Academy of Distinguished Teachers Nominations

The purpose of the James Worth Bagley Academy of Distinguished Teachers is to recognize engineering faculty of all ranks (instructor, assistant professor, associate professor, and professor) who have distinguished themselves in the classroom at the undergraduate or graduate level. To be eligible for these awards, faculty must be full-time and must have taught at least one engineering class in at least five of the six regular semesters (fall or spring) immediately preceding the nomination. Up to two faculty members will be inducted into the Academy. The selection committee will decide on the number of inductees to be chosen in a particular year based on the strength of the candidate pool and the availability of funds. Once inducted into the Academy, faculty will remain members for the duration of their employment at MSU.

Selection Criteria

Outstanding teaching is evidenced by many factors. Outstanding teachers engage students in the learning process and motivate students to succeed inside the classroom as well as outside the classroom. Outstanding teachers seek to use a variety of teaching methods to reach students regardless of their individual learning styles. Outstanding teachers are demanding but fair, clearly communicating their expectations for students and hold students to these expectations. Outstanding teachers challenge students at all levels in their classrooms and encourage collaborative learning among their students. Outstanding teachers engage in active assessment of the learning of their students and seek to improve their teaching to ensure even greater student learning in the future.

The selection criteria for this award will mirror that of the MSU Grisham Master Teacher award. The same evaluation form will be used.

Download form (pdf)

Selection Committee

The Associate Dean will serve as chair of the selection committee along with three faculty members. The committee will also include three students. The faculty representatives will be selected from members of the Academy. The student members will be chosen by the presidents of the MSU chapters of the Engineering Student Council, the National Society of Black Engineers, and the Society of Women Engineers.

Nomination Process and Timeline

Faculty may be nominated by any individual student, student organization, department head, or faculty member in the College. The selection committee will work with the nominees to inform them of their nomination and to guide them in the development of their nomination packet. Nominees must submit an electronic (pdf) nomination packet to the chair of the selection committee. Details about items to include in the nomination packet are described below. Nomination packets for winning nominees become the property of the College of Engineering and will be available for review by persons who have been nominated in future years or individuals considering making a nomination.

Nominations due: March 1 
Final application packets due: March 30

All nomination information should be emailed to Kari Babski-Reeves at

Nomination Packet

The nomination packets for the Academy of Distinguished Teachers will mirror that of the Grisham Master Teacher application and will consist of the following information:

  • Nomination letter from a colleague, department head, dean, student, MSU graduate, or other professional associate.
  • Three letters of support from faculty and/or administrative colleagues or superiors.
  • Three letters of support from former students (at least two must be from students who have graduated within the last five years).
  • Teaching vita (maximum of five pages on teaching-related content): courses taught and developed, research and scholarship in teaching, teaching awards, etc.
  • Nominee’s statement of educational/teaching philosophy (not to exceed two pages).
  • Description and evidence of teaching method and assessment of student learning (not to exceed 15 pages).
  • Summary of student evaluations in courses taught over the past five years (include copies of official statistical summaries for all courses taught and evaluated AND prepare a one- to two-page summary table listing the means for each official university evaluation question for each course taught and evaluated, noting course number, title or abbreviated title, and semester and year; do NOT include individual student response sheets and do not go beyond the past five years).


Each inductee into the Academy of Distinguished Teachers will receive a $2,000 award in one of their spring pay checks. In addition, each inductee will receive a plaque announcing their induction. There will be a recognition plaque in the McCain engineering building that will be updated each year to include the new inductees’ names, departmental affiliation and year of induction. New inductees of the Academy will be automatically, where appropriate, nominated by the College for the university’s Grisham Master Teacher awards each fall. This does not preclude the nomination of other faculty for the Grisham awards from within the College.