Innovation in Teaching with Technology Awards


John Shafer, Research Librarian and Assistant Professor, School of Law, for his long standing support for effective technology and innovation in the Law School. He was nominated by a colleague, who cited:  His commitment to leveraging technology to improve teaching and learning sets a benchmark for educators to explore and integrate new technologies effectively. His pioneering work not only enhances teaching and learning at our university but also fosters a culture of innovation and continuous improvement among faculty and students.

Sedique Popal, Associate Professor, School of Education, for his growth over time as an instructor in the MA TESOL program. A graduate student in the program nominated him for his consistent strong use of educational technologies both in the classroom and online. Citing this student: Dr. Popal's effective technology teaching strategies have been paramount to student success. Also noteworthy is his active contributions to the displaced Afghan community where he launched a program for incoming Afghan students - they didn’t have computers, just arrived, 12 people in one apartment. He found resources, got donated recycled computers, launched the after school program, and built a curriculum so they could access their homework.

Nicole Phillips, Associate Professor of Legal Writing, School of Law, as a rising star who has incorporated AI into her Advanced Legal Writing course. One of the key ways she used AI is by developing hypothetical practice problems and full practice case files tailored to the course content. These AI-generated resources allowed students to apply their knowledge to realistic scenarios, promoting critical thinking, problem-solving skills, and a deeper understanding of the subject matter. Also noteworthy are Nicole's professional development activities for other faculty in the Law School who are learning about AI for teaching and learning.


FT faculty award receipients

2023 - Jesse Anttila-Hughes, College of Arts and Sciences, Economics Department

Professor Hughes incorporates data cleaning and coding using R and Python and provides tutorials, demonstrations, and copies of the code to ensure that his students understand the material in his Econometrics course. He is also very flexible, recording all his lectures on Zoom and using the HoverCam document camera for notes, providing equitable access to information. He also pioneered the use of ChatGPT to help with coding roadblocks. His use of technology has been instrumental in enhancing student engagement and learning outcomes. Overall, his teaching style is effective, innovative, and student-centered.

2023 - Steve Trettel, College of Arts and Sciences, Math Department

Professor Trettel utilizes various technologies, including Canvas, PowerPoint, and Gradescope, and integrates Cengage Publisher content for assignments and resources. He creates his own teaching materials, incorporating Java programming language to create animations and interactive graphs. As a geometric topologist, professor Trettel uses computer graphics to draw 3D animations to facilitate mathematical visualizations. He teaches multivariable calculus and allows students to interact with the interactive animations to increase comprehension. Steve is actively involved in the AI Club in the Math department and collaborates with other instructors to enhance the experience of students in the club. Overall, his teaching style provides an innovative approach to teaching Math and is effective in helping students understand complex mathematical concepts.

2022 - Xornam Apedoe, School of Education

Dr. Xornam Apedoe is the Program Coordinator for the Educational Technology Master’s program in the School of Education, which provides students with “innovative ways to integrate relevant technology with sound pedagogical practice”. She oversees the curriculum in this program in the theory and uses of a wide variety of technology tools focusing on those that are low-cost or free. Her use of technology in her own classrooms is exemplary.

Dr. Apedoe uses technology as a space to build community and keep the dialogue about course content going between class sessions. She uses Zoom to build the flipped classroom. She creates pre-recorded lectures/videos that allow for class sessions to focus on interactive, engaging, activities and discussions rather than lecturing. This has been especially helpful during these past two years teaching only online via Zoom.

Furthermore, Dr. Apedoe supports student projects/presentations using technology. Over the past few semesters she has had students create E-posters (to mimic a Poster Session at a research conference) - where students create a digital poster to view online (outside of class time) and then come together to discuss and ask questions during the live class meeting.

Finally, Dr. Apedoe’s research addresses the uses of technology in teaching, such as methods for differentiating the student flipped learning experience and assessing by process and not just product. Her work is read and cited widely and used to inform best-practices in technology in teaching and learning.

