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These awards aim to celebrate excellence in learning and teaching, its delivery, development and support and use a process which is underpinned by collegial thinking, operating on the principles of equality, openness of process, and inclusivity for all staff who contribute to teaching and learning at Durham University. We also recognise that as well as being fair and transparent any nomination and review process must not add an onerous burden to either those nominating or those scrutinising.

General Nomination Principle

  • Any staff member at Durham university can nominate any other staff member at Durham University who has made an outstanding contribution to teaching, learning, or student academic support in academic year 21/22 by providing a short nominating statement. Self nomination is not possible.
  • The nominating statement would address the definition for the category of award and be at maximum 2100 characters (approx 300 words).
  • All staff who are nominated will be congratulated on their nomination, including details on who made the nomination and why.
  • All nominations will be considered for the awards, the quality of the nominations in each category being the primary consideration.

Award Categories

We’re delighted to announce new categories for the awards, which include:

  • Excellence in Teaching and Learning

This award recognises individuals who have made an outstanding contribution to providing inclusive and engaging learning experiences for our students. 

  • Excellence in Student Academic Support

This award recognises individuals who have made an outstanding contribution to supporting learning and teaching activities, that goes significantly beyond that which would normally be expected in their role.

  • Excellence in Research Student Supervision

This award recognises individuals who have made an outstanding contribution to supervising and supporting doctoral researchers in their personal, professional and career development through their doctoral studies. Nominations from supervised students are also welcome in this category.

  • Unsung Hero of Teaching and Learning

This award recognises individuals who have provided exceptional support to others in the area of teaching and learning, going over-and-above to support students and/or colleagues. 

  • Most impactful innovation in teaching and learning

This award recognises an individual who has researched, developed and evaluated a new, different and innovative approach to teaching and learning. To actively develop a culture of innovation, we welcome applications regardless of how directly successful the innovation is. Regardless of the outcome the nomination should reflect the lessons learned from the work and how this has led to a new approach to teaching and learning.


Nominations will be made via this online form


The timetable for the 2021-22 awards will be:

Announcement of Competition6th July 2022
Deadline for receipt of applications9th September 2022
Panel meetings:Mid July-Early September
Announcement to nominated applicants and those shortlisted as winner in each categoryEarly October
Awards Event:November


A steering group composed of the DCAD Director, Deputy Pro-Vice Chancellor (Education), Deputy Executive Deans (Education), EDI Rep, Student Reps and DCAD Deputy Director (AE) will coordinate the awards scheme, organise representative sub-panels to shortlist 6 nominations for each award, decide on overall winners, plan the awards event, evaluate the success of the scheme and plan for the following year’s awards.

Awards Event

Invites to the awards event for shortlisted nominees in each category and panel members will be circulated in mid-September. If government restrictions make a live event impossible, an online event will be held instead. The Awards Event will include a drinks reception and announcement of awards and presentation of certificates. Profiles of the successful candidates will be published on the DCAD Blog as exemplars of good practice in teaching and supporting student learning