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Four UT Arlington educators receive Regents’ Outstanding Teaching Award

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Friday, August 8, 2014

Media Contact: Herb Booth, Office:817-272-7075, Cell:214-546-1082, hbooth@uta.edu

News Topics: alumni, faculty, liberal arts, science, staff, students

Four faculty members from The University of Texas at Arlington are among 96 educators recognized this year by The University of Texas System Board of Regents for excellence in the classroom.

The UT System’s most innovative and dedicated educators will share $2.4 million this month as winners of the Regents’ Outstanding Teaching Award. Faculty members from across the UT System’s 15 academic and health institutions will receive $25,000 each and will be honored at a ceremony Wednesday, Aug. 20, in Austin.

UT System Regents outstanding teachers at UT Arlington.

UT Arlington honorees are:

  • Krystal Beamon, assistant professor of sociology;
  • Darryl Lauster, assistant professor of art and art history;
  • Allan Saxe, associate professor of political science; and
  • Kevin Schug, Shimadzu Distinguished Professor of Analytical Chemistry.

The four professors bring UT Arlington’s total number of Regents’ Outstanding Teaching Award recipients to 45 since the program’s inception in 2008.

The awards highlight the talent and commitment to excellence in teaching among UT Arlington faculty members, President Vistasp M. Karbhari said.

“Preeminent research universities are distinguished by the quality of their faculty members and the faculty’s dedication to students. The best teachers instill in their students a shared passion for life-long learning and discovery,” Karbhari said. “This year’s UT System Regents Outstanding Teaching Awards winners represent the very best that UT Arlington has to offer our students, and we are honored to call them our colleagues.”

Honorees were selected based on recommendations from department chairs, deans and committees. A complete list of winners by institution can be found on the Regents’ Outstanding Teaching Awards website.

“We are proud that these awards support and promote a culture of teaching excellence, especially in undergraduate programs, at all our campuses System-wide,” said Regents Vice Chairman Steven Hicks, chair of the board’s Academic Affairs Committee. “The teachers we are honoring are truly the best of the best.”

The Regents have awarded nearly $13.4 million since 2008, when the program was created to recognize faculty members who deliver the highest quality of instruction in the classroom, the laboratory, the field or online.

The award recognizes tenured, tenure-track as well as other instructional faculty for their outstanding teaching, mentoring, personal commitment to students and the learning process as well as motivating students in the classroom.

“It is the UT System’s responsibility to provide a world-class education for students at our institutions,” said Regent Robert L. Stillwell, who chairs the Health Affairs Committee. “Recognizing teaching excellence is an important part of the overall commitment to improving the quality of higher education across the state.”

Recipients are vetted by their peers, students and UT System presidents before advancing to competition at the System level.

In their evaluations of a candidate’s teaching performance, members of the review panel consider a range of activities and criteria, including classroom expertise, curricula quality, innovative course development and student learning outcomes.

“Our excellence in teaching faculty is a critical part of the System’s vision of an institution of the first class,” said UT System Chancellor Francisco G. Cigarroa, M.D. “These awards are a reflection of the Regents placing the highest priority on undergraduate, graduate and professional teaching excellence System-wide.”

About The University of Texas at Arlington

The University of Texas at Arlington is a comprehensive research institution and the second largest institution in The University of Texas System. The Chronicle of Higher Education ranked UT Arlington as the seventh fastest-growing public research university in 2013. U.S. News & World Report ranks UT Arlington fifth in the nation for undergraduate diversity. Visit www.uta.edu to learn more. Follow #UTAdna on Twitter.

About The University of Texas System

Educating students, providing care for patients, conducting groundbreaking research and serving the needs of Texans and the nation for more than 130 years, The University of Texas System is one of the largest public university systems in the United States, with nine academic universities, six health institutions and a fall 2013 enrollment of more than 213,000. The UT System confers more than one-third of the state’s undergraduate degrees, educates two-thirds of the state’s health care professionals annually and accounts for almost 70 percent of all research funds awarded to public universities in Texas. The UT System has an annual operating budget of $14.6 billion (FY 2014) including $3 billion in sponsored programs funded by federal, state, local and private sources. With about 90,000 employees, the UT System is one of the largest employers in the state.

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The University of Texas at Arlington is an Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action employer.