2021 - Leigh Meredith, Department of Rhetoric and Language

Professor Meredith improves student learning by blending tradition and innovation. She consistently seeks out digital tools that help students meet course learning outcomes and fulfill USF’s social justice mission.

Leigh is committed to developing students’ abilities to evaluate and deliver communication across multiple media forms – an essential skill in the 21st century.

Leigh has delivered both ETS and CTE presentations that encourage innovative uses for technology. Her most recent service to the USF community is sponsored by an Open Educational Resource Grant to create a multimedia textbook for multimodal rhetoric.

Because of Leigh’s innovation in teaching with technology, students have the confidence and ability to choose the medium and technological platform that best fits their target audience.

2021- Kelly L'Engle, School of Nursing and Health Professions

Professor L’Engle optimizes the use of the Google suite of collaborative products for remote teaching. She uses Google Docs with zoom breakout room rooms for discussions with student groups. Students find the collaborative Google platform, combined with zoom breakout rooms, highly engaging, which is essential for the evening and 3-4 hour classes she teaches in the School of Nursing and Health Professions.

These tools support what she calls "inside-out" pedagogy: because she can observe learning in real time (by students) as students engage in collaborative discussions and assignments completed through Google tools. Kelly mastered the use of technology tools that are available at no additional cost to USF students and faculty. She enabled the learning process via remote synchronous zoom sessions to be more inclusive, enjoyable, interactive, and full of “deep learning” for students. She shared these pedagogical methods with SONHP faculty through a "Teaching Collaborative" sponsored by her department, and a number of faculty have requested additional support so they can begin to use Google tools in their own classes. USF has a reputation of employing excellent teachers, and she believes that her use of widely-available, simpler to use technologies - especially during these times of remote teaching, has greatly contributed to her teaching and student learning.

2020 - Daniela Domínguez, School of Education

Professor Domínguez worked with USF graduate research assistants using CARTO, an online computing platform that provides GIS, web mapping, and spatial data science tools, to teach them how to create innovative asset maps to support underserved communities. The maps were created to document the gathering spaces where Latinos/X feel safe, comfortable, and welcomed. Latinos/X in Sonoma Valley have been impacted by the effects of the 2017 Northern California wildfires, immigration enforcement practices, higher rates of poverty, lower educational attainment, and persistent barriers to health care access. The maps were disseminated in Sonoma Valley during community meetings and forums, offering residents the opportunity to provide feedback, debate preliminary results, and assess whether their voices were captured accurately.

Dr.  Domínguez taught her students how to employ a “boots-on-the-ground” strategy with theoretical sophistication and encouraged their ongoing use of technology “with” people and “not over” people. Using technology with a focus on community development, her students built close relationships with Latino/X communities in Sonoma Valley. They learned that using technology to facilitate community linkages, collectivism, and “respeto” [respect] is a new way of doing research. Today, her students know how to create asset maps using GIS technology. They also know how to do this with communities that have been historically targeted.

2020 - Fay (Zifei) Chen, College of Arts and Sciences

Since joining the Communications department in 2017, Professor Chen has continuously made technology an integral part of her instruction. She has attended workshops hosted by CTE and ETS to enhance her understanding of the tools available at USF. Beyond that, she has also sought insights and input from industry professionals, in order to provide her students the opportunities to use the industry tools free of charge for their career preparation. Her efforts have paid off, as shown in students’ work products, formal and informal course evaluations, and the competitive advantage students gain in careers. Professor Chen has also incorporated ethical and legal guidelines of technology use into her class instruction in order to prepare students to become ethical and socially responsible public relations professionals and professional communicators. This is in line with the updated program learning outcome for the public relations minor that she has developed, as well as the overall mission, vision, and values of USF. She continues to educate herself with the most updated tools, guidelines, and knowledge. For example, she participated in the CTE Faculty Learning Circle on e-portfolios to further develop her use of technology in the classroom to benefit student learning. Professor Chen is committed to modeling the ethical use of technology and has demonstrated a continued commitment to integrate technology into her classroom to benefit student learning.

