teaching excellence gear

Teaching Excellence


The Faculty Senate, in partnership with the Vice Provost of Faculty Affairs, seeks to improve DU’s methods of course evaluation and teaching review for the purpose of annual reviews, promotion, and reappointment. This initiative will involve a multi-year and multi-committee process to have a robust, rigorous, and evidence-based set of methods to assess teaching performance holistically, and that allows units flexibility of practice in a way that best aligns with their faculty and academic programs.

Senate Motion Establishing the Task Force (pdf)

Governance and Structural Change: Teaching Excellence Task Force

This Task Force is faculty-driven and also includes staff with subject matter expertise and administrators with oversight or job responsibilities in these areas. This group is responsible for overseeing policy changes and making recommendations to Senate for iterative motions over the life of this initiative. The charge of the Task Force is:

  1. Survey local and national models
  2. Identify additional metrics for demonstrating teaching success
  3. Review/revise existing metrics like student evaluations of teaching
  4. Document findings and create recommendations
  5. Develop iterative changes and Senate motions

    Please help us welcome the new memebers and co-chairs for 22-23:

    • 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

    We extend sincere gratitude to the task force members spanning 2020-2022:

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

      To begin engaging in department-level teaching evaluation change, a multi-year cohort program begins in 2022. This project supports the work of the Teaching Excellence Task Force and guides departments through a change process known as “Department Action Teams” (DATs). Participating departments/programs will determine ways to apply the Teaching Quality Framework and ensure three voices (self, student, peer) are reflected in teaching evaluation for annual and consequential review.

      DATs at DU: Click here for more details and to participate

      Faculty Fellows of Teaching and Learning

      The Faculty Fellows of Teaching and Learning are key partners with the Office of Teaching and Learning (OTL) and Vice Provost for Academic Affairs. Collaborating primarily with the Director of the Office of Teaching and Learning, the Faculty Fellows are engaging in activities to support change processes, build community, and lead efforts that advance DU’s university-wide initiative to move the institution beyond the use of student evaluations as a primary mode of evaluating teaching performance for merit, promotion, and reappointment. These fellows serve on the Teaching Excellence Task Force and as DAT facilitators.

      Dr. Jared Del Rosso, Associate Professor Department of Sociology and Criminology

      Dr. Jared Del Rosso, Associate Professor Department of Sociology and Criminology

      Dr. Barbekka Hurtt, Associate Teaching Professor Biological Sciences

      Dr. Barbekka Hurtt, Associate Teaching Professor Biological Sciences