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Profile: Steven Katz - 2012 Award for Excellence in Initial Teacher Education


May 2, 2012

By Jennifer O’Reilly

Steven Katz, recipient of 2012 Award for Excellence in Initial Teacher EducationDr. Steven Katz is the 2012 recipient of the Award for Excellence in Initial Teacher Education. A Senior Lecturer in the Department of Human Development and Applied Psychology, Dr. Katz coordinates the Psychological Foundations of Learning & Development for the Initial Teacher Education (ITE) program.

His research interests include program reform in teacher education; building capacity through collaborative learning networks; the relationship between the psychological foundations of learning & development and classroom assessment; building capacity in evidence-informed decision-making for school improvement and teacher belief about mind and learning.

Dr. Katz stands out as a dedicated and effective teacher. His unique pedagogic, instructional and communicative strategies—combining humour, knowledge and practical experiences to advance complex theories of learning—make his classroom accessible and meaningful to his teacher candidates. In addition to teaching undergraduate and graduate students and mentoring faculty, Dr. Katz finds time to commit to ITE administration and service. He is frequently asked to sit on departmental and institutional committees and task forces and serves on these committees with distinction. Writing in support of his nomination, a colleague said, “Steve lives and breathes teacher education. Even as a high school student, he would critically observe the teaching skills of his teachers and consider how they could be improved. I thought this was remarkably early evidence of his passion. OISE is blessed to have Dr. Katz as a part of its teaching staff.”

Dr. Katz’s passion for his students and colleagues alike is obvious. “I’m very honoured and deeply touched that I am to receive this award. If my teaching story was a book, the acknowledgments would be filled with explicit words of gratitude for what I have and continue to learn from my students and colleagues year after year. They inspire me to want to be a better teacher – and a better learner – every day!”