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Animal Behavior & Education




The Animal Behavior Society's Education Committee was formed to promote quality instruction and training in the area of animal behavior.



Penny Bernstein Distinguished Teaching Award

Please consider nominating a colleague whose educational accomplishments you admire!

It is easy to know about our colleagues’ research by reading publications; it is much more difficult to know about their teaching excellence. Please take this opportunity to recognize colleagues who have demonstrated a sustained record of highly effective and innovative teaching.

Persons wishing to make a nomination should submit a one-page letter providing evidence to support the nomination. Nominations must include complete contact information for the nominee. Nominations are sent to the chair of the PBDTA sub-committee (Stan Braude, braude@wustl.edu) and must be received by November 30.

The Education Committee will solicit supporting materials from the nominee and the will contact peer and student reviewers suggested by the nominee.

The recipient of this award receives recognition, a plaque from the Society, and the opportunity to propose and organize an education-related event at an annual meeting.

Although e-mail copies are acceptable by the deadline, hard copies of letters of nomination with signatures are required before final considerations can be made.

Criteria and Procedures

  1. Nominees must be ABS members. Members and members-elect of the Executive Committee are not eligible for nomination until 18 months after completion of their service on the Executive Committee.
  2. Nominees must have demonstrated highly effective and innovative teaching in the classroom or in an informal education setting (e.g., zoos, aquaria, museums, 4-H programs, research labs and field stations, and environment centers). They should have a reputation among peers and students for excellence in educating people about animal behavior.
  3. Persons wishing to nominate an individual for the award should submit a one-page nomination letter providing evidence to support the nomination. The letter should also include names of at least two additional peer reviewers, and two current or former students or program participants. If students are under 18 years old, the student/participant references should be accompanied by, or attached to, a letter from the appropriate teacher or youth program coordinator. (Note: Department chairs, directors, supervisors, or colleagues may be helpful sources for this information if you are not at the same institution as the person you are nominating.)
  4. The Education Committee will solicit appropriate supporting materials, including those indicated in nominating letters (e.g., documentation of other teaching awards, peer and student evaluations, additional references, evidence of innovation in curriculum development, development of educational tools, programs, or multimedia products, or other appropriate indicators of superior educating).
  5. If you would like to renominate an individual for the award, please submit a letter indicating that you are doing so and provide any additional information you feel might be helpful to the committee. Please also include the date of the original nomination. Names of additional peer or student reviewers may also be provided.
  6. Previous Recipients

    Distinguished Teaching Award Year Awarded
    H. Jane Brockman 1995
    Rudolf Jander 1996
    James L. Gould 1997
    Douglas K.Candland 1999
    Gail R. Michener 2000
    Katherine Wynne-Edwards 2001
    Robert W. Matthews 2002
    George H. Waring 2005
    Michael Noonan 2006
    John Alcock 2007
    William G. Eberhard 2009
    Daniel Blumstein 2010
    Sylvia Halkin 2011
    Stan Braude 2011
    David Miller 2012
    Alexandra Basolo 2014
    Linda S. Rayor 2015
    Peggy Hill 2016
    Jennifer E. Smith 2017
    Susan Riechert 2018