University of Auckland academics win top teaching accolades

18 August 2016
Tertiary Teaching Excellence Awards Martin East and Tracey McIntosh portrait 2016
Associate Professor Martin East and Associate Professor Tracey McIntosh

Dedication to student-centred and innovative teaching distinguish the two University of Auckland academics who have won Tertiary Teaching Excellence Awards in 2016.

Associate Professor Tracey McIntosh and Associate Professor Martin East received national awards for sustained excellence in tertiary teaching at an event hosted by the Prime Minister in Wellington on Wednesday night.

Winning the award in the Kaupapa Māori category, former Head of Sociology Tracey McIntosh has a particular interest in the inter-generational transfer of social inequalities. She has held senior positions including Associate Dean of the Faculty of Arts, Deputy Pro-Vice Chancellor (Equity) and joint director of Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga: Māori Centre for Research Excellence.

She has worked extensively with Māori women in prison, teaching voluntarily in a programme at Auckland Region Women's Corrections Facility, supporting women in formal education and within a creative writing programme.

Dean of Arts Professor Robert Greenberg says Tracey's exceptional contributions to teaching over many years, particularly with respect to Kaupapa Māori, are acknowledged by her peers and supported by effusive teaching evaluations and testimonials. “Positioning herself as a Māori academic, Tracey focuses on workable, innovative and empowering solutions that in turn empower students.”

Winning in the general category, Martin East is an Associate Dean (Research Development) at the Faculty of Education and Social Work and an Associate Professor in the School of Curriculum and Pedagogy.

Martin is an experienced teacher at both secondary and tertiary level and is currently the editor of the peer-reviewed professional journal The New Zealand Language Teacher. His research and teaching interests focus on second language acquisition and as well as being widely published and in demand at international conferences, he has had significant input into a new form of NCEA assessment at national level.

Martin “exemplifies the very best of tertiary teaching” says Dean of Education and Social Work Professor Graeme Aitken. “He draws on his own rigorous research and scholarship to develop and deliver courses that are consistently highly regarded by his students.”

He says students specifically mention Martin’s clarity and organisation, and the extent to which he is “approachable, encouraging and motivating”.

A total of 12 national awards across the tertiary sector were presented at Wednesday’s dinner, with all Sustained Excellence winners receiving $20,000.

The University has now won 25 Tertiary Teaching Excellence Awards since they were introduced by the Government in 2001 to celebrate and encourage outstanding tertiary teachers. More about Teaching Excellence Awards.

Watch Associate Professor Tracey McIntosh talk about her teaching.

Watch Associate Professor Martin East talk about his teaching.

Julianne Evans
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