About the Adams Center

We believe that learning is a lifelong process.

The Adams Center exists to promote the lifelong learning of ACU’s faculty as they strive to integrate their faith and their discipline. Today, as in 1992, our purpose remains: to support faculty who understand and appreciate the limitless potential for life changing, value building, and mind expanding achievements in the learning experiences at Abilene Christian University. 

What We Do
The Adams Center is a gathering place for faculty to share insights, raise questions, and develop skills in a hospitable, supportive context. We provide state of the art learning facilities that allow you to experiment with new ways of teaching, learning, and research, but we also focus on hospitality. Drop by on the way to class for coffee or join us for lunch and conversations led by your colleagues.
We invite you to browse our site for services, events, and resources!

Programs and Events

Learn about ongoing programs such as Master Teacher, Summer Faculty Institute and New Faculty Orientation and the many sessions offered over a hot lunch.

Teaching Resources

Find out about the services we provide to our faculty, including faculty consultation, course planning and guides to improve teaching and learning.

Faculty Career Resources

Get assistance with your tenure portfolio, learn about grants and funding for research, or learn how to apply for faculty renewal leave.

Learning Technologies

Discover ways to use Canvas, Lockdown Browser, Turnitin, Faculty Success and other frequently used tools at ACU.

Our Staff
Dr. Laura Carroll

Dr. Laura Carroll

Assistant Provost for Teaching, Learning and Vocational Formation

325-674-2264
lbc01c@acu.edu

Dr. Scott Hamm

Dr. Scott Hamm

Assistant Director and Learning Designer

325-674-2981
scott.hamm@acu.edu

Dr. Rodney Ashlock

Dr. Rodney Ashlock

Director, Faculty Development

325-674-3767
ashlockr@acu.edu

Amy Boone

Amy Boone

Teaching and Learning Specialist

325-674-2456
alb17a@acu.edu

Dr. Stephen Rektenwald

Dr. Stephen Rektenwald

Assistant Director, Innovation Foundry and Educational Technology

325-674-2457
smr97a@acu.edu

Dr. Amy McLaughlin-Sheasby

Dr. Amy McLaughlin-Sheasby

Director of Faculty Spiritual Formation

325-674-2023
acm12a@acu.edu

Hollye Jaklewicz

Hollye Jaklewicz

Administrative Coordinator

325-674-2023
hyj21a@acu.edu

Our Staff
Dr. Laura Carroll

Dr. Laura Carroll

Assistant Provost for Teaching, Learning and Vocational Formation

325-674-2264
lbc01c@acu.edu

Dr. Rodney Ashlock

Dr. Rodney Ashlock

Director, Faculty Development

325-674-3767
ashlockr@acu.edu

Dr. Stephen Rektenwald

Dr. Stephen Rektenwald

Asst. Director, Innovation Foundry & Educational Technology

325-674-2457
smr97a@acu.edu

Hollye Jaklewicz

Hollye Jaklewicz

Administrative Coordinator

325-674-2023
hyj21a@acu.edu

Dr. Scott Hamm

Dr. Scott Hamm

Asst. Director and Learning Designer

325-674-2981
scott.hamm@acu.edu

Amy Boone

Amy Boone

Teaching and Learning Specialist

325-674-2456
alb17a@acu.edu

Dr. Amy McLaughlin-Sheasby

Dr. Amy McLaughlin-Sheasby

Director of Faculty Spiritual Formation

325-674-2023
acm12a@acu.edu

Our Staff
Dr. Laura Carroll

Dr. Laura Carroll

Assistant Provost for Teaching, Learning and Vocational Formation

325-674-2264
lbc01c@acu.edu

Dr. Scott Hamm

Dr. Scott Hamm

Asst. Director and Learning Designer

325-674-2981
scott.hamm@acu.edu

Dr. Rodney Ashlock

Dr. Rodney Ashlock

Director, Faculty Development

325-674-3767
ashlockr@acu.edu

Amy Boone

Amy Boone

Teaching and Learning Specialist

325-674-2456
alb17a@acu.edu

Dr. Stephen Rektenwald

Dr. Stephen Rektenwald

Asst. Director, Innovation Foundry & Educational Technology

325-674-2457
smr97a@acu.edu

Dr. Amy McLaughlin-Sheasby

Dr. Amy McLaughlin-Sheasby

Director of Faculty Spiritual Formation

325-674-2023
acm12a@acu.edu

Hollye Jaklewicz

Hollye Jaklewicz

Administrative Coordinator

325-674-2023
hyj21a@acu.edu

Reserve a Room

In some instances, the three spaces in the Adams Center may be available for use by outside groups. The planned event should meet the following guidelines:

