University 'rising star' wins National Teaching Award
Press release issued: 1 July 2004
Dr Dudley Shallcross, a Lecturer in Chemistry at Bristol University, has won a prestigious National Teaching Fellowship Scheme award worth £50,000 in recognition of his outstanding contribution to learning and teaching. He is the first academic at the University and the first chemist in the UK to receive the award.
Dudley is one of ten winners of the Rising Stars category, chosen from 88 nominations submitted by higher education institutions across England and Northern Ireland.
Since his appointment in 1999, Dudley has not only taught and supervised undergraduate and postgraduate students, but he has also been very active with secondary and primary schools and in the community on projects relating to the promotion and understanding of science, ranging from workshops at primary schools to lunch time clubs for retired people. As the School of Chemistry's first Schools Liaison Officer, he has established a network of 100 local secondary schools and has run festivals, summer schools and Chemistry Camps.
As a member of the Teaching Advisory Board in Chemistry, Dudley has had a significant impact on teaching and learning practice, and has helped shape maths provision throughout the School. He is carrying out research on mathematics education in collaboration with colleagues in the University's Graduate School of Education. This work could impact on the teaching of mathematics to scientists from post-16 to university level.
He runs a leading atmospheric science research group and an impressive number of his students have won undergraduate project prizes and graduate prizes for oral or poster presentations. One of them gave him the ultimate accolade: 'Yours is the only course I discuss with friends in the pub.'
Professor Guy Orpen, Head of the School of Chemistry, commenting on Dudley's award, said: "It is a particular honour that Dudley has won this award and great testimony to his growing influence nationally and locally in science education and communication."
He represents the University of Bristol on the UK Worldwide Universities Network Chemistry Committee, which is addressing the teaching of Chemistry at A-level and undergraduate level. He has also represented the University at a Higher Education Regional Development Agency working party for Physical Sciences.
Dudley plans to use his funding to develop teaching and assessment methods based on 'situated cognition' (relating new information to what the learner already knows).
The National Teaching Fellowship Scheme (NTFS), now in its fifth year, recognises and rewards teachers or learning support staff in higher education for their excellence in teaching. It is managed by the Higher Education Academy on behalf of the Higher Education Funding Council for England and the Department for Employment and Learning in Northern Ireland, which fund the Scheme.
The Government's White Paper on the Future of Higher Education, published in January 2003, recognised the success and influence of the National Teaching Fellowship Scheme by proposing that it should be more than doubled in size. Two new categories have been added this year, with awards being given for the first time in three categories: for experienced staff, learning support staff, and 'rising stars' who have been teaching regularly for fewer than six years. Every eligible institution was able to nominate one person for each of the three categories: 91 nominations were received in the Experienced Staff category, 88 for Rising Stars and 70 for Learning Support Staff.
The winners will receive their awards from the Minister for Lifelong Learning and Higher Education, Alan Johnson, at a celebration dinner in London on 9 September 2004.
The nominations were judged by an Advisory Panel chaired by Sir David Watson, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Brighton. Nominations are assessed against the criteria in two rounds by a panel of 34 assessors who are chosen to represent a cross-section of the higher and further education sectors. Each nomination is anonymously assessed by a total of at least six assessors, with final decisions being made by the whole Panel.
The Higher Education Academy was formed following the recommendations of the Teaching Quality Enhancement Committee (TQEC), published in January 2003. It integrates the work of the main agencies most directly involved in teaching quality enhancement into a new body. It incorporates the former Institute for Learning and Teaching in Higher Education (ILTHE), Learning and Teaching Support Network (LTSN), and TQEF National Co-ordination Team (NCT).