CityU Faculty Member Wins Teaching Psychology Award

Robert Roughley, Award Winner and CityU Faculty Member
Robert Roughley, CityU Faculty Member

It’s always exciting to celebrate a great educator and mentor, and we are delighted to celebrate Robert A. Roughley who recently received the Psychological Association of Alberta Excellence in Teaching Psychology Award, thanks to several students nominating him.

Robert is an assistant faculty member and a faculty and program coordinator at CityU in Calgary, Alberta Canada. He has taught for 15 years at the Elementary and graduate level and is honored to receive this award. When teaching Elementary Robert worked in special education and supported students who had mental illness. It was during this time that Rob felt a true calling to go into counseling. Answering this call, Robert enrolled in a Master’s in Counseling degree program and received his Master’s thereafter. After graduating, he went to University of Calgary and taught undergraduate students in education and counseling psychology and established his teaching style – which is a delicate balance of teaching and mentoring.

When asked about his teaching style, Robert said “I am all about DOING rather than lecturing. In fact, I don’t lecture students; I like to integrate what I’m teaching into the big picture and discuss how what we are discussing is applied in ‘real life’. Knowing this application and how it fits into the larger picture is critical to students learning and processing content.”

Robert applied his method of teaching for five years as an instructor at the Teaching and Learning Centre, University of Calgary and received several teaching award nominations. He taught instructional strategy courses to faculty and graduate students and is now in the final stages of his Ph.D. from the University of Calgary.

Now, at CityU, Robert teaches foundational courses and helps supervise the development of research questions for students in counseling programs. When assisting students with research, he challenges them to pursue something culturally and professionally relevant.  In this process he helps students find their inner advocate and voice. He does this so students stay strong in their pursuit toward greater knowledge. According to Robert, students often doubt the relevance of their research question and/or methods. Robert is there to encourage students along in their research and stamp out self-doubt. He does this in weekly meetings with students where he asks key questions about students’ progress and advises them where they could go with their research. According to Robert, he does not force anyone to take a particular direction; he leaves it up to students to reach new ground and conclusions with their research.

As a result of good mentoring and teaching, CityU students nominated Robert for 2013’s Psychological Association of Alberta Excellence in Teaching Psychology Award. Upon nominating him, a committee at Psychologists’ Association of Alberta (PAA) reviewed the nomination and chose him to receive this year’s award. The award will be presented to Robert in late May. He will be the fifth to receive it. According to PAA, they select educators based upon who demonstrates “outstanding” teaching of psychology in an Alberta approved/authorized institution for post-secondary education.

When asked how he will continue to apply his superior teaching skills, Robert said that he could see himself as an active participate in CityU’s learning community and foster growth among other educators like him.

Thank you and congratulations to Robert!


Published May 13, 2013



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