Teaching & Learning

Utah State University Faculty Receive National Credential in Teaching Excellence

Over 20 professors, learning specialists, graduate students, and instructors have joined the 8% of Utah State University faculty who are ACUE certified.

Faculty members were recognized for earning a nationally recognized teaching credential co-endorsed by the Association of College and University Educators (ACUE) and the American Council on Education (ACE) during a pinning ceremony on May 9, 2022.

Faculty demonstrated their commitment to student success by completing a 25-week course in Effective Online Teaching Practices to equip them with the instructional skills shown to promote student motivation, learning and persistence.

"We are so proud of these dedicated instructors," said Travis Thurston, director of teaching excellence. "With their ACUE credential these instructors will not only have a positive impact on the students in their individual classrooms, but they will also become leaders in supporting their peers in our thriving teaching excellence community across the USU system."

The event was hosted by Office of Empowering Teaching Excellence and Academic & Instructional Services, which partnered with ACUE to promote teaching excellence. The 28 credentialed faculty members include instructors from 22 departments, tenure-track/non-tenure track faculty/graduate students, and learning specialists.

“When I implemented the evidence-based teaching practices in my courses, it was enthralling to observe how students truly did become more engaged. ACUE has motivated me to improve and be a more effective instructor,” said Carolyn Ball, a clinical assistant professor in Communicative Disorders and Deaf Education.

To earn their Certificate in Effective College Instruction, faculty members completed a 25-module course that requires them to learn about and implement new evidence-based teaching practices in their courses and reflect on the experience.

Aligned with the latest research in cognition and adult learning, ACUE’s courses address over 200 evidence-based teaching practices, covering how to design an effective course, establish a productive learning environment, use active learning techniques, promote higher-order thinking and utilize assessments to inform instruction and promote learning.

Faculty will continue to learn about pedagogy and receive career-long support through ACUE’s Community of Professional Practice, which provides access to member forums, expert webinars, biweekly newsletters, the “Q” Blog, and “office hours” with leading scholars in college instruction.

The cohort was led by Marilyn Cuch, Senior Lecturer in the School of Teacher Education and Leadership and was facilitated by ETE Coordinator Shelley Arnold and was completely online.

“The cohort began in August 2021, before USU courses began, and ended one week before spring final exams, which requires such dedication to staying focused on their ACUE course while juggling the demands of teaching and service. It’s just incredible what the cohort was able to accomplish weekly and apply concepts within their courses over the two semesters. They are truly more empowered for teaching online than before,” Marilyn Cuch said.

About ACUE: The Association of College and University Educations is the nation’s leading provider of professional development to higher education. ACUE’s mission is student success through quality instruction. Through innovative online courses, ACUE prepares and credentials faculty in evidence-based teaching practices. ACUE’s standards-based approach leads to the only nationally recognized Certificate in Effective Instruction endorsed by the American Council on Education. Numerous, independently validated studies confirm that students learn more, more equitably, when taught by ACUE-credentialed educators. ACUE supports thousands of educators nationwide through partnerships with colleges, universities, and higher education systems and directly to educators through open enrollment offerings.? To learn more, visit acue.org.


Marilyn Cuch
Secondary Teacher Education Program, School of Teacher Education & Leadership
Emma Eccles Jones College of Education and Human Services


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