Graduate students in the National Capital Region attend class with peers via teleconferencing

The Graduate School presents two teaching awards each year to honor students who demonstrate excellence during their teaching assistantships.

Winners receive a plaque and $1,000 for each category.

Category 1: GTA Instructor of Record: Primary instructor of course or course section. GTA typically has more control of the content and delivery of the material and assigns grades for students. Student SPOT evaluations are completed regarding the nominee.

Category 2: GTA - Assistant Award: Provides support to faculty instructor of record. Duties may include: grading, occasional lecturing, student office hours and similar tasks. College, department, or course specific evaluations may be collected in place of SPOT evaluations.

Award criteria

  • Teaching or instructional support must have been done at Virginia Tech by GTA for at least a full semester in Spring, Summer or Fall 2017 (P14 or wage appointments are not eligible)
  • Only one nomination in each category per department
  • Excellent teaching as evidenced by:
    • Thorough knowledge of the subject matter
    • Effective communication skills
    • Enthusiasm for the subject
    • Learner-centered pedagogy
    • Demonstrated evidence of participation in teaching-effectiveness seminars, classes or FDI programs
    • Ability to motivate students to learn
    • Demonstration of innovation

Nomination requirements

  • Completed and signed nomination form verifying student as the department's nominee
  • Two recommendations addressing criteria of excellent teaching
    • One from a supervising faculty member
    • One from faculty or staff member, or graduate student who has observed the nominee's teaching skills
  • Student evaluations (summaries only – maximum 4 pages) or alternative measure of outstanding performance
  • Statement of personal teaching philosophy from the nominee (should include summary of primary teaching accomplishments - maximum two pages)
  • Evidence that the nominee has had sufficient teaching duties to demonstrate criteria of good teaching
  • 2-page curriculum vitae from the nominee highlighting information relevant to teaching excellence
  • Complete nomination packet not to exceed 15 pages

Additional details

For more information, contact

Submit combined PDF files to

Deadline: January 29, 2018