Institute for Academic Development
Institute for Academic Development

Introduction to Academic Practice (IntroAP)

About the Introduction to Academic Practice course, a Higher Education Academy accredited course aimed at University of Edinburgh tutors and demonstrators.


This course is accredited by the Higher Education Academy (HEA) for Associate Fellowship.


This course will run twice in each academic year, once in each Semester. Semester 1 will be fully online delivery spread out over the semester; Semester 2 will be on campus delivery over one week.  

For full detailed information about dates see our IntroAP Sharepoint Site


To be eligible to participate in the Introduction to Academic Practice you need to:

  1. Be able to attend three seminars during the course, either online in semester 1 or on-campus in semester 2; 

  1. Have at least two semesters of recent university teaching experience before the course starts;  

  1. You need to have CURRENT teaching responsibilities in Edinburgh University during the semester you are taking the course, so that you can participate in a teaching observation exercise. Since this exercise is required for course completion, you cannot complete the course if you cannot guarantee teaching responsibilities during the semester. Alternatively, for online teaching, you can use a recent recorded online teaching session that you have permission to share. 

  1. You need to have a University staff ID during the time you are completing the course (you will have this as part of your teaching contract with the university), otherwise Advance HE charges you an admin fee of £150 at the point of course completion. 

  1. You will need to supply 2 references regarding your teaching practice, one with your application and one with your final assignment submission. Further details may be found in the Handbook. 


What the course entails

Semester 1 Tasks: Semester 1 will be delivered fully online and is spread out across semester 1. Before and after the seminar dates you will be asked to submit regular online tasks, to contribute to a discussion board, and to carry out a teaching observation exchange. There is also a final assignment of around 1,400 words to submit after seminar 3. These tasks and the seminars are fully supported with a dedicated set of course materials in LEARN to which course participants are enrolled at the start of the course. 

Semester 2 Tasks: Semester 2 will be delivered on campus over the course of one week. You will also be asked to carry out a teaching observation exchange before Seminar 1 during the semester.  During the week, the three seminars, several independent online tasks such as reading and contributing to discussion boards, and a draft writing exercise will occur. This means participants should be able to commit to attending on campus seminars and doing independent tasks during one full week. After the week, there is also a final assignment of around 1,400 words to submit. These tasks and the seminars are fully supported with a dedicated set of course materials in LEARN to which course participants are enrolled at the start of the course.  

Workload: Previous participants have reported that between 40-50 hours’ input is required to complete all aspects of the course. We do not expect this to change for either semester.  

Detailed course information

For detailed course information please see

IntroAP Sharepoint Site

The site includes further details on: 

  • eligibility criteria 

  • full course dates 

  • the course handbook 

  • information sessions 

  • how to apply 

Applying to the course

Please ensure you have read and meet the eligibility criteria before applying.

Apply to IntroAp on our SharePoint site

How places are allocated

Places are allocated on a first-come-first-served basis as much as possible, but if we are oversubscribed, we may need to prioritise participants. We will take applicants who cannot be accommodated into account for the following intake. 

Priority order if needed: 

  1. PhD candidates in their final years 

  1. Staff on short term contracts 

  1. Other PhD candidates 

  1. Other Staff 

  1. Masters students 

  1. Undergraduate students 

Find out more about HEA accreditation

More information about Advance HE (formerly Higher Education Academy) accreditation is found on the HEA website:

Higher Education Academy accreditation

More information about the different ways by which you can work towards accreditation at Edinburgh is found here:

How to develop your teaching

Questions about this course?

  • Send us an email: 

Tutors and demonstrators: further queries and contact details

Contact details