Advanced Teaching Institute: Getting Comfortable with Challenging Discussions

The USC Center for Excellence in Teaching (CET) announces the debut of Advanced Faculty Teaching Institutes. The Fall 2021 topic is Getting Comfortable with Challenging Discussions. 

The semester-long institute comprises a series of seven workshop-style Zoom sessions. There will be two cohorts offered on Thursdays. Cohort 1 will meet from 10:00 am-11:30 am, and Cohort 2 will meet from 1:30 pm-3:00 pm Pacific Time. Due to the interactive design of this institute, registration will be limited to 30 faculty in each cohort. Advanced Teaching Institutes are intended for faculty who have completed a previous CET Faculty Teaching Institute or the Accelerated Online Teaching Institute.

Getting Comfortable with Challenging Discussions will provide a supportive and informative space for faculty to engage in discussions of controversial topics and manage discussion conflicts. Institute facilitators, guest speakers, and participants will engage in the following topics

  • Creating a classroom environment for productive discussions
  • Policies and laws on academic freedom and speech
  • Planning for challenging discussions in your course
  • Addressing current societal events in class discussions
  • Managing conflicts during class discussions

Dates for Live Zoom Sessions in Fall 2021

Zoom sessions for cohort 1 are Thursdays from 10:00 am – 11:30 am Pacific Time
Zoom sessions for cohort 2 are Thursdays from 1:30 pm – 3:00 pm Pacific Time

  • August 26
  • September 9
  • September 23
  • October 7
  • October 21
  • November 4
  • November 18

Certificates of completion will be given to those who participate in at least six of the seven synchronous Zoom sessions.

Registration for this institute is now closed.
For questions about the CET Advanced Teaching Institute: Getting Comfortable with Challenging Discussions, contact Ingrid Steiner at

CET is here to support your teaching and course design.
Schedule a consultation or ask us a question!

Contact Us


CET institutes engage faculty in advancing their knowledge of scholarly approaches to teaching excellence.

Learn More


CET promotes a vibrant culture of teaching and learning with consults, Faculty Learning Communities, and the Mentored Teaching Fellows program.

Learn More


Explore resources related to course design, evaluation, and instruction.

Learn More