Distinguished Teaching Award
Purpose & History


The goal of the UCLA Academic Senate Teaching Award is to increase awareness of UCLA’s leadership in teaching and public service by honoring individuals who bring respect and admiration to the scholarship of teaching.  By recognizing teachers for their achievements, the award gives UCLA an opportunity to demonstrate to the community, alumni, students, parents, donors and others what makes UCLA “a beacon of excellence in higher education”.  These awards are an effective way to boost morale on campus and provide role models for faculty and students.

SENATE MEMBERS: The UCLA Alumni Association first presented the Distinguished Teaching Awards in 1961 to Academic Senate members. Traditionally, five teaching awards have been presented to Senate members by the Alumni Association.  One of these five Senate winners is cited for Distinction in Teaching at the Graduate Level and another is designated to receive the Eby Award for the Art of Teaching.  In 2004, a sixth award was implemented to honor an Academic Senate faculty member who has provided superb mentorship to undergraduate students engaged in research and/or creative, scholarly projects. The new award was recommended by the Joint Taskforce on Undergraduate Education in a Research Context.

TEACHING ASSISTANTS: In 1975, the UCLA Office of Instructional Development (OID) began sponsorship of awards to teaching assistants. 

NON-SENATE MEMBERS: In spring of 1985, OID sponsored three more awards given to instructors who are not Senate members.  This category includes lecturers, adjunct professors and clinical faculty members.  The Committee on Teaching selects all of the award recipients.