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University Pedagogical Programme


The Centre for Educational Development at Aarhus University (CED) is responsible for the University Pedagogical Programme for assistant professors and postdocs at Aarhus University.

The programme is aimed at assistant professors and postdocs with teaching obligations on their way to qualify/apply for a permanent position as associate professors as well as other employees at AU that are responsible for teaching activities at the same level as assistant professors, e.g. teaching assistant professors or associate professors without similar pedagogical competencies.

The programme aims to contribute to the professionalisation and quality of university teaching through the development of the participants’ practical teaching skills and by fostering a scholarly approach to teaching.

Learning outcome

The aim will be achieved when participants can:

  • Analyse and discuss teaching based on knowledge about quality teaching, didactics, assessment, evaluation, and students as learners.
  • Plan, execute, and evaluate well-aligned teaching and assessment activities within their disciplines and organisational contexts.
  • Use and evaluate educational technologies to promote learning activities for groups and individual students.
  • Demonstrate practical teaching skills within a variety of forms of teaching.
  • Collect data, analyse, and communicate information about their teaching practices and experiences to colleagues and other stakeholders in a teaching portfolio.


The programme is organised to support the teaching activities in which participants are already involved by, for example, supporting the planning of teaching and implementation of teaching experiments as well as the preparation of (digital) teaching material.

Finally, it is a central part of the programme that participants write contributions to their learning portfolios. The learning portfolios may be considered the starting point for the development of participants’ teaching portfolios, which they must develop to apply for a position as associate professor at AU. AU’s rules for teaching portfolios can be found here.

The programme is considered the basis of the mandatory supervision process that forms part of the pedagogical training of assistant professors at Aarhus University.

AU’s rules and practice concerning the teacher training programme for assistant professors and postdocs

The structure of the programme

The programme consists of four modules:

Module 1: Introduction to teaching and learning in research-based education

Module 1 is a 3-day residential course at either Sandbjerg Gods (spring) or Kystvejens Konferencecenter, Grenå (autumn).

The module focuses on

  • Participants own development as university teachers
  • Basic university pedagogy: theory, concepts and models
  • Student characteristics, motivation and learning 
  • Pedagogical research and evidence
  • The planning of teaching, with a focus on well-founded choices of learning outcomes, content, assessment, and educational IT
  • Teaching methods and techniques including an introduction to lecturing, small class teaching and supervision
  • Course evaluation and the development of participants’ courses.

The total workload is estimated at 50 hours. The module is held in a blended learning format. The estimated preparation is approximately 25-30 hours ahead of the residential module.

Module 2: Educational IT – The use of educational technology

The module is held at each of the five faculties, and the content is designed to fit the different educational IT strategies at the faculties.

The module focuses on the implementation of;

  • The educational IT strategy of Aarhus University, including:
  • Different course formats: ’technology distributed’, ’ technology supported’, ’ technology innovated’ (blended learning), and ’ technology based´(distance learning)
  • Best practice examples of teaching supported by technology
  • Models for planning blended learning teaching (classroom teaching supported by e-learning)
  • Hands-on experience with different methods of e-learning and technology, with special focus on lecturing, small class teaching, and supervision
  • Production of minimum 1 digital teaching object for use in participants’ teaching
  • Re-design of participants’ courses
  • The teacher’s role as e-moderator

The total preparation and workload for this module is estimated at 25 hours. The module is held as a blended learning module at ARTS, BSS and HEALTH and as a distance learning module at Nat-Tech.

Module 3: (Re-)designing course

Participants must choose one of the following tracks: Lecturing, Small Class Teaching, or Supervision.

All tracks have the following format:

  • Online introduction
  • Course day face-to-face (f2f) with presentations, activities, sharing of knowledge and preparation of a (re-)design project for a course or learning module
  • Supervision related to the (re-)design project, including the use of technology
  • The testing of the re-designed learning module in participants’ teaching
  • Final course day f2f with an evaluation of experiences and results. 

The track on lecturing focuses on, e.g.:

  • Identifying issues in participants’ lecturing practice
  • The planning of lectures or a series of lectures (including the interaction between in-class and out-of-class activities)
  • Rhetorical instruments in the lecture
  • Digital instruments in the lecture
  • Visual instruments in the lecture

The track on small class teaching focuses on, e.g.:

  • Identifying issues in participants’ small class teaching practice
  • Possibilities and challenges in activating students in small class teaching
  • Organising small class teaching (including the use of technology and the interaction between in-class and out-of-class activities)
  • Meeting the students, including classroom-management and the diversity of students
  • Managing professional dialogue in small class teaching
  • Feedback and assessment in small class teaching

The track on supervision focuses among on, e.g.:

  • Identifying issues in participants’ supervision practice
  • Matching expectations in supervision
  • Relational and process skills
  • Text skills and feedback in the writing process
  • Communication skills and methods for dialogue
  • The use of technology in supervision

The total workload for one of the tracks in this module is estimated at approximately 45 hours: 20 hours for preparation and participation in the course days, and approximately 25 hours for formulation and testing of participants’ project.

