Sara Wolfson at "Oscars of Higher Education"
Canterbury Christ Church University historian Sara Wolfson has been shortlisted for a Times Higher Education award in the category of Most Innovative Teacher of the Year.
This award seeks to reward the academic whose imagination and passion have transformed a course and inspired students. It is open to academics in all UK higher education institutions.
The THE awards have been described as the "Oscars of UK Higher Education" and Sara was chosen from hundreds of nominees. In her submission Sara had to:
- Explain how she evaluated and developed her own professional progress with regard to teaching.
- Show how her engagement with students impacted positively in and beyond her academic role and how it has had an effect beyond Canterbury Christ Church University.
- Show evidence of sustained commitment to advancing and positively influencing the student experience.
“In my teaching, I value the ways that innovative methods help to shape the individual student experience, while maintaining the academic rigour of historical study."
“I am passionate about holistic modes of learning which allows students to build connections between the pieces of information they assimilate to make sense of topics for themselves. To do this, I create an environment where knowledge is shared and discussed."
“From 2014-2015, I have experimented with workshops rather than traditional lectures in first and second year. This differs from the way history is taught across the sector. Students in my first year course recreated Charles I’s trial of 1649 with the help of an external scholar, Dr Simon Healy from History of Parliament. The core reading for the task was split up amongst the students, who then separated into prosecution and defence teams. Role-play, historical investigation, teamwork and interaction presented the course in a creative way to highlight the historical debates that are still very much alive today."
Sara has also embedded graduate employability more broadly within her history modules by building upon the skills developed through good citizenship points and collaborative learning.
We are thrilled that Sara has been shortlisted for this prestigious award.The category winners will be announced at a presentation ceremony in November.