Faculty Honored for Academic Excellence

Published on April 10, 2018

Six Eastern Kentucky University faculty members were honored on Monday, April 9, for high-impact teaching practices, teaching innovation, scholarship related to teaching learning, and faculty leadership.

The awards presentation ceremony was part of the University’s annual Scholars Week celebration April 9-13.

The High-Impact Practice Teaching Award was presented to Dr. Beth Polin, Department of Management, Marketing and International Business; and to Dr. James Wells, School of Justice Studies. As defined by the Association of American Colleges and Universities, “the practices may include techniques and/or designs for teaching and learning that have proven to be beneficial for student engagement and successful learning among students from many backgrounds.” A myriad of practices qualify, generally sharing common traits such as requiring considerable time and effort, facilitating learning outside of the classroom, requiring meaningful interactions between faculty and students, encouraging collaboration with diverse others, and including frequent and substantive feedback.

The Faculty Innovation in Teaching Award was presented to Dr. Hung-Tao Chen, Department of Psychology, and Dr. Jacob C. Domenghini, Department of Agriculture. It recognizes faculty members leading the way in innovative teaching, which can include methods, activities, new technologies, novel approaches or the development of products used for teaching. The scope may vary, to include a unit of study, an assignment or an activity.

The Faculty Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL) Award went to Dr. Gaby Bedetti, Department of English. A recipient’s strong record of accomplishments in SoTL may include publications, presentations and/or grants.

The Faculty Leadership Award went to Dr. Socorro Zaragoza, Department of Languages, Cultures and Humanities. The award is presented to a faculty member who exhibits exemplary leadership on behalf of the University, or a department or college.

Each aforementioned award recipient received $1,000 and a plaque.

Also at the ceremony, Critical Reading and Critical Thinking Teaching Awards were presented to recognize those faculty who challenge students to improve their critical reading and critical thinking skills. Faculty are nominated for the honor by students through a campus-wide survey.

Critical Reaching Teaching Award winners were: Dr. Barbara Davis, Biological Sciences; Dr. Ronald Dotson, Safety, Security and Emergency Management; Dr. Benjamin Freed, Anthropology, Sociology and Social Work; Joel Goodrich, Psychology; Adam Hisel, English; Dr. Charles Myers, Counseling; Katherine Nicholas, Occupational Therapy; Dr. Eileen Shanahan, Curriculum and Instruction; Dr. Brian Simpkins, Safety, Security and Emergency Management; Dr. Kevin Rahimzadeh, English; Lonnie Reppert, Health Promotion and Administration; and Shaun Turner, English.

Davis, Dotson, Goodrich, Hisel, Myers, Nicholas and Turner also received the Critical Thinking Teaching Award, in addition to Michael Ballard, American Sign Language and Interpreter Education; Dr. Bradley Kraemer, Biological Sciences; Dr. Jerome May, Chemistry; Dr. Stephanie McSpirit, Anthropology, Sociology and Social Work; and Dr. Mike Roberson, Management, Marketing and International Business.

For a complete schedule of Scholars Week events, visit ekuscholars.eku.edu.

Critical Thinking and Reading award winners

Bottom photo: Critical Thinking and Reading Teaching Award recipients included, from left, Dr. Eileen Shanahan, Dr. Mike Roberson, Lonnie Reppert, Katherine Nicholas, Dr. Charles Myers, Michael Ballard, Dr. Benjamin Freed, Dr. Barbara Davis and Dr. Kevin Rahimzadeh. Award winners not pictured: Dr. Brian Simpkins, Dr. Stephanie McSpirit, Shaun Turner, Adam Hisel, Joel Goodrich, Dr. Ronald Dotson, Dr. Bradley Kraemer, Dr. Jerome May.