Adam Michael Smith Wins Outstanding Graduate Student Instructor Award

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Adam Michael Smith recently proved his incomparable teaching skills by receiving the Outstanding Graduate Student Instructor (OGSI) Award.

Adam Michael Smith, a leading graduate student instructor at the University of California, Berkeley, recently received an award through the university for his outstanding performance in the classroom. The award he received, the Outstanding Graduate Student Instructor (OGSI) Award, is afforded to only a select handful of students at the university.

Each department at the university had the opportunity to choose at least one graduate student instructor to receive the award, with larger departments able to choose nine percent of their instructors. Adam Michael Smith was selected due to his overall effectiveness in his instructor role, his ability to promote critical thinking, and his skillfulness in presenting course material.

Other criteria used in selecting graduate student instructors for the OGSI Award this year include the use of collaborative learning and other effective pedagogical approaches in the classroom, as well as the ability to produce course syllabi, paper topics, exam questions, essay questions, websites, and other materials designed to promote learning. The university’s departments also selected instructors who had demonstrated a command of their respective subject areas.

Instructors were chosen based on the evaluations that students submitted, students’ or faculty members’ nomination letters, faculty classroom observations, and their teaching portfolios. Other materials taken into consideration include the instructors’ teaching philosophy statements.

Many departments on campus have established their own traditions for recognizing graduate student instructors who have received the OGSI Award. For instance, some departments award these instructors at luncheons, departmental gatherings, or commencement ceremonies. Meanwhile, others display the award recipients’ names along with their photographs in their department offices or on their websites. Still others give out cash awards.

Graduate student instructors can receive the OGSI Award one time while studying at Berkeley.

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