Teaching is at the very core of our Holy Cross tradition of academic excellence.
Students benefit from an active and rigorous learning environment that is constantly refined toward a common goal — to inspire to think, learn and grow beyond expectations.
Established in 1991, the Center for Teaching Excellence grew from the desire to continually elevate the learning experience for students at St. Edward’s. Through the center, faculty members come together to share ideas and strategies for successful teaching. They learn practical and inventive ways to improve teaching methods and respond to the various learning needs of students.
The Center for Teaching Excellence promotes effective, innovative, inclusive, and evidence-based college teaching that fosters sustained learning. The Center cultivates a campus culture that values diverse approaches to learning and teaching. It supports faculty in enhancing pedagogical practices and facilitates the exchange of ideas and development of community among faculty.
The Center for Teaching Excellence focuses on a variety of activities designed to support our mission, which include:
Teaching Support Archive of recordings and slides for all CTE and Instructional Technology co-hosted events, as well as additional curated resources.
Jennifer Jefferson is the Director of the Center for Teaching Excellence. She comes to this role after being a Visiting Assistant Professor in University Studies at St. Edward's University. Previously, she taught at The University of Texas at Austin and Texas State University. Her educational background is in American Studies and Cultural Studies in Education.
She is committed to providing programming and support that is responsive to the St. Edward's community, and she collaborates across campus to address the complex needs of faculty at a liberal arts university. Some of her areas of interest include inclusive course development, reflective practice, and peer learning communities.
Alex Barron, Associate Professor of University Studies
Kerrie Taylor, Assistant Professor of Counseling
Stephen King, Professor of Communication
Kate Lopez, Assistant Professor of Accounting
Mity Myhr, Professor of History
Paul Walter, Associate Professor of Mathematics
The Center for Teaching Excellence offers a variety of programs to improve teaching at the university, including:
Faculty Resources for 2021 to 2022
To help faculty prepare for teaching in this new environment, the Center for Teaching Excellence and the Office of Information Technology will continue to offer guidance and host workshops to help faculty develop and teach courses, whether they are face-to-face, hybrid or online, as well as prepare for the possible contingency of going remote again.
To help keep track of events and information, we offer the following resources:
As additional reminders, each event will be posted to the university calendar and to Workplace a few days in advance of the workshop. We hope this approach is helpful to you as we try to manage our summer course design processes and teaching.
Podcasts and Coffee
Pick a series that fits into your schedule:
Last Wednesday of the month at 1:00 pm (virtual)
Last Thursday of the month at 3:30 pm (masked and outside; if raining, we will move to Zoom)
Each month, we will listen to an episode or two of a podcast and come together to discuss the episode(s), much like we do with Books and Coffee. We can build some of the playlist together, too (if there is interest). The goal of this gathering is to engage with scholarship on teaching and learning and talk with colleagues from across campus. Join us!
Sponsored by the Anti-Racist Teaching and Learning Group
Wednesday, January 5th
In person: 10 am, Holy Cross Hall 105
Join Colleagues from across campus on January 5th for a syllabus swap and discussion. This session, facilitated by members of the Anti-Racist Teaching and Learning group, is designed to introduce colleagues to integrative social justice syllabus best practices and to provide time for working on syllabuses in a supportive environment. Our hope is that everyone who attends will feel confident in making one change in their syllabus to work toward anti-racist teaching and learning practices.
Inclusive & Intentional Classroom Engagement Strategies
Facilitated by te CTE and OIT
Thursday, January 13th at 12:30 - 1:30 pm
Join us to discuss inclusive and intentional classroom engagement strategies that we can deploy at different points over the course of the semester with the goal of sustaining both ourselves and our students. We will share discussion approaches, student learning assessments, and group activities. We'll help you build your own checklist for creating a more intentional and inclusive classroom.
Let's Chat: Seeing Colleagues (and Taking Advantage of Central Texas Fall)
The CTE would like to invite colleagues to join us at informal check-ins this month. There will be tables set up outside of Holy Cross Hall (in between the building and the seal), and we will visit with colleagues from across campus. There might even be some treats to take with you. :)
Thursday, 11/4 at 2:00 pm
Monday, 11/8 at 11:00 am
Tuesday, 11/16 at 3:30 pm
Call for Self-Nominations for the 2022 Teaching Symposium Planning Committee
The Center for Teaching Excellence invites members of the teaching faculty to serve on the Planning Committee for the annual St. Edward's teaching symposium to be held. The committee is responsible for designing a call for proposals, reviewing proposals, and determining the final conference program. Faculty leadership and the peer review process are both important ro ensure a high-quality and responsive conference; your participation is greatly appreciated. Sign-up here
Deadline to self-nominate: Monday, November 8th
Who is eligible to join the committee?
The CTE invites self-nominations from all faculty, tenure-track, full- and part-time non-tenure-track (including adjunct faculty), and staff who teach in all fields.
What do committee members do?
