The Star Malaysia - Star2
THREE academics from the School of Information Technology, Monash University Malaysia, were recently recognised with the Teaching Excellence Award 2015.
This award from Monash University Australia recognised and celebrated the importance of excellent teaching.
Dr Anushia Inthiran, Dr Sylvester Olubolu Orimaye and Dr Mohammad Reza Zare emerged as winners in the Citation for Outstanding Contribution to Student Learning category.
Dr Anushia received the award for enabling exceptional participation in student learning and teaching experience, with the use of conventional engaging strategies.
According to her, students at Monash University Malaysia have continuously indicated that they find classes dull and lustreless.
“This made it difficult for students to pay attention in class, and that led to a less than satisfactory learning and teaching experience. To enhance this experience, several strategies were introduced during the lectures and tutorials,” shares Dr Anushia.
“These strategies were able to engage students, creating a fun learning environment and inspiring students to explore beyond the boundaries of learning outcomes.”
The implementation of these strategies were well- received by peers and students.
In his quest to help students experience first- class information and practical interpretations of theories, Dr Orimaye, in his advanced programming and web- database interface unit, discovered that students had problems interpreting information in a way that is meaningful and useful to their field of study.
So, he engaged students through active learning by clearly interpreting lecture contents using practical scenarios, relevant industry visits, industry talks and educational technologies.
“Teaching technical units such as programming and database to a first year student, especially to passive learners, is very tricky. At the same time, I believe the young generation is full of energy and passion, which needs special attention.
“I believe in active learning, which is a hands- on approach to learning, and have employed a successful combination of the flipped classroom, individual and group activities plus outcome- based learning according to the nature of the topics,” says Dr Mohammad Reza Zare, who received the citation for successful implementation of various student- centred approaches to groom first year students to have a passion in learning.
The Teaching Excellence Award was introduced in the Faculty of Information Technology, Monash Australia, to celebrate the importance of excellent teaching, recognise and reward excellent teachers, and identify potential teachers and projects for further nominations of awards within the university, in Australia and overseas.
Staff and students were invited to nominate a teacher, honours supervisor, staff or support within the faculty, whom they thought deserved recognition.
The Excellence Award 2015 was divided into three categories:
Citations for Outstanding Contributions to Student Learning
Award for Teaching Excellence
Award for Excellence in Honours Supervision