2006 Teaching Excellence Awards

held April 18, 2006

Pictured are the College recipients of the 2006 Teaching Excellence Awards (left to right):

Dr. Pamela Roberson, Dr. Dixie Mercer, Dr. Bert Stine, Dr. Wanda Mouton,
Dr. Fred Allen, Dr. Ken Collier and Dr. Daniel Unger

Dr. James Standley, Dean of College of Applied Arts and Sciences and College of Liberal Arts,

Dr. Wanda Mounton, 2006 Teaching Excellence Recipient

and Dr. Mary Cullinan, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs

The Teaching Excellence Awards were established in 1994 to honor outstanding classroom teachers at SFA. Selection criteria is divided into three categories which include knowledge of subject matter, interest in students, organization of classes and assignments, innovative instruction, letters from students, alumni, faculty and teaching colleagues, and contribution to improvement of teaching at the university.


Each of the seven candidates received a plaque and $500. As recipient of the University Teaching Excellence Award, Mouton received an additional plaque and an additional $500.


Keynote speaker for the convocation was Dr. Dan Bruton, associate professor of physics and astronomy, and the 2003 recipient of the University Teaching Excellence Award.


Recipient of 2006 University Teaching Excellence Award

Dr. Wanda Mouton
College of Applied Arts & Sciences

Dr. Wanda Mouton received the College of Applied Arts and Sciences Teaching Excellence Award. An associate professor in the Department of Communication, she is a Garrison High School graduate. Mouton earned a bachelor's degree in journalism from SFA, a master's degree in journalism and secondary education from the University of Texas – Permian Basin , and a doctorate from Texas A&M University . She joined SFA in 1990 as an adjunct faculty member.


Mouton was a 2003 recipient of the Member in Print award from Delta Kappa Gamma, an international professional teachers' organization and has received awards for writing and layout and design from Texas Press Women.


“Dr. Mouton has strong organizational and communication skills,” said Dr. James Standley, dean of the College of Applied Arts and Sciences. “Her considerable ability in this area is founded in a genuine concern for the welfare of students and a love of teaching journalism. She can work enthusiastically

with the most inexperienced student as well as with upper level and advanced students with equal effectiveness. Further, she demonstrates with her confident manner that she has those traits of character that make her a good role model for students to emulate.”




Dr. Daniel Unger
College of Forestry and Agriculture


The Arthur Temple College of Forestry and Agriculture Teaching Excellence Award winner is Dr. Daniel Unger, associate professor of remote sensing and geographic information systems. Unger holds bachelor's degrees in forestry and general management from Purdue University , a master's degree in forest resources from Pennsylvania State University and a doctorate in forestry, wildlife and range sciences from the University of Idaho . He joined the SFA faculty in 1998.


According to Dr. R. Scott Beasley, dean of the Arthur Temple College of Forestry and Agriculture, remote sensing helps scientists see everything in context with its surroundings, from large ecosystems and broad landscapes to small forests and individual trees.

“Dr. Unger's research has helped him stay current in a field that literally changes day by day,” Beasley said. “Every time a new satellite is launched into space, additional high quality data are available to aid in the management, protection and conservation of our natural resources. Staying abreast of these changes and incorporating them into his courses is a challenge he has mastered.”


Unger has won poster competitions hosted by mapping software company ESRI, by the Texas Natural Resources Information Systems GIS Forum and by the East Texas GIS Users Group. He was the Robert C. Heller Scholarship recipient at the University of Idaho.



Dr. Bert Stine
College of Business

Dr. Bert Stine is the Teaching Excellence Award winner for the Nelson Rusche College of Business. A professor in the Department of Economics and Finance, Stine joined the SFA faculty in 1992. He holds a bachelor's degree from Sam Houston State University , a Master of Business Administration degree from Texas A&M – Commerce and a doctorate from Louisiana Tech University .


“He has the wonderful ability to take a very complicated subject and bring it down to a level where the students can understand it,” said Dr. Violet C. Rogers, dean of the college. “As world markets expand and the world of finance gets more complicated, good teachers who can offer clarity in this field are rare. Dr. Stine is a master at delivering the fundamentals, breaking it down, tearing it apart, and putting it back together so that they see the whole picture, one element at a time.”

Stine has earned the Outstanding Professor award presented by the SFA Phi Alpha Kappa finance club four times and also has received the MBA Association's Outstanding Graduate Professor award.

Dr. Dixie Mercer
College of Education

The College of Education Teaching Excellence Award recipient is Dr. Dixie Mercer, project director for the Visually Impaired Teacher Training Program. Mercer joined the Department of Human Services faculty in 1998 and currently serves as associate professor. She has written and been awarded two federal grants funded by the Department of Education's Office of Special Education Programs and has been responsible for developing distance learning materials as part of a federal Fund for Improvement of Post Secondary Education grant.


