WATE Arts Winners
About the Arts Faculty Award
The Arts Faculty Award recognises the achievements of Warwick's outstanding educators who have enabled excellent learning, creating the conditions within which all students are supported and empowered to succeed and thrive.
Winner - David Coates (Theatre and Performance Studies, School of Creative Arts, Performance and Visual Cultures)
In my teaching I bring both my research interests and industry experience to the table to create engaging, relevant and challenging sessions for my students in modules that have appropriate and authentic assessment methods. I am passionate about developing students who have their fingers on the pulse of current debates, research and the industry. However, I believe that ‘being an ‘excellent teacher’ means more than being effective in the classroom’ (Mortiboys, 136). I hope that I can have a long-term impact on my students and the ethos of my department through championing the importance of the wider university student experience; better embedding wellbeing, careers, industry, employability, and skills within the curriculum; and collaborating with students to foster a meaningful sense of community in Theatre and Performance Studies (TPS).
David is an Assistant Professor in Theatre and Performance Studies. He teaches and researches nineteenth century theatre history, historiography, and queer theatre. As well as teaching core and specialist modules in the department, David has designed a skills-focussed programme for first year undergraduate students and an industry-focussed module in collaboration with Warwick Arts Centre.
Highly Commended - Rochelle Sibley (English and Comparative Literary Studies)
I devised and now teach the UK's only undergraduate module on Yiddish literature in translation. While I initially developed the module to better represent Ashkenazi experience and culture within comparative literary studies, teaching it has also led me to revise my pedagogic approach so as to better support my students during and after the pandemic. This has involved using blended learning strategies to reflect changing student needs and engaging with anti-racist pedagogies to explore Yiddish in relation to our broader departmental discussions about representation, diversity and inclusion at Warwick.
Rochelle is a Senior Teaching Fellow in the Department of English and Comparative Literary Studies and who runs the department's Writing Centre. Rochelle teaches, research and translate Yiddish literature and is also lead the departmental training for new tutors.
Commended - Zhiyan Guo (School of Modern Languages and Cultures)
In teaching Chinese in UK HEIs, there is no established pedagogy. My own teaching beliefs have been influenced largely by Vygotskyan sociocultural theories, and my endeavours have been based on principles of being interactive and inclusive, technology-focused and learner-centred. I engaged my students in active learning, video feedback and co-producing learning materials and initiated international virtual exchanges to create intercultural community. I promoted diversity and cemented connectivity inside and outside the classroom. I empowered my students through taking them as partners in assessment and encouraging undergraduate research. I have received positive feedback from yearly module evaluations and presentations at conferences.
Zhiyan is an Associate Professor of Chinese, Senior Fellow of HEA, and Chair of the British Chinese Language Teaching Society (16-18). She enjoys teaching and seeing her students grow and prepare well for their personal and professional successes. Her pedagogical and disciplinary research covers teaching and learning, language acquisition, cultural mediation and intercultural communication.
About the Postgraduates who teach award
We also celebrate the exceptional work of colleagues at a very early stage in their academic career, through the award for Postgraduates who teach and support learning in the Arts Faculty.
Winner - Ian Farnell (Theatre and Performance Studies, School of Creative Arts, Performance and Visual Cultures)
My experiences as a student continue to inform my teaching practice. Central to this is my reliance on humour as a pedagogical tool – as noted in multiple research papers, laughter can create a welcoming and relaxed atmosphere in which students can confidently express themselves and interrogate their own preconceptions. I take my students’ learning seriously while approaching it lightly, and my caring, attentive and fun practice uniquely enables my students to grow as individuals, scholars and artists.
Ian is an IAS Early Career Fellow and tutor in Theatre and Performance Studies. His thesis (completed in 2021 and funded by the Wolfson Foundation) explored British theatre and science fiction. Ian was a finalist for the 2021 WATE PGR and is delighted to be a WATE PGR winner.
Winner - Fiona Farnsworth (English)
Teaching and learning in literature is not only about what we’re reading, but the ways in which we’re reading it. I support my students to develop skills in critical analysis and close reading; but I also ask them to engage in a reflexive process regarding power relations on multiple scales, and how those might come to bear on the ways that we engage with knowledge and its production. I want my classroom to be a space of mutuality in which my students and I collaborate, explore, and critique; and I hope not just that they will develop their critical consciousness, but that they will challenge and extend mine, too.
Fiona is a literary scholar and IAS Associate Fellow with teaching and research interests at the intersection of world-literature, environmental humanities, and food studies. Her teaching is informed by theories of critical pedagogy, and engages with discourses and relations of power as registered in literary and cultural production.
Commended - Francesca Farnell (History)
I am extremely proud to have been nominated in my first year of teaching by students who I have tried to continually stimulate and empower, investing in them as collective emerging scholars and, importantly, as unique individuals. As a tutor my primary goal is always to instil in my students confidence within themselves and in the value of their ideas, and to enthuse them about taking active roles as co-creators of their own learning. Fundamental to this is my resolve to cultivate learning environments that are spirited and collaborative.
Francesca is a second-year History PhD student and has been at Warwick since her undergraduate studies. Now funded by Midlands4Cities and supervised by Professor Peter Marshall and Professor Beat Kümin, Francesca's research focuses on the relation and construction of women’s experiences in in early modern narratives of the supernatural.
Commended - Ronan Hatfull (Theatre and Performance Studies, School of Creative Arts, Performance and Visual Cultures)
My teaching ethos, methods, and experiences traverse disciplinary boundaries across both Theatre and English. I teach first-year Theatre students and my work on ‘Your Theatre and Performance Toolkit’ has had positive impact upon their learning. My signature pedagogy on the module ‘Remaking Shakespeare’ is open-space learning (OSL), and more recently I have run a collaborative workshop for the Resonate Festival with students and professional theatre-makers.
Ronan teaches at the University of Warwick and NYU London. He is also a theatre-maker and Artistic Director of Partners Rapt. Ronan is currently co-writing Shakespeare and Hip-Hop: Adaptation, Citation, Education, co-editing Shakespeare and Biofiction on the Contemporary Stage and Screen and developing a monograph on the Reduced Shakespeare Company.