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What we do
The Centre for the Integration of Research, Teaching and Learning (CIRTL), supports staff and students who are engaged in teaching, and demonstrates academic leadership in the scholarship of teaching and learning. We coordinate accredited teaching development courses for staff, modules in teaching and learning for postgraduate students who teach, and residential courses for international lecturers. We host seminars and additional events throughout the academic year for staff and students interested in topics related to teaching, learning, and assessment. We also foster and conduct research on Teaching and Learning in Higher Education.
Our Strategic Plan for Teaching & Learning 2017 - 2022 provides a detailed road map of the Centre’s mission and vision.
Mission & History
UCC has a strong tradition of integrating the core activities of research, teaching and learning. This has earned the institution national and international recognition. Within UCC, staff development in teaching and learning started in earnest in 2000 when relevant government grants became available. The resulting activities demonstrated a need for formal accredited courses, which began in 2004. By 2006, as a natural development, Ionad Bairre, The Teaching and Learning Centre at UCC, was established. The approach of the Centre was one of scholarly enquiry into teaching and learning practice.
The National Academy for the Integration of Research Teaching and Learning (NAIRTL) was funded by the Higher Education Authority between 2006 and 2012, with UCC as the lead partner in this national collaborative project. The goal of NAIRTL was to enact a series of activities and initiatives to support students, researchers, and staff to implement and advance effective research-informed teaching and learning practices throughout the Irish higher education sector. This was achieved through staff development initiatives such as national conferences, small grants, and teaching excellence awards. NAIRTL transitioned from an academy to a national network in 2015 linked through contact points in each partner institution.
The combined approaches of NAIRTL and Ionad Bairre were brought together in 2015 to form the Centre for the Integration of Research, Teaching and Learning (CIRTL). The UCC CIRTL Co-Director is the custodian of the NAIRTL resources and website, and is the UCC contact point for the new national network. CIRTL builds on the high quality programmes and SoTL approach that is the legacy of Ionad Bairre and demonstrates institutional, national and international leadership in advancing the integration of research teaching and learning. Key projects include partnering in the EUA Thematic Peer groups on research-teaching linkages, providing keynote talks at the international conference on the Scholarship of teaching and learning as well as nurturing the growth of a SoTL community amongst the alumni of the various programmes and development activities.