JERAA Teaching Awards

Winner of the 2020 JERAA Award for Outstanding Teaching in a Journalism Program, Sonja Heydeman. Supplied.

Sonja Heydeman of RMIT University has won the 2020 JERAA Award for Outstanding Teaching in a Journalism Program for The News Corp RMIT Data Journalism Interdisciplinary Project.

This project takes an innovative approach to develop data-journalism skills, pairing interdisciplinary student teams via internships with an industry partner, News Corp.

Sonja’s project was commended by the judges “as was a new and innovative WIL project that used an interdisciplinary pathway to foster job-ready data journalism skills”.

This year’s teaching award judges were Professor Trevor Cullen of Edith Cowan University, Associate Professor Kristy Hess of Deakin University, and Assistant Professor Caroline Graham of Bond University.

The judges noted that this “student-centred project had clearly defined objectives, and connected students with another discipline, to work collaboratively with industry to learn and acquire key data skills and experiences.

“The project provides an excellent case study and exemplar for other journalism educators, especially in terms of cooperative learning, inquiry-based learning and experiential learning. It also created an authentic experience to build job-ready skills.”

Sonja said she intends to use the $2000 prize money for travel, accommodation and expenses for students to stay in regional areas and develop stories based on their data exploration. She has offered to share information on the project with other journalism educators.

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JERAA Teaching Award for Innovation in Online Teaching (the COVID-19 pandemic edition)

Tito Ambyo (L) and Janak Rogers (R) of RMIT University have won the first Innovation in Teaching Online Award

The inaugural JERAA Teaching Award for Innovation in Online Teaching has been won by Tito Ambyo and Janak Rogers of RMIT University.

This new award recognises innovations implemented in online teaching in journalism during the COVID-19 pandemic and attracts a $1000 prize.

Tito and Janak competed with four other journalism academics at a live presentation session on Friday morning at the JERAA 2020 Conference.

Participants gave a short 5-minute presentation with 20 slides, auto-timed to 15 seconds, in an online forum. The winners were selected by popular vote.

JERAA VP (Awards) Jeanti St Clair noted all presentations were of a very high calibre.

Tito and Janak’s presentation explored how two remotely-produced RMIT podcasts, Under Cover ​and ​The Kicker,​ ​demonstrated how innovation and adaptation with a range of digital tools used in collaborative spaces supported students to create high-value work in a fully remote environment.

“We created entirely new remote production processes and designed innovative assessments in response to the move to online teaching,” Tito said.

“Emphasising collaboration, the cultivation of a community and by giving students ownership of two audio storytelling assessments, we produced two successful podcasts that reached a wide audience; one of them reached the top 20 rank in the Australian iTunes’ Documentary category.

“We also used our experience in working with students from CALD backgrounds to tackle the feeling of isolation that students were at risk of feeling during the lockdown – a feeling that many students of colour have felt before the pandemic.

“We were then able to build on the insights gained from creating ​Under Cover ​in Semester 1 and further innovate in Semester 2 with the creation of The Kicker. We believe that we now have some useful online teaching tools and concepts for other journalism lecturers who are interested in building a sense of camaraderie and professionalism among journalism and media students.”

The competition was open to ongoing, fixed term, sessional and casual staff with at least one year’s experience teaching in a recognised journalism program.

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In 2019, Phil Kafcaloudes has won the inaugural JERAA Teaching Award for his outstanding work in coordinating the coverage of “Election 2019”.

RMIT Industry Fellow Kafcaloudes was the executive producer for the 120-strong team for the three-hour program that was broadcast on Community Television and The Junction’s website. The show included students from more than 20 universities across Australia.

The judging panel was comprised of national teaching citation and award winners Professor Trevor Cullen (ECU), Teaching Fellow Caroline Graham (Bond), and Associate Professor Kristy Hess (Deakin).

Kafcaloudes wins a $2000 prize for his work on “Election 2019”.

