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Matthews Underclass Teaching Award

The Matthews Underclass Teaching Award honors significant contributions to the teaching of first- and second-year students in Mathematics, History, and Modern Languages, broadly interpreted.

Eligibility: All faculty ranks, including lecturers, are eligible for this award. Nominees cannot have received this award previously, and must not be current members of the LSA Curriculum Committee. For a list of award recipients, please see below.

Evaluation Criteria: The Matthews Underclass Teaching Award honors significant contributions to the teaching of first- and second-year students in Mathematics, History and Modern Languages, broadly interpreted. This award recognizes faculty members who are enthusiastically interested in and highly dedicated to undergraduate education. Nominees will be considered on the basis of their outstanding contributions to teaching, the intellectual rigor of their courses, and their ability to inspire a sense of wonder and excitement in their students.

Calendar for Submission and Evaluation of Nominations: A call for nominations is sent out in mid-January each year, with nominations accepted until mid-to-late February. Nominations will be reviewed by the LSA Curriculum Committee, which will recommend an award recipient to the LSA Executive Committee. The successful nominee will be notified in May and will be presented an award of $1,000 at the beginning of the following academic year.

Documentation Required

Departments with fewer than 30 FTE faculty may nominate up to two individuals; departments with 30 or more may nominate up to three. Please include the following for each nominee:

1. Completed Nomination Form from Chair, Associate Chair, or Director. Alternatively, a one-page letter that addresses the same questions as the Nomination Form may be submitted.
2. Enrollment and grading data for all first- and second-year courses that the nominee taught for the past four years—that is, please complete the table below for each nominee. Average grade and enrollment data are available in the Teaching History Report in the LSA Management Reporting System. (Questions about access and questions about the Teaching History Reports, interpreting the data, etc., should be sent to
3. Teaching evaluations for all first- and second-year courses that the nominee has taught for the past four years. Please do NOT include student comments, but only the “Instructor Report.” If any student comments are particularly illuminating, we suggest you make reference to them in the Chair/Director’s supporting statement.
4. (Optional) Letters of support from up to two former students of the nominee, who took a class from the nominee while they were in their first or second year. Each letter should be limited to no more than one page (single-spaced, standard font and margins). The nominee should be given the option of requesting these letters of support directly from students of his or her choice.
5. (Optional) Up to 5 additional pages of write-ups from faculty peer evaluations/classroom observations of the nominee, or similar supporting documentation.

All submissions should be in electronic form. Paper submissions will not be accepted. Each nomination should be sent as a SINGLE PDF file to Assistant Dean Dorine Lawrence-Hughes ( and Cameron Gibelyou ( and Cameron Gibelyou ( Please title the PDF file “Matthews Award, [Nominee Name], [Name of Nominating Department]”.

Table from #2:

Semester Course Enrollment E&E Q1 Score E&E Q2 Score Average Grade in Course

Sample Evaluation Form

Matthews Underclass Teaching Award - Recipients

2020 Maria Dorantes Romance Languages and Literatures
2019 Mayumi Oka Asian Languages and Cultures
Tatiana Calixto Romance Languages and Literatures
2017 Paulina Alberto History/Romance Languages and Literatures
  Farina Mir History/Center for South Asian Studies
2016 Stephen Berrey American Culture/History
2015 Martin Pernick History
2014 Jeremiah Chamberlin English Language and Literature
2013 Ralf Spatzier Mathematics
2012 Victor Lieberman History
2011 Gavin LaRose Mathematics
2010 Karen Rhea Mathematics
2009 Olga Lopez-Cotin Residential College
2007 Despina Margomenou Classical Studies
2006 Enid Zimmermann English Language and Literature
2005 Geoffrey Bankowski English Language and Literature
2004 Eileen Pollack English Language and Literature
2003 Ifeoma Nwankwo English Language and Literature/Afroamerican and African Studies
2002 Ray Van Dam History
2001 Hartmut Rastalsky Germanic Languages and Literatures
2000 George H. Cooper English Language and Literature
1999 Barbra S. Morris Residential College
1998 Howard G. Lay History of Art
1997 Merla Wolk English Language and Literature
1996 Edith (Jackie) Livesay English Language and Literature
1995 Traianos Gagos Classical Studies
1994 Kathleen M. Canning History
1993 Cynthia Sowers Residential College
1992 Chi-Keung Cheung Mathematics
1991 Lillian Beck English Language and Literature
1990 John Rubadeau English Language and Literature
1989 Patricia O'Dowd Ezekiel English Language and Literature
1988 Helene Neu Romance Languages and Cultures
1987 William Holinger English Language and Literature
1986 Patricia Shure Mathematics
1985 Richard Meisler English Language and Literature
1984 Sylvie Carduner Residential College
1983 Gerald Linderman History
1982 Ejner Jensen English Language and Literature
1981 Cecile Zorach  
1980 Hilda Ruey Tao Asian Languages and Cultures