L&S wins 9 of 12 campus Distinguished Teaching Awards

February 25th 2016 | L&S News
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Faculty members from the College of Letters & Science received 9 of the 12 Distinguished Teaching Awards awarded by the University of Wisconsin-Madison this year. The awards recognize the university’s finest educators, and have been granted by the university since 1953.

Chancellor Rebecca Blank and Provost Sarah Mangelsdorf will present the awards at a ceremony at 5 p.m. March 16 at the Fluno Center, 601 University Ave. The ceremony, sponsored by the Wisconsin Alumni Association with support from the Office of the Secretary of the Faculty, is free and open to the public. To attend, register here.

2016 L&S Recipients

[caption id="attachment_18671" align="aligncenter" width="600"]Remzi Arpaci-Dusseau lectures in front of a class Bryce Richter, University of Wisconsin-Madison[/caption]

Remzi Arpaci-Dusseau, Professor, Department of Computer Sciences
Chancellor's Distinguished Teaching Award

During his time at UW-Madison, Remzi Arpaci-Dusseau has earned a reputation for being both an innovator and student-focused. Beloved by his students, he encourages hard work by making his courses engaging and exciting. He has breathed new life into how the department teaches courses on operating systems by adding new conceptual material and hands-on projects, as well as improving the overall quality of classes for undergraduate and graduate students. He and his wife and fellow professor, Andrea Arpaci-Dusseau, wrote Operating Systems: Three Easy Pieces and made it available free on the Internet. Last year, the book’s chapters were downloaded approximately 2 million times and used around the world. Arpaci-Dusseau has won a student-selected teaching award so often that students were forced to limit the number of times a professor could be given the honor.

[caption id="attachment_18672" align="aligncenter" width="600"]Russ Castronovo meets with a student during office hours Bryce Richter, University of Wisconsin-Madison[/caption]

Russ Castronovo, Professor, Department of English
Chancellor's Distinguished Teaching Award

Being an affable professor known for teaching stimulating courses means that Russ Castronovo receives rave reviews from his students. His focus on improving students’ writing skills is well known: He may meet with students several times before they complete an essay and aims to provide constructive feedback. Understanding that disadvantaged students may find it difficult to secure prestigious internships, Castronovo worked with the Center for Academic Excellence to garner a $300,000 grant to help underrepresented minority students obtain internships. He is respected at all levels of learning and earned the Graduate Student Association Award from the Department of English for 2011–12.

[caption id="attachment_18673" align="aligncenter" width="600"]Jeff Miller, University of Wisconsin-Madison Jeff Miller, University of Wisconsin-Madison[/caption]

Ivan Ermakoff, Professor, Department of Sociology
Chancellor's Distinguished Teaching Award

"Stunning" is the word fellow faculty members use to describe Ivan Ermakoff’s teaching skills. He has shown an ability not only to challenge students with intricate ideas, but also to provide personal attention to students so they do not become frustrated with or confused by the material. As a researcher, Ermakoff has been consistently productive in publishing one or two articles per year in top sociology journals. His latest, “The Structure of Contingency,” appeared in the American Journal of Sociology, the top-ranked journal in the field. He has received many accolades for his research, including the 2012 Lewis A. Coser Award for Theoretical Agenda Setting from the American Sociological Association’s Theory Section.

[caption id="attachment_18674" align="aligncenter" width="600"]Daniel Erman lectures in front of a class Jeff Miller, University of Wisconsin-Madison[/caption]

Daniel Erman, Assistant Professor, Department of Mathematics
William H. Kiekhofer Teaching Award

Daniel Erman has been teaching at UW-Madison for only two-and-a-half years, but already he has distinguished himself in courses ranging from first-year calculus to graduate topics. Since he’s been on campus, he has written eight papers that have either been published or accepted for publication, and he has five other papers in process. He has also secured a personal research grant from the National Science Foundation. Above all, Erman’s love for mathematics and teaching shines through in his tireless search for ways to reach students and his concern for their well-being.

[caption id="attachment_18675" align="aligncenter" width="600"]Holly Gibbs leads a small discussion section Bryce Richter, University of Wisconsin-Madison[/caption]

Holly Gibbs, Assistant Professor, Department of Geography
Chancellor's Distinguished Teaching Award

Known as a rising star in the department, Holly Gibbs’ research focuses on assessing rates of tropical deforestation and the effectiveness of policies implemented to hinder it. Her work with policymakers is receiving widespread attention and has been featured in several news outlets, including NPR and the BBC. As a teacher, she is committed to building students’ professional credentials through experiential class design, and she motivates students to turn their ideas into action.

