UNBC Professor Wins National Teaching Award

March 10, 2011

A professor at the University of Northern British Columbia has been awarded one of the nation’s top post-secondary teaching awards. UNBC English professor Lisa Dickson was named to one of ten 3M National Teaching Fellowships by 3M Canada and the Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education.

“I have to say that I was stunned when I got the news,” says Dr. Dickson, who specializes in Renaissance Literature, Shakespeare, and Literary Theory. “There are a great many amazing teachers out there so I’m really glad that this award can shine some light on the fantastic instructors we have here at UNBC.”

The 26 year-old 3M National Teaching Fellowship recognizes exceptional achievements by teacher-scholars across Canada and is meant to “build and enhance personal and institutional reputations as the most prestigious recognition of teaching excellence in Canada.”

“My teaching philosophy is based on helping students to engage in active dialogue, among themselves and with critics, artists, teachers, in order to see themselves as participants in the creation of knowledge.  We learn to make connections, to understand contexts, to see how we all fit into a larger, shared conversation,” says Dr. Dickson, who has been on UNBC’s faculty for about ten years. “All too often, students get caught in a ‘bucket line’ of information, not knowing where the fire is, or where the water is coming from. My job is to help them to see the big picture. It’s not about my teaching, but about the students’ learning.”

Dr.  Dickson is UNBC’s second 3M Fellowship to date. Heather Smith, a professor in the International Studies Program, also achieved the honour. The full list of this year’s 3M Fellowships will be included in a special issue of Macleans Magazine on March 10.

Media: please email Lisa Dickson at dicksonl@unbc.ca to arrange an interview.
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Lisa Dickson

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