Ngā Whakawhiwhinga Whakaako

Teaching awards

Ako Aotearoa is proud to announce the revised guidelines for the 2019 national Tertiary Teaching Excellence Awards.  

The procedures and criteria are now:

  • more inclusive
  • more flexible
  • more focused.

Portfolios can include multimedia material (video and/or audio), as well as text.  The maximum length of portfolios is reduced, and the criteria are less prescriptive. 

For more detail, download Revised Procedures, Guidelines and Criteria - Tertiary Teaching Excellence Awards Nominations 2019 (PDF, 3.7MB, 22-pages). 

About the awards

Since 2001, the awards have recognised more than 200 of this country’s top tertiary teachers. The categories include: 

  • General – Sustained Excellence in Tertiary Teaching (up to 10 annual awards, each worth $20,000)
  • Kaupapa Māori – Sustained Excellence for Tertiary Teaching in a Kaupapa Māori Context ( up to three annual awards, each worth $20,000)
  • Excellence in Supporting Pacific Learners endorsement (one annual endorsement selected from the above two category nominees, worth $5,000)
  • Prime Minister’s Supreme Award (one annual award selected from the above nominees, worth an additional $10,000).

Eligible teachers

The awards are open to part time or full time teachers with more than six years' teaching experience. You can apply individually or as part of a team. We encourage nominations from all parts of the tertiary education sector in Aotearoa New Zealand; wānanga, private training establishments, adult and community education, industry training organisations, institutes of technology and polytechnics, and universities. 

Awards criteria

Overall, the Committee will be looking for evidence that nominees (individuals or teams): 

  • have maintained teaching practices that exemplify excellence
  • are student-centred
  • are proactive in their own professional development as teachers and content specialists
  • demonstrate leadership
  • systematically collect and use information that informs their practice. 

Ready to enter this year's awards?

  1. Download and read the Revised Procedures, Criteria and Guidelines document.
  2. Watch three promotional videos for a good overview of what's involved. [Videos coming soon]
    Tertiary Teaching Excellence Awards promo
    Tertiary Teaching Excellence Awards nomination process
    Tertiary Teaching Excellence Awards preparing a portfolio
  3. Contact us if you have any questions – go to the Enquiries page of the criteria booklet for full details.