Inderjit Nirdosh (1996)

nirdoshAffiliation at the time of the award: Lakehead University, Chemical Engineering.

Citation: Inderjit Nirdosh has been widely known for exceptional teaching throughout his career at Lakehead University. His work with students is the centerpiece of his achievement as a university educator and his classroom approach can be characterized as one of caring – “But for your special caring, constant encouragement, and a lot of patience, I might have never been where I am today”. When he realized how important presentation skills were to graduates, he introduced coached practice of these skills in many of his courses. The difference between students who have had the benefit of his tutelage, and those who have not, is clearly evident whether during a thesis exam or when his students present at national conferences. With student ratings consistently above 9 on a 10 point scale, it is no wonder he received an OCUFA Teaching Award in 1995 and, in the same year, Lakehead University’s Distinguished Instructor Award.

Inderjit Nirdosh’s approach to refining teaching is scholarly. When students experienced difficulties, he conducted a survey to determine the nature of the difficulties, devised a series of review tutorials and won the support of the department to make these a regular part of the curriculum. In 1994, he helped to organize a university-wide workshop on problem-based learning and then went on to apply this particular approach to teaching in one of his own courses. He described this experience through articles in the local instructional development newsletter and subsequently published the results of his efforts in a Chemical Engineering journal. Recently, he joined a select group of colleagues from several academic disciplines to plan the course of the University’s instructional development program.