SCU lecturer earns State teaching award

Published 26 November 2004

Southern Cross University lecturer Dr Baden Offord received a distinguished State award for excellence in teaching at a ceremony at Government House in Sydney today. (November 26).

Dr Offord was presented with the NSW Minister for Education and Training and Australian College of Educators Quality Teaching Award for 2004, a highly competitive award presented to selected teachers across all sectors of education.

It is the first major external competitive award given to SCU for teaching.

Dr Offord, who has convened and taught Cultural Studies in the School of Arts since 1999, said he was very honoured to receive the award.

“This award is extremely valuable as it validates my teaching philosophy and practice, and the passion I have for teaching and learning. It is great to be recognised at state level,” Dr Offord said.

“It’s also recognition of the fact that the Cultural Studies program is distinctive, regionally and internationally engaged, and cutting edge in its focus. For a regional university to be recognised in this way is extremely important. This achievement reflects the strong support of my students, colleagues and the University.

“I think one of the main reasons why students like Cultural Studies and appreciate the approach I take is that it is a very collaborative teaching/learning experience. Students of cultural studies become activated learners, take responsibility for their learning and importantly realise that it is never too late to change the world.”

Dr Offord has successfully combined his passion for teaching with research in fields including human rights, sexuality, identity and belonging, and Australian and Asian culture. He is also Chair of the Human Research Ethics Committee, Director of the Centre for Law, Politics and Culture and a Researcher in the Collaborative Indigenous Research Centre for Learning and Educare.

The recipients of the awards are selected through a rigorous process, including student and peer reviews and on-site visits. Dr Offord is one of 59 teachers from early childhood education through to university level to receive the State award this year.

SCU Vice-Chancellor Professor Paul Clark said Dr Offord had demonstrated an exceptional commitment to student learning and was highly regarded by both students and colleagues.

“This award is an excellent achievement and very much deserved. Dr Offord has shown a high level of dedication and enthusiasm both in teaching and research. It is great to see his achievements recognised in the wider community,” Professor Clark said.

Media contact: Brigid Veale, SCU Media Liaison, 66593006 or m. 0439 680 748.