By Mike Thorn, Taylor Institute for Teaching and Learning
There are numerous ways to acknowledge teaching excellence at the University of Calgary. Outstanding instructors can make their marks in so many ways — across diverse learning contexts, individually and in groups, through curriculum design and educational leadership. The University of Calgary Teaching Awards program acknowledges and celebrates all of these areas while also serving as a stepping stone to wider engagement in the academic community.
All awards recipients become part of the University of Calgary Teaching Academy, a dedicated scholarly group that spans disciplines and backgrounds. The academy currently has more than 70 active members who hold monthly themed conversations, participate in a peer-to-peer mentorship program, and collaborate on Open Classroom Week. The Teaching Awards also present the possibility for even higher forms of recognition, such as the 3M National Teaching Fellowship, originally established in 1986 as a partnership between 3M Canada and the Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education.
UCalgary and 3M award recipients Leslie Reid (vice-provost of teaching and learning) and Ken MacMillan (professor in the Department of History) both find even more important than the recognition of individual achievement are teamwork and community growth, two key components of the Teaching Awards nomination process.