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K-State Today

January 18, 2018

Rader receives outstanding teaching assistant award

Submitted by Division of Communications and Marketing

Mikaela Rader, senior in education and geology and teaching assistant for Introductory Geology Laboratory, GEOL 103, and Mineralogy, GEOL 502, has received the 2018 Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award from the National Association of Geoscience Teachers. The association is a national organization that fosters improvement in the teaching of the Earth sciences at all levels of formal and informal instruction, to emphasize the cultural significance of the Earth sciences and disseminates knowledge in this field to the general public.

This award honors undergraduate and graduate students who have demonstrated excellence as Teaching Assistants in Earth science. Rader will receive a one-year membership to the National Association of Geoscience Teachers, the Journal of Geoscience Education and In the Trenches journal.

Matthew Brueseke, associate professor, and Aida Farough, teaching assistant professor, both in geology, nominated Rader. Both emphasized Rader's outstanding academic credentials; contributions to the curriculum of the introductory geology laboratory and mineralogy; strong rapport among students; contributions to improving the learning environment of her lab; and positive attitude, hard work and maturity. Rader taught herself to use the Augmented Reality Sandbox — a new teaching tool in the geology department — and developed an extensive class activity using the technology.  

"She is an excellent communicator," said Farough, who also is the president of the Mid Continent section of the association. "She developed the activity really well for the wide range of students enrolled in geology lab and even provided instructions for instrument set up and calibration."

The award also recognizes the geology department for providing an environment where teaching assistants can flourish, follow their interests and develop expertise in Earth sciences and education. 

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