2014 VSU Teaching Excellence Award for Online Teaching

Congratulations, Dr. Anita Ondrusek, 2014 Award Recipient

Dr. Ondrusek was selected as the first recipient of the Teaching Excellence Award for Online Teaching. Dr. Ondrusek joined VSU in the Master of Library & Information Science (MLIS) department in 2004. Some of Dr. Ondrusek's contributions and engagement with online instruction include:

  • Membership on the eLearning Advisory Board
  • Panelist on the Online and Adult Learning New Faculty Orientation Panel for Fall 2014
  • Volunteer judge for the Georgia Educational Technology Conference Problem Based Learning Media Competition
  • Member of the Online Lifeline Conference Steering Committee from 2009 - 2013

Dr. Wallace Koehler, Professor and Director of the MLIS program said "The quality of the MLIS as well as VSU online teaching would not be nor could it be as progressive as it is without Dr. Ondrusek's participation." Dr. Linda Most, Interim Department Head indicated that "Dr. Ondrusek develops rapport with her students by providing rich feedback and offers them opportunities to review and resubmit their work to demonstrate their mastery of the required concepts. She takes the time to develop scaffolded learning experiences students can use to build the skills they will need to be successful in achieving course learning outcomes. Her students respond to her attentions by doing well in her classes and they thank her via their evaluations."

Dr. Ondrusek writes, "As a professor in a graduate program, I feel that I owe it to the students to give them the 'hard problems.' As a result, students characterize the courses I teach as intellectually demanding. Tempering that rigor with learning opportunities that help students to succeed is my greatest challenge. Watching these students enter the profession and hearing reports from them that they were well prepared by their MLIS education is my greatest reward."

From a letter authored by a current student: "Dr. Ondrusek (Dr. O) is one of the most effective instructors I've had during my college career, and that includes face-to-face undergraduate program. Dr. O also makes herself available beyond the classroom. She encouraged me to carry out my research proposal from Research methods and took the time to point me in the right direction in order to see it through. I know from former students that she was instrumental in helping them publish articles and achieving more than they normally would within the program."

Thank you Dr. Ondrusek for all your contributions to the VSU online programs.

Nomination Criteria 

Nominations are now closed. Look for updated information for the 2014/2015 awards in 2015.

Eligibility

Eligible candidates include full-time members of the teaching faculty and teaching academic staff who teach a minimum of 12 credit hours of fully online instruction across the fall, spring, and summer semesters.  ‘Fully online instruction’ is defined in accordance with the University System of Georgia standard which defines an online course as one in which “95% or more of the course must be delivered fully online.”  

Nominations

Nomination portfolios must be received by March 7, 2014 (extended due date).  Portfolios may be sent via campus mail, delivered in-person to the Center for eLearning, or submitted electronically.  Electronic portfolios should be submitted as a single PDF file. 

Meg G. Giddings
Office of Extended Learning / Center for eLearning
Odum Library, Suite 2621
mhgiddin@valdosta.edu 

Award Committee

The selection committee will be comprised of VSU faculty, campus administrators, and a representative from the Center for eLearning.  Due to the nature of this award, committee members will be experienced in online instruction and program administration.

Selection Criteria

The award committee will review portfolios for persuasive evidence that nominees:

  • Possess a strong commitment to quality online teaching and learning, as evidenced by teaching and scholarly activities designed to advance the quality of online teaching and learning.
  • Use effective and innovative online teaching practices that result in student engagement, student satisfaction, and effectiveness in achieving desired learning outcomes.
  • Demonstrate an extraordinary commitment to fostering the academic success of online students through the development of rapport with individual learners in and beyond the virtual classroom.

Portfolio Documentation Requirements

  • Nomination portfolios may not exceed 20 pages, including any appendices (no smaller than 12 point font). Two of the twenty pages are reserved for the nomination letter from the chief academic officer which will be obtained by the winner for inclusion with the nomination packet for the University System of Georgia Award.
  • Each portfolio must include the following information:
    • 1-2 letters of support from colleagues qualified to comment on the nominee’s online teaching.  These letters should describe the nominee’s teaching and why he or she is especially effective in advancing student learning.  One letter should be from the department chair or program administrator. (2-3 pages)
    • Condensed curriculum vitae (2-3 pages)
    • A reflective statement that includes the nominee’s online teaching and learning philosophy, strategies, and objectives (2-4 pages)
    • 1-2 letters of support from recent and/or former students
    • Other supporting documentation that can provide evidence of the nominee’s online teaching excellence and may include such items as:
      • Written approval for the committee to access an online course developed by the faculty member.
      • Evidence of faculty-student interaction
      • Student evaluations
      • Student satisfaction
      • Evaluation results
      • Student success to include learning outcomes and course completion data
      • Faculty development sessions attended
      • Data showing success of the nominee’s students
      • Selected components of course syllabi
      • Methods of assessing student learning and achievement that go beyond student evaluations
      • Peer evaluations
      • Summaries or recent student evaluations
      • Student mentoring/advising activities
      • Please note: these documents should be accompanied by a brief explanation of why they are included in the dossier, (i.e., how they document the excellence of the nominee’s teaching).

The winner of the 2014 VSU Teaching Excellence Award in Online Teaching will be submitted as the VSU nominee for the University System of Georgia’s 2014 Teaching Excellence Award in Online Teaching.