More than 20 years dedicated to criminology as a student and teacher have earned Senior Lecturer Matthew Thurgood a fellowship from the UK-based Higher Education Academy.
The fellowship was awarded in April, for demonstrating achievements in six areas of professional criteria. The honour acknowledges Matt's commitment to teaching, learning and his enrichment of the student experience, with a distinction highly valued among international educational institutions.
“Receiving a fellowship with the HEA is a wonderful endorsement of my teaching approaches,” said Matt.
“It is significant recognition that my practices are valid, something that is otherwise difficult to gauge given the time for self-reflection is limited when teaching multiple units every trimester,” he said.
Matt’s interest in criminology and justice began as an undergraduate university student in 1997 and he joined the Navitas College of Public Safety (NCPS) faculty as a sessional lecturer in 2004 with a Masters qualification in the discipline. In 2010, he was appointed to a full-time role and in 2011 became Senior Lecturer and Course Coordinator. Matt also teaches the criminology units of the Bachelor of Psychological Science and Criminology, at the Australian College of Applied Psychology (ACAP).
Matt says the fellowship confirms that his teaching reflects international expectations, “It reassures me that what I do at NCPS and ACAP matches the standards practiced at larger institutions, not just in Australia but overseas, and therefore that our students are receiving a high-quality education which is equal to, if not better than, that of their peers studying elsewhere.”
In awarding the title, the HEA considered Matt’s teaching and curriculum development experience and contributions to learner enrichment at the colleges, for both on-campus and online students. His development of a digital platform for new students, innovative use of digital technology, and ongoing work in revising and accrediting the NCPS Bachelor of Criminology and Justice also contributed to his application’s success. The rewards of fellowship bring both personal and organisational benefits.
“The HEA provides the opportunity to tap into an international network of like-minded professionals,” said Matt.
“Engagement with the HEA certainly provides NCPS and ACAP, and Navitas more broadly, with the important reputation that we are serious about the quality of the teaching and learning experiences we offer our students.”
Find out more about the Higher Education Academy.