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Queen's University

Centre for Teaching and Learning

Alumni Award for Excellence in Teaching

Nomination Guidelines

In recognition of the primary importance of teaching excellence at Queen's University, the Alumni Association and the Senate will offer the Alumni Award for Excellence in Teaching.

The Award

The recipient of the award will receive $5,000 presented at the Queen’s University Alumni Association’s annual Gala Awards Dinner, and the Teaching Award statuette, presented at Convocation.


A candidate must be a teacher at Queen's University who has the primary responsibility for a course offered to registered Queen's students (i.e. organization and presentation). For this purpose, classrooms are not limited to lecture halls but include other teaching environments such as laboratories, seminars and tutorials.


Students, alumni and/or faculty may make nominations, individually or collectively. Nominations from students and students perspectives are especially valued.

Teachers may not nominate themselves.

A prior nomination does not disqualify a teacher. Many excellent candidates are not selected for an award simply because there is only one award given annually. Nominations for candidates who are shortlisted will be brought forward for one year. Members of the University community are urged to submit additional information for previously shortlisted candidates or re-nominate candidates who were unsuccessful in previous years and who continue to show excellence in teaching performance.

The Teaching Award Committee

The Teaching Award Selection Committee will consist of two academic staff members and three student members appointed by the Senate, and two alumni members appointed by the QUAA Board of Directors. The Alumni Officer for the QUAA will act as the Secretary for the Teaching Award Selection Committee. The Committee will be chaired by a member of Queen’s faculty.

Nomination Pacakge

Nominations must not exceed 10 pages, including appendices and graphics.

Nominations packages must be received no later than the last Friday in February.

The Secretary of the Teaching Award Selection Committee will then consolidate the nominations and refer the list of names, together with supporting documents, to the members of the Committee.  

The nomination package includes 2 parts:

Part 1 - The nomination form:

Part 2 - Evidence of excellence in teaching:

    a) A letter of nomination which focuses on the following selection criteria;

        1. An ability to foster student learning – includes being able to communicate in ways that are meaningful to
           students, demonstrating passion for the subject, and constructing an inclusive learning environment where
           students with special needs are automatically integrated into the learning community;

        2. An ability to engage with and inspire interest among students -- includes recognizing that teachers and
           students are partners in the learning enterprise and that students are partially responsible for defining learning

        3. Meaningful methods to assess student performance -- includes using assessment practices that evaluate
           understanding of the subject rather than the ability to memorize, allow students to track their growth over time,
           and permit final judgments about achievements that go beyond the accumulation of ideas to requiring students
           to make connections among the course's main ideas, i.e., extending their learning to new and unique

        4. Innovation in curriculum development -- includes integrating new themes and topics into existing courses
           based on students' needs and the instructor's formal or informal research in the field of study, and recognizing
           a need and filling it with a new course, if and when appropriate. Demonstrate commitment to instructional
           development -- includes participating in teaching workshops and consulting with individuals, groups or
           curriculum committees for professional development and in-service to the community of teachers.

    b) Letters of support from faculty colleagues and current and/or former students (graduate or undergraduate).

Note: Both parts must be submitted.

Selection Process

The Committee will review the nominations and compare the qualifications of each nominee to the criteria, and will identify a short list of finalists (not to exceed 5 ) for further consideration.

Prospective finalists will be asked:

  1. If they consent to having their name placed on the list of finalists; and
  2. If they wish to submit a teaching dossier, including but not limited to:

          • A statement of teaching philosophy
          • A description of their approach to teaching (with examples of course materials and a description of
            particularly effective strategies used)
          • Other materials (total package not to exceed 10 pages in length including any appendices and graphics)

The name of the recommended recipient, with supporting material, will be forwarded to the President of the QUAA by April 30, who will bring the decision to the QUAA Board of Directors for endorsement by May 31.

Past Winners

     2015 Jacqueline Davies, Philosophy and Gender Studies
     2014 Catherine Donnelly, School of Rehabilitation Therapy
     2013 Daniel Lefebvre, Biology
     2012 James Fraser, Physics
     2011 George Bevan, Classics
     2010 David Strong, Engineering and Applied Science
     2009 Les MacKenzie, Anatomy and Cell Biology
     2008 John Hanes, Geological Sciences and Geological Engineering
     2007 Pat Oosthuizen, Mechanical Engineering
     2006 Richard Jackson, Business
     2005 Bruce Tufts, Biology
     2004 Donato Santeramo, Spanish and Italian
     2003 Bill Newstead, Chemistry
     2002 Richard Ascough, Theology/Religious Studies
     2001 Jim Whitley, Mathematics and Statistics
     2000 Leo Jonker, Mathematics and Statistics
     1999 Terry Krupa, Rehabilitation Therapy
     1998 Lynda Jessup, Art
     1997 Paul Christianson, History
     1996 Alan Gorman, Geology
     1995 Joan McDuff, Education
     1994 Virginia Walker, Biology
     1993 Barrie Frost, Psychology
     1992 Katherine Wynne-Edwards, Biology
     1991 Robert E. Hawkins, Law
     1990 Patrick J. O'Neill, German
     1989 David H. Turpin, Biology
     1988 Alistair W. MacLean, Psychology
     1988 Sandra I. McBride, Geological Sciences and Geological Engineering
     1987 Frank D. Collom, Business
     1987 Rita Maloney, Nursing
     1986 Caroline M. Miller, Sociology
     1986 Stanley Sadinsky, Law
     1985 Robert G. Crawford, Computing Science
     1985 Frederick W. Gibson, History
     1984 Gerald S. Marks, Pharmacology
     1984 Josephine M. Reddick, Nursing
     1983 D. Catherine Brown, History
     1983 Colette Y. Tonge, French
     1982 Ronald J. Delisle, Law
     1981 Willliam T. Cannon, Business
     1980 David J. Mullan, Law
     1979 William C. Reeve, German
     1978 Catherine R. Harland, English
     1977 Alistair R.C. Duncan, Philosophy
     1976 H. R. Stuart Ryan, Law
     1975 William D. Gilbert, Mechanical Engineering

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