Get Involved



Taking an Inside-Out course involves being part of an especially vital and purposeful learning community.  For an Inside-Out course, campus-based ("outside") students travel to a correctional facility together and join equal numbers of incarcerated ("inside") students in taking a course.  Inside-Out courses are designed to allow both groups of students to reflect on the experience of working together as well as to do important academic work. 

An Inside-Out course offers a valuable experience but also requires serious commitment from outside students. In order to enroll in one of PPEP's Inside-Out courses, students must first meet with the instructor to review the mechanics and policies of the course, including the time commitment (traveling to and from a weekly course held at a prison typically requires a 5-hour window of time) and the PA Department of Corrections policies that must be scrupulously observed, together with Inside-Out policies fundamental to PPEP's working relationship with both the university and PA DOC.  Students in Inside-Out courses must submit applications for clearances well in advance of the beginnng of class. 

Because of COVID-related restrictions, PPEP is not able to offer Inside-Out classes in 2020-2021, although we are offering some correspondence courses for inside students.  For information about past and upcoming courses, visit


Teaching in prison is a rewarding experience. PPEP is eager to involve Pitt faculty members as teachers, guest presenters, and contributors in other ways.  

Teaching Inside-Out courses requires successful completion of a training organized by the Inside-Out Center. Because prisons have limited resources for supporting class meetings and because PPEP needs to provide a varied curriculum, timelines between completng training and offering an Inside-Out course vary.  PPEP is also developing options for teaching couses for incarcerated students only (Inside Only courses) in certain areas of the curriculum, especially in STEM fields.

Ready to submit your Expression of Interest in teaching for PPEP? Click on this link to our email address to access the Expression of Interest form:

Faculty members can also contribute to PPEP by offering guest lectures, workshops, performances, and presentations in the prisons where we work.  Be advised that any visit to a prison requires applyiing for clearances well in advance of the visit.  To express interest in contributing in this way, please email, and a member of the PPEP Steering Committee will be in touch.

Faculty members are also invited to volunteer to supporting incarcerated students academically through tutoring.


Tutors provide for incarcerated students what the Writing Center, the Tutorial and Academic Success Center, and other academic support centers provide on Pitt's campus.  When PPEP's Inside-Out courses are in session, PPEP supports a tutoring network open to graduate students and faculty members.  Tutors undergo an orientation and must submit applications for clearances, as is required of anyone volunteering inside a correctional facility.  Tutoring is currently suspended because restrictions related to COVID-19 prevent PPEP from holding Inside-Out courses at present.  Email if you would like to be notified when there are opportunities to tutor.