2019 - Omar Miranda, Arts and Sciences

Technology has helped bring the recitation of poetry into the modern era. This instructor has tried to change the way that poetry is taught in the literature classroom to make it more fun and engaging for USF students. He is the founder of Recited Verse, an online community dedicated to creating and sharing original audio recordings of poetry.

With this interdisciplinary project, he partnered with faculty and students in the Departments of Computer Science and Art, trying to bring together all these intellectual strengths and skills for the benefit of students and educators not just in English but also in other disciplines.

2018 - June Lee, School of Management

Everything is online all readings, announcements, assignments (including distribution, submission, and grading), the peer discussions, and attendance are all through the Canvas system. She stresses the connection between the tools they learn in class and their applications to industry her course design prepares her students for the real world.

They experience running a social media campaign to reach real-world audiences and use Open Source software to launch an online business. Students develop a LinkedIn profile, a website, and are encouraged to use technology to build their products.

This instructor has worked closely with USF alumni and other online campus resources to introduce relevant technology and concepts to her students. She believes that by presentation, demonstration, hands-on application, and hosting guest speakers from industry, students learn transferable skills.

This faculty member truly motivates her students while also inspiring her peer faculty.

2017 - Nola Agha, Sports Management Program, College of Arts and Sciences

Since joining USF in 2010, this instructor has relied on Canvas as an essential component of all of her courses. Weekly modules provide reading materials, links to notes, training videos, and assignments. Assignments are turned in online via Turnitin and marked up, graded, and returned to students online – importantly, because her class only meets once a week and digital grading provides faster feedback. She consistently innovates lessons using technology to improve student learning.

This instructor uses GoogleDocs with her students to work on documents in real time during class. Teaching both on the Hilltop and in the Orange County campus, she uses Zoom for meetings with students. Students book appointments with her using which syncs with her Google Calendar. This faculty member is a self-starter who has found a variety of ways to integrate technology to enhance teaching.

2017 - Cathy Gabor, Rhetoric and Language, College of Arts and Sciences

This instructor's combination of pedagogical acumen AND her willingness to constantly innovate, truly sets her apart and makes her an inspiring model to those who are slower to adopt new technologies.

She has used Echo360 lecture capture software to record videos to support student writing of MLA citations in text. In her Rhetoric 295 course, New Media/You Media: Writing in Electronic Environments, students are critical consumers and producers of technology. Assignments such as the Technological Literacy Autobiography allow students to research and analyze their own digital literacy practices.

2016  - Sophie Engle, Computer Science, College of Arts and Sciences

This instructor is not afraid to try new things so that she can improve her instructional practice and keep it relevant. She uses online discussion boards to encourage students to ask questions and help each other solve problems. She adopted the flipped classroom approach and has posted on YouTube a full suite of lecture videos recorded using Echo 360. She was among the first in the department to use Canvas, and is the department's go-to person for any Canvas-related questions. She stays up-to-date on the latest technological developments, and when she sees something that will help improve student learning, she employs it.

2015 - Brandi Lawless, Communication Studies, School of Arts and Sciences

This full-time faculty member has made clear moves to utilize technology to improve the learning environment. Technology has become an integral component of her teaching philosophy. In order to promote development of critical thinking in her classroom, she has been flipping various lectures in her classes for 3 years. She has been purposeful with her use of technology, which she believes has enhanced student learning and educational outcomes.

2014 - Eugene Kim, School of Law

This full-time faculty member uses a variety of programs to develop his online videos for students' access to his Flipped Classroom.  According to one faculty peer, who “It's clear that he incorporates technology, not just because technology is fun and attention-grabbing, but because its use actually helps to convey information and instruction in a meaningful and productive way, which allows students to become more efficient and effective learners. This instructor’s use of technology is clearly benefiting his students. But we also believe that his knowledge and facility with technology will benefit the rest of us at the law school.

