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Katie Dawson Honored by Board of Regents for Excellence

Department of Theatre and Dance Assistant Professor Katie Dawson is among the twenty-six UT Austin faculty members honored with the 2013 Regents' Outstanding Teaching Award, the UT System Board of Regents’ highest teaching distinction.

The award includes $25,000, and is considered among the nation’s largest cash prizes for higher education faculty members who exhibit outstanding classroom performance and innovation in undergraduate instruction.

An alumna of The University of Texas at Austin, Dawson (M.F.A. ’06) is recognized as a pioneer in the classroom and in the field of applied theatre. Her areas of research include community-engaged outreach programs, arts integration, youth theatre, museum theatre, drama-in-education, theatre-in-education, and teaching artist praxis.

Woman in blue shirt
Assistant Professor Katie Dawson

She serves as the director of Drama for Schools, the department’s professional development program that trains educators and students in drama-based instruction. Partnering with schools nationally and internationally, Drama for Schools provides educators with strategies to build student engagement across the curriculum.

“The Regent's Award is in recognition of Katie's exciting and groundbreaking work in ‘drama-based instruction,’ which is the application of theatre techniques to create new methods of teaching and learning for education, business, and government," said chair Brant Pope. “The excellence of her teaching and her accelerating international reputation mark her as a rising star in the field of performance and theatre education.”

Dawson also advises the Any Given Child Creative Learning Initiative – a partnership between Austin Independent School District, the City of Austin and MINDPOP that is dedicated to delivering student success through an arts-rich education. The Creative Learning Initiative works to provide Austin ISD with a well-coordinated, well-researched approach to student achievement and student success through access to and experience in the arts for every Austin child.

Established in 2008, the Regents’ Outstanding Teaching Awards program recognizes educators who demonstrate a clear commitment to teaching and sustained ability to deliver excellence to the undergraduate learning experience. A panel of students, peer faculty members and external reviewers evaluates the award nominees’ teaching performance over three years. Faculty members are considered through a rigorous process based on a range of activities and criteria that include expertise, curricula quality, innovative course development and student learning outcomes.

Past Department of Theatre and Dance recipients of the Regents’ Outstanding Teaching Award include Andrea Beckham, Charlotte Canning, Franchelle Dorn and Susan Mickey.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013