Documenting your teaching and research efforts can be useful as a way to reflect on, improve and direct your teaching and research activities. Keeping good records of both teaching and research also serves to help facilitate faculty service reports and tenure and promotion processes. The NIU community recognizes and supports faculty who excel in the practice of teaching, research and engagement through several prestigious awards. These awards are presented below.
Evidence of teaching can be derived from your own records as well as records from others while evidence of research is made apparent by publications and other activities. Most of your teaching and research documents can be stored electronically for easy access and flash drives provide storage that is both portable and secure.
The lists below highlight a range of teaching and research evidence but should not be construed as the required documentation for all department or school personnel committees. Please discuss with your department or school chair or director about those requirements necessary for applying for tenure and/or promotion.
Periodically reflecting on the scope and direction of your teaching and research activities can help you develop philosophy statements in these areas. Explain how your philosophy has been put into practice in course syllabi, examinations, readings and assignments to establish a context of understanding and evaluating your overall record of effectiveness as a university professor.
In addition to keeping records of teaching and research activities, begin to keep document outcomes that demonstrate ways your courses provide excellent learning environments. These records can also act as a means of self assessment and personal growth and improvement toward efforts as an effective educator. Here are some examples of those endeavors:
Because teaching and research are of utmost importance “for attaining the educational goals of the university, outstanding teachers [and researchers are] are recognized by the university community” through a number of awards. These awards are granted yearly to those individuals who have demonstrated excellence in teaching and research and provide “support for current and future efforts” (NIU 2007, Para. 1).
Excellent instructors and researchers exhibit an intense interest in their fields and show relevance of its value to society. These individuals apply rigorous standards in the classroom and inspire students to excel. They demonstrate a strong commitment to students and their welfare, not only in subject matter and in class preparation, but by being available outside classroom to help students with course-related projects and activities as well as personal and professional development. The following highlight the NIU awards that recognize excellence in teaching, research and engagement. Learn more about internal awards.
The Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching Award honors tenure-track and tenured faculty who exhibit excellent undergraduate teaching in the university, encourage improvement of instruction promote discussion among members of the university community on the subject of teaching.
The purpose of the Excellence in Undergraduate Instruction Award is to honor excellent undergraduate teaching in the university, specifically among non-tenure track educators not recognized by the NIU Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching Award, to encourage improvement of instruction and to promote discussion among members of the university community on the subject of teaching.
The purpose of the Excellence in Online Teaching Award is to encourage and honor outstanding online and hybrid teaching at NIU. It recognizes NIU faculty and instructors whose performance exemplifies a commitment to excellence in online teaching, course development and student engagement.
Presidential Teaching Professors are acknowledged to be among the most notable teachers at the university who have demonstrated continuous excellence in the teaching of under-graduate and/or graduate students.
Recipients of the Presidential Research, Scholarship and Artistry Professor Award have received national or international acclaim for their scholarship, are among the researchers or artists of highest stature in their speciality, have made significant positive impact on the discipline nationally or internationally, and are judged to be likely to continue to make such impact.
The Presidential Engagement Professor Award honors those tenure-track and tenured faculty through their engagement with the community through research, economic development, service and instruction. Establishment of these professorships places NIU in the company of the growing number of institutions which now recognize and reward this increasingly critical function.
The Board of Trustees Professorship recognizes faculty who have achieved a consistent record of excellence in teaching, scholarship or artistry, service and outreach, and academic leadership; have earned a national/international reputation for professional achievements; and are deemed likely to make continued and substantial contributions in higher education. Special emphasis is placed upon the recognition of faculty who are renowned scholars/artists who have engaged students in their research/or and other professional activities.
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Northern Illinois University Center for Innovative Teaching and Learning. (2020). Documenting your teaching and research. In Instructional guide for university faculty and teaching assistants. Retrieved from https://www.niu.edu/citl/resources/guides/instructional-guide