The Harriet W. Sheridan Award

The Harriet W. Sheridan Award for Distinguished Contribution to Teaching and Learning recognizes those members of the faculty of Brown University who exemplify teaching through the support of their colleagues, including graduate students, in professional development in reflective teaching that integrates teaching and research. The Sheridan Center's Advisory Board invites faculty and members of the University academic administration to nominate faculty colleagues for this award.  Two awards will be given each year and carry a stipend of $2,000 each.  Deadline: December 31

As Professor of English, Dean of the College (1979-1986) and founder of the Sheridan Center (1987), Harriet W. Sheridan believed that ongoing professional development by faculty and graduate students was an essential commitment for institutions of higher education. Professional development integrates the impact of research and teaching on both graduate and undergraduate learning, and enables faculty to realize Brown’s historic commitment to a diverse student population and to learning environments which empower students to realize their potential.


  Candidates should have fulfilled the following criteria:

  • Mentoring 
    The candidate should be an effective mentor in the development of a reflective teaching practice. The Sheridan Award defines an effective mentor as one who makes a dedicated effort to support colleagues, both faculty and graduate students, within or beyond their discipline, develop into successful practitioners of reflective teaching. Testimony from faculty and graduate students of such effective mentoring is required.
  • Leadership 
    The candidate will have demonstrated leadership of departmental initiatives to support professional development in pedagogy within the discipline. This may include: organizing departmental seminars or classroom visits to promote the exchange of ideas about pedagogy among both faculty and graduate students; leadership of departmental seminars for graduate students which foster a reflective teaching practice within the discipline; development of departmental criteria for the constructive assessment of teaching and learning; work with colleagues to explore discipline-specific or interdisciplinary pedagogical issues at the national level.

In addition, candidates may have demonstrated active leadership in University and/or national initiatives which integrate research and teaching. These may include: innovative national or University grant-sponsored teaching/research projects (such as NSF, NIH, NEH or UTRA grants); course curricula which foster the integration of research, teaching and learning through collaboration between faculty, graduate/medical and undergraduate students; or leadership in faculty development programs, services and publications which integrate reflective teaching and research.  

Learn which members of the Brown teaching community have been recognized with this award.

Read about the accomplishments of these award winners.

Nomination Process

Nominations must include:

  • A letter of nomination providing evidence of the candidate's accomplishments in, and ongoing support for professional development in reflective teaching and mentoring at Brown.
  • A current curriculum vitae
  • Supporting letters from three faculty colleagues.  Examples of evidence supporting the candidate’s accomplishments should include information about the scope, longevity and impact of his/her efforts. 
  • At least one supporting letter from an undergraduate or graduate student.

NB: Current Sheridan Advisory Board members are not eligible for award candidacy during their term of service and for one year subsequent to their service.

Please send nominations to The Sheridan Center ( by December 31.