Supervision Award for Faculty Members

The School of Graduate Studies Supervision Awards aim to recognize outstanding performance in the multiple roles associated with graduate student supervision. Each year, two JJ Berry Smith Doctoral Supervision Awards and two SGS Early Career Supervision Awards will be offered to successful nominees: one of each award in the Humanities/Social Sciences and in the Physical/Life Sciences.

Each Award recipient receives an SGS Supervision Award certificate, an SGS Travel or Conference Grant (up to $5000) for a current student to support their research travel or conference presentation. Award winners have their names inscribed on a plaque housed at the School of Graduate Studies

The annual SGS Graduate Student Supervision Awards honour active faculty members who, over a minimum of a 15-year period (JJ Berry Smith Doctoral Supervision Award) or up to 6 years (SGS Early Career Supervision Award), have demonstrated excellence in supervision at the University of Toronto by:

  • inspiring and guiding students to reach excellence in scholarship;
  • providing an environment that is supportive and stimulating;
  • enabling students to learn the essential methodologies, concepts and cultures of their discipline;
  • introducing students to the wider content of the discipline and relevant communities of scholars;
  • positioning students for future careers both within and outside academe;
  • fostering a strong sense of academic integrity.

The 2020 Winners

Dr. Douglas McDougall and Dr. Ted Sargent are this year’s recipients of the JJ Berry Smith Doctoral Supervision Award, which recognizes outstanding performance in the multiple roles associated with doctoral (PhD, EdD, DMA, SJD) supervision.

Media Links

Dr. Douglas McDougall

Dr. Douglas McDougall, Department of Curriculum, Teaching and Learning: Professor Douglas McDougall has been a faculty member in the Department of Curriculum, Teaching and Learning for 23 years and an educator for 40 years. Dr. McDougall has demonstrated his leadership as a B.Ed. Option Coordinator, Academic Coordinator of the Master of Teaching program, Director of the Centre for Science, Mathematics and Technology Education, CTL Associate Chair, CTL Department Chair, and OISE Associate Dean, Programs. His achievements are unparalleled as a scholar and as a mentor of young educators.

During his time as a faculty member at OISE, he has supervised 47 doctoral students and 22 master students to completion, and currently is supervising 13 doctoral students. Dr. McDougall believes that teachers must be caring individuals who are patient, understanding, and respectful of their students. He provides his students with guidance and opportunity, which lead to many of his graduates achieving highly successful careers, both in academia (McGill University, Ontario Tech University, Queen’s University, University of Toronto and numerous universities in the United States and Australia) and outside academia (Project Managers, Principals, teachers).

One of the key roles of a faculty member is to provide graduate students with opportunities to engage in research. Dr. McDougall’s research is directed at helping teachers provide better supports for students; particularly those situated in low income areas. His graduate students are actively involved in this research. Dr. McDougall has supervised 20 students as graduate research assistants. These projects yielded 12 doctoral dissertations, four Master theses, and three Major Research Papers.

Dr. McDougall has been described as an “exceptional mentor that creates an environment which fosters collaborative relationships, collective inquiry and personal growth.” His supervision makes students feel comfortable to express viewpoints yet are adequately challenged by his deep understanding of education and are shown the merits of perspective-taking and critical thought. Click to learn more.

Dr. Ted Sargent

Dr. Ted Sargent, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering: Dr. Sargent instills values of academic rigour, creativity, and innovation in his PhD students. His trainees have been among the University of Toronto’s most successful graduate students, on both the national and international stage, having received prestigious fellowships and awards. Over the last two decades, Dr. Sargent has consistently supported his trainees’ transition successfully into independent careers in academia or in industry.

He holds the rank of University Professor in the Edward S. Rogers Sr. Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Toronto. He holds the Canada Research Chair in Nanotechnology and was recently named U of T’s Vice-President, Research and Innovation, and Strategic Initiatives.

