Preparing a Nomination

Every reviewer in the Adjudication Committee appreciates the time and energy you devote to completing a nomination dossier. Please accept what follows as guidance to improve the energy and conviction of your nomination.

The 3M National Teaching Fellowship is an established and growing body of post-secondary teachers who have demonstrated teaching excellence and educational leadership and innovation.

Who to nominate

  • The 3M National Teaching Fellowship recognizes excellence in teaching at the diploma and undergraduate degree level. Evidence of exceptional graduate teaching is certainly relevant too, provided the nominator has first and most strongly made the case for exceptional undergraduate teaching.
  • The 3M Fellowship is not a lifetime achievement award. Please do not nominate retired professors or those near retirement. Outstanding retired teachers and leaders deserve to be honoured, but the 3M Fellowship is not intended to be such an honour.
  • Likewise, please do not nominate full-time administrators or educational developers whose teaching opportunities have been significantly reduced for the past five or more years.

Tips for preparing an effective dossier

Well-organized dossiers help the reviewer find key pieces of evidence quickly. Please follow the recommended format and structure outlined in this Call for Nominations.

A dossier prepared for some other purpose (e.g. tenure, promotion, another teaching award) should be significantly revised to fit the structure, criteria, and documentation required for the 3M National Teaching Fellowship.

Supporting letters should be recent (ideally dated within the last 18 months). In the letters, please address specifically the criteria for this Fellowship. Address letters to the 3M NTF Program Coordinator.

Do not include a full CV.

Keep the dossier succinct: there is a 35-page limit. Mere lists are unhelpful in making a compelling case. Mentions of workshops, addresses, and articles can be persuasive if supported by commentary on their impact.

Provide institutional context and background. The Adjudication Committee may not be familiar with the disciplinary or institutional norms of teaching in your institution.

Please remember, only material contained in the dossier is considered in the Committee’s assessment.

As nominator and nominee, be optimistic as you prepare your dossier, but remember, several recipients each year will have been nominated at least once before. Each unsuccessful nomination for a 3M Fellowship will receive extensive feedback, both general and specific, that may enrich the reflective process of resubmission and the resulting dossier.

Please ensure all material — course materials, student comments, letters of support — is clearly dated.

Students preparing a nomination

If you are a student preparing a nomination for a former professor, thank you! We encourage you to get help from the nominee, from his or her colleagues, friends, and former students, and from places like the teaching and learning centre and the grants and awards office. 

We do not encourage students to nominate professors by whom they are currently being taught.

Dossier support from mentors

There is a mentoring group for the Fellowship composed of 3M National Teaching Fellows and others who will assist anyone wishing to put together a dossier. Please contact mentorship@stlhe.ca for further information.

The mentoring group may be of particular assistance to higher education institutions who do not have a teaching and learning centre or who have not yet had a 3MNTF at their institution.