Award season is here! At a special Town Hall Meeting at the 2017 NMC Summer Conference, the NMC is bestowing its highest honors via the NMC Center of Excellence Awards and the NMC Henderson Prize. Drumrolls, please…

2017 NMC Center of Excellence Awards

The Center of Excellence Award (CoE) distinguishes NMC member institutions that have demonstrated an exceptional record of success in the integration of technology with teaching, learning, or creative expression at NMC member institutions. This year’s recipients are:

***UNED Costa Rica***
***California State University Channel Islands***


About UNED Costa Rica
The State Distance University (UNED) of Costa Rica has had, for two years, the first and only fabrication laboratory in a public university in its country — completely open to anyone in the world. Open technologies such as Arduino and Raspberry Pi have been integrated into courses and careers of the university, with the goal of giving students more tools to generate projects solve real problems. Among the technologies found in the Lab, there are open technologies, 3D printers, video mapping, and augmented reality.

Fab Lab and Team @ UNED Costa Rica

Through this laboratory, UNED has provided new opportunities to traditionally excluded groups, including students deprived of liberty, those who face difficult socio-economic realities, and female entrepreneurs. Every project developed at UNED’s fabrication lab is done in collaboration with units or groups within the university, as well as NGOs, primary and secondary education institutions, state and private government institutions, and other fabrication labs around the world.

“The NMC leads a global movement to improve lives through innovation and education, and we are truly grateful to be a part of this community and to shine,” shared Diana Hernández, Project Coordinator and Researcher, on behalf of UNED Costa Rica. “We democratize knowledge and innovation and this award means that our efforts are very important today and in the future.”


About California State University Channel Islands
From its inception in 2002, California State University Channel Islands was charged with becoming a hub of innovation. Since then, leadership, faculty, and staff have created and nurtured a culture that allows for innovation and change. Specifically, CSUCI’s Teaching & Learning Innovations efforts have resulted in high quality, scalable innovations, that are influencing the educational landscape. With the goal of reaching all faculty and building digital literacy, an untethered approach to faculty development was created. Through modeling and the use of technology, untethering connects others to learning and builds digital literacy.

Bell Tower as the sunrises over CSU Channel Islands


CSUCI Teaching & Learning Innovations Team

In the classroom, CSUCI Teaching & Learning Innovations have built in a focus on humanizing to prioritize presence, connections, and relationships in learning, especially in online and blended environments. These priorities assure that there is opportunity for all to actively engage, interact and succeed. Additionally, CSUCI is guided by a philosophy of openness, sharing work and connecting with others with an aim of transforming the educational experience through the use of open and affordable materials.

“CSU Channel Islands may be new, and our team may be small, but the work we are doing to support faculty creating new ways to teach and learn has an impact far beyond the boundaries of our campus,” said Michael Berman, VP Technology & Communication, on behalf of the CSUCI team. “We are honored and thrilled that NMC has recognized this impact by naming us a Center of Excellence.”

> View previous CoE awardees


2017 NMC Henderson Prize

The Henderson Prize was created by the NMC in honor of Don Henderson to recognize those who have displayed exemplary ongoing passion for teaching, learning, and innovation. Don Henderson is the NMC’s longest serving board member, and his creativity, curiosity, compassion, and deep commitment to education have been evident throughout his service to the NMC, and reflects the values that the Henderson Prize rewards. This year’s recipient is:

***Diane Reddy, Professor of Psychology and Director of the Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee***

Nominated by UWM colleague Ray Fleming, Diane is responsible for developing the evidence-based U‑Pace instructional model, which integrates concept mastery and proactive instructor support to increase academic success and learning for students that are disadvantaged, academically underprepared, and racial and ethnic minorities, as well as those with disabilities enrolled in core disciplinary, gateway courses. Many students perform poorly in these courses, failing to acquire fundamental skills essential for academic success beyond the introductory level. Diane realized that it was critical to increase student success in gateway courses as mastery of skills and knowledge gained in them potentiates students’ ability to complete their degree and attain their educational and vocational goals.

The result of her vision was the creation, implementation, and scaling of U‑Pace instruction in higher education. She also believed from the start that the approach should be disseminated throughout higher education free of charge. U‑Pace instruction is student-centered and puts students in control over their own learning. Throughout the learning process, all students receive tailored, proactive support without having to ask for help. The focus of proactive support is on helping students with concepts not yet mastered, modifying students’ beliefs about themselves as learners, including their sense of control over their learning, and shaping students’ behavior toward success through the strategic use of behavior-based praise.

Diane’s U‑Pace instructional approach has produced:

  • Greater academic success (by a margin of at least 30 percentage points)
  • Greater learning (by a margin of at least 8 percentage points on proctored cumulative exams measuring core concepts up to six months after the course)
  • Improvements in the rate of concept mastery (from the beginning of the semester to the end, suggesting improvement in self‑regulated learning skills)
  • Reductions in the achievement gap between disadvantaged students and not disadvantaged students (The percentage of disadvantaged students achieving academic success, earning a final grade of A or B, with U‑Pace instruction was greater than the percentage of not disadvantaged students achieving success in the comparison sections).

“I feel incredibly honored to be the recipient of the NMC Henderson Prize,” shared Diane. “At just the right time in my 35-year career in higher education, New Media Consortium published the first Horizon Report, which inspired me to envision what was possible. What resulted was my creation of U-Pace instruction, which leverages learning analytics to provide personalized proactive support to students as they work to master concepts in online learning. Thank you for recognizing my work with this prestigious award. I am grateful for the NMC’s leadership in educational technology, the support for innovation I have received from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and the many students who have enriched my academic life. I am proud to accept the Henderson Prize.”

> View previous Henderson Prize recipients

About The Author

Samantha Adams Becker, Senior Director of Communications for the NMC, is the Director of the NMC Horizon Project and lead writer and researcher for the NMC Horizon Report series, which analyzes emerging technology uptake in various education sectors across the globe. She has an expertise in digital communications, with a special interest in e-publishing, social media, and online learning. In 2013, she taught the first online course ever to exclusively take place in Facebook, which was geared towards training education professionals to integrate social media into their teaching practices. Previous to the NMC, Samantha facilitated the digitization of books and periodicals for several of the world’s largest publishers and was the managing editor of a lifestyle magazine.