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Awards and Prizes

There are six awards and prizes which are associated with the annual HERDSA conference.

1. Taylor and Francis Prize: Best Paper by a New Researcher

The purpose of the award is to foster original research by encouraging new and less experienced researchers. A prize of AUD$1000, sponsored by Taylor & Francis, publishers of the HERD journal, will be awarded to the paper written by a new researcher (or researchers) which makes a significant contribution to research in the field of tertiary education. The papers will be judged by the Executive Editor of HERD and/or members of the editorial team.

A 'new researcher’ is someone who is within the first three years of researching higher education and/or this is their first higher education research paper.

The closing date is 5pm on the 12th of May. Authors of full papers who are early career researchers are invited to self-nominate themselves by contacting Jennie Billot: jennie.billot@aut.ac.nz

2. HERDSA Prize for Best Scholarly Paper

This award of AUD$1,000 and one year’s free membership to HERDSA, is open to all papers accepted for presentation as a full refereed paper. However to be considered for this prize, a paper must be unanimously nominated by the reviewers. Papers nominated by the reviewers are judged by three members of the HERDSA executive under the oversight of the HERD Executive Editor.

3. HERDSA Prize for Best Paper Presentation by a Student

The purpose of the prize is to encourage students to disseminate their work at national and international higher education conferences. Applicants must be presenting a full refereed paper or showcase at the HERDSA conference in order to be eligible for this prize. Presenters will be judged on their ability to effectively communicate as well as on the academic content of their presentation. The winner receives a cash award from HERDSA of $450 and is usually presented at the closing ceremony of the conference.

There is no application process. Eligible student presenters will be identified by the awards convenor and members of the HERDSA Executive New Scholars portfolio will attend and judge the presentations.

4. HERDSA Prize for Best Poster

All posters are eligible for this prize of $300. The purpose of the prize is to promote and recognise excellence in the ability to visually communicate ideas, findings or outcomes related to tertiary education.

Posters will be assessed by all conference delegates – on both the ability to visually communicate as well as on the academic content of the poster. Conference participants can vote using the conference mobile app which will work on any smartphone, tablet, or computer connected to the internet (a paper-based form will also be available).

The best poster prize will be awarded to the poster that receives the highest number of votes, with a runner-up prize to the second-highest poster.

5. HERDSA Travel Award for a Postgraduate Student

A travel award of up to $1,000 is available to provide support for a post-graduate student to attend and participate in the HERDSA conference. Preference will be given to applicants who

  • can demonstrate financial hardship (e.g. geographical location or other personal circumstances)
  • are able to attend the full conference
  • have a conference paper based on their research accepted for presentation
  • are the sole author of the paper rather than a joint author (if joint, indicate percentage contribution)
  • are willing to make a contribution to HERDSA News if asked
  • have had limited, or no, opportunities to attend similar conferences
  • have not previously received a HERDSA travel award.

To apply, attach a brief application letter to an email to office@herdsa.org.au that addresses all the criteria above. Attach to the application letter a supporting letter from the applicant’s research supervisor, including a statement indicating that the applicant complies with the criteria.

6. Edith Cowan University Prize For the Best Paper on an Authentic Learning Environment

A prize of $1000 will be awarded to the paper which in the opinion of a panel of judges (from Edith Cowan University) makes a significant contribution to knowledge about authentic learning environments in higher education.

The purpose of the Edith Cowan University Prize for the Best Paper on an Authentic Learning Environment is to promote the development of authentic learning environments in all facets of university teaching and learning, and to support the dissemination and publication of good practice associated with these environments. An authentic learning environment can be described as one where activities represent the types of complex tasks performed by professionals in the field, rather than decontextualised or contrived activities. Students have access to supporting resources and engage in collaboration, articulation and reflection as they produce outcomes typical of quality performance.

The award will comprise a certificate and prize of $1000 and it will be awarded to the paper which in the opinion of a panel of judges makes a significant contribution to knowledge about authentic learning environments in higher education.

To be eligible for this award, the paper must

  • Describe and discuss the development, implementation and/or evaluation
  • of an authentic learning environment in a higher education setting
  • Be submitted for paper refereeing for the HERDSA 2017 Conference, and be accepted
  • Be presented at the conference as a paper presentation.

The criteria for judging the award are

  1. The paper makes a significant contribution to knowledge about authentic learning environments in higher education.
  2. The paper links the development of the authentic learning environment to previous theory and research, and provides appropriate references to the literature.
  3. The authentic learning environment described is typically characterised by:
    1. Real-world relevance where learning is embedded in social practice
    2. Authentic tasks, with diversity of outcomes
    3. Opportunities for students to examine content and tasks from a variety of perspectives
    4. Opportunities for students to collaborate, articulate and reflect
    5. Assessment is authentic and seamlessly integrated with tasks.
  4. The implications of the development for other educators are clearly drawn.
  5. The paper is well-written in an appropriate style, and in a clear and logical manner.
  6. The paper conforms to the word length specified by the conference.

Edith Cowan University reserves the right not to make the Award if there are no suitable papers.

Authors wishing to register for this award will need to complete the Coversheet on which they tick a box that acknowledges that they meet the stated eligibility criteria. Eligible submissions should be sent to Jennie Billot (jbillot@aut.ac.nz)

7. Taylor & Francis HERDSA Conference Travel Grants

Taylor & Francis, the publishers of HERDSA’s journal Higher Education Research & Development (HERD) is a sponsor of the annual HERSDA conference. As part of that sponsorship, HERDSA is able to offer three travel grants of up to $500 per applicant to support HERDSA members attend the annual HERDSA conference. The travel grants are open to all current HERDSA members. Awards will be payable in Australian Dollars and are to be used to support travel, accommodation or subsistence of the successful applicant.

Applications will close 12 May 2017.

For full details, view the application form and guidelines.

For further information about any of the awards and prizes, contact the HERDSA Office: office@herdsa.org.au.

Register Online
  • Key Dates
  • Call for Proposals Open 12 September 2016
  • Registration Opens 19 September 2016
  • Call for Refereed Paper Abstracts Closes 23 October 2016
  • Notification of Acceptance for Refereed Paper Abstracts 15 November 2016
  • Full Paper from Accepted Abstracts Due 6 February 2017
  • All Other Submission Types Due 20 February 2017
  • Notification of Acceptance for All Other Submission Types 10 April 2017
  • Early Bird Registration Extended till 12 May 2017
  • Pre-Conference Workshops 27 June 2017
  • HERDSA 2017 Conference 28 – 30 June 2017