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James W. Pennebaker, Chair The University of Texas at Austin, SEA 4.212, Austin, TX 78712 • (512) 475-7596

Faculty Members Named to Prestigious Academy of Distinguished Teachers

Posted: June 6, 2011

AUSTIN, Texas — Seven faculty members have been named to the prestigious Academy of Distinguished Teachers at The University of Texas at Austin, Steven W. Leslie, executive vice president and provost, has announced.

Leslie said the academy is designed to recognize tenured faculty members who have made sustained and significant contributions to education, particularly at the undergraduate level. With this year's selections the academy has 126 members.

The new members are Jay L. Banner, professor, Department of Geological Sciences, Jackson School of Geosciences; Michael W. Downer, professor, Department of Physics, College of Natural Sciences; Charles Holahan, professor, Department of Psychology, College of Liberal Arts; Sharon Jarvis, associate professor, Department of Communication Studies, College of Communication; Beth Maloch, associate professor, Department of Curriculum and Instruction, College of Education; Yale N. Patt, professor, the Ernest Cockrell, Jr. Centennial Chair in Engineering, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Cockrell School of Engineering; and Marjorie C. Woods, professor, Department of English, College of Liberal Arts.

The faculty members were named to the academy based on recommendations from an ad hoc faculty/student committee that reviewed nominations of outstanding faculty members. The faculty members, he said, have earned the respect of peers, students and administrators for their outstanding teaching.

Members of the academy will receive a permanent academic salary increase of $7,000 and will be designated as a Distinguished Teaching Professor. Leslie said individuals are selected from the Academy of Distinguished Teachers to serve on an advisory group to the provost on teaching excellence. They also provide institutional leadership and guidance for the distinctive undergraduate experience available in the university's research environment.

Established in February 1995, the Academy of Distinguished Teachers was one of the first associations of its kind in the nation. New members of the academy are selected each year through a rigorous evaluation process. Deans of colleges and schools annually nominate faculty for membership, and a committee that includes members of the academy, students and other faculty review the nominations and recommend a slate of honorees to the provost, who makes the selections.

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