CASS academics recognised in 2018 Vice-Chancellor's Awards for Excellence

Vice-Chancellor Professor Brian Schmidt with recipients of the 2018 VC's Awards for Excellence in Education. Image: ANU.
Monday 14 May 2018

CASS scholars in the fields of philosophy, languages and archaeology have received 2018 Vice-Chancellor's Awards for Excellence in Education.

Dr Bronwyn Finnigan from the School of Philosophy was one of two CASS academics to be recognised for Teaching Excellence. 

Bronwyn's teaching covers a range of topics including Buddhist philosophy, philosophy of mind and ethics. In students she aims to cultivate an openness, curiosity and respect for investigating issues, approaching them from diverse perspectives, both Eastern and Western.

She believes this award is not only recognition of her contributions to teaching, but of the great value ANU places on a high standard of undergraduate education.

“It reinforces to me that excellence in undergraduate teaching and learning is both noticed and valued by ANU,” Professor Finnigan says.

Also recognised for teaching excellence, in the Early Career category, was French Studies lecturer Dr Gemma King from the School of Literature, Languages and Linguistics.

Dr King expressed her delight that her students feel inspired and valued in her classroom.

“I am also heartened to know that they respond so well to the way the classes blend language and culture into one learning experience,” she says. 

“I approach French teaching as something that should adapt to and evolve with every cohort, sparking each student’s interest in French and Francophone cultures so they are driven to learn and use the language in their own individual ways.”

A cohort from the School of Archaeology and Anthropology and School of Culture, History and Language (CAP) received the Award for Programs that Enhance Learning for Archaeology in the field, the field in the classroom.

Representing the group, Associate Professor Philip Piper described the archaeology program as one of a “scaffolded classroom, field-based and blended (field and classroom) learning”.

“It’s designed to be inclusive and provide students with the kind of comprehensive, career-orientated knowledge and experience in archaeological research expected of graduates within the professional sector and academia,” Associate Professor Piper adds.

“The Vice Chancellor’s Award for Programs that Enhance Learning is a marvellous recognition of all the hard work the archaeological community in the Colleges of Arts and Social Sciences and Asia and the Pacific has engaged in the make the practical archaeology program a real success.”

In addition to Associate Professor Piper, the cohort who received the award comprised: Dr Catherine Frieman, Dr Ash Lenton, Associate Professor Dougald O'Reilly, Dr Duncan Wright, Dr Guillaume Molle, Professor Matthew Spriggs, Associate Professor Tim Denham, Dr Sofia Samper Carro, Dr Stuart Bedford, Dr Jack Fenner, Ms Julia Dunn, Ms Rachel Wang, and Mr David McGregor.

ANU Vice-Chancellor Professor Brian Schmidt congratulated all recipients on their awards.

"It takes knowledge, time, care and imagination to meet the challenges that continue to face teaching within universities, and I am really pleased that so many of our staff have those qualities in abundance," said Professor Schmidt.

“Teachers nurture the minds of the leaders and innovators of the future. The legacy of teaching excellence goes well beyond the present, as teachers inspire, lead, motivate, encourage and assist the students of today to reach their potential."

The full list of recipients can be found on the ANU website.

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Updated:  14 May 2018/Responsible Officer:  CASS Marketing & Communications/Page Contact:  CASS Marketing & Communications