Two more academics from De Montfort University (DMU) are to receive National Teaching Fellowships in this year’s awards.
Vivien Rolfe and Chris Goldsmith will receive their awards – the most prestigious awards for excellence in higher education teaching – at a ceremony in London in October.
The pair’s success brings the total number of National Teaching Fellows (NTFs) currently working at DMU to 13.
With two awards previously made to staff who have since left the university, DMU now has the second highest number of NTFs of any institution involved in the scheme, which has been run by the Higher Education Academy (HEA) since 2000.
Dr Vivien Rolfe is a principal lecturer in anatomy and physiology and joined DMU in 2003. She is the programme leader for Medical Science and also lectures on the Biomedical Science degree.
She has a passion for developing learning resources for her students using animation and visual materials.
In 2009 she was awarded Learning Technologist of the Year by the UK Association of Learning Technology for creating a virtual lab aimed at new students entering lab based degrees, often with little or no lab experience.
Her recent work has also involved championing Open Educational Resources at DMU, a global movement designed to share learning resources and expertise across schools, colleges and universities around the world.
"I joined academia 10 years ago after working in industry so to receive a national award for my role as a lecturer in that time is completely amazing,” said Dr Rolfe.
“I am so lucky to work with brilliant colleagues at the university and that my students are always very open to new ideas. This has allowed me to develop my creative side and has shown the students that there are different and interesting ways to learn.”
Chris Goldsmith has been teaching at DMU since 2001. As a senior lecturer in International Relations, he teaches and supervises both undergraduate and postgraduate politics and international relations’ programmes.
“Although this is a personal award, I couldn’t have achieved it without the help of my very supportive colleagues at DMU,” he said.
“This is a university that puts a lot of energy into teaching and I believe that our innovative teaching is one of the things that makes DMU distinctive.”
Chris’s commitment to innovative teaching methods helped earn him National Teaching Fellow status.
His use of technology and simulations to create challenging learning environments, and his collaborative work with international partners, are designed to help students learn about themselves, while developing their understanding of politics and international relations.
“Higher education is about more than the acquisition of knowledge,” he said.
“It should also be a transformative experience that challenges our assumptions and allows individuals to grow.
“This award is validation of what I’ve been doing for so many years – and it’s great to be recognised by your peers.
“Becoming a National Teaching Fellow was a key part of my career plans, so it’s nice to have reached that target. Now I’m going to have to find myself a new target!”
Professor Andy Downton, Pro Vice-Chancellor, Teaching and Learning at DMU, is extremely proud of his colleagues’ success.
“I am delighted that the quality of our teaching at DMU has been recognised once again,” he said.
“Being recognised as a National Teaching Fellow is a real honour – and it’s one that both Viv and Chris fully deserve.
“Their hard work, commitment and creativity are hugely appreciated by the university, as well as by our students.”
The award winners were chosen from over 180 nominations submitted by higher education institutions across England, Northern Ireland and Wales, with 55 lecturers and learning support staff announced as new National Teaching Fellows today (26 July).
Each winner will receive £10,000 to help further their professional development.
Professor Craig Mahoney, Chief Executive of the HEA, said: “The 55 new Fellows have all made a highly valuable contribution to learning and teaching within their institutions.
“Students deserve – and expect – the best possible learning experience during their time in higher education and fantastic staff, such as National Teaching Fellows, help to deliver this experience.”
Vivien Rolfe and Chris Goldsmith will receive their awards at the Middle Temple Hall in London on 10 October.
The 13 NTFs at DMU are listed below, in alphabetical order:
Alasdair Blair (awarded 2006)
Rob Brannen (2003)
Deborah Cartmell (2010)
Will Curtis (2011)
Chris Goldsmith (2012)
Richard Hall (2009)
Tracy Harwood (2004)
Andrew Hugill (2006)
Julia Pointon (2009)
Michael Powell (2005)
Vivien Rolfe (2012)
Jayne Stevens (2000)
Jo Webb (2005)
Posted on Thursday 26th July 2012