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Principal's Prize for Excellence in Teaching

The Principal's Prize for Excellence in Teaching recognizes teaching excellence in the following categories:

  • Assistant Professor
  • Associate Professor
  • Full Professor
  • Faculty Lecturer

Click here for the Principal's Prizes Guidelines and Nomination form. For more information, please contact josie [dot] damico [at] mcgill [dot] ca (Josie D’Amico).


For each category, units should nominate one candidate for whom strong dossiers can be prepared. Past winners of the Leo Yaffe Award may be nominated for a Principal's Prize.

As in the past, to avoid excessive work, the nomination process consists of two steps:

First step: Nominating letter
Deadline: TBA

Each chair should send a letter indicating the department's nominees (one person for each category, if possible). Please note that this letter should support each nomination by highlighting the nominee's outstanding contribution to teaching, of both undergraduate and graduate students.

In order to help the Committee decide on the appropriate candidates, the Committee would like to have the following information in your letter describing each candidate:

  • a list of the courses taught (graduate and undergraduate) for at least the past two years 
  • the number of students enrolled in each course
  • course evaluations for each course (two years of evaluations - AVERAGES ONLY)
  • a summary of the nominee's supervision of undergraduate-research students, graduate students, post-graduates
  • contributions to course design, course restructuring, course coordination, etc. 
  • evidence of integrating research with teaching and using inquiry-based teaching techniques
  • innovative teaching contributions
  • teaching awards
  • academic advising
  • what makes the candidate an outstanding teacher (in the second step, nominees will be asked to provide a Statement of Teaching Approach - see #4 in the guidelines; something of this should be included here).  

Please do not include research activities.

NOTE: In past years, some units have submitted complete dossiers rather than the nominating letter requested here. This is not fair to those who submit nominating letters. Please do NOT submit complete dossiers at this point. The Committee will review only nominating letters at this first step.

From these nominating letters, the committee will select the top 2-3 candidates in each category.

Second step: Final Selection

The following week, the departments of the 2 or 3 finalists in each category will be asked to submit complete dossiers and supporting documents.

Please send all documentation to josie [dot] damico [at] mcgill [dot] ca (Josie D'Amico).

Past recipients:


  • John Stix, Earth & Planetary Sciences -  Full Professor
  • Andrew Hendry, Redpath Museum & Biology - Associate Professor
  • Anne-Marie Kietzig, Chemical Engineering - Assistant Professor
  • Teresa Rudkin, Faculty of Medecine - Faculty Lecturer


  • Eyad Hashem Atallah, Atmospheric and Oceanic Science - Faculty Lecturer
  • Gary Brouhard, Biology - Assistant Professor


  • Ariel Fenster, Chemistry - Faculty Lecturer


  • Laura Nilson, Biology – Associate Professor


  • Michael Petrides, Psychology - Full Professor


  • Grazyna Wilczek, Chemistry - Faculty Lecturer


  • Paul Wiseman, Chemistry/Physics - Assistant Professor
  • Richard Koestner, Psychology - Full Professor


  • Axel Hundemer, Mathematics and Statistics - Faculty Lecturer
  • Daniel Levitin, Psychology - Associate Professor


  • Nilima Nigam, Mathematics and Statistics - Assistant Professor
  • Donald Taylor, Psychology - Full Professor


  • John Silvius, Biochemistry - Full Professor


  • Brian Alters, Faculties of Education and Science - Associate Professor
  • John Abela, Psychology - Assistant Professor
  • Fritz Buchinger, Physics - Faculty Lecturer


  • Hanadi Sleiman, Chemistry - Assistant Professor
  • Anthony Williams-Jones, Earth and Planetary Sciences - Full Professor
  • Rhonda Amsel, Psychology - Faculty Lecturer