Center for Learning Experimentation, Application, and Research

Faculty First Flight

Program Overview

The Faculty First Flight program provides training and support in teaching, student learning, and course design for newly-hired UNT faculty. DSI CLEAR designs and facilitates the program with support from the Office of Faculty Success and the Provost’s office. Our goals are to:

  1. support newly-hired UNT faculty in the continuous development of their teaching practice;
  2. inform newly-hired UNT faculty of the context, characteristics, and procedures unique to teaching at UNT; and
  3. facilitate an UNT educator community of practice that promotes a culture of teaching excellence at the university.

faculty first flight logo


Faculty First Flight spans the Fall and Spring semesters. Program content and activities will be largely conducted asynchronously online through Canvas, as well as through synchronous UNT-sponsored teaching events of participants' choosing. Content consists of a series of modules on pertinent UNT policies, procedures, and resources, as well as teaching and learning. Activities include a variety of assessments and the creation of course planning documents, which DSI CLEAR staff will use to measure participants’ understanding and mastery, and which faculty can use to design and/or implement teaching strategies in their courses right away. Participants will complete a series of required foundational modules and will then select an elective module that best fits their individual teaching needs and/or interests. All of the online modules can be completed in approximately 18 hours (including the orientation). Event completion will depend on the events you select.


Foundational modules are:

  • Teaching @ UNT: This module overviews common characteristics of UNT students and how to create a UNT class syllabus and prepare for the first day of class.
  • UNT Teaching Policies & Resources: This module overviews the UNT policies and resources that impact and facilitate teaching at UNT. Includes “just-in-time” teaching tips for specific policies such as academic integrity, accessibility, and intellectual property, plus tips for how to best use UNT resources such as the UNT Libraries.
  • Learning @ UNT: This module addresses principles of learning and examines what cognitive science can tell us about learning. Includes teaching strategies for maximizing learning, such as diversity & inclusion, course design, assessment techniques, teaching with technology, etc.

Optional modules include:

  • Interactive Lecturing: This module overviews Barkley and Major's interactive learning method which integrates active learning techniques with the lecture format. Participants will learn strategies for engaging students by creating active learning opportunities and designing engaging presentations using Barkley and Major’s interactive lecturing model. We recommend this module for instructors who anticipate teaching mostly face-to-face and/or remote classes, though Barkley and Major do include techniques for online classes.
  • Online Teaching & Management: This module addresses teaching practices related to online courses, including management and organization. For the purposes of this module, we will use online education to refer to any teaching in an online environment. We define an online course as any course that is 50% or more online. We recommend this module for instructors who anticipate teaching online or blended courses.

Requirements for Participation

Participants who complete the program will be eligible to receive a professional development stipend in the amount of $500 that can be used towards travel for conferences, professional development resources and materials, and/or other professional development allowances per the participant’s department. Stipend eligibility applies to new UNT faculty with continuing contracts or contracts that are renewed for the 2021-2022 academic year by June 1, 2021.