  1. If it is a lunchtime event, the event should be open exclusively to faculty and all faculty on campus.
  2. Events/meetings between 8 a.m. – 11 a.m. or 1:30 – 5 p.m. (not during lunchtime), may be scheduled for faculty and staff groups, but not any student groups. Priority will be given to faculty groups.
  3. If you would like to serve food, please talk with administrative coordinator Hollye Jaklewicz first to make sure we can accommodate outside food on that day, then plan to make your own arrangements to order the food.

Occasionally we might be able to handle events that would fall outside of these guidelines, but these would be rare.

Contact administrative coordinator Hollye Jaklewicz.

Our History

Dr. Walter H. Adams, ACU’s first faculty member to hold an earned doctoral degree, received his first degree, a Bachelor or Arts in education, from Abilene Christian in 1925. He received a Master of Arts in education from Stanford University in 1927 and earned a doctorate in guidance from Columbia University in 1933. Adams was named Dean of Abilene Christian in 1932 at the age of 29 and served as an administrator until 1969. In 1992, ACU announced the opening of the Walter H. Adams Center for Teaching Excellence, located on the ground floor of the Brown Library Complex.

The great legacy of creative and imaginative academic leadership given to this University by Walter H. Adams serves as the inspiration and encouragement for the Center. His strong emphasis on teaching excellence serves as an enduring example to all who understand and appreciate the limitless potential for life changing, value building, and mind-expanding achievements in the classrooms, laboratories, and lecture halls of Abilene Christian University.

Our Partners

By the Numbers

The Numbers

Faculty Responses

Highlights

Faculty Served

Visitors in 2021-22

Sessions Offered

Teaching/Learning Sessions

Mission Sessions

Reading Group Sessions

Collegiality Sessions 

Scholarship/Research Sessions

The Master Teacher program has given me some of the nuts and bolts tools to help me actualize the teaching philosophy I wanted to embody through my teaching.

The most helpful parts of New Faculty Orientation were meeting with other faculty and having your own cohort. …The classes we attended were invaluable and assisted me in learning so many of the ancillary supports on campus. I also love the mentorship provided.

Teaching Squares helped us think more consciously about teaching with regard to inclusivity. 

Through this process, I realized that there are many opportunities to infuse antiracist practices.

Read the complete 21/22 Annual Impact Report.

New Faculty Oriented

Master Teachers Graduated

Technology Questions Answered

Video Tutorials Created

Teaching and Research Grants Awarded

Student Fellows Consulted

Focus Groups Conducted

Faculty Participated in Teaching Squares

By the Numbers

The Numbers

Faculty Served

Visitors in 2021-22

Sessions Offered

Teaching/Learning Sessions

Mission Sessions

Reading Group Sessions

Collegiality Sessions 

Scholarship/Research Sessions

Faculty Responses

The Master Teacher program has given me some of the nuts and bolts tools to help me actualize the teaching philosophy I wanted to embody through my teaching.

The most helpful parts of New Faculty Orientation were meeting with other faculty and having your own cohort. …The classes we attended were invaluable and assisted me in learning so many of the ancillary supports on campus. I also love the mentorship provided.

Teaching Squares helped us think more consciously about teaching with regard to inclusivity. 

Through this process, I realized that there are many opportunities to infuse antiracist practices.

Read the complete 21/22 Annual Impact Report.

Highlights

New Faculty Oriented

Master Teachers Graduated

Technology Questions Answered

Video Tutorials Created

Teaching and Research Grants Awarded

Student Fellows Consulted

Focus Groups Conducted

Faculty Participated in Teaching Squares

Contact Us

Laura Carroll

Executive Director

Scott Hamm

Assistant Director and Learning Designer

Rodney Ashlock

Director of Faculty Development

Amy Boone

Teaching and Learning Specialist

Hollye Jaklewicz

Administrative Coordinator

Stephen Rektenwald

Assistant Director of Educational Technology

In 1994, the President of the University established a Professional Development fund to be used to supplement currently budgeted monies dedicated to faculty enrichment. This document summarizes the purposes of the program, the process used to allocate the funds, and the closing dates for applications to be received.

