Faculty Application Process

Faculty Interested in Teaching a Summer Abroad Course

Exceptional faculty members who enjoy engaging with undergraduates are invited to teach a Summer Abroad course! 

The Summer Abroad Instructor Application for Summer 2025 is now available.

The deadline for instructors and departments to submit course proposals for 2025 Summer is March 31, 2024.

We invite prospective instructors to attend our Information Session for Prospective Summer Abroad Instructors on Thursday, 22 February 2024 from 11am to 12 pm. Please register for the webinar and the Zoom link will be emailed to you. Link to the registration form.

If you have any questions, please contact Loraine Au Tham, Director, Professional and International Programs at l.autham@utoronto.ca.

Applying to Teaching a Summer Abroad Course

Interested instructors may complete the Summer Abroad Instructor Application and submit it via email to Loraine Au Tham (l.autham@utoronto.ca). Course proposals should relate to the selection criteria listed below and the Summer Abroad Learning Objectives.

Selection Criteria

Both the courses and instructors are evaluated for their suitability as part of the Summer Abroad program. The selection of all courses and instructors are at the sole discretion of Woodsworth College, since funding for all courses is through the College budget.

A. Course Selection Criteria

Ongoing Offerings: Some Summer Abroad sites have courses that are listed every year. Ongoing courses include those that: are offered by the host institution; can sustain high enrolments of 30+ students; or are required for administrative/academic reasons. In addition to our ongoing courses, we invite instructors to submit proposals for a new site or program.

Relevance to Site: The academic content and field trips for all courses must be relevant to - and take advantage of - the host site. Science research courses or those with service learning components overseas will be considered.

Enrolment: Courses must have broad appeal. The Summer Abroad programs are cost-recovery and as such we normally require a minimum of 22 students for a course to be financially viable. The following information is used to assess the appeal of courses:

  • course enrolment statistics from the previous fall/winter session;
  • the number of students in relevant minor, major and specialist programs;
  • whether the course will be cross-listed;
  • and historical enrolments in similar Summer Abroad course offerings.

The Summer Abroad office tries to offer courses that can be counted towards minor, major or specialist programs but that also have few or no prerequisites so that they may be taken as electives.

Complementarity: Our goal is to have courses that complement other courses at that site as well as other Summer Abroad offerings. Competing offerings are avoided.

Diversity in Offerings: In large programs (e.g. Siena, England), courses from a variety of disciplines are offered in order to attract and accommodate the needs of as many students as possible. In general, courses may changed from year to year to keep the curriculum 'fresh.' 

Note: the number of courses offered per site is determined based on historical program enrolment, residence capacity and the quality of the student experience.

B. Instructor Selection Criteria

Status at U of T
Preference will be given to faculty at the University of Toronto, including Professors, Associate Professors, Assistant Professors and Teaching Stream instructors. Positions will only be advertised to CUPE Unit 3 or 1 instructors, or to instructors from other universities, if suitable instructors cannot be found from the pool of University of Toronto faculty.

Excellence in Teaching
Instructors must demonstrate excellent teaching abilities and commitment. Indicators that will be used to asses teaching performance including teaching evaluations, teaching awards received, and enrolment levels in other courses taught by the instructor.

Commitment to the Student Experience
Instructors must be prepared to go above and beyond the call of duty as students abroad are more dependent on the faculty for guidance and support, including outside of regular teaching hours. Instructor approachability and participation/performance in similar programs or off-campus offerings will be considered.

Familiarity with the Host Site and Language
Instructors should have familiarity with the site so that they can plan field trips and, where possible, make connections with the host university and local organizations (e.g. for guest lectures). Given the special safety conditions of certain programs (e.g. Ecuador and archaeological digs), only instructors who have engaged in work at the sites or who have experience running field schools in these environments will be considered. For Science Abroad, research opportunities instructors must have a current research program or collaboration at the host site.

Decisions will be made by a committee with representatives from Woodsworth College and the Faculty of Arts and Science. Applicants will be informed of the decision within eight weeks of the application deadline.

Proposals for New Programs

Departments or U of T instructors may submit proposals for new program, pending Faculty approval.  These are also due in March of the preceding year of the proposed offering (e.g. March 31, 2024 is the deadline for any proposals for Summer 2025).  Proposals are welcome from Arts & Science and other divisions.

The committee will be considering the following:

  • Whether there is an on-going commitment of a U of T department (within the Faculty of Arts and Science St George campus) to be the primary academic partner;
  • Pool of potential instructors to teach in the program;
  • Potential appeal to students;
  • Overlap and possible competition with other programs (e.g. will a new group of students or geographic area be served? The new program complement existing offerings?);
  • Appropriateness of the overseas partner (i.e. the institution that will be hosting the students);
  • Cost of the program;
  • Safety and security of the program;
  • Administrative capacity of the program;
  • Administrative capacity of Woodsworth College to deliver the program;
  • How the program fits into the Faculty and University's academic priority areas. Preference will be given to programs that can demonstrate long-term viability.


What is the instructor compensation?

Instructors will receive a teaching stipend for a "Y" course, return economy airfare to the site, U of T arranged faculty accommodation and field trip expenses.  All instructors receive the same stipend regardless of the duration of the program.

For Science Abroad research projects no stipend is issued to instructors.  Eligible expenses for reimbursement will be determined on a case-by-case basis depending on the needs of the research project and the number of participating students.

How large will my class be?

For most courses instructors will have a maximum of 30 students.  Please note that there is no TA support for any Summer Abroad course.

What can I expect when teaching a Summer Abroad course?

Here is a document outlining what instructors can expect when teaching a Summer Abroad course (PDF file)

How will the students who apply for my course be selected?

Applicants for all programs will be considered based on the following criteria

  • academic record over the past 12 months
  • relevance of program of study
  • personal statement outlining the reasons why he/she wants to study abroad; how this program fits into his/her overall academic, program and personal goals; describing a situation in which he/she had to adapt to the environment or circumstance.

When will I find out if I've been selected?

The Summer Abroad instructor selection committee usually meets in early to mid-April. Applicants will be informed about their application status by mid-May.