Center For Excellence In Teaching And Learning
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A global scan of higher education practices reveals that all world-class universities are distinguished by the quality of the services provided to faculty for their professional growth.

Institutions are now conducting research on classroom instruction or what is called the Scholarship Of Teaching And Learning. This type of research explores innovative teaching approaches and curriculum designs that will promote and transform current pedagogical practices to maximize student learning.

Excellence in teaching and learning is important to almost every educational planning strategy, not only in Oman and the Gulf but it also dominates the global conversations in major organizations such as the United Nations, UNESCO, and the World Bank. To achieve this objective, the SQU Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning was established in June 2014 to provide leadership for the improvement of higher education teaching and to initiate and support interdisciplinary interactions and research focus on teaching and learning for the 21st-century skills and dispositions.

In addition, CETL is expected to host international speakers, support inter-organizational faculty groups, support course level change, highlight effective teaching practices, encourage research and scholarship about teaching and learning and, provide enhancement programs, courses, seminars and workshops, and consultations.

The last academic year has been particularly meaningful as we focused our work on promoting teaching that leads to meaningful student learning. To this effect, we worked closely with our Faculty Fellows to make teaching and learning more visible. We had a total of 3 international consultants who conducted workshops and consultations both for the faculty fellows and the university community at large. We conducted workshops for individual colleges and departments upon request. At the beginning of the academic year, we focused on newly appointed faculty by developing a Faculty Hand Book which provides all information needed to ensure a smooth pathway into teaching at SQU. We also systematically visited individual colleges to inform faculty of the services that CETL provides.

Besides the big success in all our initiatives, last year was particularly significant because CETL won its first grant to investigate the current system of student evaluation of faculty (SET) and courses at SQU. This research is ongoing and we hope upon completion,   to propose a new SET tool as part of the new process.

Another new area has been our involvement in the peer observation activities of the Department of Management at the College of Economics and Political Sciences. Working with experienced faculty from the College of Nursing, we hope to provide advanced training for the faculty fellows in peer observation. They will then be able to work with faculty members in their colleges to improve the achievement of the stated program outcomes and course outcome-based learning objectives.

Our plans for this year are to award the first Certificates of Higher Education Teaching and Learning to the first group of faculty fellows who served from 2015-2017. We also plan to work with the newly appointed faculty fellows in the newly established certificate program, complete the work of another internal grant to promote the teaching of higher order thinking skills, organize book discussions, workshops and launch at least one online course for faculty. Of course, we will continue to reach out to all faculty members in all colleges and teaching units.

I realize that this is an ambitious plan but we are truly looking forward to another successful year where we continue to focus on teaching excellence to maximize student learning. 

It is my privilege and honor to lead the Center together with a strong and competent staff and faculty fellows from different colleges of the University. The Center will keep its promise to be the symbol of excellence and embodiment of its ideals.

The Center hopes that all faculty members consider it their safe haven, their resource, and their partner in their exciting teaching journeys at Sultan Qaboos University.

Happy Teaching and May Allah Bless Us All!


Prof. Thuwayba Al Barwani

Director Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning 


The Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning will serve to position Sultan Qaboos University at the forefront of research-based teaching and learning practices in higher education. 


The Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning will:  

  • Promote learning by supporting and enhancing effective higher education teaching and learning practices evidenced by current research, and aligned with the requirements of the major accrediting agencies. 
  • Stimulate a learning community that continually explores the relationship between higher education teaching and learning. 
  • Encourage research and scholarship in teaching and learning in higher education. 
  • Provide consultancy services in the areas of teaching and learning in higher education. 


The Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning will: 

  1. Provide professional development and consultancy for faculty to support the implementation of best practices in teaching and learning through programs, services, and resources.  
  2. Create, promote, and support community learning through: 
  3. Supervising awards for excellence in teaching. 
  4. Providing opportunities for reflection on pedagogical practices. 
  5. Managing a Faculty Fellows program. 
  6. Managing faculty and staff teaching “experts” who will share their teaching expertise with colleagues and who may post online teaching portfolios.
  7. Conduct and disseminate research on teaching and learning.  
  8. Conduct a periodic needs assessment to adapt to changing situations, goals, and research findings related to teaching and learning. 
  9. Work collaboratively with the Centre for Educational Technology (CET) to provide consultation services to faculty aimed toward more effective teaching. While CETL will provide consultation services, CET staff will provide e-learning and technology support to CETL and to the faculty. CETL will showcase e-learning platforms that are promoted by CET and will co-host workshops as appropriate.
  10. Work collaboratively with the Medical Education Unit in the College of Medicine and Health Sciences to support the current certificate programs and to provide additional programs as requested. 
  11. Report to faculty and administration formative and summative evaluation data related to curriculum change and student learning. 
  12. Offer certificate in higher education teaching and learning (CHETL). For the implementation of this objective, a proposal has to be prepared and approved by the Academic and University councils

CETL Organizational Chart

The Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning at Sultan Qaboos University provides services to academic faculty, thus enhancing the quality of teaching and learning first at SQU, then at both public and private higher education institutions nationally. CETL also makes visible the intellectual work of teaching while recognizing excellent Faculty Fellows across the SQU Colleges. 

