Leading the way in teaching and learning

Leading the way in teaching and learning

By Communications Staff

July 3, 2019


The recipients of the 2019 Principal’s Teaching and Learning Awards have been announced, recognizing excellence in the areas of educational leadership, student support, promoting student inquiry, international innovation, and curriculum development.

Administered by the Centre for Teaching and Learning (CTL), the awards are presented to individuals and teams for their innovation and leadership in teaching and learning at Queen’s.

“This year’s award winners are a dedicated group of faculty and staff who have shown a deep commitment to enhancing the student learning experience at Queen’s,” said Principal and Vice-Chancellor Daniel Woolf when the awards announcement was made last month. “There is a great deal of innovative work that goes into fostering excellence in teaching and learning across the university and I am delighted that these awards not only recognize these efforts but also help raise the profile of this initiative.”

Formal presentation of the awards will take place at the Teaching Awards Reception to be held in early 2020.

The recipients are:

Principal’s Educational Leadership Award

Dr. Michael Adams

Dr. Michael Adams is an exemplary educational and academic leader. His insight and desire to transform the experience for the learner in higher education is remarkable. He has positively influenced educational change throughout his career. His contribution to the renewal of the undergraduate medical education curriculum resulted in his being a member of the MD Program Executive Committee from 2010-2018, while in 2012 he became the inaugural Department Chair of the Department of Biomedical and Molecular Sciences. In addition to the multiple responsibilities Dr. Adams has as a department chair, he has assumed the role of Director of the Bachelor of Health Sciences. In 2012 the Faculty of Health Sciences established an eLearning Advisory Committee regarding the potential to develop an online degree program. From the outset Dr. Adams assumed responsibility for putting all of the necessary pieces in place to achieve success. This included an environmental scan and a needs assessment, the creation of a business plan, the establishment of an organizational chart and the required appointments that would meet the needs of a new online program. He also established and participates as an ex officio member of the Faculty of Health Sciences Online Curriculum Committee. Dr. Adams provided oversight to every piece of the creation of this new degree program through to its implementation in 2016.

Principal’s Curriculum Development Award ­

Competency-Based Medical Education (CBME) Executive Team 
Dr. Richard Reznick 
Dr. Leslie Flynn 
Dr. Ross Walker 
Dr. Denise Stockley 
Dr. Damon Dagnone 
Dr. Laura McEwen 
Dr. Richard van Wylick 
Dr. Rylan Egan 
Dr. Jena Hall 
Jennifer Railer

Queen’s School of Medicine’s Strategic Plan (2012-2016) identified developing and evaluating new models of training as one of its core educational deliverables. To meet this, the Competency-Based Medical Education (CBME) Team set an ambitious goal: to transition Queen's entire post-graduate medical education program (29 residency specialties in all) from its existing time- based curriculum to a CBME curriculum by July 1, 2017. The intended learning outcomes are based on the opportunities provided in a CBME curriculum to integrate high-impact practices while addressing residents’ ongoing and emerging needs. The team designed the program to ensure that CBME results in a well-defined and mutually co-created learning experience. Outcomes to date have exceeded expectations on all fronts: learners have received earlier and more targeted feedback, assessments are aligned and tracked to specific competencies, and residents are gaining valuable skills as independent responsible lifelong learners prepared for medical practice and also for their future careers as health care educators. An accreditation review performed in March 2018 by The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (RCPCS), reviewed, analyzed, and evaluated all 29 residency programs during the first year of their curricular change. As a result, the RCPCS not only endorsed the change that was done ahead of their mandated process, they identified Queen’s as a national leader in medical education.

Principal’s Promoting Student Inquiry Teaching Award

Dr. Petra Fachinger

Dr. Petra Fachinger has been a fierce champion of diversity in her teaching for the Department of English, offering courses in Asian-Canadian and Indigenous literature. However, with her creation of ENGL 466 – Racism, Islamophobia, and Violence against Indigenous People in Yung Adult Novels Written in Canada, she has taken that work to a new level. Understanding that students engage more deeply and meaningfully with issues that they research themselves, Dr. Fachinger designed a course that supports and guides student inquiry while raising awareness of the complex issues of racism in contemporary Canadian society. In developing the course processes Dr. Fachinger unites an ethical commitment to principles of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion with an equally powerful pedagogical commitment to Inquiry-Based Learning. Her practice of collaborative classroom exploration of texts combined with individual assignments designed to encourage reflection and conversation exemplifies the pedagogical cycle. This in-class discussion work fosters a community of inquiry that is further developed through individual research.

Principal’s Educational Technology Award

Dr. Marian Luctkar-Flude 
Dr. Deborah Tregunno

Dr. Marian Luctkar-Flude and Dr. Deborah Tregunno have led the way in designing, implementing and evaluating simulation scenarios for nursing students and interprofessional groups of health professionals and students. Over the years, they recognized the need to better engage learners during the presimulation preparation phase, as well as the need for faculty development to support nurse educators in doing so. In 2013-2014 the duo led an unprecedented province-wide collaboration of nurse educators from 13 schools of nursing to create 26 peer-reviewed scenarios for senior nursing students to better prepare them for their transition to professional practice and enhance patient safety. This effort led to the formation of an ongoing online community of practice for nurse educators, the Ontario Simulation Alliance (OSA). As subsequent scenarios were designed a learning outcomes assessment rubric was incorporated into each scenario to support self-regulated learning and assessment. However, in the simulation lab, instructors were still reporting many students were not well-prepared to participate in simulation. As a result there was a recognition of the changing learning styles of learners, and a need to develop innovative and cost-effective approaches they would find engaging and would support their learning. The response was the use of online virtual simulation games to enhance presimulation preparation for nursing students for the simulation labs. Faculty involved in the project have gained expertise in the virtual simulation game design process.

Principal’s Michael Condra Outstanding Student Service Award

Dr. Martin Hand

Throughout his career at Queen’s, Dr. Martin Hand, Associate Professor in the Department of Sociology, has exemplified the spirit of the Michael Condra Outstanding Student Service Award through his advising, support and mentorship of undergraduate students, specifically the time he devotes to listening to students – in and outside of the classroom – and helping them navigate their way through their studies. He is described as caring, respectful, encouraging, fair, approachable and thoughtful. He creates an environment that encourages critical thinking, one in which students feel comfortable contributing to the discussion and exploring their ideas. Dr. Hand challenges students to grow as independent scholars through his engaging teaching style and commitment to student learning. He also has participated in undergraduate recruitment events on behalf of his department, meeting with perspective students and their families, and he supports the departmental student council by attending events and providing much valued advice. Many students wrote about the significant impact he has had on their intellectual lives, and their student experience.