Purposes of the Program

The Presidential Fund for Professional Development is a special fund of $11,000 that has been set aside to assist University faculty in becoming excellent teachers and scholars. Monies from this fund are intended to support faculty members traveling to conferences to improve their teaching or to present their research and scholarship at national or international conferences. Priority will be given to those attending conferences about teaching

Awards from the Presidential Fund for Professional Development will be given in amounts up to $1,000 per fiscal year, per faculty member.

Eligibility to Apply for Funding

In order to be eligible to apply for funding, the faculty member must attend a conference (or conference track) related to teaching. The conference can be directly related to the applicant’s field or a general teaching conference (for example, a Lilly conference). The applicant does not need to present at the conference. If the applicant chooses to attend a teaching track at a disciplinary conference, they must attend at least three sessions related to teaching. Faculty who attend a teaching conference will meet with Adams Center staff to share what they have learned.

Alternatively, an applicant may be presenting their research at a national or international conference or program within his/her discipline. The event must be generally recognized by the discipline as a major conference or program. The presentation can be either a paper or poster accepted through a peer-review process or an invited presentation. 

Monies from this fund may not be used to supplement participation that is otherwise funded by the conference organization. Monies from this fund must not be used to exceed the costs of conference participation. 

Application Process

Applications will be submitted to the Faculty Development Committee through the online form. Applicants should be prepared to provide: 

Rationale for attendance

        • A description of the teaching conference the faculty member wishes to attend and a rationale for how the conference will enhance the applicant’s classroom teaching, OR 
        • A description of the faculty member’s selection for participation in the meeting (noting how peer review has been involved in his/her selection). A copy of the acceptance or invitation letter for the presentation must be included, along with an abstract of the presentation.
        • Travel Budget
              • The budget must reflect any funds allocated by other sources, including the faculty member’s department. The budget should indicate how the funds that are being requested will be used (travel, registration fees, and so on), and should reflect the total expenses that the faculty member expects to incur.Travel Budget
          • The budget must reflect any funds allocated by other sources, including the faculty member’s department. The budget 
      • Applications for awards will be accepted three times each fiscal year for as long as the Fund remains in effect. Closing dates for applications are:
        • Summer Cycle: 5 p.m. on the second Monday in April. This cycle includes travel to events that occur from June through September.
        • Fall Cycle: 5 p.m. on the second Monday in September. This cycle includes travel to events that occur from October through January.
        • Spring Cycle: 5 p.m. on the last Monday in January. This cycle includes travel to events that occur from February through May.
      • Applications must be supported by a recommendation from the faculty member’s Department Chair, confirming the prestige of the conference or program and the significance of the faculty member’s participation. The Chair will receive an invitation to complete the recommendation form once the application has been submitted. Prior to applying, therefore, applicants should discuss with their Chair their plans to apply for Presidential Funds.  
      • Complete applications will be evaluated by the Faculty Development Committee, and this committee will make a recommendation for awards to the Provost’s Office.
      • The Provost’s Office will notify faculty members in writing whether or not they have been awarded funds. Upon award, funds will be transferred to the departmental FOAPs provided by the faculty member on the application.

      Criteria for Awarding Funds

      If the Faculty Development Committee receives more applications from eligible faculty than can be funded in a given cycle, they will use the following criteria to select which applications to fund: 

      • The committee will consider the quality of the proposal, the conference’s scope of influence, and the applicant’s need for funding. 
      • Preference will be given to applicants who did not receive Presidential Funds within the current or previous fiscal year. 
      • Preference will be given to junior faculty building their portfolios for tenure and promotion. 
      • The committee will aim to distribute Presidential Funds across the widest variety of departments and colleges. If there are multiple applicants from the same department, the committee will use the above criteria to select which applicants receive funding. In some cases, the committee may choose to offer smaller awards in order to fund multiple applicants from the same department. 

      Brown Library Room #264
      ACU Box 29201
      Abilene, TX 79699-9201