[caption id="attachment_18676" align="aligncenter" width="600"]Keisha Lindsay sits on a table as she teaches a class of undergraduate students Jeff Miller, University of Wisconsin-Madison[/caption]

Keisha Lindsay, Assistant Professor, Departments of Gender and Women's Studies and Political Science
Chancellor's Inclusive Excellence Award

As a faculty member of color at UW-Madison, Keisha Lindsay serves the university by working for an equitable future through her teaching, advising, and mentoring. She has developed unique courses based in her areas of expertise and contributed to some of the most important courses on campus, including Contemporary Feminist Theories, Black Feminisms, Theories of Intersectionality, African American Political Thought, and Feminist Political Theory. She is one of the leading experts on intersectionality, an area in gender and women’s studies that has been the topic of special issues of journals across the social sciences.

[caption id="attachment_18677" align="aligncenter" width="600"]John Moore works individually with a student Jeff Miller, University of Wisconsin-Madison[/caption]

John Moore, W.T. Lippincott Professor, Department of Chemistry
Van Hise Outreach Teaching Award

As the head of the Institute for Chemical Education (ICE), John Moore helps provide instructional materials and develops workshops for precollege chemistry and science teachers. Through ICE, he helps establish summer chemistry camps for middle school students, assemble student-led chemical demonstrations in public venues, and partners with Fusion Science Theater to organize science-themed mini-plays for children. For many years, Moore served as editor of the Journal of Chemical Education, the field’s premier journal. He is also the author of many articles and four textbooks, including Chemistry: The Molecular Science.

[caption id="attachment_18678" align="aligncenter" width="600"]Lauren Riters chats with a student Bryce Richter, University of Wisconsin-Madison[/caption]

Lauren Riters, Professor, Department of Zoology
Chancellor's Distinguished Teaching Award

Lauren Riters has shown great devotion to students at the undergraduate and graduate levels. She teaches courses ranging from Introduction to Animal Biology to the graduate seminar course Behavioral Neuroscience. To help maximize positive outcomes in large lecture courses, she is actively involved in implementing new teaching approaches, which include offering online testing, in-class clickers to help determine levels of student understanding, and post-lecture questions for students. She also manages a research laboratory that provides training for graduate and undergraduate students, including underrepresented minorities.

[caption id="attachment_18687" align="aligncenter" width="600"]Basil Tikoff leads a lecture Jeff Miller, University of Wisconsin-Madison[/caption]

Basil Tikoff, Professor, Department of Geoscience
Emil Steiger Teaching Award

Geoscience 202, Introduction to Geologic Structure, is the first “real” course for geoscience majors at UW-Madison. Basil Tikoff was the driving force behind this hands-on course 16 years ago and, as is made clear by student feedback, it still resonates. Additionally, Tikoff plays a leading role at the national and international levels in research into the deformation of the earth’s crust and upper mantle: the subdiscipline known as structural geology. He is also a leader in the Structure and Tectonics Division of the Geological Society of America.


2016 Recipients Across Campus

[caption id="attachment_18684" align="alignleft" width="300"]David Brow chats one-on-one over coffee with a student Bryce Richter, University of Wisconsin-Madison[/caption]

David Brow, Professor, Department of Biomolecular Chemistry, School of Medicine and Public Health
Chancellor's Distinguished Teaching Award

David Brow has been at UW-Madison since 1986. During that time, he has established himself as an enthusiastic and dedicated educator who is known to make the arcane accessible to his first-year medical students. He also helps new faculty members to feel at ease by attending their lectures and providing feedback. During the last 35 years, Brow’s NIH-funded research program has made important contributions to the field of RNA biology, and his expertise is highly sought after in the United States and around the world.

[caption id="attachment_18685" align="alignleft" width="300"]Linn Posey-Maddox participates in a discussion Jeff Miller, University of Wisconsin-Madison[/caption]

Linn Posey-Maddox, Assistant Professor, Department of Educational Policy Studies, School of Education
Class of 1955 Teaching Excellence Award

Linn Posey-Maddox’s teaching is anything but traditional. She uses video clips, Web postings and new media in all of her courses and teaches her students how to organize ideas coherently and comprehensively to create knowledge. She also excels when teaching in a conventional manner because her cogent lectures engage students, and she chooses her reading materials to accommodate various levels of student understanding. Posey-Maddox’s reputation as one of the best discussion facilitators in both undergraduate and graduate courses is well known among colleagues.

[caption id="attachment_18686" align="alignleft" width="300"]Ahna Skop works one-on-one with a student at a computer station Jeff Miller, University of Wisconsin-Madison[/caption]

Ahna Skop, Associate Professor, Departments of Genetics and Life Sciences Communication, College of Agricultural and Life Sciences
Chancellor's Inclusive Excellence Award

Ahna Skop has been a leader in advocating for student diversity and inclusiveness at UW-Madison for more than a decade. Aside from being internationally recognized for her work as a geneticist and cell biologist, Skop acts as a role model for underrepresented students who might otherwise not be interested in genetics. Since 2009, she has mentored the research projects of 11 underrepresented undergraduate and Summer REU students, including students from Native American groups.

Story originally posted by University Communications