Shelli Fowler, executive director of graduate programs and new pedagogies in Learning Technologies and associate professor of English in the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences at Virginia Tech, has received the university's 2013 Edward S. Diggs Teaching Scholars Award.

Sponsored by the Diggs Endowed Professorship Fund and the Center for Instructional Development and Educational Research, the Diggs Teaching Scholars Award was established in 1992 and is presented annually to three Virginia Tech faculty members to recognize exceptional contributions to the teaching program and learning environment. A cash award is given to each recipient and their academic department. Diggs Teaching Scholars are invited to lead the Diggs Roundtable–a series of presentations and a discussion of their innovative teaching–a year after receiving the award.

The award is supported by an endowed fund from an estate gift by the late Edward S. and Hattie Wilson Diggs. Edward Diggs was a 1914 graduate of Virginia Tech.

As one of two tenured faculty members with a primary appointment in Learning Technologies, a division of Information Technology, Fowler has extensive experience teaching both undergraduate and graduate students and working with faculty in her expertise of teaching and learning. Since joining the Virginia Tech community in 2003, she has taught 40 to 50 graduate students every semester.  She developed the Graduate Education Development Institute and routinely receives outstanding feedback from students in the institute’s classes.

Fowler has developed a teaching enhancement project called, “Digital Citizenship and Civic Engagement for a Networked World” that will develop a peer-to-peer mentoring program that encourages undergraduates to explore the significance of, think critically about, and decide how best to use web 2.0 tools as active contributors within the context of civic engagement.

“Shelli’s project  brings together her expertise in pedagogy, diversity and social justice issues, digital engagement, and social media,” said Anne Moore, associate vice president for learning technologies. “Her commitment to refining effective pedagogies for contemporary learners is important work for Virginia Tech.”

Among many accolades, Fowler has been recognized nationally for her work in transforming teaching and learning and for providing leadership in the field of educational technologies. She has served as an invited faculty member and co-director for the EDUCAUSE Learning Technology Leadership Institute and has been the co-creator and leader of two EDUCAUSE leadership seminars.

Fowler earned her bachelor’s degree from San Jose State University and her master’s degree and Ph.D. from The University of Texas at Austin.

Dedicated to its motto, Ut Prosim (That I May Serve), Virginia Tech takes a hands-on, engaging approach to education, preparing scholars to be leaders in their fields and communities. As the commonwealth’s most comprehensive university and its leading research institution, Virginia Tech offers 240 undergraduate and graduate degree programs to more than 31,000 students and manages a research portfolio of $513 million. The university fulfills its land-grant mission of transforming knowledge to practice through technological leadership and by fueling economic growth and job creation locally, regionally, and across Virginia.

Written by Catherine Doss.
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