The Faculty Fellows of CETL are expected to assume the following responsibilities: 

  • Conducting peer consultation
  • Modeling and promoting teaching excellence 
  • Developing outcome-based learning objectives
  • Promoting innovation in teaching 
  • Promoting student success 
  • Linking the College to the Center
  • Conducting workshops
  • Promoting center activities and events
  • Committee participation  

In addition, CETL provides other services to SQU Colleges and faculty. These services include development of workshops specific to the requests of individual academic programs, classroom observation, confidential consultation, syllabus and assessment review, along with print and electronic resources. Faculty Fellows Program  recognizes faculty who use excellent teaching/learning strategies derived from classroom-based research and who will be trained to act as college and program consultants. CETL staff will work with administration and faculty to assess both curriculum/teaching changes as well as document the impact these changes have on student learning. This collaborative evaluation process  include the establishment of performance goals, assessment criteria, identification or design of assessment tools, data collection, and reporting.










Certificate of Higher Education Teaching and Learning (CHETL) Guidelines



Program Focus:  The Certificate in Higher Education Teaching and Learning program is designed to support faculty in developing the strategies and skills needed to improve teaching and maximize student learning across higher education institutions in Oman.

Program Goals:  Recipients of the Certificate in Higher Education Teaching and Learning Program have demonstrated the ability to:

  • Apply instructional strategies suggested in current research and pedagogical literature related to; learner-centered education; development of critical thinking skills, establishment of appropriate learning goals at the course and program levels, and development of appropriate assessments to measure student achievement of those goals.
  • Use the SQU course outline to align university graduate attributes, program outcomes, learning objectives, teaching and learning activities, materials, assessment tools, and feedback.
  • Apply the principles of active learning.
  • Reflect on teaching practice to describe the correlation between course climate and student learning.
  • Give effective feedback to fellow teachers.
  • Prepare a capstone portfolio (a work in progress throughout teaching career) to highlight student centered courses, active teaching strategies, and authentic assessments of student learning at the course and program levels.


Program Structure:  The Certificate in College Teaching Program offers modular workshops focused on the following topics:

  • Introductory workshop for all participants focused on effective integrated course design models and outcome based learning objectives,
  • Teaching with Technology
  • Student-centered active teaching and learning environment
  • Outcome-based learning objectives for programs and courses
  • Rubric Design
  • Research-based teaching
  • Authentic assessment and data analysis
  • Teaching with Cases
  • Problem-based Learning
  • Critical Thinking Across the Curriculum
  • Student supervision
  • Teaching Portfolio

Each workshop certificate will state the credits of study in the required topic to which it can be applied.


CHETL Requirements: The following 3 components must be successfully completed by each participant with 2-3 years:

  1. Workshop completion:  28 credits in workshop topics as explained in Table 1.A
  2. Peer Assessment as explained in Section 2.A
  3. Portfolio completion and submission as explained in Section 3.A

Workshop Modules


Introductionto the CHETL


Educational Philosophy & Learning Theory


Outcome-based learning


Course design (alignment, syllabus design, instructional strategies)


Assessment and Rubric design/selection


Use of technology in teaching


Research-based teaching and/or SOTL


Peer assessment


Teaching CT online course


Capstone Portfolio



Total credits


2.A Peer assessment

  • Complete peer review as the reviewee
  • Complete peer review as the reviewer

3.A Capstone Portfolio that contains:

  1. Philosophical and theoretical foundations of your teaching
  2.  Course Outline/Syllabus for one or more courses including course goals, outcome-based learning objectives, course assessment tools and related rubrics.
  3. One classroom-based research analysis with instructional or assessment changes
  4. One new lesson plan with active, student-centered teaching strategies, course documents and artifacts
  5. Sample course assignments and activities to promote student critical thinking skills.
  6. Any work required for a workshop certificate
  7. Personal reflection on student learning that includes an analysis of student evaluations of the course and teaching
  8. Workshop certificates.


There will be a charge (To be determined) for the portfolio review due at the time of submission.

CHETL Credit Assignment Submission Procedures

Applying for CHETL


Working Hours      Address                                    Telephone No                           Email Us
Sun - Thu                 CETL, SQU, 50,pc: 123          + 96824141025                
8 am to 4 pm 


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