Bond academics win esteemed teaching awards

October 15, 2015

Bond University has been honoured with three prestigious citations for outstanding contribution to student learning at the 2015 Australian Government Office for Learning and Teaching's Australian Awards for University Teaching, held in Brisbane at the Gallery of Modern Art.

The Australian Awards for University Teaching are designed to recognise quality teaching and outstanding contributions to student learning in universities and higher education facilities across the nation.

Assistant Professor Francina Cantatore, Director of the Bond Law Clinic, received an award acknowledging her outstanding contribution to student learning through the development of experiential learning curricula, resources and services through a legal clinic and formal subjects to enhance the law student experience and employability skills.

Also from the Faculty of Law, Assistant Professor Louise Parsons, Director of Mooting, was recognised for a nurturing, influential and motivational teaching approach that enhanced the learning experience of law students and inspired them to excel in competitive advocacy.

The final award was won by a team of nine academics from the Faculty of Health Sciences and Medicine for preparing medical students to work with, and improve the health of, Indigenous Australians through an innovative program incorporating cultural immersion.

The academics who were awarded the Indigenous Medical Education accolade were Professor Janie Smith, Associate Professor Shannon Springer, Associate Professor Mary Martin, Associate Professor Bradley Murphy, Assistant Professor Sally Sargeant, Professor Katrina Bramstedt, Associate Professor John Togno, Associate Professor David Waynforth and Associate Professor Christina Wolfe.

Professor Janie Smith, Professor of Innovations in Medical Education, said she was very proud to be part of the diverse team that took home the national award for their work in Indigenous Medical Education.

"Winning this award as a team award of nine academics provides a strong endorsement for our cultural awareness program, as it challenges students to learn about, and work through, complicated issues related to Indigenous health in a safe environment," she said.

"It is also an endorsement of Bond University as a whole, as the program we have developed could only have been done with strong leadership, innovation and a commitment to trying a different approach.

"Bond's Indigenous Medical Education program is leading the way in terms of university medical programs and is fully integrated across the five years of the medical curriculum.

"In fact, we have had a number of universities coming to view our program so they can replicate it within their own medical schools.

"We also have one of the few Aboriginal doctors here as discipline lead, Associate Professor Shannon Springer, who oversees the Indigenous health curriculum, developing clinical placement opportunities in Indigenous communities and engaging with the Gold Coast’s Indigenous community.

"There are only 216 Aboriginal doctors in Australia, so to have Associate Professor Springer working here full time is a real coup for the university."

Bond University Vice-Chancellor and President Professor Tim Brailsford said the awards were a demonstration of Bond University's commitment to providing the very highest standard of teaching quality to its students.

"The 2015 Australian Awards for University Teaching are the foremost awards for student learning in Australia," he said.

"I am proud of what the recipients have achieved, and congratulate each of them on this fine achievement."