ASPS Teaching Award

 Applications for the ASPS Teaching Award should be lodged with the Honorary Secretary, ASPS Inc.

Applications for the 2021 ASPS Teaching Award will open Feb 14th 2021.

The closing date for the 2021 award is March 19th 2021.

Nominations are invited for this Award every year. The background of the Award is given below, together with candidate prerequisites and procedures to follow in making a submission.

The Award

  1. This award recognises excellence, innovation (i.e. original and creative methods/student activities) and/or other contributions with successful learning outcomes to teaching plant science at University level.”
  2. The award will be made on the description of excellence, innovation and/or contributions to the teaching of plant science to undergraduate students.
  3. The teaching shall be in any branch of plant science.
  4. The award will be for teaching within an Australian institution.
  5. The award will be made at yearly intervals and only when a suitable candidate is nominated.


  1. The candidate must be a member of ASPS Inc.
  2. No age restriction will apply to the award.
  3. Candidates are not restricted as to the number of occasions on which they apply for the award or are given the award
  4. The candidate may be a sole teacher or a team of teachers.

Application Procedure

Each application shall include the following files:

  1. Letters of support: one page letter of support from two colleagues or supervisors familiar with the teaching contribution of the candidate(s).
  2. Report: A one-page report by the candidate outlining the reasons why she/he is considered to be an excellent and/or innovative University level teacher of plant science.
  3. Proof of how the work of the candidate enhanced student learning. This can be included in the one page report or on a separate page.
  4. Supporting documentation (optional): where applicable, supporting documentation such as a teaching portfolio, interactive computer exercises, innovative laboratory practical exercises, handouts to students, or student assessment of teaching practices should be attached.
  5. Submission: Electronic applications for the Teaching Award should be emailed to the Honorary Secretary, ASPS Inc. ( Files pages should be numbered and Arial font size 11 is preferred.


Evaluation of the application

The Award will be granted by the Society on the recommendation of its Committee chaired by the ASPS Plant Science Education Representative and comprising one of the Postgraduate Student Representatives and at least one co-opted Discipline Representative with a strong background in undergraduate teaching. In cases where more than one candidate receives a strong recommendation, the president or Secretary will decide on the Award based on the advice received.

Successful Candidates

  1. The winner(s) will be invited by the Society to give a short presentation on their teaching methods, innovations or contributions at the annual ComBio conference.
  2. The winner(s) will receive a certificate and the amount of AD$700 will be provided to help enable the participation of one speaker (team leader or nominated presenter) at ComBio to present a talk in the Teaching Symposium.
  3. The winner(s) will be required to provide a description of their work in the next 60 days after the award is granted. This presentation will be posted at the “Teaching” section of the site for it to be made available to other plant science educators. This presentation (up to 3 pages long) should be sent to the ASPS Teaching Representative as a Word document and photos should be provided separately as “png” files. Other material, such as videos or additional URL, is also welcome.


Past Recipients

       1997 Dennis Bittisnich, Australian National University
1998 Acram Taji, University of New England
1999 Grahame Kelly, Queensland University of Technology
2000 Julie Plummer, University of Western Australia
2001 Janet Gorst, Queensland Department of Primary Industry
2002 Sharon Robinson, University of Wollongong
2003 Brian Atwell, Macquarie University
2004 Tim Colmer, University of Western Australia
2005 Martha Ludwig, University of Western Australia
2006 John Harper, Roger Mandel & Geoffrey Burrows, Charles Sturt University
2009 Amanda Able, University of Adelaide: Learning in Action
2010 Tim Cavagnaro, Patrick Baker, Martin Burd, Monash University: Innovation and Integration in Botanical Teaching
2011 Gonzalo Martín Estavillo, Australian National University: Plant Detectives
2012 Alex Johnson, University of Melbourne: Engaging students through discussion of GM plants
2013 Danny Liu, University of Sydney: Seeing plants in a new light – engaging large first-year classes in experimental plant science
2014 No award was made
2015 No award was made
2016 No award was made
2017 No award was made
2018 Beth Loveys, University of Adelaide
2019 Sigfredo Fuentes, The University of Melbourne