Partnering with students in the development of the teaching and learning environment is a meaningful opportunity to develop important academic and transferable skills as well as fostering a student-centered learning environment.

The Students as Partners Program (SaPP) offers Faculty, Instructors, Contract Instructors, Educational and Instructional Developers and Librarians the opportunity to provide a paid work experience to undergraduate students interested in teaching innovation, with all funding being provided by Teaching and Learning Services.

Healey et al. (2014: 8-9) highlight four areas where students as partners in teaching and learning can be an experiential learning opportunity: 1) learning, teaching, and assessment design; 2) curriculum design and pedagogic consultancy; 3) subject-based research and inquiry; and 4) the scholarship of teaching and learning. As such, the partnership program seeks to engage students in different projects and activities, including, but not limited to:

  • Co-designing and contributing to the development of curriculum.
  • Researching, sourcing and organizing course materials, media, and appropriate learning resources.
  • Helping design course materials such as assessments, cuLearn site, and multimedia tools.
  • Formatting and preparing assessments.
  • Incorporating educational technologies, whether online or face-to-face.
  • Enhancing the use and understanding of assessment criteria.
  • Working on a Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL) project

Note: The projects funded through SaPP must provide an opportunity for students to contribute to the academic directions of the projects; they are not meant to resemble a Teaching Assistant or simply to alleviate instructors/staff workload: the work must be completed prior to the beginning of the course.

The program runs throughout the academic year, with each student partnership being funded up to a maximum of 130 hours per academic term.


  1. All faculty, instructors, contract instructors, educational and instructional developers and librarians working on relevant teaching projects are eligible.
  2. Undergraduate students enrolled and continuing in a Carleton program (part-time or full time) throughout the tenure of the Students as Partners Program. They must be in good academic standing upon application, and during the tenure of the program.
  3. Students may not complete a co-op work term and SaPP simultaneously.
  4. Use their Carleton email account – all communications will be sent through this address.

Protocol and Procedures

Faculty, Instructors, and staff members interested in this program are encouraged to identify an undergraduate student partner that they feel that they can collaborate with. This may be students who have successfully completed a course that they have taught, a student they have worked with before, or a student who has expressed interest in collaborating with them.

To facilitate finding a student partner, Teaching and Learning Services can provide messaging and information for placement in a cuLearn course site. Teaching and Learning Services will not vet or select student partners – this is the sole responsibility of the instructors/staff members.

Once an instructor/staff member has identified and selected a student partner, they should jointly complete the online application form.

The student’s role is to partner with instructors/staff members to contribute to the pedagogical design of a particular course.

The standard of work will be established in partnership between the instructors/staff members and the student including outlining the responsibilities and scope of the collaboration.

Please note the department does not match faculty and student partners.

Due to funding opportunities, space is limited. There is a one student per one faculty member limit. And one student per project. It is not guaranteed that all who apply will be accepted.



Teaching and Learning Services will fund the student partner for up to 130 hours of work at $15 per hour (up to a maximum of ($1950 + 4% vacation pay). It is anticipated that the work will be completed within one academic term.

Administration of payment to the student partner will be done through the Discovery Centre. The payment schedule may vary depending on the student’s work schedule. It is the responsibility of the instructor/staff partner to inform the Discovery Centre Coordinator of the hours worked ahead of the pay period deadlines.

Please indicate a begin and end date in the application.

Selection Criteria

Faculty members, instructors, contract instructors, educational and instructional developers and librarians along with a student partner should jointly complete the online application. Proposals will be evaluated based on the following criteria:

  • The strength of the partnership between the instructor/student. (Is the student considered as collaborator and partner?)
  • The scope and appropriateness of the project/initiative being proposed.
  • The opportunities for learning by both the instructor/staff and student
  • How the partners intend to communicate their work (via events organized by Teaching and Learning services, blog posts, social media, reports, etc.).

It is expected that most projects will involve one instructors/staff member and one student partner. However, there may be projects and initiatives that require an additional student partner. If this is the case, please discuss the project with the Discovery Centre Coordinator before applying.

Selection Committee

A committee chaired by the Associate Vice-President Teaching and Learning will review proposals and make selections based on above criteria.

Sharing Your Work

The funded projects will not be considered completed until they have been shared with the teaching community. There are multiple ways that the partners can meet this requirement, including sharing at an end of year Discovery Centre: Students as Partners Showcase, submitting a SoTL output for publication, writing a blog post, sharing on social media, or other acceptable ways of reporting on the partnership.

New for 2020-21 – FUSION

The Future Skills Innovation Network (FUSION) is a network of Canadian universities focused on exploring innovative and inclusive experiential learning approaches to foster skill development and prepare university students for the rapidly evolving society and job market. The project is part of the federally funded Future Skills Centre.

FUSION has developed a curriculum that consists of a 10-hour online integrated learning experience designed to enhance student skills in three areas critical to 21st-century success and leadership: meta-cognition, communication and problem-solving.

As one of the six member institutions in FUSION, Carleton launched this project in the fall term. Participation is optional. Students that complete the program will receive compensation in the amount of $100.

For more information, please visit Carleton’s FUSION website or contact

Carleton University is continuing to closely follow the advice provided by Ottawa Public Health and other health agencies such as the Public Health Agency of Canada and Ontario Public Health. Ottawa Public Health has published new guidelines to maximize social distancing including recommendations to limit non-essential trips out of the home, work from home if possible, and to implement distancing at work. In response, Carleton has determined minimum staffing levels and is operating remotely where possible. This program is scheduled to run during the Summer Term, but it will run remotely in an effort to limit the number of people on campus as the COVID-19 situation continues to evolve. If you are selected for this program, you will (until further notice) complete work from home to fulfil the program requirements. For more information, visit Carleton’s COVID-19 website.

All applications need to be completed and submitted online via portal on the Discovery Centre website.

Interested in learning more about Students-As-Partners initiative? Please refer to the following literature:

Students-As-Partners Literature Samples