Two associate professors have been jointly recognised as the Australian University Teacher of the Year for their innovative approaches to teaching – including the use of a virtual market simulation system.

Minister for Education and Training Senator Simon Birmingham praised the outstanding efforts of Halim Rane from Griffith University and Kevin Tant from Monash University for their “engaging and imaginative approach to teaching”. 

Minister Birmingham said the Turnbull Government was committed to improving teaching standards across Australia to ensure educators have the skills to engage with students and provide an environment where they can realise their full potential. 

“Associate Professor Tant is recognised for his contribution to teaching excellence and student learning in the field of finance, including immersing his students into the virtual world financial markets and testing ideas via realistic simulations before going out to market,” Minister Birmingham said.

“Associate Professor Rane is similarly committed to securing the best outcomes for his students in Islamic studies, implementing an innovative Muslim World Study Tour that takes students to Malaysia, Turkey, Spain and Morocco in promoting cultural competence and intercultural understanding. 

“I congratulate both Halim and Kevin, who embody the innovative and creative spirit as well as the commitment to teaching and learning that will help mark out Australia from the rest of the world as we enter the ideas boom.

“These educators are outstanding examples of how our higher education institutions are helping to prepare Australian students for the diverse challenges, immense opportunities and culturally connected world they will work within.” 

Minister Birmingham said a further 14 awards for teaching excellence and eight awards for programs that enhance learning were presented at the Australian Awards for University Teaching 2015 last night at Parliament House, Canberra.

The Neville Bonner Award for Indigenous Education was presented to Dr Asani Wood from the Australian National University for his success in empowering and guiding Indigenous law students through to the successful completion of their tertiary education.

“All award winners, individuals and teams play a vital role in building Australia’s future through their life-changing impact on the students they teach and inspire through their commitment to excellence and innovation,” Minister Birmingham said.

“They show us just how well we can embrace change and disruption by being innovative, imaginative and bold enough to take on the challenges that face us.”

For a full list of award recipients visit 
Senator Birmingham’s media contact: James Murphy 0478 333 974
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