Undergraduate Teaching Success

March 27, 2018

The Faculty of Social Science at Western University is dedicated to excellence in undergraduate teaching. This includes a focus on courses taught by full-time faculty, and innovated and interesting teaching methods.

Our faculty members have been recognized for their teaching.

Lisa-Hodgetts-cover.jpgLisa Hodgetts, Associate Professor in the Department of Anthropology has been recognized for excellence in teaching, with the 2018 Edward G. Pleva Award for Excellence in Teaching, the highest honour for full-time teaching presented by Western University. Hodgetts also received the 2017 Dean’s Award for Excellence in Teaching.

Lisa Hodgetts’ teaching philosophy states, “We learn best by doing.” Her courses in the Department of Anthropology illustrate this drive for active learning. She brings the field into the classroom with teaching innovations that range from blogs, YouTube videos, and board games to 3D prints and virtual-reality viewers. From first-year to graduate courses, she creates an interactive learning environment and provides opportunities for hands-on activities and experiential learning. She recently redesigned the graduate professional development course to enhance learning opportunities and provide students with concrete outputs to further their careers.

Beyond the Western classroom, Hodgetts is a passionate advocate for archaeology – locally, as she works with high school students in London; and nationally, with Inuvialuit youth in the Northwest Territories. Hodgett’s commitment to teaching and research make her a role model for students and colleagues alike.



Andrew Walsh and Ian Colquhon, Department of AnthropologyAndrew Walsh and Ian Colquhoun, Associate Professors in Anthropology received the inaugural Vice-Provost (Academic Programs) Award for Excellence in Collaborative Teaching, in 2017.

For the past 10 years, Andrew Walsh and Ian Colquhoun, Associate Professors in Anthropology, have worked with Alex Totomarovario of Université d’Antsiranana in Madagascar to offer a unique exchange and learning opportunity for students from both universities. Through the exchange program, students from Western travel to Madagascar, and in turn Malagasy students visit Western. During the exchange, students have an opportunity to undertake research, and participate in the everyday life on the university campuses.

Read more about their collaborative teaching.



Michelle Hamilton and Mike Dove, Professors, Department of HistoryMichelle Hamilton and Michael Dove, professors in the Department of History, received the 2018 Vice-Provost (Academic Programs) Award for Excellence in Collaborative Teaching. Hamilton and Dove co-administer the Public History program at Western. The M.A. in Public History was established more than 30 years ago. Since 2008, Hamilton and Dove have redesigned the program, taught the core courses and jointly led and administered the program. In 2017, a Minor in Public History was made available to undergraduate students


For Hamilton and Dove, collaboration takes many forms: co-administering the program, partnerships with community members, and teaching their students how to effectively collaborate.

Read more about their collaborative teaching.