McMaster only university in the Americas in running for global teaching prize

July 13, 2017

McMaster is the only finalist from the Americas - and one of only 27 in the world - for a prestigious new teaching award.

The Global Teaching Excellence Award, run by the Higher Education Academy in partnership with Times Higher Education, recognizes universities with strong institution-wide approaches to driving up educational standards.

“McMaster’s distinguished record for innovation and excellence in educational leadership makes learning a transformational experience for its students,” says Arshad Ahmad, McMaster’s Vice-Provost, Teaching and Learning and Director of the MacPherson Institute. “This shortlisting recognizes that, among other things, exceptional quality of teaching and learning is in McMaster’s DNA.”

The Global Teaching Excellence Award nomination covers McMaster’s advances in promoting evidence-based teaching, its sharing of high-impact teaching practices, experiential educational opportunities offered to students and the University’s commitment to the overall student learning experience.

Read: McMaster programs ranked among the best in the world

McMaster was ranked 113th in the world and sixth in Canada in the Times Higher Education’s 2016-2017 World Rankings.

Svava Bjarnason, chair of the judging panel and a former member of the World Bank Education Sector Board, said that there had been some “fantastic entries”.

“Our panel was looking for robust evidence of excellence in three areas: leadership, teaching and in student support,” Bjarnason said. “We found a great deal of outstanding practice in these submissions, and I believe this presents a superb opportunity for others to consider these lessons for their own institutional teaching strategies.”

McMaster has long stood out among the world’s universities in providing high-quality teaching and learning.

In 1969, faculty in Health Sciences began the development of small-group, problem-based learning, later described by Maclean’s magazine as “one of the truly new innovations of modern education.”

McMaster was also one of the first Canadian universities to open a centre dedicated to improving teaching and learning across campus. The centre is now known as the Paul R. MacPherson Institute for Leadership, Innovation and Excellence in Teaching.

The winner of the Global Teaching Excellence Award will be announced at a ceremony in London on 4 September, coinciding with the THE World Academic Summit.