Skip to McMaster Navigation Skip to Site Navigation Skip to main content
McMaster logo

The Program

The McCall MacBain Postdoctoral Fellows Teaching and Leadership Program is a 1-year postdoctoral training program aimed to train future leaders and educators, aiming to build the next generation of high-performing teachers, researchers, and leaders. The program runs from September through May.

Our Mission

Nurturing today’s postdoctoral researchers to become tomorrow’s world class educators and transformational leaders.

Our Goals

  1. Contribute to the enhancement of postdoc education, transforming postdoctoral training in Canada
  2. Increase teaching skills in postdocs through evidence based research
  3. Increase leadership skills in postdocs
  4. Create social connection and community in postdocs
  5. Increase interdisciplinary collaboration among postdocs

Postdoctoral Fellows that participate in the program are expected to fully participate in the program activities, which should amount to one day a week. To compensate the postdoctoral fellow’s supervisor for their time in the program, the postdoctoral fellow’s Faculty will cover 20% of the salary and benefits of postdoctoral fellows accepted into the program (from September to May refunded directly to the Program Member’s supervisor). This financial support will release the member from their postdoctoral research and allow the Program Member to devote one day a week to invest in their leadership, teaching and research skills.

Key Activities

Membership within this program requires meeting weekly to advance knowledge about best practices in teaching & learning, and leadership development. Key activities in the program consist of:

Biweekly Education Cognition Journal Club The EdCog Journal Club

The EdCog Journal Club meets biweekly to discuss papers related to education and cognition. Starting in September, the Fall semester reading list contains key papers in the field to acquaint postdoctoral fellows with the literature. The Winter semester reading list consists of cutting-edge, new research papers in the field of education, cognition and learning. Postdoctoral fellows are expected to be active participants in journal club meetings. Once the postdoctoral fellows are well-acquainted with the field, they will facilitate meetings in the winter term.

Workshops Workshops

The workshops are designed to enhance topics related to education, cognition or leadership. The workshops are where the postdoctoral fellows will learn to put their new evidence-based knowledge from the journal club, education research project or other workshops into practice. The workshops are led by experts in their topics and provide the postdoctoral fellows with hands-on experience in teaching and leadership.

Key Deliverables

In addition to the scheduled meetings with the rest of the program, the postdoctoral fellows will also complete key deliverables as part of the program:

Discipline-based education research project

Postdoctoral fellows will have the opportunity to work with a professor doing education-related work or choose to investigate their own topic. The postdoctoral fellow will have the opportunity to select from these projects to form a research collaboration and mentoring relationship to be conducted throughout the year. The goal of this research project is to showcase the work they’ve done and to disseminate findings that will translate into prescriptions for teaching in the classroom and result in changes in policy. Postdoctoral fellows will have to option to present their research at the end of the program to share what they have learned with their peers. Postdoctoral fellows can also present their research at the McMaster Conference on Education and Cognition

An Op-Ed report on a topic of the Program Member’s choice.

Postdoctoral fellows will attend a workshop led by Wade Hemsworth, McMaster’s Public Relations Manager, to learn the importance of and how to write an Op-Ed. Writing a lay-terms, Op-Ed on the Program Member’s research will teach vital communication skills required to become a leader and instructor in the academic and professional world. Furthermore, reaching a wider range of readers can influence the policies for how we teach. Read the published Op-Eds here.

Participate in the McC MacB Talks

After attending workshops relating to effective PowerPoint design and how to give a fantastic presentation, postdoctoral fellows will develop a 10 minute talk about their research aimed towards a general audience. The top McC MacB Talks will also present at the Alumni Appetizers for the Mind event. This will allow the postdoctoral fellows an opportunity to continue honing their academic communication and leadership skills. Watch all of the McC MacB talks here.

Optional Participation Teaching with Dr. Kim and Katie George

In the Spring semester, the postdoctoral fellows will be able to optionally teach one module of Inspire 3MP3 (A world of big questions and multiple perspectives) with Katie George and Dr. Kim to put their new skills into practice. Postdoctoral fellows will be able to take risks with their teaching, try new techniques and develop an experiential learning assessment.

Job Talk

Program members will create/edit and improve their job talks to prepare them for their future. In collaboration with our mixed-media expert, postdocs will receive a personal consultation and slide re-design to ensure that they stand out in a highly competitive job market.

Instructional Skills Workshop (ISW)

The Instructional Skills Workshop (ISW) is a three-day intensive program designed to strengthen instructors’ skills in student-centered teaching through evidence-based, practical opportunities for teaching practice. Mixing small and large peer group interaction, the workshop is designed to build skills and confidence as well as enabling participants to learn from and foster partnerships with colleagues from other disciplines. Participants successfully completing the entire three-day program will receive a certificate of completion that is internationally recognized.

Postdoctoral Leadership Certificate

This made at McMaster Certification gives postdoctoral fellows insight into leadership in academia and industry. Industry leaders will deliver carefully crafted workshops and deliverables to enhance each program members ability to develop transformational leadership skills. In collaboration with The DeGroote School of Business, the McCall MacBain Postdoctoral Fellows Teaching and Leadership Program strives to create the next generation of transformational leaders.