Excellence in Teaching and Learning

Defining Excellence in Teaching and Learning 

Foundational to excellent teaching at ϲʲͼ Mercy is a dedication to discernment through the process of reflection. ϲʲͼ Mercy faculty and students are expected to participate in these processes regularly in alignment with Mercy and Jesuit traditions, which include a passion for quality, an emphasis on ethics and values, care for and education of the whole person, academic excellence, and real world and life-long learning. 

With a passion for diversity, equity, and inclusion, ϲʲͼ Mercy faculty strive to create an inclusive environment and support academic growth by meeting learners where they are with rigor, compassion, and personalized attention. ϲʲͼ Mercy faculty embrace a variety of teaching modalities, engage with emerging pedagogies and best practices, while aiming to improve teaching and learning through professional development activities. The faculty’s dedication to student well-being includes a thoughtful and practical attention to the employment market and how best to help situate its graduates for career success. 

Excellent teaching at ϲʲͼ Mercy is also excellent learning and therefore, is defined as an ongoing commitment to fostering an environment in which both instructors and students commit to their mutual responsibilities: instructors are experts in their respective disciplines as well as pedagogical professionals and students are respectful, eager, and engaged learners. 

While individual disciplines may include additional goals in their definitions of excellent teaching and learning, the following includes universally accepted maxims supported by research on best practices for instruction at the college and university level: 

As Excellent Teachers, ϲʲͼ Mercy Faculty: 

  • Model Inspired Learning 
  • Create an environment that strives for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion 
  • Provide Rigor and Challenge 
  • Communicate Effectively and Consistently 
  • Focus on Student-Centered Mentoring 
  • Foster and Engage in Reflection and Self-Reflection 

As Excellent Learners, ϲʲͼ Mercy Students: 

  • Commit to Learning 
  • Embrace a classroom environment that strives for diversity, equity, and inclusion 
  • Accept Rigor, Challenge, and Responsibility 
  • Respect their Instructors and Class Colleagues 
  • Value their Instructors’ Knowledge 
  • Engage in Reflection and Self-Reflection 

In embracing these goals, both ϲʲͼ Mercy faculty and students strive for an excellent teaching and learning community that inspires both student and instructor, demands rigor of both, and facilitates intellectual, spiritual, ethical, and social growth. 

Adopted by the faculty assemblies on all campuses: McNichols (October 6, 2022), Riverfront (April 12, 2023), and Corktown (April 25, 2023).


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  • Question Set for Student Reflection on Learning (SRL)

    Student Reflection on Learning (SRL) - a replacement for the previous course and instructor student evaluations - emphasizes the role of student responsibility in effective learning and emphasizes reflection as an essential element for recognizing and developing teaching excellence.

    Student Reflection on Learning - Fall 2023 Pilot -

  • Center for Excellence in Teaching & Learning

    The Center for Excellence in Teaching & Learning (CETL) is available to support faculty through individual consultations, small groups, formal workshops, and professional development -