Committee members finalize the call for proposals; review 6-8 short, submitted proposals; decide the final program; and attend the Symposium. In total, members will be asked to attend two-three meetings-- developing the call for papers and to discuss criteria, discussing their reviewed proposals, and planning for the symposium. They are also expected to attend some portion of the conference and then offer feedback on the programming-either through a survey or a focus-group meeting.
How to nominate yourself: Please sign up here
Have questions? Please feel free to write to Jennifer Jefferson (firstname.lastname@example.org) for clarification.
Living Out Our Mission: Increasing our Knowledge and Building a More Inclusive Hilltop:
A Faculty DEI Series
We all want to create inclusive and welcoming spaces for our students, colleagues, and community members. However, we might need support to be equipped to create and sustain these spaces. Join us for this series that will help faculty members refine a conceptual framework, reflect on their identities, and increase their ability to act.
Developing a Critical Framework and Vocabulary
Thursday, October 21st at 3:30 pm
Reflecting on Your Identities and Actions
Wednesday, November 10th at 3:30 pm
Exploring Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation
Friday, November 19th at 12:30 pm
Please attend the sessions that will support you and your work the most. We welcome your Participation in as many sessions as you can join; you do not need to attend all sessions in order to participate.
All sessions will be held at the following Zoom link, and we ask that you RSVP to help us tailor the sessions to the community's needs:
Mid-Semester Informal Chats
Monday, 10/11 from 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm
Thursday, 10/14 from 9:00 am - 10:00 am
The CTE would also like to invite colleagues to join us at informal check-ins next week. There will be tables set up outside of Holy Cross Hall (in between the building and the seal), and we will take time to see colleagues from across campus and say hi to one another. There might even be some treats to take with you. :)
Books and Coffee--> Podcasts and Coffee
2 sessions: First Wednesday of the month at 1:00 pm (virtual)
Oct. 6, Nov. 3, Dec. 1
First Thursday of the month at 3:30 pm (masked and outside; if raining, we will move to Zoom)
Oct. 7, Nov.4, Dec. 2
Please let us know if you will be able to join us:RSVP
Here is the link for thus virtual event: Zoom
Mixing it up this semester--welcome to podcasts and coffee! Each month, we will listen to an episode or two of a podcast and come together to discuss the episode(s), much like we do with Books and Coffee. We can build some of the playlist together, too (if there is interest). The goal of this gathering is to engage with scholarship on teaching and learning and talk with colleagues from across campus. Join us!
Read. Try. Chat. : The Art of Gathering: How We Meet and Why it Matters
First Friday of the Month at noon (virtual)
Oct. 1, Nov. 5, Dec. 3
RSVP: CTE will provide the text; please commit to attend at least 3/4 sessions
Here is the link for these virtual event:Zoom
We're bringing this reading and action group back for the fall semester. Join us for a monthly session where we discuss both this text and how we are applying the strategies offered. As we navigate our way back to a variety of gatherings, we might want to take the opportunity to think more intentionally in how we come together, including in the classroom.
Flexible Options for Instructional Continuity
Wednesday, September 1 at 3:30
Please let us know if you will be able to join us: RSVP
Here is the link for these virtual event: Zoom link
Have you been notified that a student can't attend your class in person for an extended period of time?Wondering how to help them keep up with class in a way that aligns with your course goals and recognizes our, and their, current context?
This session will review strategies to ensure continuity of instruction, including:
We envision this session as providing you with some strategies for thinking through your approaches, as well as offering plenty of time for questions and discussion.
Poll Everywhere Faculty Training
Wednesday, August 25, 1-2:30 pm
In this session, Poll Everywhere staff will provide an introduction to using Poll Everywhere, which is an interactive online polling tool that can be used with PowerPoint or Google Slides and can also integrate with Canvas. Topics covered will include creating and managing polling activities, embedding polls in presentations, reporting and grading with Canvas, and asynchronous polls or surveys. There will also be time for questions.
Blended (Hybrid) and Online Teaching (Begin with Backwards Design)
Teaching Symposium 2021
Reigniting Your Passion: Finding Joy in Reconnection
Thursday, August 19, 9 am-4:00 pm
Each year, the Center for Teaching Excellence and the Symposium Planning Committee organize an on-campus conference on teaching and learning at St. Edward’s.The conference is planned by St. Edward’s faculty, presentations are proposed and led by St. Edward’s faculty, and it is widely attended by both adjunct and tenure-track faculty as well as administrators and staff.
Getting Started with Canvas
Wednesday, August 11, 2-3:15 pm
Wednesday, August 18, 1:00-2:30 pm
Learn how to get started setting up your Canvas page for your class.
Please let us know if you will be able to join us: Canvas
Here is the link for these virtual events: Zoom
Rethinking Policies and Syllabi
Tuesday, August 10, 11 am-12:15 pm
The syllabus is a key part of our classes that we often take for granted. In this session, we’ll discuss key goals with our syllabi and share a range of options to help us rethink this foundational document.
