WATE SEM Faculty winners
About the SEM Faculty Award
The Science, Engineering and Medicine 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 - Celine Martin (WMG)
My position as a learning designer is an exciting space to occupy. Whilst I have been an advocate of education technology for many years, the pandemic has brought its prospect to the forefront of higher education. I am fortunate that I hold a position covering many areas within the department, allowing me to see opportunities for collaboration and learning from others. My work on course design is helping shift the focus onto a coherent student learning journey. In addition, as the lead for the pedagogical internship programme, I can provide a safe space for students to practice their research skills.
Celine started at Warwick in 2002, initially in research, and is now an Assistant Professor in the Education Innovation Group, working as a learning designer. Celine's role leads tutors in enhancing their teaching practice, ensuring that they can best support students through their time at Warwick.
Highly Commended - Massimiliano Tamborrino (Statistics)
The key aspects behind my last two years with online delivery were: a) a consistent module structure (resembling the face to face delivery) and a clear communication (a weekly email with the teaching material and learning outcomes, plus a detailed email for the assignments); b) a reflective teaching practice enhanced by weekly anonymous feedback which were sought, listened and acted upon; c) student engagement and learning enhanced via different approaches (e.g. non-assessed quizzes/assessments, lecture notes with gaps filled in during the recordings), aiming to promote active learning; d) enthusiasm for what I taught (e.g. by embedding my research into the teaching).
Massimiliano is Assistant Professor in Statistics and Deputy Course Director of MORSE. Teaching online, he integrates technology tools to promote student engagement and learning, weekly collecting anonymous feedback to enhance his reflective teaching practice. As theoretic statistics can be “scary”, he shows the intuition behind abstract concepts to make them accessible to everyone.
Commended - Sotaro Kita (Psychology)
I strive to create an inclusive learning environment in which students from diverse backgrounds can all feel included and motivated to be their best. To achieve this goal, I have taken three lines of actions. First, when I supervise students in research projects, I carefully attend to individual students' background, strength, and preference, and adjust supervision approach to get the best out of each student. Second, I create module contents that are diverse so that a broad range of students can passionately engage with them. Third, I co-produce research with ethnic minority undergraduate students in my laboratory.
After studying engineering at University of Tokyo, Sotaro received his Ph.D. in psychology and linguistics from University of Chicago. Then, he joined Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics in the Netherlands. Sotaro has lectured at University of Bristol and University of Birmingham. Sotaro has been a Professor in Department of Psychology at Warwick since 2013.
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 Science, Engineering and Medicine.
Winner - Niamh Harrington (Life Sciences)
I think it is important to make science accessible to everybody and give students the space and confidence to ask questions and speak up when they have ideas. Sharing my own experiences, being positive about the mistakes and failed experiments along the way, and acknowledging that we all process information in different ways creates a relaxed environment that allows students to thrive. The knowledge that I have inspired at least one person to pursue a PhD in the life sciences, and career as a scientific researcher, is one of my proudest achievements.
Niamh is a microbiologist and has just completed a PhD in the school of Life Sciences. Niamh's research is focused on the development of a pig lung model for bacterial infections in Cystic Fibrosis. Niamh loves being involved in training new scientists and sharing her passion for research!
Winner - Alex Dixon (Computer Science)
I have now been teaching as a postgraduate for around five years, and this year will be my last as a PGR. Across that time, I have had the pleasure of teaching upwards of 500 undergraduate students across a range of topics – primarily tutoring theoretical mathematics modules to computer science students. Across that time, I have had the pleasure of teaching upwards of 500 undergraduate students across a range of topics, and every second of it has been a joy.
Alex is a tutor in Computer Science, mostly focusing on theoretical topics. Alex has a keen interest in making challenging content more approachable and engaging.
Commended - Joseph Dunford (WMS)
My main teaching focus is delivering Case Based Learning (CBL) on the MBChB programme at WMS. These sessions enable students to develop the skills and knowledge to become effective adult learners, and ultimately good doctors. In these sessions, I aim to provide excellent pastoral as well as educational support to students. Successful CBL requires a collaborative approach, in which I (as the facilitator) work in partnership with students to develop their understanding and apply their knowledge to the clinical setting. These sessions are well received, and I have continuously received positive feedback from both students themselves and observations of teaching delivery.
Joseph trained in clinical medicine before starting a PhD in Interdisciplinary Biomedical Research at Warwick Medical School. Joseph is involved in teaching in clinical medicine on the MBChB programme, as well as basic science on BSc and interdisciplinary MSc programmes. He has designed new Further Education qualifications in Healthcare Science, and is working on completing the APP-PGR.
Commended - Matthew Nicholson (Physics)
My main goal as a teacher is to explain the often complex topics of Physics in a clear and concise way. I want my students to have intuitive understandings of concepts without being intimidated by tortuous mathematics. I view successful teaching as a subset of communication, hence I pay of lot of attention to the delivery and reception of my teaching material. I enjoy teaching topics that are slightly above the usual syllabus - such as Lagrangian Mechanics, as I believe these topics help marry otherwise disparate concepts and provide deeper understanding of the standard material.
Matthew is "a second year Physics PhD student and longtime rockstar", working in the field of Particle Physics. He received his undergraduate and master's degree from Balliol College, Oxford. His research concerns the use of Gadolinium in the Super-Kamiokande detector and measurements of Supernova Relic Neutrinos.