The USC Center for Excellence in Teaching (CET) is dedicated to the inspiration and advancement of outstanding teachers in a learner-centered environment. Through a variety of activities, CET encourages the widespread promulgation of innovative pedagogies among USC's faculty and students. In addition, through mentoring and structured programs, it fosters the development of junior faculty and doctoral students with aspirations of academic careers.
CET is unique among centers and institutes with similar purposes at major U.S. colleges and universities. Its programs are conceived and implemented by creative faculty, CET's Faculty Fellows, whose excellent teaching and exemplary scholarship are well-recognized by their peers.
The Faculty Fellows are committed to excellence and innovation in teaching and learning. They are an interdisciplinary community of practice, addressing the impact of innovative pedagogies and educational technologies on student learning across the curriculum. In addition, the Fellows constitute an intellectual resource on the assessment of instruction and educational policy.
The Center's programs include:
- Forums on teaching and learning
- Academic career workshops
- Mentoring programs
- Extensive web resources, including video archives of our events
- Collegial exchange with faculty interested in strengthening teaching and learning at USC
- Work with departments or schools to affect programmatic change, curriculum/course design, and assessment of student learning outcomes
- Awards for outstanding faculty and teaching assistants
- Grants for fostering innovative undergraduate teaching
- Open classrooms of Faculty Fellows (the "Teaching Excellence in Action" program)
- TA Training
- ITA Language Institute
- Extendive video archive of CET Events as well as Teaching and Learning Subjects
CET's commitment to excellence in teaching and learning is embodied by two of our Distinguished Faculty Fellows, President Emeritus Steven B. Sample and Professor Warren Bennis who co-teach "The Art and Adventure of Leadership," a popular course offered to juniors and seniors by application only. Students describe the course as "unparalleled," "inspiring," and even "life-changing." As a consequence of the course, students report changing majors and even long-term career goals. Furthermore, the personal and intrinsic rewards of teaching are recognized by our president who notes: "teaching this course has been one of the most satisfying academic experiences of my career" (Sample, The Contrarian's Guide to Leadership, 2001).