Center for Teaching and Learning


Our Mission

The Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) was established in the summer of 2002, thanks to a generous gift from the Eisner Foundation, the family foundation of Michael and Jane Eisner. Focused originally on neurodevelopment and how knowledge of those constructs can be taught to teachers and ultimately impact the way they teach and the way students learn, over the last few years the CTL has broadened its scope. Faculty and affiliates are now researching and analyzing multiple innovative approaches to teaching, counseling, educational therapy, administration, and professional development. Our Fellows are able to infuse their findings into pre-service classes within our teacher education programs, in-service professional development done in schools, and the research and assessments we continue to do and disseminate nationally. Like our university, the CTL shares the mission of being regionally focused and nationally recognized.

Scenes of the College of Education building

The Center for Teaching and Learning at the Michael D. Eisner College of Education, California State University Northridge (CSUN), continues to embrace and fulfill its mission of exploring innovative programs that impact the preparation of teachers and school related professionals. CTL Fellows and related associates have been engaged in efforts to improve the preparation of teachers and school related professionals across the continuum of professional development, tracking implemented changes from the admission to our programs to employment out in the schools to the impact on K-12 student achievement.

A growing list of external and internal innovators has contributed to our knowledge base and continues to transform our ongoing professional preparation efforts at CSUN. New explorations into transdisciplinary service delivery options and an interprofessional preparation curriculum have become areas of increased focus as the Center responds to increasingly complex learning needs of the surrounding community.

Explore the 4 areas through which the CTL's vision and mission are implemented in our various projects.

Pre-service Preparation

As a Center whose Fellows represent all of the departments in the College of Education, we are committed to the preparation of all of the students who attend the Michael D. Eisner College of Education. By providing curriculum activities to be embedded into classes in departments throughout the College, a variety of education courses continue to be enhanced through the creativity and work of CTL Fellows and Innovation Groups. In addition, specific CTL projects (such as Bridging Cultures, Positive Psychology, Neurodevelopment, Strategic Instruction Model, and Instructional Intelligence) have been brought into the classes to directly impact CSUN students. Finally, the administrative team at the CTL works closely with the Teaching, Learning, Counseling Consortium (TLC), which is the Clinical arm of the College, as well as the new Ed.D. preparation program in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies.  

In-service Preparation

The CTL Fellows have engaged in a variety of work that has a direct impact on K-12 schools. As the Professional Development arm of the College of Education, the CTL has overseen the development of curriculum, staff development modules, multi-departmental projects, and numerous presentations at the local, state, and national levels. Fellows in the CTL work closely with public, charter, private, and non-public schools. Examples of recent areas of in-service professional development include co-teaching, instructional intelligence, neurodevelopment, deaf education, motivation, and positive mindsets.


The Center for Teaching & Learning closely collaborates with the Teaching, Learning, and Counseling Consortium (TLC), the Clinical arm of the Michael D. Eisner College of Education. For example, the CTL is coordinating a "Strengths-based Assessment" project that is being implemented in the TLC.  By coordinating faculty in Educational Psychology, the director of the TLC, and professionals in our national network, the CTL has taken a lead in ensuring that students who attend CSUN’s College of Education have the opportunity to learn more about strength based assessments, and even practice conducting them in the TLC.  This type of collaboration and coordination is a hallmark of the work of the CTL – bringing together key individuals so that CSUN students and their K-12 students and families benefit.

Research and Dissemination

As the Research arm of the Eisner College of Education, the CTL is committed to studying the impact of its programs and activities. Each project funded through the CTL is expected to provide data demonstrating its outcomes and deliverables. Fellows and Innovative Groups are strongly encouraged to publish their results and present at national conferences. The CTL Research Committee is headed by the Eisner Endowed Chair and is composed of faculty from the different departments, as well as K-12 faculty. Individuals or groups who want additional feedback, support or guidance on research design, implementation, or analysis are invited to attend CTL Research meetings. In addition, located in the CTL Conference Room is a Resource Bank, which houses a variety of books, articles, curriculum, and other related material authored by CTL Fellows, CTL consultants (like Rick Lavoie, Bob Brooks, and Barrie Bennett), and CTL associates.