Teaching Excellence Program

Teaching Excellence Logo

At UVU, teaching excellence is defined as a professional commitment to the intentional, systematic enhancement of teaching practice. “Excellent teaching is inclusive and engaging and empowers students to achieve their educational, personal, and professional goals” (UVU Teaching Excellence Model). 

OTL’s Teaching Excellence Program and UVU’s Teaching Excellence Model are anchored in the seven principles for good practice in undergraduate education as developed by Chickering and Gamson, 1987. “These seven principles are not ten commandments shrunk to a 20th century attention span. They are intended as guidelines for faculty members, students, and administrators …to improve teaching and learning. These principles seem like good common sense, and they are — because many teachers and students have experienced them and because research supports them. They rest on 50 years of research on the way teachers teach and students learn, how students work and play with one another, and how students and faculty talk to each other.”

OTL’s mission is to advance the scholarship and practice of effective teaching and learning. We have designed the Teaching Excellence Program and aligned it to the seven principles as a framework, called Faculty Learning Outcomes (FLOs).




Faculty Learning Outcomes (FLOs) of the Teaching Excellence Program


Inclusive teaching values every student and provides accessible, equitable, and culturally diverse learning experiences and resources for students of all backgrounds. Inclusive teaching fosters an inviting and supportive environment in which students can succeed. 

  • Respect every student’s experience, unique perspective, and ways of learning
  • Nurture collaborative learning | Foster sense of belonging


Engaged teaching provides meaningful, interactive, and experiential learning opportunities that integrate into the fabric of the community. Engaged teachers participate in ongoing dialogue about teaching and learning, professional development, innovation, and reflection about their work. 

  • Maintain regular and substantive interaction
  • Encourage active learning
    • Apply and test learning in new contexts
    • Structure opportunities to reflect and integrate
    • Incorporate public demonstration of confidence


Achievement-focused teaching empowers students to gain essential knowledge, skills, and competencies needed to face the challenges of a dynamic and complex world. Instructors promote deep learning by integrating disciplinary currency/mastery with metacognitive pedagogy and design of instruction to guide students in realizing outcomes that include learning soft-, hard-, process-, and career-specific skills. 

  • Demand time and effort
    • Design opportunities for students to engage deeply and meaningfully with content
    • Scaffold self-regulation skills for learners
  • Communicate high expectations

Through the Teaching Excellence Program (TEP), UVU faculty can gain recognition for their commitment to continuous improvement and strengthen the teaching component of their portfolios. The TEP offers formal certifications that are visible on the Teaching Certifications dashboard and many include a stipend for completion. Six of the TEP pathways align with high impact practices (HIPs) recognized by the American Association of Colleges and Universities - writing enriched, service learning, undergraduate research, global/intercultural, first year seminar, collaborative learning, and teaching with technology (Kuh, 2001, 2003). Since 2015, UVU has been distinguished as a Carnegie “engaged” higher education institution and the Office of Engaged Learning (OEL) partners with OTL on multiple initiatives to provide engaged learning experiences for UVU students. This partnership includes making connections between the pedagogical skill development of instructors and improved learning outcomes for students. This is an active and rich pedagogical research area that connects UVU faculty to national high impact communities of practice.

Learn more about HIPs certification requirements.

Advance HE Logo

AdvanceHE is an international, non-profit organization with more than 160,000 Higher Education Academy (HEA) fellows that promotes teaching effectiveness in higher education. After completing one or more of the certification paths and applying in their classrooms, UVU faculty are ready to apply for HEA fellowship directly through the Office of Teaching and Learning. As an Advance HE Global Partner, UVU is accredited to award HEA fellowships at the categories of Associate Fellow, Fellow, and Senior Fellow. HEA fellowship offers UVU faculty an internationally recognized teaching credential and access to a global network with higher education colleagues who are committed to improving teaching and learning.

Learn more about HEA fellowships


The Teaching Excellence Program pathways are shown in the figure below. TEP Pathway leaders are typically faculty who are experts in the subject area and the workshops may be delivered in face-to-face, online, livestream, or hybrid format. HIPs certifications are often offered in a compressed fashion in May/June, and in addition the workshops are offered across the year. Online and livestream certifications are offered every semester. Certifications entail about 12.5 to 25 hours of training and require completion of key assignments. Newly certified instructors are invited to join the appropriate community of practice to continue the dialogue and support application of concepts.

Contact OTL to join communities of practice

OTL TEP brochure