Finch wins FHSU's Mediated Classroom Teacher Award

Dr. Amy Finch, assistant professor of communication disorders, has been named by a faculty recognition committee as the recipient of the Mediated Classroom Teacher Award for her performance in Fort Hays State University's College of Health and Life Sciences.

The faculty recognition program rewards outstanding teacher innovators and outstanding mediated classroom teachers from each of the four colleges of the university. Two other special awards - Teacher/Scholar/Innovator of the Year and Faculty Advisor of the Year - are also part of the program.

Recipients are selected by a committee chaired or appointed by the respective college deans.

One award is given each month over the period August through May. Finch is the recipient of the Mediated Classroom Teacher Award for March. She received a check for $300 and a university lapel pin that signifies teaching excellence. The university provides two-thirds of the financial award and the other third comes from Commerce Bank of Hays, which established a fund with the university to help recognize outstanding faculty teaching.

Finch, who joined the FHSU faculty in 1994, has developed two web-based courses, one in Augmentative-Alternative Communication and the other in Communication and Aging. These courses use LearningSpace as the primary mediated format and also use CD-ROMs developed by FHSU's Center for Teaching Excellence and Learning Technology. The CD-ROMs contain video explaining, for example, the use of various augmentative-alternative communication devices. Students merely click on a MediaCenter link and they are taken directly to the appropriate lecture material for the courses. Students can also easily access supplemental course materials through LearningSpace.

These courses have increased access to learning for both traditional and non-traditional students.

"Thanks to Dr. Finch's efforts, many students are being reached who would otherwise not have such instruction available to them," said Dr. Tony Fernandez, dean of the College of Health and Life Sciences.

Finch earned a bachelor's degree in speech and hearing science in 1969 and a master's in speech pathology in 1972, both from Colorado State University, and a doctorate in speech-language pathology in 1981 from the University of Kansas. She previously won FHSU's Outstanding Teacher Innovator Award in 1996.

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