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Excellence and Innovation in Teaching Award

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A friend of Grand View established the Excellence and Innovation in Teaching Award to honor a faculty member who demonstrates a commitment to enhancing student learning through inter-disciplinary connections, who utilizes creative and effective pedagogies, and who demonstrates a genuine care and concern for Grand View students.  The criteria for this award are in alignment with the exemplary teaching practices and positive faculty-student relationships that are encouraged by Grand View’s Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning.

This year’s honoree is Dr. Chad Timm. Never satisfied with the status quo, he continually strives to create new and inventive ways to teach his students.   He uses multiple strategies and tools in his classes to reach a variety of learners, from video clips and primary sources to Twitter and internet memes.  He meets students where they are, and brings them up to where they need to be in order to shine in the field.  His classrooms are a “safe space” where students feel free to express their ideas and wrestle with difficult concepts.  One student nominator expressed the idea that this professor’s “whole-hearted belief” in her success has made her a much stronger student in all of her classes.

Additionally, because of his years of expertise in his field, he is able to pull in real life stories to help students put concepts and theories into practice themselves.  He is always willing to share these experiences, and can brainstorm with students to help them see solutions to their own real world situations.  As a teacher of teachers, his creative lectures, interactive lessons, and passion for his subject serve as role models, and his extensive annotations on students’ own lesson plans help them see how reflective practice will serve them their whole professional life. 

Finally, and foremost, this professor cares about his students.  Numerous student nominators said he was always willing to set aside a huge stack of work when they rushed into his office with a crisis.  Our honoree takes the time out of his day to check in with students, to see how they are doing, or to send them an encouraging Tweet.  Last, but certainly not least, he “knows how to rock a bow tie.”

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