Benefits of Teaching in Taos 

SMU-in-Taos is a unique academic environment that emphasizes Southwest studies, sustainability, experiential learning and interdisciplinary collaboration.  Over the past four decades, dozens of SMU faculty have taken advantage of our distinctive mountain campus. The living-learning environment provides valuable opportunities for faculty and students across the disciplines.

We hope you will consider proposing a course for SMU-in-Taos.

Should you need additional information, please view our Faculty Resources or contact us directly.

 Extra Compensation

  • Teaching at SMU-in-Taos is done separately from one’s normal course load.  Extra compensation for full-time faculty is typically calculated at 10% of one's normal salary with a $10,000 max.  Adjunct pay is calculated using departmental adjunct rates, not to exceed $10,000. 
  • Faculty live on campus where room and board are provided for faculty and immediate family. Travel will be reimbursed up to $785 via Concur.


  • Taos offers the perfect complement to the big city setting of Dallas. Enjoy beautiful mountain weather and views at our 423-acre campus in Taos, NM.
  • Discover the fascinating intersection of cultures and history in the American Southwest.  Explore Taos’ art, music, outdoor recreation and much more.
  • Campus resources included brand new Miller Campus Center, library staffed by SMU librarian, on-campus OIT Specialist, shared faculty office with computers and free printing, biology and archaeology lab spaces, art barn for creative projects and chef-prepared meals. 

 Short, Focused Terms

  • SMU-in-Taos courses are offered during three focused summer terms and one fast-paced winter term.
  • Condensed, focused terms during the summer and winter breaks allow you to engage and challenge your students through discussions, projects and field trips each day.
  • Our living-learning environment, like that of the new Residential Commons system, increases interactions with students in and out of class.
  • Small class sizes mean you get to know each and every one of your students both personally and academically.  

Course Meeting Times

  • In each term, students are required to enroll a 3-credit course.  Students also have the option to add on one-credit courses (KNW 2199 and PRW 2135). In order to ensure each course has the ability to fulfill their minimum contact hours, it is important that all faculty respect the scheduled class meeting times.
  • All 3-credit courses need to complete a total of 45 contact hours.
  • PRW 2135 will meet all day Saturday and Sunday, along with a few weekday evenings.
  • Students will not be allowed to enroll in both KNW 2199 and PRW 2135, except during June Field School.  KNW 2199 will meet on the weekends only.  All courses are encouraged, but not required, to participate in KNW field trips.

NOTE: In-person classes have been suspended for the Taos campus for 2021. Instead, SMU-in-Taos will offer fully virtual or Flex (Dallas campus) for May, summer, and August terms.



Class Days


Number of Credits Students Can Take Proposals Due


January 2-17, 2022


6 hrs/day

4 August 20, 2021


May 15 - June 1, 2022


4 hrs/day

June Field Session
June 5 - July 2, 2022 20 2.5 hrs/day 7 TBD

August 3-20, 2022

4 hrs/day:


Experiential Learning 

  • SMU-in-Taos practices a “classroom without walls” philosophy.  This encourages learning beyond the physical classroom, from educational hikes and field trips to class debates and discussions around an evening campfire.
  • We encourage faculty to offer internships, independent research, directed study and community engagement opportunities utilizing the unique resources in Taos.
  • Local Points of Interest: Taos Pueblo (UNESCO World Heritage Site), Santa Fe Opera, Bandelier National Monument, Los Alamos National Laboratories, Pot Creek Pueblo Excavation, KTAOS Solar-powered Radio Station, Ghost Ranch and Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Chaco Canyon, local non-profits, organic farms, and many more.

Interdisciplinary Collaboration

  • Collaboration among faculty is strongly encouraged.  From sharing lectures, field trips, guest speakers or community engagement projects, the opportunities are unlimited.
  • We strive to offer a wide variety of courses that fulfill major, minor and/or UC requirements, including Ways of Knowing courses, which are inherently collaborative.

Course Development Funds

  • If you would like to propose a new course to be taught in Taos, but are unfamiliar with the area, consider applying for a course development grant.