First Year Florida is a course designed to aid students in a successful transition to the University of Florida. This course aims to help students develop a foundation for a well-rounded college experience, connect students to the University of Florida, promote engagement within and outside the classroom and communicate university expectations. First Year Florida is taught by faculty, staff, and administrators at the University of Florida who are committed to first-year student success. A First Year Florida Instructor is a University of Florida employee that is committed to first-year student success and persistence. Instructors serve as educators, resources, and representatives of UF. Instructors will work very closely with their undergraduate peer leader to create dynamic learning opportunities for their students.
Benefits of Teaching First Year Florida
- Have an impact and connect with University of Florida students. “I am surprised how many of them turned to me in times of crisis/distress and I was more than happy to assist. I loved the Peer Leader experience and facilitating learning with them.” – 2014 Instructor
- Stay connected to the student experience. One instructor said, “Connecting to real life first year students puts my role as an administrator/practitioner in perspective. I enjoyed working with students in a group setting and hearing their common concerns and experiences during their first semester.”
- Expand your network of faculty and staff. With over 75 instructors per year that represent various campus offices and departments, instructors will have the opportunity to experience a greater connection to the University of Florida.
- Professional development opportunities. Instructors will have the opportunity to engage in learning strategies, become familiar with transitional needs of first-year students, and learn things they can apply to their other responsibilities.
- It’s fun!
- Meet regularly with Peer Leader to coordinate and plan course components (may vary depending on partnership).
- Become familiar with the needs of new students.
- Develop a rapport with new students.
- Be accessible and willing to assist with informational needs of students.
- Establish consistent grading criteria and communicate/distribute grades in a timely manner.
- Plan out-of-class activities such as the service project component of the course.
- Prepare and conduct well-organized presentations, class discussions, and activities on various topics.
- Communicate accurate and timely information to students about academic and student resources.
- Respond appropriately to feedback and evaluations.
- Abide by all curriculum guidelines such as learning outcomes, out of classroom activities, etc.
- Graduate Instructors must attend additional workshops and trainings. Please click here to learn more.
- Hold at least a Bachelor’s degree and worked at UF for a minimum of 1-2 years or hold a Master’s degree and worked at UF for at least 1 semester.
- Completion of New Instructor Training (Location and Day TBA)
- Status as a University employee of UF.
- Attend the Teaching Teams Mini-Conference with your Peer Leader (Location and Day TBA)
- Approval by the instructor’s supervisor or department chair.
Renewal decisions are based on minimum requirements, meeting expectations, and two additional criteria:
- Satisfactory student and course evaluations
- Participation in instructor development activities
- Returning Instructors, click here to renew your application.