2013 - Jeremy Howell, Sports Management, College of Arts and Sciences

This full-time faculty member is recognized as a dynamic and progressive educator across our campus. According to one student: “In this class, all students submit a weekly blog and all course materials, readings, and assignments are posted online. Students are also encouraged to participate via Twitter and the final project is structured in a Wiki format.” He creatively facilitates learning by using technology to enable communications among all class participants – because he believes that students learn as much from one another, as they do from him. This faculty member also demonstrates that it is possible to be a jock, a nerd, and a great teacher – all at the same time.

2012 - Peggy Takahashi, School of Management

2011 - Bruce Price, School of Law

This Professor is definitely on the forefront of technology use in the classroom at the School of Law, and he effectively utilizes technology to accommodate various learning styles among his students.  He is diligent about making course learning materials available online, which greatly benefits his students while also being green. His engaging use of clickers is both fun and helpful in teaching course material.

2010 - Ryan Wright, School of Business and Professional Studies

This Professor not only efficiently manages his class, utilizing tools such as Blackboard, email, wikis, and other technology resources available to all teachers, he has also spearheaded a whole class centered around Internet Business Applications where his students enables his students to use their knowledge and experience gained from previous business courses to better themselves but also to better the community. He has successfully merged education and real life experiences with the goals of USF.

2009 - Mouwafac Sidaoui, School of Business and Management

The full-time faculty award recipient is passionate about digital learning and wants to ensure that students are as technologically advanced as possible. He teaches students how to use Excel to model business situations and solve “real-world” problems.  His classes are paperless. His syllabus, lecture notes, homework and tests are all digital. He teaches students how to learn more using technology and “goes the extra mile in order to help students gain a greater level of competency with technology.” Nominated for this award multiple times over the years, this faculty member has shown a sustained commitment to incorporating technology in the classroom to enhance student learning.  According to one student, he “provides students with the skills to be able to handle technology, which is a requirement in today's professional world."

2008 - David Silver, Professor, Media Studies, College of Arts & Science

Professor Silver builds his class around technology. It's not just about struggling to keep up with it; it's about looking at it from different perspectives (while we use it in class). He is forward thinking - the technological world is one he is eager to share with his students.

2007 - Patricia Busk, Learning and Instruction, School of Education

The Faculty Award recognizes overall outstanding use of technology in the classroom or online. This year’s recipient, from the School of Education, joined the University in 1980. An early adopter of Blackboard, she continues to develop and refine her courses as educational technology evolves. The online compliments to her classes include discussions, quizzes, and a rich array of resources that are an invaluable component to her classes. Most recently she has added podcasts of her class lectures to her Blackboard course sites, providing students with an opportunity to take extra time to process her challenging and content dense courses. As her students affirm, her use of technology challenges her students to become technologically literate.

2007 - J.P. Allen, School of Business and Management 

Pushing collaborative learning to a new level, the second innovation award goes to a professor who also uses wikis to engage students as knowledge producers outside the classroom and enhance the learning experience inside the classroom. His class wiki included group workspaces where students collaborated to create their in-class presentations. The class wiki also provided transparency in assignment feedback and student evaluations. His underlying philosophy includes the reflective use of technology and commitment to grounding the use of new classroom technologies in sound pedagogical frameworks.

2007 - Stephen Zavestoski, Sociology and Environmental Studies, College of Arts & Science

Pushing collaborative learning to a new level, the second innovation award goes to a professor who also uses wikis to engage students as knowledge producers outside the classroom and enhance the learning experience inside the classroom. His class wiki included group workspaces where students collaborated to create their in-class presentations. The class wiki also provided transparency in assignment feedback and student evaluations. His underlying philosophy includes the reflective use of technology and commitment to grounding the use of new classroom technologies in sound pedagogical frameworks.

