Home About Mission & Background

Mission & Background


Formally started in August 2012 and reporting to the Office of the Provost, the Caltech Center for Teaching, Learning, & Outreach (CTLO) supports and connects university teaching and learning with PreK-12 and public educational outreach under a unified umbrella. 

In this way, Caltech faculty can easily access services related to teaching a wide variety of audiences. Caltech students, both graduate and undergraduate, also gain experience designing, delivering, and assessing educational offerings in a variety of settings. These experiences contribute to multi-disciplinary knowledge, communication, mindset as early career role models and mentors, and future success in STEM-related fields. 

Vision and Mission 
Caltech's vision is for our teaching and educational excellence to parallel our renowned research excellence. 
The mission of the Center for Teaching, Learning, and Outreach is to work toward this vision by:
  • supporting instruction, 
  • enhancing learning, and 
  • facilitating educational outreach. 

CTLO is committed to advancing evidence-based, inclusive practices through our programs and services, and to fostering innovation based on this foundation. 

Advisory Groups 

As a Caltech Center serving Faculty, Students (Undergraduate and Graduate), and Staff in their various roles as instructors, teaching assistants, program coordinators, mentors, and tutors, regular input and feedback is essential. We work with several groups on a regular basis: 

CTLO Faculty Advisory Committee: 
Mike Brown, GPS 
(Open), BBE 
Mitchio Okumura, CCE 
Christopher Umans, EAS 
Morgan Kousser, HSS 
Elena Mantovan, PMA 

Nick Hutzler, PMA

This Graduate Student Committee has been active since 2009; CPET runs a popular series of seminars aimed toward graduate students and postdocs, contributes to TA Orientation programs, and runs peer reviewed "Certificate of Interest In College Teaching" and "Certificate of Practice in University Teaching programs. CPET now serves as an important advisory group to the CTLO and is housed within the Center. 

This Undergraduate Committee, part of ASCIT, has a long history of active engagement with undergraduate education. The ARC Chair, Course Committee members, and the CTLO Director meet regularly, collaborating on projects and programs such as Course Ombudspeople and providing Undergraduate fedback on new programs, services, and projects. 

Other Committees and Groups: 
The Center periodically convenes or contributes to other committees and groups across the institute, e.g.: 
  • Educational Outreach Coordinator associated with various Divisions, Research Groups, and projects. 
  • Committee on Undergraduate Education (a faculty, staff, and student committee). 
  • Committee on Online Education (a faculty and staff committee). 
  • Reaccreditation Steering Committee and Working Groups, Provost's Office. 
  • Other offices supporting on-campus teaching such as the Hixon Writing Center, Caltech Library, Registrar, Undergraduate and Graduate Deans, Academic Media and Technologies, International Offices, General Counsel, and Vice Provost regularly convene through topical discussions organized by academic affairs and student affairs.