we provide feedback that achieves this? Tutors and demonstrators play an integral role in providing students feedback and are often involved in assessing their work. In this module, we will examine many aspects of marking and feedback, including how to give meaningful feedback, and how to assess fairly and consistently.

T7 – Peer Observation and Feedback (a two hour out-of-class session) 

How well do we know our own teaching practices? This out-of-class module provides a framework for you to reflect on being observed and receiving feedback on your teaching practices. You will have the opportunity to share your teaching practice and build awareness of the impact of your teaching.


Elective modules:

T5.1 - Inclusive Teaching 

Inclusive teaching describes the range of approaches to teaching that consider the diverse needs and backgrounds of all students to create a learning environment where all students feel valued and where all students have equal access to learn. 

A selection of Coffee Courses are available as elective modules. Topics covered include designing online learning environments, engaging students online, facilitating effective discussions, hybrid teaching and learning, and fostering student wellbeing.

T8 - Getting Started in Wattle

This workshop will show you how to find your way around Wattle (Moodle), how to use the common functions, and where to go for more information. There will be time at the end of the workshop if you would like support for specific issues. 

T3.1 - Team Teaching

This module combines themes addressed in T3 and T4 to explore how to co-facilitate as part of the teaching team. This module will be delivered via Zoom on Tuesday, 1 December from 9:30 am to 12:00 pm AEST. Check Wattle closer to the date for registration details.


Completion of the program

To successfully complete PTD, you must attend all seven core modules and one elective module of your choosing. In addition, you must complete take-home tasks to be submitted through Wattle.

Upon successful completion of PTD, you will receive a (non-award) certificate from ANU. This certificate, along with your take-home tasks may form the basis of an application for the award of Associate Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (AFHEA).



Participation in all PTD modules is free of charge for staff of the Australian National University.

However, a no show/cancellation fee of $50 per person, per module, is charged where notification of non-attendance is not received 48 hours prior to the start of any face-to-face modules.