Dr. Linda Belau

Dr. Linda Belau

Name: Dr. Linda Belau

Department: Literatures & Cultural Studies 

College: College of Liberal Arts


UTRGV Center for Teaching Excellence - November Spotlight Video


I am Professor of English and Film Studies in the Department of Literatures and Cultural Studies.  I am also the Director of the Film Studies Program, which includes the Film Studies minor here at UTRGV.  I have been awarded the UT Regents’ Outstanding Teaching Award, the University-wide Excellence in Online Teaching Award, and the Provost’s Award for the Advancement of Study Abroad Programs at UTPA.


Why is teaching important to you?

As a first-generation college student, formal education changed both my life and its potential trajectory dramatically.  I will be forever grateful for the excellent education I have received, and I will always remember the amazing professors I worked with at all levels of my education.  Because of this, it important to me to be able to give back to the academic community as a teacher and to work with students who are also in a position to change their lives dramatically with the support of a strong education that gives them the confidence, knowledge, and skills they can use to make a difference in their own lives as well as in the lives of others.


What are your beliefs toward teaching and learning?

Teaching and learning are symbiotic activities that reinforce and support each other.  I believe that there is no teaching without learning.  Teaching and learning are also the best ways to engage with the world and to change it for the better.


What type of learning environment do you try to create in your classroom?

My courses are all supported by a fundamental philosophy, which includes a student-centered environment at its center, that every student can excel in his or her learning.  I work to support all my students and to maintain clear and concise communication so that they know what to expect from my class and so that they can produce their best work.


What is your favorite teaching strategy to foster student learning? 

Online teaching combined with traditional forms of delivery.  I believe that the flexibility of online platforms can be combined seamlessly with a more traditional approach to learning, and that this combination serves students well.  It makes them responsible for their learning, but, at the same time, it does not expect them to teach the class to themselves.  It allows for a full commitment to teaching while, at the same time, offering flexibility and support for students who need it.


What advice do you have for new UTRGV faculty members regarding teaching?

Make an effort to take advantage of the many support networks that abound at UTRGV.