UT System Academy of Distinguished Teachers to induct new members

Estefania Espinosa

The UT System Academy of Distinguished Teachers will induct three new members Tuesday, including UT-Austin music professor Robert Duke.

The Academy is an advocacy group that focuses on improving teaching methods, encouraging innovation and advancing interdisciplinary efforts. Duke, head of music and human learning, has taught at the University for 31 years. Duke is the Marlene and Morton Meyerson Centennial Professor, and his research includes motor skill learning, cognitive psychology and neuroscience.

“Teachers are of the noblest profession and the Academy honors the best of the best, not only for their teaching excellence but also for their impact and advancements across the UT System,” UT System Chancellor William H. McRaven said in a press release.

Nominees must be past recipients of the Regents’ Outstanding Teaching Award. John Sibert, president of the Academy of Distinguished Teachers, said members must also show interest and leadership in teaching, beyond their own classes.

“From now on, these exceptional educators will be asked to collaborate with their fellow Academy members to promote educational excellence and innovation throughout UT System institutions,” McRaven said.

The time commitment associated with Academy membership is comparable to departmental service, according to the UT System website.

“Membership in the Academy is a call to action with a mandate, enthusiastically embraced by each member, to significantly impact the undergraduate learning experience Systemwide,” Sibert, associate professor of chemistry at UT Dallas, said in a press release.  

The two other new members are chemistry professor Kevin Schug and mathematics associate professor Barbara Shipman, both from UT-Arlington.