Teaching Excellence Task Force Begins 3rd Year of Work

Feb 5, 2023

By: Leslie Cramblet Alvarez, Director of the Office of Teaching and Learning

On May 22, 2020, the Faculty Senate approved a motion creating the Teaching Excellence Task Force. The motion imagined the Taskforce as “the first step in a multi-year and likely multi-committee process. We seek to move the institution beyond the use of student evaluations as a primary mode of evaluating teaching performance for merit, promotion, and reappointment.”

Operationally, the task force is one dimension of the campus-wide Advancing Equity in Faculty Workloads and Rewards initiative formally kicked off last October.

While the Departmental Action Teams (DATs) tackle department/program level changes, per the Senate motion, the Teaching Excellence Task Force is related to governance and structural changes. This multi-year endeavor will include creating structures for decision-making processes; reviewing local and national best practices on course and instructor evaluation; surveying units at DU on current policies, procedures, and practices; and designing a framework for future task force work.

This year, we are turning our focus to recommendations for revision of student evaluations of teaching. Linked here is a summary of the previous work and the current focus.

We extend sincere gratitude to task force members during 2020–2022:

  • Richard Colby, Writing Program (2021–22, faculty co-chair 2022–23)
  • Leslie Cramblet Alvarez, OTL (2020–current, co-chair 2021–23)
  • Jared Del Rosso, Sociology and Criminology (2020–current, co-chair, 2021–22)
  • Mohammed Albow, Computer Science
  • Jeff Bowen, Daniels (2020–21)
  • Jillian Blueford, MCE (2020–22)
  • Michelle Kruse-Crocker, University College (2020–22)
  • Claude d’Estree, Korbel (2020–22)
  • Barbekka Hurtt, Biological Sciences (2020–22)
  • Christina Paguyo, OTL (2020–21)
  • Sarah Pessin, Senate President (co-chair 20–21)
  • Kate Willink, VPFA (co-chair 2020–21)

Please help us welcome the new members and co-chairs for 2022–23:

  • Richard Colby, Teaching Professor, University Academic Programs (faculty co-chair)
  • Leslie Cramblet Alvarez, Director of the Office of Teaching and Learning (staff co-chair)
  • Christy Cobb, Assistant Professor of Christianity, Religious Studies
  • Jared Del Rosso, Associate Professor, Sociology and Criminology
  • Sandra Eaton, Professor, Chemistry and Biochemistry
  • Sandra Johnson, Teaching Professor and Director of the Global Health Program, Josef Korbel School of International Studies
  • Stephen Riley, Director of Academic Assessment, Office of Teaching and Learning
  • Nancy Sasaki, Teaching Professor, Biological Sciences
  • Kimberly Schmidt, Clinical Assistant Professor, Morgridge College of Education

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