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Equity and Teaching

As both an HSI (Hispanic serving institution) and an MSI (minority serving institution), the University of Houston-Downtown recognizes, embraces, and celebrates the unique value that diversity brings to the university experience. The CTLE is proud to support a teaching corps working actively to design and facilitate learning experiences where issues of equity are front and center, with resources and programs to assist instructors with identifying and addressing inequities and creating on-ramps for learning for all.


Magna Videos

The CTLE's subscription to Magna Publications’ video library gives you access to hundreds of videos presented by leaders in the field of SoTL. Most are only 20 minutes long and all include additional supplemental resources. To access the titles below (and the entire Magna library), follow the instructions at the associated CTLE resource page on that topic.

Some Strategies/Interventions

Here are a few strategies to try as you re-evaluate your courses and teaching practices through the lens of equity.
  • Collect and analyze student demographic data (historical and current enrollment) to inform course design and facilitation. 
  • Conduct detailed surveys, especially at the beginning of the semester, to learn more about your learners and their needs.
  • Incorporate reflection assignments that give learners the opportunity to articulate their place and role in their learning.
  • Create multiple pathways to learner engagement (rich multimedia, multiple ways to respond to prompts, multiple ways to demonstrate achievement of outcomes and objectives, etc.).
  • Re-examine class policies, rubrics, and syllabus language so as not to exacerbate inequalities (more flexible deadlines, fewer penalties for - or a new definition of - late work, etc.).  
  • Reformulate your grading practices (heavily diversified grade categories that feature various ways to do well in the course, multiple attempts on quizzes and/or tests, opportunities for resubmission of work, etc.).  
  • Provide equitable access to learning resources (moving away from costly textbooks, using OER, LCT, and/or ZCT, relying instead on instructor-created materials, presenting materials in multiple formats, creating a download area of the course so that students don't have to rely exclusively on streaming, etc.).  
  • Examine (and design with intention) representational aspects of a course so that students see themselves in the field you are all exploring together (in readings, in guest speakers, etc.). 
  • Craft and carefully manage and participate in debates, role-play, discussions, and/or simulations that tackle issues of equity, diversity, and inclusion.


Rubrics & Review Tools

In recent years, several rubrics and review tools have become available that allow faculty to look at their courses through the lens of equity. Below are some of the most widely used. How do your courses match up to these? As always, if you'd like assistance with addressing any areas of these rubrics and review tools, make an appointment for a consultation.

Certificate Series Microcredential

The CTLE's popular Certificate in Evidence-Based Instruction and Course Design includes three workshops that lead to a microcredential in Inclusive Teaching. The workshops are:

Workshop from the Online Learning Consortium

The CTLE can connect you with short-duration workshops from OLC and Quality Matters. One of OLC's newer offerings is Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility in Online Learning. To request enrollment, visit the OLC website, make a note of your preferred start date, and apply at the CTLE's online form