Skip to content

National Teaching Fellowship for Biosciences lecturer

20 December 2016

Dr Stephen Rutherford

Dr Stephen Rutherford, Deputy Director of Undergraduate Education at Cardiff University School of Biosciences, has been awarded a prestigious National Teaching Fellowship.

Managed by the Higher Education Academy (HEA), The National Teaching Fellowship Scheme (NTFS) celebrates excellent practice and outstanding achievement in learning and teaching in higher education. The awards support individuals’ professional development in learning and teaching, and success depends only on excellence, not career level.

55 National Teaching Fellowships are awarded per year, across the HE sector in a competitive process. Successful nominees were nominated by their institutions and submissions had to show evidence of three criteria: individual excellence, raising the profile of excellence, and developing excellence in learning and teaching.

As a National Teaching Fellow, Dr Rutherford joins an active community of almost 700 passionate and enthusiastic professionals, working to enhance learning and teaching in their institutions and the sector.

In his role as a senior lecturer at the School of Biosciences, Dr Rutherford encourages students to form mutually-supportive learning communities and to work with staff as partners on the basis that we learn best by finding communal answers to problems. His teaching approach encourages active learning, with flipped and collaborative-learning methods and technology to support student engagement.

Dr Rutherford has also introduced several innovative approaches that enhance peer-supported learning, and his teaching philosophy underpinned recent major revisions to the School's degree programmes.

This latest success for Dr Rutherford follows an award from the University in 2015 for ‘Excellence in Teaching’. He was also shortlisted for two categories in the 2016 student-nominated Enriching Student Life Awards.

Commenting on receiving the Fellowship, Dr Rutherford said,

“I am deeply honoured to receive this award, and hopefully it reflects the many examples of teaching excellence that can be found within the School of Biosciences. This award would have not have been possible without the constant support of exceptional and inspirational colleagues within the School and across the University, and also the enthusiastic engagement by our dedicated and creative students.”

Head of the School of Biosciences, Professor Jim Murray, said,

“I was delighted, although not surprised, to learn that Dr Rutherford had been awarded the National Teaching Fellowship. As Deputy Director of Education for the School his commitment to learning and teaching excellence is second to none, and he is constantly innovating to ensure that Cardiff students have the best possible university experience. The award is thoroughly deserved and on behalf of myself and the School I would like to convey my sincere congratulations.”

Dr Rutherford will be presented with his award at a ceremony on 25 January in the Merchant Taylors’ Hall, London.