Richard Schwier (2005)

SchwierAffiliation at the time of the award: University of Saskatchewan, Curriculum Studies.

Citation: Richard Schwier is a self-proclaimed teaching junkie whose passion for teaching and commitment to sound pedagogy have been enhancing student learning for years. An exceptional leader in the field of instructional technology, Richard is respected by a generation of learners and colleagues for his dedication, his compassion, his innovation, and his mentorship.

Whether he is teaching large classes or small ones, at a distance or up close, what distinguishes Rick is how seamlessly he integrates new research into his course content and uses it to initiate relevant discussion and to motivate students. As one colleague states, Rick demonstrates “a special gift for listening to his students, and encouraging and supporting them as they endeavor to find their place in the world of research, teaching, and learning.” In his reflections on his teaching, Rick states that “the most powerful technologies are the soft technologies – how we do things in the classroom, how we engage students, excite them, and empower them.”

Outside of the classroom, Rick has shared his insights and research on online learning communities with the rest of the world through his publications and workshops. Rick has also revised, redesigned, and implemented new programs within the College of Education and was instrumental in promoting a coordinated approach to instructional support services for faculty.