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K-State Today

December 3, 2013



Seeking nominations for Presidential Awards for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching

By Gail Zeak

The president’s office and the Curtin Companies are offering four Presidential Awards for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching. An honorarium of $5,000 is provided for each award.             

One award will go to a graduate teaching assistant, and three awards are open to all undergraduate teachers with some preference given to teachers of large freshman/sophomore classes. Nominations should be made by department heads and forwarded to their dean. Each dean may submit up to four nominations (one for the graduate teaching assistant award and three for the other undergraduate teaching awards) from his or her college to the provost’s office for review by the advisory committee. Because students in the college of Veterinary Medicine are not considered undergraduates, teachers (faculty and GTAs) in this college are not eligible for this award.

Each nomination packet should include:   

  1. Letter of nomination that describes in detail why the nominee is deserving of this award.
  2. Nominee’s current curriculum vitae.
  3. Summary of undergraduate courses taught within the last two years (include title, number of students enrolled and short description of course).
  4. Student evaluations from at least two, but not more than three, undergraduate courses taught by the nominee within the last three semesters (fall 2013, spring 2013, or fall 2012).  If a nominee has taught any large freshman/sophomore courses within the last three semesters, those evaluations should be submitted. Student comments should also be submitted along with the numerical evaluation summaries.
  5. Letters of support from students (not more than three letters), additional letters will not be considered.
  6. Paragraph from nominee on his/her teaching philosophy.
  7. Contributions made by the nominee to the teaching field within the last two years (one-page limit). 

Please submit all nomination materials electronically in pdf format to Gail Zeak, gaill@k-state.edu.  Enclosed is additional information about the criteria for selection and the nomination process. 

Nominations must be received by the office of the provost and senior vice president by 4:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 21, 2014. The monetary award and a plaque will be presented at a reception sponsored by the president’s office for all of the recipients of the Presidential Awards for Excellence.

These awards provide a wonderful opportunity to recognize the efforts of both GTAs and faculty.  I encourage each of you to nominate deserving individuals from your departments and colleges.

Criteria for the selection of Presidential Award for

Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching 

The original and current purpose of these awards is to recognize excellence in teaching performance in the undergraduate program and to provide an incentive to achieve that goal. 

There are four $5,000 awards made each year for excellence in undergraduate teaching. One of these awards will go to a graduate teaching assistant. The other three awards are open to all undergraduate teachers, with some preference given to teachers in large freshman/sophomore courses. Veterinary Medicine faculty and GTAs are not eligible for the undergraduate teaching awards, since their students are not in an undergraduate program. 

The nominations for the awards are made at the college level and all teachers in an undergraduate program are eligible for the same award. Nominations for the awards are solicited from students, faculty and administrators. Nominations are submitted by department heads to the dean of the college in which the teacher is appointed. Each dean may submit up to four nominations from his or her college, one for the GTA award and three for the other undergraduate teaching awards.  Colleges are strongly encouraged to nominate individuals who have not previously won this award. 

Nomination packet for Presidential Award for Excellence in Teaching

The nomination packet should contain the following items:

  • Letter of nomination that describes in detail why the nominee is deserving of this award.
  • Nominee's current curriculum vitae.
  • Summary of undergraduate courses taught within the last two years (include title and short description of course, along with number of students enrolled).
  • Student evaluations from at least two, but not more than three, undergraduate courses taught within the last three semesters. If a nominee has taught any large freshman/sophomore courses within the last three semesters, those evaluations should be submitted.  Student comments should also be included along with the numerical evaluation summary.
  • Up to three letters of support from students, (additional letters will not be considered).
  • Paragraph from nominee on his/her teaching philosophy.
  • List of contributions made by the nominee to the teaching field within the last two years (one-page limit).

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