What We Do

Southern Methodist University’s Center for Teaching Excellence (CTE) is an ongoing catalyst for the growth of a university culture that values, supports, and rewards effective student-centered teaching. CTE's mission supports the pursuit of academic innovation by providing research-based instructional design services, supporting a campus culture of teaching excellence, and empowering faculty to transform their pedagogical practices.


Altshuler Distinguished Teaching Award Winners

2021 award winners are Professors Maxime Foerster, Steven Lindquist, Rebekah Miles, and Carolyn Smith-Morris. The winners receive $10,000 and are appointed to a two-year term in the SMU Academy of Distinguished Teachers.



SMU Mask Mandate Lifted

SMU has lifted the mask requirement on campus. For Summer 2021, classroom decisions regarding masks are at the discretion of each faculty member. Communicate with students-- including a formal announcement on your syllabus and on Canvas-- about whether or not masks will be required in your course. In the interest of maintaining a consistent approach across faculty and staff, faculty can choose to require masks or not only in classroom instructional spaces, not during office hours. If you are interested in office hour options, you can reach out to your chair to help you find larger spaces in which to meet with students in person for office hours or offer a combination of in-person or Zoom-based office hours. Below is suggested language you can use and/or modify for your syllabi.

Masks required: On May 18, SMU announced that faculty will determine whether masks will be required in Summer 2021 courses. For this course, the instructor and students attending in person are required to wear a mask during all class meetings.

Masks recommended: While masks are not required in this course, individuals should use their own discretion if they prefer to wear masks. The instructor and students will show respect for individual decisions and responses to the health concerns of the pandemic for those who choose to continue wearing masks. Your vaccine status is private information and will neither be requested nor made public.

Pedagogical Partner Up Grant Projects

We recognized that faculty have poured a great deal of time, energy, and creativity into your teaching the Fall 2020 semester. As a response to faculty feedback, we were excited to announce a call for applications for Partner-Up Grants of $2,000 for full-time faculty to participate in faculty-led learning pods focused on priority areas that emerged as topics from the faculty surveys. Each pod served as a nexus for faculty to enhance their own pedagogical knowledge while sharing with colleagues and their work is showcased in the CTE website.




Meet CTE's Senior Instructional Designer

Dr. Adeline "Addy" Tolliver assists faculty in course development, deployment, and evaluation. She assists faculty with integration of technology and various pedagogical practices to effectively showcase content and promote student engagement in face-to-face and online courses. Consultation sessions can last up to 50 minutes and can happen in small groups or one-on-one, virtually.


Remote Teaching Support

Tools and things to consider when you have to move your class online quickly.


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