DIGITAL MEDIA: Senior Lecturer of Digital Media Dr Ashley Holmes and I.T. Teacher Nivva Dopathi help year 11 student, of Mackay State High, Igor Selezner plan life after highschool. Photo Louise Starkey / Daily Mercury
DIGITAL MEDIA: Senior Lecturer of Digital Media Dr Ashley Holmes and I.T. Teacher Nivva Dopathi help year 11 student, of Mackay State High, Igor Selezner plan life after highschool. Photo Louise Starkey / Daily Mercury

CQ educators snap up prestigious teaching awards

Three educators from CQUniversity Australia have been recognised with prestigious national teaching awards.

The Australian Awards for University Teaching celebrate outstanding achievements in university teaching and are assessed by an independent panel of expert academics.

The successful award recipients from CQUniversity include Professor Michael Cowling (Award for Teaching Excellence), Dr Ashley Holmes and Dr Ramadas Narayanan (Citations for Outstanding Contributions to Student Learning).

Information and Communication technology expert, Professor Cowling’s Award for Teaching Excellence was considered in the category of physical sciences and related studies.

The accolade recognised his demonstrated excellence, leadership and sustained commitment to teaching and learning in higher education.

Professor Cowling’s Queensland Government workshop series ‘Weaving Technology into the Fabric of the Classroom’ trained hundreds of educators in the use of innovative technology. Additionally, as part of his CSIRO-supported ‘Professor Tech’ program, he has presented to students in a significant number of K-12 schools.

His own higher education students, as well as hundreds of school teachers, and tens of thousands of students from kindergarten through to doctoral level have learned directly and indirectly from Professor Cowling, benefiting from his mantra of ‘pedagogy before technology’ and his commitment to technology as a driver to enhance the student educational experience.

Professor Cowling is also a highly regarded technology and science communicator writing articles and appearing on radio and television to talk about the impact of technology on education and daily life.

This is the second year in a row that a CQUniversity learning and teaching specialist has been recognised with an Award for Teaching Excellence, with Professor Kate Ames honoured in 2020 for her commitment to ensuring distance and online learners are ‘central to the classroom’.

Digital media specialist Dr Holmes and mechanical engineering lecturer Dr Narayanan both received citations for outstanding contributions to student learning which recognise and reward the diversity of contributions made by individuals and teams to the quality of student learning.

Citations are awarded to those educators who have contributed to the quality of student learning in a specific area of responsibility over a sustained period.

CQUniversity’s Vice-President, Academic, Professor Helen Huntly congratulated her colleagues on their achievements and noted that their recognition was well-deserved.

“I am delighted to see Professor Cowling, Dr Holmes and Dr Narayanan recognised with these awards,” she said.

“Receiving one of these prestigious teaching awards represents national recognition of the commitment and dedication each has shown to their respective disciplines and their students, over several years.

“These experts set a benchmark when it comes to sharing their knowledge and expertise with students, and providing innovative and engaging learning environments that cultivate successful and enriching student learning.

“I applaud their efforts and thank them for their continued contribution to CQUniversity and our students,” Professor Huntly said.

The 2020 AAUT were announced virtually this week.



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