Associate Professor Kate Schick

Te Whatu Kairangi Award

Inclusion and community at the heart of Kate’s practice

Dr Kate Schick is Associate Professor in Political Science and International Relations Te Herenga Waka | Victoria University of Wellington.

There is plenty of evidence that Kate’s quest to shape the university into a place where everyone can flourish has been successful. Her desire to preserve communal small-group deep learning in large classes has led to her embracing relational pedagogy and creating ‘micro-communities’ within her classes.

Kate cultivates her small student groups through ako (teaching and learning reciprocity) and whanaungatanga (relationships). The groups are connected as a community in a way that provides deeper learning for all, and supportive learning environments for Māori, Pacific, neurodiverse and remote learners.

Students say they feel comfortable sharing their thoughts and experiences in these communities where they’ve come to know and trust one another. Some ākonga highlight that they come to better understand themselves and their own cultural heritage because of their learning on the course, deepening the sense of pride they have in their ancestors.

Kate’s approach has also had a significant impact on her colleagues who are “inspired and deeply thinking”. Kate’s excellent teaching practice has been published and recognised both nationally and internationally. In 2022, she was jointly awarded the British International Studies Association Award for Distinguished Excellence in Teaching International Studies.

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Associate Professor Kate Schick - Recipient of a 2023 Te Whatu Kairangi Award