Skip to main content

Dr. Sarah Cooper (Politics, Streatham) picked-up the award for Best Supervisor (Taught) and Postgraduate Teaching Assistant Monica Ronchi (IAIS) won the award for Best Postgraduate Teacher.
Credit: Exeter Students' Guild

Success for SSIS at the Guild Teaching Awards!

The College of Social Sciences and International Studies had eight nominations and picked up two awards at the Students’ Guild Teaching Awards.

Since 2010, an estimated one million words have been written by students praising the excellent work of the staff at the University of Exeter for the annual Guild Teaching Awards. This year, having received 2425 nominations written by 1800 students, the Guild’s shortlist included eight nominees from the College of Social Sciences and International Studies.

Ben Street (Students’ Guild VP Education) opened the ceremony by saying that, in the current academic climate of vying for research grants and competing over budgets, these awards are a way of recognising “teaching quality, not in results and outcomes, but for the lifelong impact it can have” on a student.

Postgraduate Teaching Assistant Monica Ronchi (IAIS) was the first success for SSIS when she won the award for Best Postgraduate Teacher. On Monica’s nomination application, one of her students wrote that “Monica’s teaching method is unique and academically stimulating” and that she “creates a healthy competitive attitude in class where everyone is engaged and challenged”.

Dr. Sarah Cooper (Politics, Streatham) then picked-up the award for Best Supervisor (Taught) after being praised not only for her academic supervision but also as “a great person to go to for advice as a woman in an academic world”. After receiving the award, Sarah said “I am both honoured and overwhelmed to receive the award for Best Supervisor. Having been well supported by the Politics Department during my time as a PhD student, I know only too well how important the role is […] Teaching is certainly the highlight of my day and I relish both imparting knowledge, but also engaging in thought-provoking discussion with my students that is often just as much of a benefit to me as I hope it is for them!”.

As well as two well-deserved victories, Law Lecturer Christina Walton, who has only been with the Law School since the beginning of this academic year, was the runner up in the Best Lecturer category. Earlier this year Christina gave a lecture on ‘The Ability of Political Trusts to Achieve Charitable Status’, representing the College for the Guild’s Research Uncovered series.

Professor Wendy Robinson, Associate Dean for Education (CSSIS), commented the following day on the success of the College saying, “The strong presence of the College in the Teaching Awards last night, with two of our staff winning in their category and a further sixreaching the final nominations represented a real high point in our academic year and a wonderful public celebration of the very best of some of the excellent teaching and learning that underpins the College’s educational vision and values. Many congratulations to the winners – Monica Ronchi (IAIS) and Sarah Cooper (Politics) and to those who reached the final nomination: Andreas Karoutas (Politics) Samantha Hurn (SPA), Salah Troudi (GSE), Annabel Watson (GSE), Darren Schreiber (Politics) and Christina Walton (Law). Last night’s success is unprecedented and thanks should also go to all the students who took the time to nominate their teachers.”

Overall, it was brilliant to see such a high number of staff and students turn up to support one another. Congratulations again to everyone who was nominated, not just from the College of Social Sciences and International Studies, but across the University.

Date: 6 May 2015

Read more University News