Overall Rating Gold - expired
Overall Score 65.35
Liaison Christa Rieck
Submission Date Nov. 23, 2015
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

University of Houston
AC-7: Incentives for Developing Courses

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Gabriel Durham
Graduate assistant
Office of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have an ongoing incentives program or programs that meet the criteria for this credit?:
Yes

A brief description of the program(s), including positive outcomes during the previous three years:

Part of the UH Energy Initiative strategic focus is a dedication to the development of new courses relating to sustainability, alternative energy sources, and grid power. The Energy Initiative is an integrative system-wide effort, offering support to participating faculty through various means. For example, Dr. Kairn Klieman is presently developing the graduate certificate in global energy development and sustainability as part of this initiative. As a co-director of the program, she is offered direct support to develop courses including departmental leave, summer pay for curriculum development, and compensation; she is also fostering further course development across the campus.

Dr. Klieman is given an extra stipend by the institution to hold a reading group focused on energy and society. Ten faculty members from the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences are given a $250 monthly stipend and free books as incentives to take part. As a result, new courses are soon to be developed with the mission to foster more collaboration between traditional energy disciplines and the humanities. One course presently in development is "Women and Energy", which examines how women are affected by the energy sector in the Middle East.

An example of already implemented curriculum as a result of the Energy Initiative can be found in the Undergraduate Program section of STARS under energy and sustainability minor.

Additionally, the University of Houston department of Faculty and Departmental Instructional Support (FDIS) has an ongoing grant award process known as the Teaching Innovation Program (TIP) geared specifically to foster innovative approaches to teaching, course development, and course sustainability. Guided by the FDIS commitment to innovative practices, the majority of awards go to courses that foster interdisciplinary collaboration, new technology to allow for better and more accessible distance education, and the flipped course model.

New courses, and even minors, have already grown from the awards granted by TIP. Examples of awards relating to sustainability include: the innovative flipped courses for the interdisciplinary food and society minor, iPad curriculum equipping students for success in the new media environment (paperless course), flipped STEM coursework with ICS videos, and art history hybrid courses through app and web development (developing a free visual database of humanity-related art).


A brief description of the incentives that faculty members who participate in the program(s) receive:

Funds for online teaching equipment: computers, projectors, iPads, etc.
Summer pay for curriculum development
Stipends to organize sustainability reading groups
Stipends to take part in sustainability reading groups
Budgeted pay to hire and train co-directors of new programs
Leave from department duties to develop new course materials
Positive priority press coverage of new courses and programs


The website URL where information about the incentive program(s) is available:

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution or simply email your inquiry to stars@aashe.org.