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ANU Criminologist named one of Australia’s best university teachers

Image shows Jason Payne leaning against brick wall, flanked by colourful leaves

"Teaching is a team effort; this national award is recognition of that," says Dr Jason Payne, winner of a 2017 Australian Awards for University Teaching. Image: supplied

Friday 15 December 2017

An ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences criminologist has been recognised as one of Australia’s best teachers.

Dr Jason Payne is among five ANU scholars who received the coveted 2017 Australian Awards for University Teaching, announced by Minister for Education and Training, Senator the Hon Simon Birmingham.

“To be recognised with a National Teaching Award is incredibly humbling,” Dr Payne says.

“Above all, it's an important reminder that our greatest impact as academics is the knowledge and skills we transfer to the next generation who will one day change the world.

“I am thankful to all the wonderful ANU Criminology students who have shared my enthusiasm these past few years. This award is just as much a recognition of their contribution to my development as a teacher at ANU. 

“Awards like this would not be possible without the many talented professional staff in CASS and across the ANU who work tirelessly to support students and academics in their teaching.

“Teaching is a team effort; this national award is recognition of that.” 

The senior lecturer in the ANU Research School of Social SciencesCentre for Social Research and Methods has a national and international reputation for his expertise, especially into criminals’ drug use.

In October 2017 he was invited to Vienna to offer his expertise to the United Nations (UN) and World Health Organisation (WHO) in their global push to tackle drug-related crime and rising incarceration

In 2016, he led an ANU team that evaluated a proposal by Queensland’s Department of Justice to reinstate a drug courts program. In June 2017 the state government acted on the team’s recommendations and reintroduced the program.

The Award for Teaching Excellence (Early Career) citation says Dr Payne “brings to the classroom a philosophy that genuine change in the Australian criminal justice system can only be achieved by a new generation of research-literate and quantitatively-confident criminal justice practitioners, policy makers and researchers.

“Since commencing teaching in 2014, Dr Payne’s integration of theory and reflective practice into the criminology curriculum has been strongly endorsed by students and colleagues.”

The judges also said Dr Payne was “committed to developing criminology into a truly interdisciplinary experience for students who, above all else, will have the confidence to understand criminological data, to interpret criminological research, and through these skills challenge the outdated doctrines of the discipline.”

“This is an outstanding result built out of Jason’s commitment to developing a generation of research-literate social scientists and criminal justice practitioners,” ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences Dean, Professor Rae Frances, said.

Dr Payne in 2017 won an ANU Vice-Chancellor’s Award for Teaching Excellence (Early Career) and the ANU CASS Award for Teaching Excellence in 2016.

Other ANU winners of the national teaching awards are Associate Professor Katrina Anderson (ANU Medical School), Dr Anna Von Reibnitz (ANU School of Finance and Applied Statistics), Jeremy Smith (ANU Research School of Engineering), and Dr John Debs (ANU Research School of Physics and Engineering).

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Updated:  19 January, 2018/Responsible Officer:  College Dean/Page Contact:  CASS Marketing & Communications