2006 - Susan Prion, School of Nursing

The Faculty Award recognizes overall outstanding use of technology in the classroom or online. This year's recipient, from the School of Nursing, joined USF in 1992. A Blackboard user since 2001, she has developed several hybrid courses and a significant number of online modules. She successfully integrates audio and visual multimedia activities into learning modules and is currently exploring ways to increase interactivity to enhance student interest, motivation, and overall content learning. As her students affirm, her use of online modules, power point, and classroom technology provide students with the tools they need to succeed.

2006 - Margaret Maag, School of Nursing

Our recipient of the Teaching with Technology Faculty award uses the online medium to provide students with greater access to learning though web-based tutorials and quizzes, instructional videos and simulations, and online forums to support students' knowledge of Pathophysiology. She developed her own tutorials for learning concepts such as Arterial Blood Gases and for performing medication calculations. Students in her course have responded positively to her use of online materials, her availability both in-class and online, as well as her sophisticated use of PowerPoint. She also utilizes the Blackboard online learning system to provide students with frequent tips, resources and announcements.

2006 - Steve Morris, School of Business

The Innovation Award recognizes overall excellence and innovative use of technology in teaching and learning. This year's recipient, from the School of Business & Management, has been with USF since 1993. This candidate has worked tirelessly at exploring the potential to improve student learning outcomes through the use of technology. Last year he was one of six faculty selected to participate in the CIT's hybrid course redesign project. This semester he video taped his lectures and is making them available from a streaming server. In another course he is podcasting recorded lectures for his students to listen to from mobile devices or a desktop computer. This instructor has also incorporated Blackboard and Clickers to keep his students engaged and connected to classroom lectures and assignments.

2005 - Eugene Muscat, School of Business

The Innovation Award recognizes overall excellence and innovative use of technology in teaching and learning. This year’s recipient, from the School of Business & Management, has been with USF for 33 years. This candidate has overcome the limitations of time and geography to provide the Family Business curriculum developed here at USF to our sister Jesuit schools and to USF students who cannot enroll in our on-campus course. He has done this through use of Blackboard, electronic discussion boards, and video lectures streamed over the Internet.

2004 - Daniel A. Rascher, Sport Management Program

Our recipient of the Innovation Award co-created an Oakland A's baseball simulator for his Sports Economics & Finance class. The online interactive simulator allows students to advise fictitious new owners of the A's baseball team on how to run their company in all aspects of management. Each student makes decisions on ticket prices, payroll, and stadium financing, then submits them using the simulator to exercise the effects of different management strategies and tactics. The simulator provides students with the practical and applied learning experiences of managing nearly all of the major decisions in a sports organization. This instructor also innovatively uses the Blackboard discussion board to support a virtual guest lecturer who an expert in the field. The guest lecturer logs in and responds to student questions creating a dynamic dialog.

2003 - Greg DeBourgh, School of Nursing

2003 - Mathew Mitchell, School of Education

Part time faculty award recipients

2022 - Karren Shorofsky, School of Law

Professor Shorofsky is extremely adept at using technology to enhance learning. Teaching using a HyFlex modality, she is able to support both students who are physically present in the classroom or Zooming in. Students in class can hear responses from remote students. She engages everyone more effectively and completely than it might be thought possible. She is very good at including remote learners in the synchronous class.

She is inventive in her use of multimedia techniques, incorporating video that is directly related to the subject matter before class, in a sort of "pre-game" show, which puts students in the mindset of learning. She uses music with visual aids that reference the subject matter and provides a historical basis for key concepts. She distributes her Powerpoint presentations before class so that students can follow along more easily and refer back to learning materials when they wish. She shares a playlist of media related to the class that reference key ideas and concepts, making them relevant after the class ends.

Professor Shorofsky posts hyperlinks in Canvas, the Learning Management System, with "news of the day" which she skillfully works into her classroom discussion.Professor Shorofsky fully and efficiently integrates technology at her fingertips, and uses it in a fresh and creative way. According to one of her Law School students, she earned “Five stars for innovative use of technology.”

