The teaching of economics at the undergraduate level requires a unique set of skills, including intellectual rigor and flexibility, a breadth and depth of knowledge about one's teaching subject, good humour, and a capacity for understanding, compassion and patience. Even those individuals who are truly exceptional researchers, supervisors and graduate instructors do not always possess the specific skills required to excel as an undergraduate teacher. With the support of the Economics Trust, the alumni, students, faculty and staff of the Queen's Economics Department recognize and celebrate excellence and dedication in the teaching of undergraduate economics with the Queen's Economics Department (QED) Undergraduate Teaching Prize.
This prize is awarded annually to the individual who, through their involvement in the teaching of undergraduate economics at Queen's, has shown that they possess and consistently apply the skills required to excel in their role as instructor, mentor and motivator for their students. Any individual who has been an instructor for one or more undergraduate economics courses at Queen's during the twelve months preceding the selection process is eligible for this prize. Eligible candidates include tenured and tenure-track professors, adjunct professors and teaching fellows. Members of the prize committee cannot be considered for the prize.
During the twelve months preceding the selection process, alumni, students, faculty and staff are encouraged to nominate candidates for this prize. Nominations must include the name(s) of the person or persons submitting the nomination and a short letter in support of the candidate. The Head of the Economics Department, in consultation with the Chair of Undergraduate Studies, will consider these nominations when forming a short list of candidates for the prize. To facilitate careful deliberation and consultation among interested parties, this short list is circulated to the selection committee well in advance of the selection meeting. The short list should be considered confidential, so a public discussion of the candidates on the short list is discouraged. The selection committee then meets to choose the prize winner.
The selection process involves a series of "majority-rules" votes, with run-off votes held after the candidate with the lowest number of supporters is dropped from consideration. The first candidate to receive more than one half of all votes is the winner of the prize. In the case of a tie, the vote cast by the Chair of Undergraduate Studies is the deciding vote. The selection committee is made up of the Chair of Undergraduate Studies, the Assistant to the Chair of Undergraduate Studies, the prize winners from the past two years, and at least one, but at most three, members of the Department Undergraduate Student Council.
The winner of the prize is announced to the Department and its supporters by the Chair of Undergraduate Studies and the Chair(s) of the Department Undergraduate Student Council at spring convocation. Financial recognition funded by the Economics Trust may accompany the prize.
2012 - 2013 Michael Abbott