Outstanding Graduate Student Teaching Award

Outstanding Graduate Student Teaching Award

Initial Nomination Forms due Tuesday, March 1, 2016
2016 Initial OGTA Nomination Form

The Outstanding Graduate Student Teaching Award (OGTA) recognizes the contributions of graduate students to teaching and learning at UC Davis. This is a tremendously important award as it honors outstanding graduate students, reminds the campus that teaching is a central part of the university’s mission, and can inspire students and professors to give increased attention to the educational process.

Anyone may nominate!

Do you know a graduate student who deserves to be recognized for exemplary teaching? Any member of the campus community having direct experience with the student's teaching may nominate. Complete the nomination form and submit your favorite graduate student teacher for consideration. Undergraduate students are especially encouraged to submit.

Dyani Taff, 2014 OGTA recipient
Dyani Taff, 2014 OGTA recipient

A committee that includes faculty and graduate students will be convened by Graduate Studies to review all nominations and select award recipients. In spring quarter, the nominees will be notified whether they have been selected to receive an award. A certificate and a small monetary award will be conferred to award winners at the Spring Awards Ceremony (May 23, 2016) recognizing their achievement and contribution.

The award is limited to currently enrolled graduate students who have been employed on this campus as Teaching Assistants and/or Associate In's during an eligible quarter.Previous recipients of this award are not eligible for nomination.

NOMINATION PROCESS

Deadline: The deadline for all application materials is Tuesday, March 8, 2016.

Who May Nominate: Any member of the campus community having direct experience with the student’s teaching. Self-nominations are allowed.

Eligible quarters for the 2016 OGTA: Graduate student Teaching Assistants and Associate In’s in courses taught in winter 2015, spring 2015, summer 2015, and fall 2015 may be nominated.

Initial Nomination Form: The Nomination Form has been updated for the current year; information from last year should not be used. Please review the following information carefully. The required information must be completed as described. The deadline for all application materials is Tuesday, March 8, 2016.  Please submit the Initial Nomination Form well in advance of this date (by Tuesday, March 1, 2016) to provide your nominee with sufficient time to complete the application form and request a letter of recommendation

The Initial Nomination Form must include a Nomination Letter/Essay which must be written by one person, with a maximum length of two pages, addressing the individual’s performance in the specific course for which he/she is nominated and should include:

  1. Nominee name and graduate program.
  2. Outstanding qualities that distinguish the candidate.
  3. Evidence of creativity and extra effort in improving instruction and teaching effectiveness.
  4. Comments on the nominee’s rapport with students, availability, willingness to hold special help sessions, efforts to stimulate independent thinking, and any other contributions to instruction that deserve special recognition and may be helpful to the selection committee.
  5. Name of individual writing the nomination letter, department, e-mail address and signature.
  6. Additional relevant information such as experience with the student in other teaching roles other than the nominated course may be added at the end of the letter.

Once the Initial Nomination Form is submitted, Graduate Studies will contact the Nominee and the Instructor of Record for the course and provide them links to the "Supporting Letter of Recommendation Form" and the "Nominee's Form and Philosophy Statement".

Henry Hao, 2014 OGTA recipient
Henry Hao, 2014 OGTA recipient

Supporting Letter of Recommendation Form: This form is considered confidential and completed by the individual who supervised the course for which the candidate was nominated. If the student is the instructor of record, the Supporting Letter of Recommendation Form must be submitted by the department chair, graduate program chair, or a designated faculty member. If the Instructor of Record submitted the Initial Nomination Form, the Nomination Letter/Essay included in that form will be used as the Supporting Letter of Recommendation. Because of the large number of nominations, all forms must be submitted by the deadline (Tuesday, March 8, 2016). No exceptions will be made. Incomplete or late nominations will not be evaluated.

Please provide the following information in the Supporting Letter of Recommendation Form: 

  1. Nominee’s name
  2. Nominated for teaching in (quarter and course)
  3. Faculty role (instructor of record, chair, or designated faculty)
  4. Describe your impressions of the candidate’s teaching in the course.
  5. What outstanding qualities set this graduate student teacher apart from others?
  6. What evidence demonstrates the candidate's creativity and effort in improving classes and teaching effectiveness?
  7. Comment on the candidate's rapport with students, availability, willingness to hold special help sessions, efforts to stimulate independent thinking, and any other contributions to teaching that deserve special recognition and may be helpful to the selection committee.

Nominee's Form and Philosophy Statement: Because of the large number of nominations, all nomination forms must be submitted by the deadline (Tuesday, March 8, 2016). No exceptions will be made. Incomplete or late nominations will not be evaluated. This form is to be completed by the nominee and provide the following information:

  1. Nominee’s name
  2. The quarter and course you have been nominated
  3. Describe your teaching duties in the course for which you were nominated
  4. Have you been nominated for the OGTA award previously? If so, when and what course?
  5. How many quarters have you taught at UC Davis?
  6. List other classes you have taught or assisted in
  7. Include information regarding courses you have taught that would be helpful to the committee
  8. Philosophy Statement: Prepare an essay describing your teaching philosophy. The essay should be a statement of the philosophy, goals, and methods that guide your teaching. Please describe efforts you have made beyond your normal teaching responsibilities. From your own experiences as a student, please describe the attributes that you think the very best teachers should possess. Format: The essays should be no more than two pages in length, double-spaced, one-inch margins, and 12-point font. Be sure to include your name, department and contact information.
  9. Teaching Evaluations: You will be asked to upload an official summary of the course evaluations for only the specified nominated course.

For questions, please contact Steven Albrecht, Graduate Studies.

Sponsored by the Graduate Council and Graduate Studies.