Inclusive Classroom Engagement Strategies
As we have navigated a pandemic, racist violence, a contentious political season, and increasing mental health challenges, we have made a concerted effort to build a sense of belonging for our students. Join us for this session as we dig into research on engagement strategies that are inclusive and affirmative, including approaches to building groups, facilitating discussion, exploring case studies, and problem solving.
On Campus: Practicing with Zoom in the Classroom
Will you be teaching a blended/hybrid course in Fall 2021 that combines in-person learning with Zoom? This session will review available classroom technology then offer participants the chance for mentored hands on practice. Participants must be willing to come to campus and follow community standards for COVID-19 safety (wear a mask, social distancing, green badge).
Discussion Strategies: Live and Asynchronous
A common conversation among faculty, even in the “Before Times,” would be the challenges of creating a vibrant space of participation and respect in class discussions. As we navigate our ways through an upcoming semester of face-to-face, blended/hybrid, and online learning, we may find that some of our previous strategies are beneficial, but could use some refinement. Join us in this workshop as we share research, strategies, and activities for synchronous and asynchronous discussion strategies.
Group Work and Collaborative Learning
How can we have our students work together in meaningful ways? How do you enable student interaction in and between the socially-distanced, hybrid, or online classrooms? This session will cover how to support live student group activities and group project work outside of class.
Exams and Quizzes options and alternatives
Due to social distancing and online courses, many courses will not be able to follow the “before times” practice of proctoring exams and quizzes for all students together in the classroom. This session will review options for giving exams and quizzes online in Canvas, proctoring with Honorlock, and alternative forms of formative and summative assessment, like online discussions, social annotation, open book tests, projects, and presentations. Candice Vasquez will join us to discuss challenges of providing accommodations in this context.
Managing Sets of Students with Canvas
Will you be teaching a blended/hybrid course i n Fall 2021? Wondering how you will divide your students into two groups to maintain social distancing and then how to manage their activities. This session will review features in Canvas to support this model.
Blended (Hybrid) and Online Teaching (Begin with Backwards Design)
Previous CTE Program Schedules:
Given annually, teaching excellence awards at St. Edward's University honor faculty for their exceptional talents and dedication to promoting learning in meaningful, engaging and innovative ways. The selection process is rigorous, evaluating candidates' course offerings, curricular designs, instructional methods, classroom performances, and interactions with students.
Four awards are given annually:
2020-2021 Teaching Winners
Sister Donna Jurick
Distinguished Career Award
Innovation fellowships support faculty who need time, resources and expertise to include pedagogical experimentation in their courses by providing a stipend, participation in the Innovation Institute, and a community of faculty fellows focused on pedagogical innovation.
Learn about our Innovation Fellows and their projects.
Read about past fellows.
Delayne Hudspeth, retired professor of Curriculum and Instruction and Instructional Technology at the University of Texas, was a mentor to several St. Edward's faculty members and scores of other master's and doctoral students. Through the generosity of an anonymous donor, Dr. Hudspeth's contributions to innovation in higher education are honored by this award.
The CTE would like to invite you to apply for the Delayne Hudspeth Award for Innovative Instruction. The award, open to all who teach, including full-time (tenure-track and non-tenure-track), part-time, adjunct, and staff who teach, is determined by a panel representing schools across campus and carries a $500 stipend. The application is a Google Form and is due March 11, 2022. Please see below for more details.
Delayne Hudspeth Award for Innovative Instruction
Deadline: March 11, 2022
Who can apply: This award recognizes St. Edward’s instructors who create innovative learning environments and projects. All teaching faculty members -- including full-time (tenure-track and non-tenure-track), part-time, adjunct, and staff who teach -- are encouraged to apply. Previous Award winners will be considered for the Hudspeth Award five years after their previous win.
What projects are eligible: Self-nominations should highlight a specific project, an assignment or exercise, a teaching method, a new use of technology, or the redesign of an entire class.
Instructors may apply for the award based on an innovation implemented in any of the three years previous to the application deadline. For this year's award, projects implemented in any of the following semesters will be eligible:
What should the application highlight: Since this award celebrates innovation, preference will be given to projects that demonstrate the greatest levels of innovation and that clearly present the value of that innovation for student learning. Note that the committee does not equate innovation with adoption of new technologies. While some winning projects have featured new uses of technology, many have not. Please review the Google form before you start crafting your application, as it will help guide you in showcasing your project.
When do you need to submit the application: Please fill out the Google Form by end of the day on Monday, March 11, 2022.
How will a winner be determined: The winner and finalist for the award will be decided upon by the members of Hudspeth Awards Committee. The committee is comprised of representatives from across the university's schools. Applications are blind-reviewed, scored according to the selection criteria, and then discussed until the committee achieves consensus.
Questions? If you have any questions about the award or would like to discuss your application, please contact Jennifer Jefferson email@example.com