The Academy of Distinguished Teachers at Southern Methodist University is an organization consisting of recipients of the Altshuler Distinguished Teaching Professor Award. It serves the academic community through the Center of Teaching Excellence by actively fostering superior teaching and learning through colloquia, workshops, lectures and mentoring. Four faculty are selected each spring to serve two years in the Academy, receiving $10,000 as part of the award. Detailed information and guidelines for membership are listed below.


Criteria for Nomination


Nominations should be in the form of an email addressed to the Center for Teaching Excellence, For the nomination, only a name is required. However, a faculty member must meet the eligibility criteria below:

  • be full-time, tenured SMU faculty;
  • have been at SMU for at least five years;
  • be in residence for the two-year Academy membership;
  • show demonstrable excellence in teaching; and
  • show demonstrable commitment to student learning.


Nominators are encouraged to contact nominees in advance in order to confirm any of these criteria. Nomination alone is considered an honor; confidentiality ought not to be a concern. It is also entirely possible that some faculty could be nominated by more than one nominator.




Upon receipt of nomination, the CTE will send the nominee a link to Interfolio to build his or her e-dossier. Items required for the nominee's e-dossier are:

  1. Current curriculum vitae.
  2. Name & Contact Information of Two (2) References: These MUST be other SMU Faculty that have observed the candidate's teaching in the past couple of years. Or, if they have not observed the candidate, they must make arrangements to observe before they submit a letter of recommendation.
  3. Course Evaluations: All course evaluations from the two previous semesters taught. These MUST be from EvaluationKit. All other evaluation types will not be accepted.
  4. Sample Syllabus
  5. Additional Materials (OPTIONAL): These could be sample assignments, student letters, or anything that the candidate might think it would be relevant to support their nomination. A maximum of 4 total additional materials will be accepted.


Current Altshuler award winners will review all information submitted and provide a list of finalists to the Provost. An announcement of the selected awardees will be made at the Spring Faculty Meeting.