Montana State University

MSU 2011 Excellence in Online Teaching Award

Winner and Finalists

Congrats to Montana State University's excellent online instructors!

The first-ever Excellence in Online Teaching Award, given in January 2011 by the MSU Provost's Office and MSU Extended University, recognizes individuals who have provided outstanding teaching, course development, mentoring of students, and service to online education. Candidates were nominated by Montana State Online students; the following quotes are excerpts from these nominations.


Kathleen Schachman, College of Nursing, Advanced Health Assessment (N 550) and Advanced Pathophysiology (N 560)

"Knowledge, enthusiasm, energy, encouragement, and all-around commitment to students. High expectations but belief in student's ability to succeed. Variety of learning activities to accommodate various student learning styles. Never felt like you're out there all alone in computer land."

"Dr. Schachman would implement different ways to convey instruction material to increase students' ability to learn concepts. She is timely, consistent, conscientious, and clear in her communication. She is genuinely concerned for the student by taking time to work with their individual needs. Dr. Schachman is a remarkable instructor and role model and is highly regarded among my peers."


Eric Brunsell, "Web Tools for Teaching Science" (MSSE 580)

"Professor Brunsell's online course was the best professional development that I have experienced in years! It continues to teach me, as the curriculum he designed has given me so many new tools that I took away and will continue to use."

Maurice Burke, "Geometry for Teachers" (MATH 527), "Number Structure for Teachers" (MATH 523 and 524)

"Professor Burke consistently challenges his students. I work hard, if not even harder, to achieve what he demands of his students. In all three of his courses, I have been forced to think and contemplate. He is able to structure the online environment so I can learn yet cooperate with fellow students."

Bryce Carpenter, "Brain Science, Educational Research, and Teaching" (EDCI 557)

"Dr. Carpenter's enthusiasm for the subject matter and the teaching-learning experience, together with his broad global knowledge and expertise in philosophy, helped make his course perhaps the most valuable and memorable one of my education."

Suzanna Carrithers, "Water Quality in the Classroom" (LRES 580)

"Suzanna really challenged me to become a better teacher and not just a scientist. I learned many education techniques I also learned a lot about current water quality issues and was given lots of information regarding where to find environmental information to pass on to my students. I was challenged to learn to design laboratory experiments, and that taught me a lot about being a good laboratory instructor."

Andrew Chaikin, "History of Spaceflight & Space Technology" (EDCI 580)

"Mr. Chaikin's understanding of the topic was excellent, and his presentations during the class were both insightful and engaging. He utilized a series of YouTube videos each week to provide an online lecture and visuals to re-enforce the reading materials assigned on a weekly basis. Additionally, he offered a Skype session for an active question and answer period to address current events and our questions."

John Graves, "Teaching Inquiry in the Science Classroom" (EDCI 580)

"John has created an atmosphere online that allows students to collaborate. He creates assignments that are applicable and allow for learning rather than memorization. He is available for assistance and holds webinars to help clarify course guidelines and requirements. His feedback on assignments is effective and clearly formatted to allow for improvement."

Sean Griffin, "Fundamentals of Oceanography" (ERTH 591)

"Dr. Griffin made the course interesting, fun, pertinent, and, of course, educational. He made me enjoy the class even though it was my first online course. When that class was over I told many people I know (that) I hope all my instructors are like Dr. Griffin. He was always available to answer questions, address concerns, and clear up any confusion."

Page Huyette, "Portfolio Design and Preparation" (PSPP 480)

"Page is an outstanding professor. Her ability to motivate and inspire students to do their best has made her an excellent candidate for this teaching award. Page was always there when we needed assistance and was prompt in answering questions and giving helpful advice. I wouldn't hesitate to take another online course from her."

Laura Massey, "Senior Seminar" (HDCF 474)

"Laura is an outgoing person and meets our needs. She takes her job seriously. She is a person that we can look up to."

Clifford Mayes, "Human Development and the Psychology of Learning" (EDCI 552)

"Dr. Mayes is an actively involved instructor. He creates useful, intellectually stimulating assignments. He does not just set online posting requirements for us; he is also fully involved in the dialogue, posting at all hours of the day. I feel very fortunate to have had Dr. Mayes for an instructor. He will forever set the standard in my mind for excellence in online teaching."

Angela Sower, "Biochemistry for Teachers" (CHMY 591)

"Biochemistry is a very difficult class, and I was worried about learning the material asynchronously. Angie was always clear with her expectations of the students in the course. It was highly organized and detailed; the entire semester was laid out clearly every week. It was a fantastic experience, and I still use the concepts from that course in the classes I teach today."

Dawn Tarabochia, "Human Response to Stress" (HDHL 451)

"Dawn went out for her way to explain things that students did not understand. If you ask me about a devoted and caring professor that is out to help you succeed with your education, it is Dawn."

Walt Woolbaugh, "Foundation of Action Research" (EDCI 505)

"I was nervous that taking classes online would make me feel isolated and far removed from the class itself, but I have received more feedback and help from Dr. Woolbaugh than from any professor I have ever met in person. Dr. Woolbaugh is an incredibly positive and caring teacher. His words of encouragement and positive feedback have truly helped to keep me motivated throughout my time at MSU."

Campus ToolsStudent E-MailDesire2LearnMy InfoMy MSU PortalMy Passwords