University academic receives top award

University academic receives top award  name

A  University of Cumbria academic, Dr Heather Prince, has been awarded a Principal Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy.  She is the first academic at the university to receive the prestigious status and one of only a handful of Principal Fellows in the UK.

A Principal Fellowship is the highest level of recognition available under the Higher Education UK Professional Standards Framework (UKPSF) and is only awarded to those who demonstrate considerable strategic leadership within their institutions and impact of their work in both national and international fields.

Heather is Associate Professor of Outdoor and Environmental Education as well as being a principal lecturer at the University of Cumbria at Ambleside.

In her application, Heather submitted evidence of designing frameworks and models for teaching, learning and assessment that have had institution-wide, national and international impact.  She included examples of how her subject discipline, pedagogy, research and innovative teaching have influenced other programmes, higher education institutions and professional practice.

Heather said of her award, “delivering quality teaching and supporting student learning is at the core of everything we do at the university. I feel extremely proud and honoured to be recognised for my strategic contribution to higher education teaching and learning here and abroad.”

Promoting and recognising excellence in teaching is a priority for the university and Head of Academic Quality and Development, Jess Robinson, explains why. She said, “A Principal Fellowship is a mark of excellence and a tribute to Heather’s dedication to learning and teaching. We are committed developing our staff professionally to enhance the experience for students while at the same time improving the reputation of the university.”

Heather is in the final stages of editing The International Handbook of Outdoor Studies (Routledge) a monograph for final year and postgraduate students which is due to be published early 2016 and along with colleagues, she is seeking to increase the number of research students and grow the culture at the university while continuing to enhance teaching and learning.

The Higher Education Academy is a national and independent organisation, funded by the four UK HE funding bodies and by subscriptions and grants, which champions excellent learning and teaching in higher education.