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Recognising and rewarding teaching excellence

05 Sep 2023

Amit N. Jinabhai, Senior Lecturer in Optometry shares his experience engaging with the Institute of Teaching and Learning (ITL) to achieve recognition in delivering excellence in Teaching and Learning

Amit N. Jinabhai, Senior Lecturer in Optometry

“My positive engagement with our Institute of Teaching and Learning (ITL) has significantly expanded the reach of my teaching and learning ideas, creations and best practices” says Amit Jinabhai, a Senior Lecturer in Optometry at The University of Manchester. 

“This includes publishing two contributions for the internationally recognised THE Campus+ website, which led to me being contacted and tweeted about by like-minded academics from all over the world.”

As a university, we are committed to fostering lifelong learning, and the Institute of Teaching and Learning is here to actively support you achieving recognition for delivering excellence in teaching and learning.  

Our transformative teaching recognition activities have been highlighted in our recent University-wide Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) submission. Evidencing how our continued support for staff professional development enhances the quality of our teaching and the experience of our students.  

Amit is just one example of how the support that the ITL provides supports our colleagues in sector-leading teaching and learning practice. In 2021, Amit was awarded one of the University’s Teaching Excellence Awards for his novel work in creating an inclusive teaching methodology with a range of engaging and interactive activities - facilitating the often anxiety-inducing link between mathematics and Optometry for his first-year undergraduates. 

In early 2022, Amit was awarded Senior Fellowship of Advance Higher Education (HE) through the University’s Leadership in Education Awards Programme (LEAP). The programme is administered by the ITL and accredited by Advance HE to award Associate, Fellow, Senior and Principal Fellowships. In the last four academic years,1,442 colleagues have been awarded an Advance HE fellowship and 48 Teaching Excellence awards.

Following his Teaching Excellence Award, Amit published a post on our Teach, Explore, Apply (TEA) blog enlightening us on the steps he has taken to improve his students’ understanding of, and engagement with, intended learning outcomes (ILOs), and the improvements that this can make to learning and engagement.  

Since its launch in 2019, our TEA blog has enabled staff and students to share their best practices in learning and teaching. Through this support, and our partnership with Times Higher Education (THE) Campus+, Amit was invited to write a piece on ILOs. This led to Amit being awarded his own profile page on THE Campus+ platform, facilitating global links, and demonstrating the reach of the University of Manchester’s teaching excellence. 

“The national exposure that was granted to me through my TEA blog contributions directly led to me receiving an invitation to speak at the British Association of Clinical Anatomists’ (BACA) 2022 BACA Beat meeting” Amit says.“This popular event was centred on the development of assessments”. 

Amit continues to embed institution wide teaching excellence through his contributions to the TEA information sessions that we hold each year. 

“All of these activities inspired me to enrol onto our university’s Postgraduate Certificate in HE programme in September 2022” Amit says. “I have had the pleasure of meeting and listening to other colleagues who were equally interested in ‘raising the bar’ in terms of delivering excellence in teaching and learning. Undertaking this research-based qualification has been an enriching experience.” 

“I would urge all readers who are actively seeking inspiration to develop and share their teaching practices to get involved with our ITL, as their bespoke support and networking opportunities offer a powerful resource that I have personally benefitted from.” 

About the ITL 

ITL has a wide range of resources designed to support your teaching and learning and is committed to recognising and rewarding teaching excellence. The ITL’s open workshop programme provides you with opportunities to explore, develop and share practice on different aspects of teaching and learning.   

Whilst our reward and recognition programmes, such as the University’s annual Teaching Excellence Awards, recognises excellence in teaching, the ITL also provide online resources including guidance and toolkits, as well as our TEA blog.