2021- Jerry Coleman, School of Law

Professor Coleman’s use of technology has had a profound impact on student’s learning. His use of PowerPoint, streaming video, polls at the beginning of his classes, and his effective use of Zoom, contributed to student’s feeling that they had learned more in his course. One student concluded that this was primarily due to the way he used technology in his class.

His use of Zoom for the synchronous class supported a seamless shift to online. He “went the extra mile” to create a more engaging classroom. One student suggested that Prof Coleman’s strategic teaching about Law cases helped prepare them for the Bar and was less anxious about exams due to Professor Coleman’s effective use of technology in his course.

2019 - Susan Stryker, School of Management

This instructor uses technology in the classroom to maximize students learning, interest, and skill sets. She is a leader in the use of Canvas for homework and classwork assignments. She uses Poll Everywhere to stimulate classroom engagement and discussions. She implemented 3-D printing in her Entrepreneurial course for prototyping projects.

She shares her use of emerging technologies with colleagues in the department, thus motivating them to try innovative teaching methods in the classroom. She helps colleagues use Canvas along with other educational technologies and has participated in 3 USF Hackathons, mentoring students and serving as a judge.

2018 - Davis Yee, Graduate Tax Program, School of Law

This instructor uses a variety of tools to keep students engaged in his hybrid-designed course. He promotes -- the Flipped Classroom method of instruction which allows for varying levels of communication and interaction with students. He uses Zoom video conferencing to support virtual office hours and accommodates his teaching methods to reach students in different time zones His use of Jeopardy Style PowerPoint has engaged students and made learning fun.

His use of a digital whiteboard has elevated student satisfaction. He has shared his enthusiasm for online technology with colleagues leading them to explore new forms of course delivery. He has co-led a Peer2Peer panel presentation on his use of Zoom to support teaching and learning.

This instructor has taken the art of teaching tax law to new levels.

2016 - George DeVries, Accounting, School of Management

This adjunct faculty member incorporates online lectures that he produced himself. He uses Canvas extensively in his Managerial accounting and Financial Accounting courses and has presented to his colleagues on his use of Canvas. Online quizzes are scored immediately and provide students with immediate feedback on how they are doing in the course.

His use of Excel is exemplary and students are provided with tutorials to extend their aptitude with the software. Students benefit from his courses because they are very practical, providing real-world instruction to prepare them for their careers in business. According to one of his students: "He enhances course learning by using excel and online platforms to teach. This gives students a real world view of accounting."

2015  - Gaelle Corvasier, Modern and Classical Languages, School of Arts and Sciences

This adjunct faculty member has been a strong advocate of technology use to support her teaching of the French language. She routinely uses technology, including multimedia, wiki pages in Canvas with her lesson plans, and e-Textbook activities that encourage both oral and aural skill development to support her lectures.

To quote one of her students, “her efforts to flip the classroom and combine both face-to-face and technology-based interactions seamlessly have inspired me. As an aspiring educator, the techniques she is using have benefitted me in my acquisition of the French language and in learning. Merci beaucoup."

2014 - Jennifer Kinder, Professor in the School of Arts and Sciences

This part-time faculty member introduced technology to the course by including a 3-D app for the iPad and computers to accompany both lab and lecture material. To help with student learning, using a portable microphone, she utilized echo 360 personal capture software to make lectures available to students outside of class.

To quote one of her students, “Her use of an Anatomy app, Echo captures, online evaluations, pictures and videos gave students a 3-D orientation to the new material they were learning and helped students quickly get an understanding of complex information. Anatomy is an extremely difficult course, and she really made a genuine and concerned effort to provide us with the tools we needed to succeed.”

2013 - Vito Ferrente, Professor in the School of Education

This part-time faculty member is a leader in adopting the effective use of technology in his classes. To quote one of his students:  “My professor embraces technology for educators wholly and shares his passion and expertise in a way that makes it accessible to learners and educators at every level. His was far the best course delivery of any I have experienced at USF.

2012 - Ben Baab, School of Education