He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, the AAAS, and the Canadian Academy of Engineering. The impact of his work has been felt in industry through his formation of two start-up companies (InVisage Technologies and Xagenic). He received hist B.Sc.Eng. (Engineering Physics) from Queen’s University and his PhD in Electrical and Computer Engineering (Photonics) from the University of Toronto. He has held visiting professorships at MIT, UCLA, and Berkeley.

His book The Dance of Molecules: How Nanotechnology is Changing Our Lives (Penguin) was published in Canada and the United States in 2005 and has been translated into French, Spanish, Italian, Korean, and Arabic. Click to learn more.

Past Recipients

Award Overview

Deadline: Date set locally by graduate unit/Faculty
Faculty Nomination to SGS: April 1, 2021
Results & Presentation of Award: May 2021

Eligibility Criteria

Nominees must be:

JJ Berry Smith Doctoral Supervision Award:
• Active graduate faculty members at the University of Toronto, having supervised doctoral students (PhD, EdD, DMA, SJD) graduate students for a minimum of 15 years

Early Career Supervision Award:
• Tenure stream or status only graduate faculty members at the University of Toronto within the first six years of acquiring a graduate faculty appointment, having engaged in supervision of graduate students (master’s degree or doctoral degree) in committee member, co-supervisor or sole supervisor roles.

Selection Criteria

Nominations will be evaluated based on how well the candidates have demonstrated excellence in supervision at the University of Toronto by meeting and exceeding each selection criteria below:

  1. Inspiring and guiding students to achieve excellence in scholarship, fostering a strong sense of academic integrity;
  2. Providing an environment that is supportive, stimulating and tailored to their individual learning styles, needs, and career/future aspirations;
  3. Enabling students to learn the essential methodologies, concepts and cultures of their discipline;
  4. Introducing students to the wider context of the discipline and relevant communities of scholars; and
  5. Promoting student participation in professional development and activities that position them for future careers within and outside academia.

In an effort to assist Faculties in reviewing their nominations, an SGS Scoring Sheet is available for Faculties’ internal selection committee use, and may be shared with nominators/nominees.

Unsuccessful candidates are eligible for nomination a second time in the year following their initial nomination, at the discretion of the (Faculty) Dean. After this, the Faculty must wait at least two years to nominate the candidate.

Nomination Package

The nomination package provides evidence that the nominee has met the above five criteria as demonstrated through the following:

  • Completed Nomination Form;
  • Faculty letter of recommendation from the Dean/Vice-Dean, Graduate (1-2 pages). Letter should provide context for the discipline: e.g. clearly address the supervisory norms (including expectations for publishing and presenting with supervised students), types of students (e.g. placement in academia vs. industry), and how the nominee stands out among peers in the same discipline;
  • Two letters of nomination (letters may be from an individual or group):
    • A letter from the department chair, current or former colleague(s); and
    • A letter from current or former supervisee(s);
  • A statement written by the candidate (max 300 words – suitable for public release):
    • Addressing the candidate’s graduate mentoring/supervision philosophy, and
    • Describing the candidate’s personal approach or strategies for mentoring/supervision;
  • Table A: listing all current and former graduate students and their current positions (see Table A: List of Graduate Students for JJ Berry Smith Doctoral Supervision Award)
  • Abbreviated Curriculum Vitae (addressing the follow categories, as applicable):
    • Academic Appointment(s)
    • Mentoring or Supervision awards
    • Awards for joint work with graduate students
    • Funded or unfunded grants with graduate students
    • ­Publications with notations of co-publishing with graduate students (last 15 years for JJ Berry Smith Award nominees and last 6 years for Early Career Award nominees)*
    • ­Presentations with notations of co-presentation with graduate students* (last 15 years for JJ Berry Smith Award and last 6 years for Early Career Award)*
    • ­Past and current graduate supervision roles (including supervisor and committee memberships)
    • External appraisals of doctoral dissertations, which includes:
      • Appraisal of a dissertation completed at a university where the nominee was not a faculty member; and
      • Appraisal of a dissertation completed at the same university as the nominee and supervised by a committee that did not include the nominee.
    • Service related to graduate student support, supervision or mentoring
    • