Students walking on campus

Center for Teaching and Learning

Empowering Educators, Inspiring Learners

The Western New England Center for Teaching and Learning provides faculty with access to cutting-edge, empirically validated teaching strategies.

Through workshops, faculty presentation, and consultation, the Center serves as a repository for teaching related information and gives students access to faculty who are well trained to be excellent in and out of the classroom.

Founded in 2011, the Center continues to build and develop programs focused on teaching and teaching-related activities.

Contact Information

Deb Patterson, Professor of Education, Co-Director of the Center for Teaching and Learning:

Tamara Shattuck, Associate Professor of Education, Co-Director of the Center for Teaching and Learning:

Teaching Excellence Award

The Teaching Excellence Award is presented to a member of the full-time faculty in the Colleges of Arts and Sciences, Business, or Engineering who best exemplifies excellence in teaching. The nominee must have made a distinct difference in the teaching climate of the University in one or more of the following ways:

  • Model teaching or instructional support
  • Innovative teaching methods
  • Cocurricular efforts, mentorship, campus leadership

Each year there is a Teaching Excellence Award committee consisting of three students, three alumni, and three faculty members (previous award recipients). The faculty members of the committee review nominations that are collected from the campus community and identify a selection of finalists. Then the campus is called upon to provide statements of support for the finalists. Finally, the full committee reviews campus input and materials submitted by each finalist to select the annual award recipient. The award is presented at Commencement.

Nominate Faculty Now

Past Award Recipients

Wellen Davison Seminar

The seminar is named after former Professor of Mechanical Engineering Wellen Davison, who taught at the University’s College of Engineering for 38 years. He began his teaching career in 1951, when the engineering program was only offered during evening classes at the Springfield YMCA. In celebration of his dedication, the University inaugurated the Wellen Davison Seminar in 1989, now an annual professional development event designed to help faculty members integrate technology into their course instruction and to improve the teaching and learning environment at the University. In 2014, the Wellen Davison Lab was opened in Sleith Hall in honor of his long academic history with the University.

Recent Seminars

Cultural Humility and Implicit Bias

This important seminar featured expert speakers Cheryl Sharp, Jody Walker-Smith, and Spencer Hill, who are all attorneys with the Connecticut Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities (CHRO). They shared their insights on issues of cultural humility and implicit bias, as well as offer strategies for addressing and combating discrimination in our communities.

Looking in the Mirror: Our Role in Dismantling White Supremacy

This seminar focused on concepts of anti-racism, diversity, inclusion, sensitivity, and unconscious bias in today’s modern workplace/university. Dr. Neenah Estrella-Luna is a researcher, educator, advocate, and consultant focusing on issues related to social justice, social relations, and democratic governance.

Teaching White Supremacy

Donald Yacovone, lifetime Associate at Harvard University's Hutchins Center for African and African American Research, has written widely on abolitionism, gender, the African American role in the Civil War, white supremacy, and American cultural history. He published Teaching White Supremacy: America's Democratic Ordeal and the Forging of Our National Identity, his ninth book, in the fall of 2022.