“Dr. Mercer is a dedicated and innovative teacher,” said Bill Bryan, chair of the Department of Human Services. “She works day and night to provide high quality instruction in the regular classroom as well in the distance learning classroom. Her impact on the field of special education in general and especially teacher of the visually impaired is enormous. She is the driving force behind an SFA program that is receiving national attention.”


Mercer earned a Bachelor of Arts degree, Master of Arts degree and educational doctorate in special education – visually impaired, all from Texas Tech University . She was the first annual recipient of the Phil Hatlen award for leadership and innovative changes from the Texas Association for Education and Rehabilitation of the Blind and Visually Impaired.


Dr. Fred Allen
College of Fine Arts

The Teaching Excellence Award recipient for the College of Fine Arts is Fred J. Allen. Allen joined the School of Music faculty in 1994 and serves as director of bands. He earned a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Abilene Christian University and a Master of Music degree from Texas A&M – Commerce.


Allen teaches conducting and music education classes and oversees nearly 300 students involved in the SFA band program. He has written more than 20 musical arrangements, including music for Texas University Interscholastic League band competitions and 11 commissioned works. His works have been performed across the United States and in Korea , Great Britain , Germany and Australia .


“He offers to his students not only his expertise in music, but also his energy, his connections in the professional world, his continuing support and assistance after graduation, and his friendship and inspiration,” said Dr. Richard Berry, dean of the College of Fine Arts . “An entire generation of public school and university band directors and music teachers are beginning to point to Fred Allen as the major defining force in their careers.”



Dr. Ken Collier
College of Liberal Arts

Dr. Ken Collier is the Teaching Excellence Award recipient for the College of Liberal Arts .

He joined the faculty in the Department of Political Science, Geography, and Public Administration, in 1999 and has earned the respect of students and colleagues because of his creative ability as a teacher, according to Dr. Ronald Claunch, chair of the department.


“Dr. Collier has written a book on the presidency and is completing a second book,” Claunch said. “He has conducted fund research at the White House Historical Association, the John F. Kennedy Library, the Johnson Library and the Ford Library. As a result, students are taught by a genuine expert in the field and they speak of his high level of knowledge.”


Collier, a Longview native, earned a Bachelor of Arts degree and doctorate at the University of Texas at Austin . He serves as associate professor of political science.


Dr. Pamela Roberson
College of Sciences and Mathematics

Dr. Pamela Roberson is the Teaching Excellence Award recipient for the College of Sciences and Mathematics. A Department of Mathematics and Statistics faculty member since 1983, Roberson serves as associate professor of mathematics. She earned Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degrees from Southwest Texas State University and a doctorate in mathematics from the University of Houston .


“Dr. Roberson is a superb teacher who can reach all students, from those in college algebra to those in graduate school,” said Dr. Anthony Duben, dean of

the college. “Teaching in the classroom environment is only one aspect of the art of teaching. Working with students on independent study and research projects is teaching in a master/apprentice mode. She has been successful at that endeavor, and her ability to bring the student from the classroom to a research setting demonstrates her ability to prepare and motivate students to aspire to the highest level of achievement in mathematics.”


Roberson was named the recipient of the annual Mathematical Association of America Distinguished Contributions to Students award in 2005 and was honored with a Teaching Excellence Grant from the Education Advancement Foundation of Austin. She serves as sponsor of the Phi Eta Sigma freshman honor society and has served as sponsor of the Texas Delta chapter of the Pi Mu Epsilon honor mathematics society.


Special Thanks


A special thanks to the members of the Teaching Excellence Committee who worked so hard to put this event together,

they are:

Dr. Andrew Parr, Music (Chair of Teaching Excellence Committee)

Dr. Tim Clipson, General Business

Dr. Dennis Gravatt, Biology

Dr. Michael Fountain, Forestry
Ms. Sherry Williford, Communications
Dr. Michael Tkacik, Political Science

Dr. Lisa Mize, Human Sciences


Previous Convocations:

The 2005 Teaching Excellence Convocation

The 2004 Teaching Excellence Convocation

The 2003 Teaching Excellence Convocation

The 2002 Teaching Excellence Convocation

The 2001 Teaching Excellence Convocation

The 2000 Teaching Excellence Convocation

The 1999 Teaching Excellence Convocation

The 1998 Teaching Excellence Convocation

The 1997 Teaching Excellence Convocation

The 1996 Teaching Excellence Convocation

The 1995 Teaching Excellence Convocation

The 1994 Teaching Excellence Convocation

General Statement, Eligibility and Criteria