Purpose

JERAA introduced a teaching award in 2019 to recognise outstanding work undertaken by journalism educators. This is considered important in a discipline that encourages practical, outward facing, engaged, and authentic approaches to learning and teaching. This award recognises journalism educators who are improving teaching and learning experiences for students in a fast-paced media society.

In 2020, JERAA has created an additional award for innovation in online teaching during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Awards

JERAA Teaching Award for Outstanding Teaching in a Journalism Program ($2000 prize)

  • Ongoing, fixed term, sessional and casual staff with at least one year’s experience teaching journalism who are members of JERAA may apply.
  • Prize will be judged by a panel including JERAA executive board members and journalism academics with national teaching citations.

JERAA Teaching Award for Innovation in Online Teaching (the COVID-19 pandemic edition)

  • A new prize that recognises innovations implemented in online teaching in journalism during the COVID-19 pandemic – $1000 prize
  • Finalists will give a short 5-minute presentation with 20 slides in an online forum during the 2020 JERAA Conference in December.
  • Finalists may be shortlisted by the JERAA Teaching Award Judging Panel.
  • Finalists must register for the conference to present.
  • Presentations will be judged by popular vote by attendees at the 2020 JERAA Conference.

Who can apply?

  • Ongoing, fixed term, sessional and casual staff with at least one year’s experience teaching in a recognised journalism program. This may be confirmed by a letter of support from a HoS or equivalent confirming the applicant’s role.
  • Applicants must be a member of JERAA (you may join JERAA in order to apply).

Criteria

JERAA Teaching Award for Outstanding Teaching in a Journalism Program

Applications will be evaluated by a panel of leading journalism educators on the basis of:

  • Innovation, authenticity, impact and engagement in teaching techniques and/or projects that motivate students
  • Fostering a deeper understanding of journalism through education, and contributing to broader society
  • Demonstrating transformational approaches to understanding journalism and its practice, and/or the application of theoretical elements through journalism education
  • Commitment to the growth of journalism education.
  • The applicant’s reputation and standing within journalism education

Evidence to support the criteria can include (but is not limited to):

  • Grants and/or publications that enhance the scholarship of learning in journalism education
  • Support from Deputy VC (Education) or equivalent
  • Recommendations on the innovation of the teaching techniques
  • Peer and student feedback on the effectiveness of the learning activities

JERAA Teaching Award for Innovation in Online Teaching (the COVID-19 pandemic edition)

Applications may be shortlisted by a panel of leading journalism educators on the basis of:

  • Innovation, authenticity, impact and engagement in online teaching techniques and/or projects in that motivate students
  • Demonstrating transformational approaches to understanding journalism and its practice, and/or the application of theoretical elements through journalism education
  • Explanation of how the teaching was impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, and how the teaching design and delivery was transformed by the presenter
  • Adherence to the Ignite model of presentation (20 slides, auto-advancing every 15 seconds, and a 5-minute presentation).

Applications

JERAA Teaching Award for Outstanding Teaching in a Journalism Program

The application should include:

  • An overview of two pages (maximum) of the teaching techniques and/or project in response to the criteria.
  • A brief budget of what the award will be spent on (for example, research or teaching related activities; conference attendance).
  • A teaching-focused CV which outlines your teaching roles and responsibilities, publications, grants, and education history. (You may include publications that are forthcoming only if they have been ‘Accepted’ for publication.)

JERAA Teaching Award for Innovation in Online Teaching (the COVID-19 pandemic edition)

Upload your 20 slides and answer include the following:

  • Name, title and university
  • Email
  • Mobile
  • Presentation Title
  • Summarize your topic in 140 characters (a “Tweet”)
  • Tell us how you think this will help other journalism educators improve their online teaching (maximum 200 words).

 Submission details

Applications close on October 30, 2020. Please email your application to JERAA VP (Awards) Jeanti St Clair at jeanti.stclair@scu.edu.au.

 

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