May 23, 2024

Two Psychology Professors Honored at the Convocation Award Ceremony

At the Convocation Award Ceremony on Friday, May 10th, 2024, two professors from the Psychology Department were honored with excellence awards.

  • Dr. Tom Ghirardelli and Dr. Jennifer McCabe won the Excellence in Teaching Award

Dr. Tom Ghirardelli won the Excellence in Teaching Award for a tenured member of the faculty. The nominator wrote that Dr. Ghirardelli’s “commitment to embedding best practices from the scholarship of teaching and learning into all their courses is clear. Their pedagogy is truly student-centered. Class observations and evaluations of course materials demonstrate clear and transparent communication of course elements to students. They utilize high-impact pedagogies and are extraordinarily responsive to student feedback…They infuse class with incredible positive energy, humor, and real-world examples to maintain student attention… Given the challenging nature of all the classes that they teach, that they are so liked and respected by students is a testament to their skill and commitment as an educator…This professor extends their teaching to the effective mentorship of a research team, carrying out experiments on topics in perception and attention. This year, students on the team co-authored two research posters presented at a regional and an international psychology conference…This professor is one of the best teachers at Goucher and overdue for this recognition.”

Dr. Jennifer McCabe won the Caroline Doebler Bruckerl ’25 Faculty Award for achievement in teaching, research, and service, informally referred to as the “MVP award” for the year. According to one nominator, Dr. McCabe is a “student-centered professor, and this comes through in all aspects of their work and service.” About their outstanding teaching, this nominator notes the winner “is a perennial participant for any pedagogical-related programming hosted by CAST, and I am always positively affected by the contributions they make in those discussions.” Another nominator added, “They incorporate the latest evidence-based teaching practices in their courses, utilize technology tools in their classes to promote student engagement and active learning, and are actively promoting inclusivity in their classes through different activities and carefully developed course syllabi that are learner-centered and use language with a warm and inviting tone.” Regarding excellent scholarship, in just the last six years Dr. McCabe has published six peer-reviewed articles, the majority of which were co-authored with Goucher students or alumnae/i, 10 conference presentations most of which also had Goucher student or alumnae/i as coauthors, and an invited book chapter. As far as service to the College, Dr. McCabe has chaired their department for years, and a colleague from another department says, “as you walk into the space the department occupies, you…recognize that something good is happening there.” A colleague from within their department wrote that they “go above and beyond the responsibilities of a Chair, facilitating the various traditions and celebrations, such as Capstone presentations, social events, Commencement breakfast, etc. …and also represent the department (and the college) through contributions to Admissions events, including the frequent presentation of a Mock Class during Explore Goucher Days… They continue to serve the college in many other ways, including as Faculty Secretary and Chair of the Institutional Review Board (IRB) as well as several smaller committees, and are currently serving the professional community as an Associate Editor for the journal Teaching of Psychology.” One nominator summarizes that Dr. McCabe “represents the best of us…They are ever present, ever engaged, always student-centered, and the model Goucher citizen.” Another acclaimed this professor as “one of the most capable, productive, and valuable members of the college community”.

Congratulations to Dr. G and Dr. McCabe on these recognitions!