Faculty developers are experienced educators who are passionate and curious about teaching and learning. Our job is to support and advance effective teaching. 

"Learning is not a specatator sport."  â€”Chickering, A and Gamson, Z. F. (March 1987)

Mission & History


The mission of Faculty Development is to foster effective and informed teaching practices that promote creativity and learning.


The seed of the Academy of Art's Faculty Development department was planted in 2002 when Natasha Haugnes, then an academic coach, coordinated a half-day teaching conference for instructors to address the most commonly articulated concerns of Academy faculty: student behavior, special populations, critiquing, and how to engage and inspire students. The workshops were such a hit that they have continued every fall and spring semester.

In 2003, a few department directors requested help from the Resource Center (now ARC) in observing and giving guidance to their new faculty. That fall, a "Faculty Support" program led by Jennifer Russell was launched on a trial basis in a handful of departments, and it became a full department with a staff of four in the summer of 2004. 

Since that time, Faculty Development has grown in size and scope and now serves 1300+ online and onsite faculty in all departments through a variety of services. Vaness Spang now leads the team.

Collectively, our team has presented at national conferences year after year, including the POD Network in Higher Education, UW-Madison's Distance Teaching & Learning, and WASC Annual Meeting, the Sloan-C International Conference on Online Learning, and TESOL (a national organization for English language educators), on a wide variety of topics, including original research.