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Teaching at OLLI

The information below is for Current and Prospective Instructors:

Please read, then fill out the Course Proposal Form: Course Proposal Form

What is Osher?

The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) is a membership program offering engaging and intellectually stimulating non-credit courses to adult learners age 50 and better who enjoy participating in a vibrant community, of like-minded adults. Our membership includes the greater South Bay Area community residents, active and retired SCU faculty and staff and SCU alumni. 

OLLI at Santa Clara University was founded by a grant from the Bernard Osher Foundation in 2004. SCU OLLI is one of 119 programs in the domestic United States. Although course instruction is at the university level, we have no prerequisites, nor do we require homework, papers or tests/grades of any kind.

What subjects are taught?

We offer traditional academic courses, the primary interest of our members. However, we also offer classes that may not be part of the traditional university curriculum when they are backed up by solid scholarship. If a topic is appropriate to a university setting, in concert with our mission, and of interest to our membership, we will take it into consideration.

How are courses organized?

Courses are organized in conjunction with the academic calendar at Santa Clara University, on the quarter system. We offer around 25-28 classes per quarter and we have long (10 hour, 5 weeks sessions) short (4-6 hours, 2-4 sessions) courses that meet in two-hour segments once a week, typically on a weekday between the hours of 10:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. However, we also offer single Saturday classes (2- 6 hours)

Who teaches for OLLI@SCU?

Our instructors tend to be from Santa Clara University or local colleges and universities. Depending upon the experience and expertise, an unaffiliated instructor may be offered the opportunity to instruct an Osher class or give a lecture.

What do instructors need to provide prior to class start?

If your course is accepted, we will need a short and concise course title, description, and bio as well as times/dates you are available to instruct. Finding available classroom space is a continuing challenge, so the greater your flexibility, the likelier we will be able to fit your course into our schedule.

What is a course developer?

Once your course is accepted, a member of the Curriculum committee will be assigned as your Course Developer. This individual is your contact and will work with you on the following: explaining our timetables and deadlines, developing your course offering, titles and your bio, and lastly obtaining your availability for times and dates to teach.

How do we publicize our courses to members?

Each quarter we print a hard copy catalog that is mailed to all registered members. We also advertise in our monthly newsletter "The Link' which will give details for all classes for the quarter offering.

If I have questions, who can I contact?

You can contact your course developer, or contact the OLLI office at 408-554-2382 or email us at: