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Professor Paul Walton receives Vice-Chancellor’s Teaching Award

Posted on 8 June 2020

The award, which recognises excellence in teaching and learning support, will be formally conferred later in the year at one of the 2020 graduation ceremonies.


Professor Paul Walton giving a demonstration lecture to students on the chemistry of oxidation and reduction.

Professor John Robinson, Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Teaching, Learning and Students, wrote to Professor Walton:

“The panel was impressed with your exceptional and sustained contribution to teaching within the department, including small group teaching innovations that have entered into the culture of the wider department. Your support for students and quality of feedback are exemplary; you are renowned amongst current and former students for going the extra mile to demonstrate what you are teaching in front of a packed lecture theatre. The Panel recognised the tremendous impact you have made on how teaching is organised and delivered in the department that is felt positively by all students and staff.”

In nominating Professor Walton for the Award, Dr Derek Wann said:

“Throughout his career Paul has introduced innovations in teaching and learning that have gone on to become part of the furniture of the Department of Chemistry. The extent to which his teaching is valued is borne out in comments from students.”  

Dr Wann gave special mention to Professor Walton’s role in the development of the Department’s trademark small-group teaching, his introduction of ‘study groups’ in which volunteer students from higher years help to tutor Year 1 students, and his creative approach to teaching which regularly elicits student comments on the entertaining and engaging nature of his lectures.

Professor Walton’s teaching also received recognition in 2000, when he received the Royal Society of Chemistry’s Higher Education Teaching Prize.

Professor Paul Walton joined the Department of Chemistry in 1993 as a lecturer and also served as Head of Department from 2004 to 2010. Currently, as well as contributing to small-group teaching within Chemistry’s college system, he contributes with lectures in core modules to chemists and natural scientists, and teaches on the Bioinspired Chemistry option module in Year 3, where he can draw on his outstanding research in bioinorganic chemistry.

The Vice-Chancellor's Teaching Awards, introduced in 2006, are one of the ways in which the University rewards excellence in learning and teaching.