Professor Eric Pawson

Award for Sustained Excellence in Tertiary Teaching

Department of Geography, University of Canterbury

'My preoccupation is not with what people learn, or how much information they retain. It is with how they learn, how they think, and how our encounter might help them to make more sense of their own worlds".

Eric is an excellent and scholarly teacher who has taught geography at the University of Canterbury for over 30 years. As a Professor, Eric teaches courses at all levels and has supervised over 50 Masters and Doctoral students. He is committed to student-centred learning and as a reflective teaching practitioner his aim is that as his students become more experienced they will become increasingly confident learners. Past students now in senior academic positions credit Eric with being the inspiration for their own careers.

Eric is recognised as a “leader and supporter of the learning of his colleagues in the discipline internationally”. Having a special interest in the first year geography curriculum, he has taken a leadership role in identifying the skills portfolio that students will build as they progress through geography’s curriculum pathways. Eric is involved in the scholarship of teaching and learning and has made a significant contribution to higher education in geography that goes well beyond New Zealand.