How can we assist you?

The Center for Excellence in Teaching & Learning (CETL) is available to support faculty through individual consultations, small groups, formal workshops, and professional development sessions regarding topics such as:

  • Course development, design, and revision
  • Course problem-solving for all course delivery methods
  • Classroom strategies and developing activities
  • Curriculum/course mapping and alignment
    • Alignment between program and course learning outcomes
    • Assessment mapping, development, and analysis
    • Development and use rubrics for improved assessment
    • Writing learning objectives that establish clear expectations for students
    • Aligning learning objectives and course materials with assessments
    • Syllabi review

CETL Faculty-Guided Course Observation and Consultation Process

The faculty-guided course observation process is a service offered by the Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning at Detroit Mercy which provides confidential feedback to faculty about their teaching. The course review process provides space for faculty to reflect upon their pedagogical practice through objective, confidential feedback. The CETL’s observation and consultation process is specifically designed to provide faculty choice and agency in the procedure by offering faculty three unique categories of observations they may choose from, based on the following teaching domains:  

  • Planning and Preparation (Focuses on topics including course plans, lesson design, use of effective assessments, and more) 
  • Teaching Environment (Focuses on classroom management, class culture, procedures, and more) 
  • Instruction (Focuses on communication between students and faculty, engagement, feedback, discussion, and more) 

How It Works: 

Once a faculty member decides to engage in the observation and consultation process, they will contact the CETL via email at or via phone at 313-578-0580 to schedule a pre-observation appointment. During the pre-observation discussion, faculty and CETL staff will consider specific aspects of teaching they would like feedback about and choose one domain of focus from the list of categories above. The faculty will choose a suitable date for the CETL staff to visit their face-to-face or online course. The CETL will visit the course on the date(s) provided by the faculty and find an inconspicuous place to record their observations and feedback. 

After the CETL has completed the observation feedback, they will set up a follow-up meeting with the faculty member. The CETL will provide feedback, observations, recommendations, next steps, and resources when applicable. Faculty may schedule follow-up sessions at their discretion and a letter of participation to include in their dossier/portfolio. (This letter does not contain confidential details about the observation but denotes participation in the process).

Course Review and Consultations

Faculty can schedule a one-on-one consultation with a CETL staff member for a brief or expanded course review. Let us help you develop your own best pedagogical practices based on the scholarship of teaching and learning. Faculty may request a certification letter of Excellence in Course Design after a positive expanded course review.

Standard Course Review: In a standard course review, a CETL team member will perform an evaluation of key course components listed under the tier-one criteria below. After the review, the consultant and the faculty member will discuss possible action plans to put into practice (including an expanded course review) later in the semester.

Expanded Course Review: In an expanded course review, an expert from the CETL will perform an exhaustive evaluation of a faculty member’s course, providing detailed analysis and feedback using both the tier one and tier two criteria (listed below). The expanded course review will include a classroom observation (either in-person or virtually) as well as follow-up discussions regarding the feedback and analysis.

TIER ONE CRITERIA: course navigation/usability, technical requirements, learning activities, syllabus design, instructional elements, assessments, and inclusivity/accessibility.

TIER TWO CRITERIA: (includes tier one criteria) course outcome alignment, assessments (details and results) and feedback (including rubrics), interactive/collaborative assignments, grading policies, and demonstration of faculty’s continuous improvement.

Academic Technology Support

The CETL offers a myriad of faculty support services, which is not limited to, but includes:

  • Creation and deployment tests and examinations (including Respondus LockDown browser)
  • Record and upload video content to Yuja and via Camtasia
  • Implement and use of Blackboard with Classic or Ultra views
  • Many other additional academic technology services

Professional Services, Scholarship, and Research

The Center also supports faculty growth at all career stages.

Additional services include:

  • Opportunities to develop and present collaborative professional development sessions with CETL staff
  • Research and grant assistance, principally related to teaching and learning
  • Faculty on-boarding
  • Confidential teaching observations

Please visit the CETL offices on the third floor of the McNichols Campus Library (room 326) or contact us via email at or phone at 313-578-0580. We’re happy to help you set up an appointment, hear your suggestions for professional development, or for you to meet with one of our experts regarding course design, the Blackboard L.M.S., or other queries regarding digital education.