2012 Teaching Awards

National Award for Tertiary Teaching Excellence - 2012

Dr Zoe Jordens

Liz Norman

See story about the awards

Vice-Chancellor's Teaching Awards - 2012

Dr Elizabeth Gray

Dr Elizabeth Gray’s commitment to teaching is underpinned by her belief that the words we use make a difference whether in business communication or literary analysis. Exciting students to be the best they can by connecting what students need to learn with how they learn and who they are is at the core of her teaching.

Dr Gray’s portfolio demonstrates her deep concern for her students ensuring their learning is relevant, embraces variety, innovation and opportunities for feedback on progress. Student diversity sees her holding individual conferences with learners around goal setting, cementing her approachability and giving the students a sense of belonging. 

In 2011 Dr Gray won the College of Business Richard Buchanan Teaching Excellence Award and has on a number of occasions been recognised for teaching excellence by her School and students. She carefully builds students’ confidence and capacity by being highly organised while articulating high expectations.

Dr Gray’s reflective approach to teaching sees her paying attention to what students, colleagues and stakeholders say in fine tuning her papers and practice. Videos of her teaching led to lecture delivery enhancements, mindful of students’ using these as learning tools.

As a scholarly practitioner Dr Gray is committed to researching her teaching and sharing the finding with colleagues.

Dr Zoe Jordens

Dr Zoe Jorden sees her teaching role as facilitator, where learning involves the interaction of the individual, activity and the environment. She documents the importance of building relationships with students so they can engage with the challenges of her student-centred, inquiry-led approach. Zoe emulates her work as an active researcher in medical microbiology in her teaching to ensure students have an authentic learning experience and guided into the scientific ways of thinking.  

In Dr Jorden’s inquiry-led labs where she provides outlines only students are challenged to collect environmental samples and plan experiments as scientists where much is unknown both for the student and the staff. This requires a high level of engagement as they learn the questions to ask and research answers.  Students respond with genuine pleasure.

Research into teaching is a passion for Dr Jorden as she seeks for excellence. She is co-leader of an Ako Aotearoa research project investigating what contributes or hinders student learning in two microbiology papers; with colleagues she has published the findings and presented seminars on her practice. In 2011 she completed a Postgraduate Diploma in Education with distinction and is enrolled in a Masters in Education. Zoe’s energy and enthusiasm is a defining feature of her teaching and rubs off on her colleagues.

Liz Norman

Liz Norman’s portfolio documents a creative, innovative and dedicated teacher who strives to pass on to the students and teachers she works with, in veterinary education, a love of learning and the importance of reflective practice. Liz is committed to providing a challenging, structured and supportive learning environment that ensures that active learning and relevance are paramount. The importance of connecting her case-based approach with the literature resonates with her students.  

Liz describes her love for learning design where she deploys a variety of innovative strategies to engage her students. For example she has designed unique online tools that mimic real steps in case investigation and management, “replay” case exercises and tutorials which provide immediate feedback. Her “beyond the textbook” tasks facilitate deep learning and focused online discussions around students’ own cases. This sharing together helped students gain confidence and belief in themselves.

Her assessment strategies, which allow students to develop their skills through a cycle of practise, feedback and refinement, are welcomed by students.

Liz’s belief that sound student learning begins with exemplary course design led her to develop a comprehensive set of Paper Design Guidelines, in her role as Programme Leader of the Masters of Veterinary Medicine programme. This programme is not only transformative for students but also for lecturers who welcome being part of this distinctive and ground breaking online distance education initiative.

Amanda Yates

Amanda Yates’ portfolio documents her passion for design in a sustainable world.  Her research-led project-based approach to teaching and learning sees her providing opportunities for students to work on ‘live’ projects outside the classroom where authentic learning experiences build skills, confidence and passion worthy of graduates, while enhancing student awareness of the spatial design community they will move into.

Live projects have seen students working in partnership with the World Wide-Life Fund on Eco-innovations, Edible Cities with the Wellington City Council producing Pop-up Gardens in the Civic Square and sustainable design solutions for Christchurch and Auckland City Councils and collaboration with Ngati Whatua.

Amanda is committed to inspiring students to“take ownership of their explorations, to be self-directed learners and to believe in themselves which empowers students to produce exemplary work. This is evidenced in the numerous student awards in spatial design within Australasia and in those who have been invited to work part-time in the community.

Students welcome Amanda’s approach to facilitating a warm, safe studio environment where during ‘crits’ they receive feedback from peers, College lecturers and community practitioners.

Amanda’s vision has led to the development of the spatial design programme to position it in a wider context and link with student and staff research interests. Collegiality is an important focus for her as she shares her expertise and passion for design. She is on the University’s Sustainability Steering Group and the Board of Directors of the Interior Design/Interior Architecture Educators Association.

Excellent Practice Awards 2012

Dr Ian Fuller
Antony Pelosi
Dr Damian Ruth
Dr Gabriele Schmidt-Adam

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