Dr. Alan Wright Award for Exemplary Online and Technology-Enhanced Teaching

Sponsored by the Office of Open Learning, the Dr. Alan Wright Award for Exemplary Online and Technology-Enhanced Teaching recognises exceptional educators who have demonstrated a commitment to innovation and enhancement of teaching in online, hybrid, and open learning.

The award recognises educators who have engaged in scholarly teaching practices to develop effective online and technology-enhanced learning environments. Winners of this award will be outstanding educators who use exemplary teaching practices worthy of sharing broadly with the university community.


Office of Open Learning OOL COOL Award Podium

athlwulf. Feb 8, 2013. Online image. Flickr.

  • The award is open to all instructors teaching online, hybrid, open and technology-enabled courses at the University of Windsor.

  • The award is open to full and part-time instructors who are tenured or permanent, tenure or permanence-track, regular faculty and AAS, sessional lecturers, and sessional instructors.

  • Eligible instructors will have taught at least one online, hybrid, open, or technology-enabled course in the past academic year, and will have evidence of a track-record of exemplary teaching practice in these teaching modes.

  • Chairs and departments heads are eligible for nomination.

  • Winners of other teaching awards are eligible for nomination.

  • Re-nomination of unsuccessful nominees from previous rounds is encouraged.

  • Previous winners of this award are not eligible to apply again within 5 (five) years of their award.

  • Previous winners of the Brightspace Innovation Award for Teaching and Learning are not eligible as this award is intended, in part, as a progression towards the Brightspace Innovation Award for Teaching and Learning or other Canadian or international technology-enhanced teaching awards.

  • Instructors may be nominated by colleagues or students, or may self-nominate.

Applications should provide evidence of achievement of the following criteria:

  • Demonstrated sustained exemplary performance in teaching in an online, open, hybrid, or technology-enhanced teaching setting;

  • Evidence of effective and innovative online teaching practices that result in enhancement of student engagement, effectiveness in achieving desired learning outcomes, or student satisfaction;

  • Development and/or implementation of significant innovations, especially those that have influenced the methods and teaching effectiveness of colleagues;

  • Demonstrated evidence of a significant curricular enhancement in online or technology-enabled courses and programs, including but not limited to commitment to open access;

  • Broad evidence of impact of scholarly educational practices;
  • Evidence of exemplary practice in supporting online or technology-enabled learners;

  • Demonstrated commitment to continuous improvement of teaching practice;

  • Service to online or technology-enhanced teaching and learning.

All applications will be evaluated by a broad committee based on the evidence presented.

Candidates can be nominated (or co-nominated) by faculty colleagues, academic administrators, or students.  Self-nominations are acceptable. Nomination packages must contain the following:

  • Nominator’s Letter: A cover letter from the primary nominator(s) outlining the rationale/reasoning for the nomination, including a summary of the candidate’s major strengths.
  • Letters of Support: additional letters of support from colleagues, administrators, and students, with personal experience or knowledge of the nominee’s online and technology-enhanced teaching practices. A minimum of 2 letters of support should be provided, with at least one from students.
  • Teaching Philosophy: A 1-2 page statement from the nominee about his/her philosophy of teaching and its connection to their teaching and learning practice. This statement may be integrated to a teaching dossier, which should provide evidence of the relationship between the teaching philosophy and teaching practice.
  • Teaching Dossier/Curriculum Vitae: A brief (max. 6 page) curriculum vitae or teaching dossier emphasizing the nominee's contributions to the enhancement of online and technology-enhanced teaching and learning. The dossier should focus on the nominee’s teaching, and research or scholarship related to online and technology-enhanced teaching activities.
  • Evidence of Exceptional Teaching Practice: Any documentary evidence relevant to the nominee's work in improving teaching and learning in online or technology-enhanced courses and programs. This evidence may be incorporated into the teaching dossier.

All applications will be evaluated by a broad committee based on the evidence presented. The selection committee reserves the right to withhold the award in any year where nominations do not meet criteria/eligibility standards.

*Note: it is expected that nominees will have varying areas of strengths and not all criteria will be equally represented in the profile of all nominees.

Evidence of effective teaching practices comes from a variety of sources. Some of these may include, but are not limited to:

  • Activities that motivate and engage students in deep learning practices in an online or technology-enhanced learning environment;

  • Evidence of commitment to principles of flexibility and accessibility in teaching;

  • Teaching approaches that encourage interaction, peer-based learning, or which facilitates collaboration;

  • Approaches that enhance experiential learning opportunities;

  • Innovative methods for evaluating student learning;

  • Methods that incorporate research into teaching;

  • Involvement of students as partners in building effective teaching and learning environments;

  • Scholarly dissemination of teaching and learning practices, for example at a conference, departmental seminar, publications;

  • Adoption or adaptation of open educational resources;

  • Improved student outcomes following an initiative including improved achievement of learning outcomes, recruitment/retention, increased program enrollment, or improved students satisfaction;

  • Positive student and/or peer feedback on innovations;

  • Evidence of 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, for example, student feedback, letters of support, emails (with permission);

  • Evidence of how practice is being shared to help other instructors enhance their pedagogy (e.g. conferences, workshops, open sharing of resources;
  • Evidence of thorough preparation for teaching online or in technology-enhanced courses, for example storyboards, scripts, videos, lesson plans, modules, syllabi, course outlines;

  • Evidence of alignment of curriculum (clear and actionable learning outcomes aligned to learning activities/instructional approaches and assessment practices), for example, using a curriculum map.

·  The Office of Open Learning will normally issue a Call for Nominations annually in January.

·  Complete nomination packages must be submitted by email ( to the Office of Open Learning, in Word or searchable PDF-format by 9 May, 2019.

The Dr. Alan Wright Award for Exemplary Online and Technology-Enhanced Teaching is sponsored by the Office of Open Learning.  The Selection Committee will be chaired by the Associate Vice-President (Academic) or designate, and includes a representative from the Office of Open Learning; a representative from the Centre for Teaching and Learning; two faculty representatives; a representative from the Library; a student representative; and a representative from WUFA.

The award will be celebrated at the Celebration of Teaching Excellence held annually in November.

Winners of the award will receive an inscribed plaque, plus a $500 cash prize. An additional $500 will be provided to assist the winner in the dissemination of their exemplary teaching practices to a broader audience (for example, through a local workshop or symposium, a conference, publishing in an open access journal etc.).

Complete packages should be submitted in searchable PDF format by email to with the subject “Alan Wright Award for Exemplary Online and Technology-Enhanced Teaching”. Questions about the submission or the award should be directed in the first instance to Alicia Higgison (; extension: 2008), or to Nick Baker (; extension: 4925) in the Office of Open Learning.

Past Recipients of our Dr. Alan Wright Award for Exemplary Online and Technology-Enhanced Teaching award:

2017- Professor Werner Keller

2018- Dr. Pardeep Jasra

Professor Werner Keller accepts award from Dr. Alan Wright, 2017Dr. Pardeep Jasra with Dr. Alan Wright Award 2018