NUS Outstanding Educator Award (OEA)


The OEA recognizes outstanding achievements in teaching, including instruction, educational design, assessment and feedback, as well as wider adoption of good practices in these areas through leadership and support of other colleagues.

The purpose of the award is to promote university teaching. The award seeks to recognize NUS colleagues who have made exceptional contributions to students’ learning and a broader culture that values teaching, as evidenced by sustained achievements in teaching and educational leadership.

Outstanding Educator

Teachers can and do achieve excellence in different ways. In the context of this award, ‘excellence’ is understood as achieving, and sustaining over time, high levels of positive educational impact. In the case of this award, outstanding educators are characterized by exemplary teaching that has a significant impact on students, and by significant leadership, that sustains educational influence over time.


  • The applicant must be a full-time NUS faculty member or NUS employee with significant teaching role and impact.  FTEC should exercise discretion on the eligibility of all applicants.
  • The applicant must have a sustained record, over multiple years, of teaching and educational leadership contributions in NUS.
  • The applicant has not won this award previously.
  • The applicant is a current faculty level teaching award winner.
  • The quota for OEA nominations by FTECs is capped at 2% of faculty teaching strength



The award will carry a monetary value of $3,000 and a $15,000 teaching grant, which will enable the awardee to engage in activities that will support and enhance his/her role as an educator, and further contribute to teaching/learning at NUS. Recipients will be recognized at a university-wide Teaching Awards Ceremony to share and celebrate their achievements with the NUS community.



Nominations will be evaluated with reference to evidence of strength in and positive impact through one or more of the following. It is not necessary to meet all the criteria, but applicants would make a more compelling case by providing evidence of strengths in more than one area. Sustained, in-depth contribution in the particular areas of strength is essential, with significant evidence of educational leadership (criterion 6).

  1. Thoughtful design and use of pedagogical approaches to teach subject knowledge in or across disciplines.
  2. Enhancing student learning, student engagement and/or the overall student experience.
  3. Fit-for-purpose assessments that advance educational goals, and promote higher-order thinking.
  4. Effective feedback strategies to motivate and support students’ learning and growth.
  5. Creating an inclusive and supportive learning environment.
  6. Demonstrating leadership through envisioning change, sharing achievements for wider adoption, and leading processes of change, review, innovation, and development, which thereby enhance the practice of colleagues within the department, and more broadly in the faculty, school, or the wider NUS community.


Possible sources of evidence

A successful case will depend on evidence from multiple and convergent sources, for example:

  • students’ feedback: evidence of interpretation and analysis of students’ perception of whether they have gained from the teaching
  • students’ work: evidence of interpretation and analysis of student work that demonstrates positive impact on learning
  • peer recognition: evidence of esteem from colleagues (e.g. in the department/college/faculty or overseas), and of influence and support beyond student learning
  • self: educational activities, materials, and accomplishments, with evidence of informed reflection on these as well as relevant sources of evidence such as those enumerated above


Documentation and submission process

Documentation needs to be focused on specifically addressing the relevant criteria above.

For Applicants

Applicants will submit a teaching portfolio (3,000 words) consisting of the following:

Table of contents List of sections with page numbers  

Curriculum vitae

Details of qualifications, positions, and experience

(maximum 300 words)

The preface makes the case for your promotion/ award/other purpose. This should be a highly distilled summary of your key contributions to student learning and educational leadership (where applicable), guided by your teaching philosophy.

Teaching statement (maximum 3,000 words)

Consists of a teaching philosophy and two to three impact narratives, which should make a case for your educational contributions, standing and reputation in your discipline in relation to your teaching practice and leadership. It could include documents on research (where applicable) and service contributions.

Teaching philosophy (approx. 600 words)
Self-reflective statement about your teaching philosophy: values, beliefs, goals, and strategies.

Impact narratives (approx. 700 words each)
As a whole, the impact narratives should provide evidence of a range of educational activities and accomplishments in relation to:

  • Teaching practice: Building on your teaching philosophy statement, focus on your teaching practice. Provide and analyse evidence to demonstrate your impact on student learning experience and outcomes.
  • Educational leadership (where applicable): Building on your teaching philosophy statement, focus on educational leadership. Provide and analyse evidence to demonstrate how you influence peers and the community.

Conclusion (approx. 300 words)
Conclude with an overview of short-term and long-term plans to develop and enhance your teaching, your impact to students’ learning, and your influence through educational leadership.

Optional supplementary dossier

(maximum 30 pages)

Appendices that compile sufficient evidence of teaching achievement (e.g. student feedback data, raw data from personal survey, samples of selected students’ work)

Submission should be made using the University Teaching Awards Portal (UTAP) and must be made by the applicant using his/her login NUS User ID, within the Applicant Submission Period determined by the applicant’s FTEC.

University Teaching Awards Portal (UTAP)  


FTECs should prepare and submit a citation (1,000 words) for each nomination that makes a case for the applicant’s impact with reference to the award criteria. 

FTEC submission of nominated applications to UTEC should be made using the University Teaching Awards Portal (UTAP) before the FTEC submission closing date.


  • At the School/Faculty level, FTECs will evaluate applications (from among current faculty level teaching award winners or, where applicable, those on faculty level Honour Roll) and submit nominations for consideration by UTEC.
  • The teaching portfolio will be evaluated by the University Teaching Excellence Committee (UTEC) with reference to the criteria above. OEA applicants are required to attend an interview session with UTEC panel.

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