2014 Recipients

Chris Buddle

Dr. Christopher Buddle
Associate Professor, Department of Natural Resource Sciences
McGill University

By thoughtfully incorporating social media tools and mobile technologies into the classroom, Professor Christopher Buddle provides a unique primary research experience for first year biology students. Learners collect and analyze data in the field and communicate their findings to the public and researchers around world.

The purpose of Prof. Buddle’s innovations is clear: he is working to provide the best possible educational experiences for learners by fostering curiosity and creativity.  His passion for teaching and learning also extends to trying to understand the effectiveness of his innovations and through scholarship of teaching and learning research. His findings suggest that his innovations are highly effective in helping students learn.


Dr. Brent Mainprize
Teaching Professor, Peter B. Gustavson School of Business
University of Victoria

Mixing teaching, research and entrepreneurship, Professor Brent Mainprize has created highly effective learning opportunities for students. His approaches, including his Venture Intelligence Quotient (VIQ) teaching system, and his curricular innovations, like the 3C Challenge and 7S (Seven Steps) of Entrepreneurship showcase his leadership, passion and creativity.

His VIQ teaching system has been used in Canada, Australia and Italy and was translated in Danish and Mandarin for use in universities in Denmark and China.

A key part of Prof. Mainprize’s innovative approaches is the development of enduring partnerships and shared ownership of teaching and learning, which is showcased in his extensive work with local Aboriginal communities. 

Pollanen web

Dr. Marco Pollanen
Associate Professor, Department of Mathematics
Trent University

Professor Marco Pollanen began his teaching innovations as a graduate teaching assistant when he developed enVision, a unique tool that facilitates online communication, teaching and learning of mathematics. The enVision tool greatly simplifies how teachers and students can explore and solve mathematical concepts and problems. 

Prof. Pollanen has continued to enhance enVision and uses it extensively for online office hours and tutorials. His experience and research suggests that office hours and tutorials are among the most valuable teaching tools, and by using enVision he is able to achieve much greater student participation and eliminate many of the barriers associated with math anxiety.

Math instructors across the world have adopted enVision, and its effectiveness has been explored and demonstrated by research.

Elaine Khoo web

Dr. Elaine Khoo
Senior Lecturer, English Language Development Centre
University of Toronto

For over 10 years, Professor Khoo has been developing innovative pedagogical approaches and teaching methods for supporting English language development. She is blazing new trails for how we can promote inclusivity and greater interactional diversity in teaching and learning. 

It is through her vision for student success that she created initiatives that empower students with new roles and experiences to address ESL learning challenges in ways that allow them to overcome their initial language and culture related obstacles as quickly as possible. Her approaches build student confidence and strong communication skills.

Grounded in research, she has been generous and highly collaborative in sharing her expertise and pedagogical models broadly. 


Dr. Ken Van Rees
Professor, Department of Soil Science
University of Saskatchewan

Professor Ken Van Rees is a superb and recognized educator and researcher, who is not afraid of taking risks and reflecting on how to improve his students’ learning experiences.

An important part of his teaching philosophy is the incorporation of experiential learning. Students learn by being in the field and observing the landscape, environment and interplay of the many different variables that enter into the science of soils. He believes that learning how to observe and think critically is crucial to becoming a scientist and lifelong learner. His innovation supports this philosophy, blending art and science to create a disruptive and powerful learning experience.

After spending the day in the field, students reflect, interpret and paint the landscape. Student feedback and outcomes from Prof. Van Rees’ innovation have been both very positive and impactful.