close-up of a tree frog, Hyla cinera, photo by JD Willson

Herpetology Teaching Award

Meritorious Teaching Award in Herpetology

The Meritorious Teaching Award in Herpetology is presented by the Herpetology Education Committee (HEC) and sponsored by the American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists (ASIH), the Herpetologists' League (HL), and the Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles (SSAR).

The Herpetology Education Committee (HEC) seeks nominations for the Meritorious Teaching Award in Herpetology to be presented at the 2021 Joint Meeting of Ichthyologists & Herpetologists in Phoenix, Arizona. Nominees must be current members of at least one of the sponsoring societies. Current officers and committee chairs of ASIH, HL, or SSAR, and members of the HEC are not eligible for nomination.

This award recognizes superior teaching and mentoring of students in herpetology. Awardees will be active teachers and mentors, with classroom teaching within the last three years and a substantial history of teaching excellence. The award recipient will receive US $500, an official letter, and a plaque from the HEC.

Nominees should have a reputation among their peers and students for excellence in herpetological education, including, but not limited to:

  • Demonstrated effective and innovative teaching in the classroom and/or other education settings (e.g., zoological parks, aquaria, museums, field stations, environmental centers).
  • Superior mentoring of students in herpetology, as evidenced by student testimonials, student publications, and placement of students in professional positions in herpetological fields.

The nomination packet (submitted as a single electronic PDF) must include the following documents that are clearly numbered and labeled:

  1. Nominating letter: A nominating letter, from a current member of ASIH, HL, or SSAR, highlighting in detail the nominee's experience and accomplishments (limit 2 single spaced pages)
  2. Curriculum vitae: A current CV of the nominee, including teaching experience
  3. Coursework taught: List of relevant coursework taught (including years taught)
  4. Recommendation from students: Letters of recommendation (limit 2) from former or current students (graduate or undergraduate) addressing the teaching and mentoring skills of the nominee
  5. Recommendation from peers: Letters of recommendation (limit 2) from professional peers who are qualified to review the merits of the nominee with respect to teaching and mentoring

Incomplete nomination packets (e.g., those that do not include each of the above 5 items) will not be considered. Nominations must be received by the HEC Chair by 31 March 2021 for consideration.

Nominations will remain active for three years. After that, the nominee must wait six years before being eligible again.

Send electronic nomination files, including all letters, as a single PDF with the subject line “MTAH2021 nomination” to Emily Taylor, chair (etaylor [at] calpoly.edu).

Past Winners

  • 2020: Steve Mackessy
  • 2019: Nancy Karraker
  • 2018: Fred Janzen
  • 2017: John C. Maerz