Module 4: Final workshop on teaching portfolio, knowledge sharing, and the teaching practice at the four faculties

The content of this module differs slightly from one faculty to the other. However, it goes for all the faculties that participants will have the opportunity to present their experiences and insights, and the outcomes of the University Pedagogical Programme for a group of supervisors and colleagues.

On the final course day, the focus will be on:

  • Feedback on participants’ learning portfolio or teaching portfolio draft
  • Presentation of selected outcomes from modules 2 and 3
  • Discussion of the teaching environment at the faculty such as the students, evaluations, conditions for teaching and teaching development, university strategies,

The total preparation and workload of module 4 is estimated at 30 hours.

Need to know about the course

Target group

The University Pedagogical Programme is an introductory training course in higher education teaching for all assistant professors and those postdocs who will be teaching while working at AU.

Assistant professors and postdocs who plan a career as associate professors at the university will have to complete the course to obtain the diploma required for a permanent position at Danish universities.  


The participants must be teaching during the semester they participate in the programme as an important part of it is 1) to discuss the planning of their teaching based on participants’ current practice, and 2) for participants to implement changes in their teaching where appropriate.

Furthermore, the participants must have a supervisor from their department.

Scope and preparation

The course amounts to approximately 150 hours of work.

Please note that each module requires a considerable amount of preparation.

  • Before module 1, you will have a workload of approximately 25-30 hours for reading literature and completing assignments; in addition to this, there is the residential module.
  • Modules 2 (Educational IT) requires approximately 25 hours. The module will be carried out as blended learning at BSS, ARTS and HEALTH and as an online module at NAT and TECH. 
  • Module 3 (Re-design module) requires approximately 20 hours for preparation and participation in the course days and approximately 25 hours for your teaching experiment.
  • Module 4 requires approximately 30 hours.

The modules must be completed in one semester.  

Requirements and diploma

To complete the University Pedagogical Programme and obtain a diploma, the following requirements must be met:

  • Attendance on scheduled course days (minimum 80% presence in each module)
  • Preparation according to the described assignments in Brightspace
  • Completion of all assignments and submission before the deadlines
  • Active participation in scheduled course days and the programme as a whole.


Module 1: Residential course at Sandbjerg Gods (spring) or Kystvejens konferencecenter, Grenå (autumn). 

Modules 2, 3, and 4: AU campus


The course is for AU employees only and is free of charge.


Each of the faculties at AU has a limited number of available seats in the programme. If there are more applicants than seats, each faculty will submit a prioritized list of applicants and approve the final list of participants from that faculty. Applicants will receive a message via email about whether or not their application has been approved.

Please note the application deadline. Applications submitted after the deadline will not be taken into consideration.

By the end of May 2021, applicants will receive a message via email about whether or not their application has been approved.

Enrolment must be agreed on with your head of department.

Course language

Please note that, in the autumn, the programme will be held in English for both English and Danish speaking participants.

All course materials will be in English. Participants must upload assignments, etc., in English.

In the spring, the programme is held in Danish.


Julie Lykke Facius

Member of Administrative Staff

Important information

  • Meeting days autumn 2021 (PDF)
    The programme will be held in English for both English speaking and Danish speaking participants.
    Please note that all course materials will be in English (texts, course site in Brightspace, etc.). Also, participants must upload assignments, etc. in English.

  • The next course will be held in Spring 2022 (in Danish). Further information here (in Danish)

  • The course in English will be held in Autumn 2022. Dates will be announced in March 2022.

  • Attendance is required on the specified dates.
    Before applying for admission to the course, we kindly ask applicants to check their calendar and reserve the dates for course participation. The course will be fully booked. Therefore, it is essential that participants set aside the specified course days and preparation time.

  • There is a limited number of available seats in the course, which are distributed between the faculties. The faculties prioritise the seats and approve the received applications.
    Applicants will be notified by the end of May whether they have been admitted to the course.

  • The University Pedagogical Programme must be completed in one semester.
    A significant amount of preparation and development work must be expected both before and after the modules. In total, a workload corresponding to approximately 150 hours.
    Please find further information under "the structure of the programme".