University of Auckland senior tutor Rena Heap was one of twelve outstanding tertiary teachers recognised last night by Ako Aotearoa – The National Centre for Tertiary Teaching Excellence.
The tertiary teaching excellence awards held at Parliament last night recognise and celebrate excellence in tertiary teaching; providing an opportunity for teachers to share with others the good practice that has proven to benefit their learners.
Mrs Heap, a Senior Tutor in the school of sciences, mathematics and technology was recognised for her methods and innovative exercises that stimulate learning. The judges noted her classes epitomise theory in action by making science fascinating, relevant and fun.
“Her willingness to take risks is rewarded by opening students’ eyes to new ways of capturing young minds in future classrooms,” said the judges.
TEU national president Sandra Grey, who attended the awards, said it was enriching to have a diverse range of tertiary teachers from different institutions recognised including senior tutors like Mrs Heap.
“As some of the recipients noted last night, it is important we recognise great teaching, not just great research in our tertiary institutions,” said Dr Grey.
Other winners last night included Peter Bilous and Professor Leoni Schmidt from Otago Polytechnic, Professor Kevin Gould of Victoria University of Wellington, Sandra Lee Morrison and Dr Mary Fitzpatrick from the University of Waikato, Associate Professor Jon Harding from the University of Canterbury, Professor Robin Kearns and Dr Ross McDonald of the University of Auckland, Dr Ksenija Napan from Unitec, and Tony Zaharic from the University of Otago. Professor Michael Walker from the University of Auckland won this year’s Prime Minister’s Supreme Award for tertiary teaching excellence.