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Mission Statement

About Us

The Gwenna Moss Centre for Teaching Effectiveness is the wing of the University Learning Centre dedicated to championing teaching at the University of Saskatchewan. We offer campus instructors various programs and workshops aimed at improving teaching effectiveness; we work with academic units to assist with their curriculum and course development activities; and we offer courses on teaching for graduate students and faculty.

The Gwenna Moss Centre endeavours to be a welcoming place for all who value teaching and learning. We welcome visitors to drop in any time to learn about our programming, to chat with our staff, and to enjoy a complimentary cup of coffee or tea. On behalf of our staff and all the friends of The Gwenna Moss Centre, I invite you to explore our website and visit our office in Murray 50.

Jim Greer, Director

Mission Statement

We develop and offer facilities, programs, resources, and opportunities for all faculty, instructors, and students in order to enhance the teaching and learning environment; to foster effective teaching and learning; and to champion and celebrate quality education at the University of Saskatchewan. Our success is dependent upon connection, collaboration, and cooperation—we acknowledge our role in building bridges and partnerships between and among people, academic and support units, and ideas as we play our part in fostering learning and creating growth, excitement, and discovery in the University. Our Mission is "to place Learning at the Centre" by:

Promoting Mentorship as a Foundation for Learning and Teaching

  • In acknowledging the intrinsic link between teaching and learning, we give undergraduate students the opportunity to be mentored, and to enhance their own learning by becoming mentors.  
  • We offer courses and opportunities for mentorship of graduate students as they transition into teaching and other professional roles.
  • We deliver programs to orient and support faculty and instructors in their professional journey.
  • We invite faculty to serve as mentors to other faculty and to our staff.

Building An Environment that Fosters a Culture of Learning and Teaching

  • We assess our perspectives, strategies, and programs and engage scholarship devoted to evidence-informed practices in teaching and learning.  
  • We continue to communicate our vision, programs, and resources to all university teachers to expand the discourse of teaching and build a university environment in which self-reflection around teaching becomes second nature.  We thus support the normalization of effective teaching both in discourse and practice.
  • Recognizing our sense of place, the heritage of the peoples of our locale, and the diversity of our students, we work to ensure that the cultures and perspectives of Indigenous peoples become core to the fabric of the University.
  • We encourage and invite all students to regard the University as an intellectual home in which they can explore, reflect, grow, and develop a sense of purpose.

Connecting Theory and Practice in Learning and Teaching

  • We facilitate curricular, multidisciplinary learning communities that validate intellectual life on campus, connect students and faculty with common interests and goals, and encourage everyone to regard knowledge holistically.
  • We vigorously explore and promote innovations in curriculum and instruction, focusing particularly on experiential learning and International and Aboriginal curricula as a means of addressing the diverse needs of our students and larger community.  We aid faculty in planning, developing and delivering program and course curricula.
  • We validate the link between life and learning by providing opportunities for community-engaged learning.

Nurturing Proficient and Effective Learning and Teaching

  • We seek to ensure that all students, especially those who have traditionally encountered barriers to access or conditions that may compromise learning, will have access to supports that enrich their learning experience.  
  • We target areas of vulnerability in student performance, and seek to address these through the provision of training in skills, habits, and paradigms
  • We assist faculty and instructors as they build teaching skills and create synergies between their programs of research and teaching.

Our Vision

The University of Saskatchewan’s Learning Charter calls us to be both a place and a community conducive to learning.  The University Learning Centre and the Gwenna Moss Centre, and the Centre for Discovery in Learning rise to this call; we dedicate ourselves to the principles of both service and leadership in inspiring students, instructors, and the University to meet their respective Learning Charter commitments.  The learning to which we aspire is deep, joyful, and transformative for faculty and students alike. We advocate for learning that allows students to better understand the wholeness and unity of knowledge, the fullness of reality, and the possibilities of human community.  We seek for both faculty and students to realize their potential within the context of their past failures as well as their successes, adopting a position of humility that characterizes successful, open-ended learning. We see teaching as foundational in discovering, building, and sharing knowledge, but just as vital is its role to inspire students in the belief that deep and effortful learning is not only worthwhile, but fundamental to life.

Our Centres seek to foster a culture of learning that begins within individual courses and programs, but which we assert can be more fully consolidated through the hospitable environment of a welcoming place in the heart of the U of S campus.  We encourage students to learn actively, think broadly, act ethically, and engage respectfully.   In acknowledging that deep learning encompasses both focused, solitary study and collaborative, experiential engagement with ideas, we nurture a respect not only for learning itself, but also for different ways of communicating and engaging knowledge.  We view faculty, instructors, and students from an integrated perspective, one which engages and recognizes the whole person.  We value reflection about the connections among discovery, service, and learning as a means of deepening the discourse of teaching and learning.

Recognizing and contributing to the burgeoning area of scholarship devoted to teaching and learning, we advocate for exemplary, effective, evidence-informed practices.  We value innovations which meet the standards of research and which take into account the natural gifts of faculty; the nature of knowledge in particular disciplines; and the targeted needs of students in particular settings.  Our sensitivity to these factors is firmly rooted in the value we place upon diversity – of people, their points of view, and the places from which they come.  In keeping with our respect for the standards of scholarship, we encourage assessment of all educational practices, and are devoted to regular evaluation of our own programs, practices, and perspectives.   

Our staff value and work within a highly collaborative environment built upon individual areas of expertise and independent scholarship.  In acknowledging the important role that others play in our own mission, our Centres aspire to consolidate and grow our many valued collaborative, synergistic partnerships with faculty, teaching and learning specialists, colleges, departments, and other academic support units.  Building and nurturing reciprocal relationships with others in the larger university community and beyond will make it possible for us to be appropriately nimble as we coordinate or conduct programs and initiatives that meet the needs of students and faculty.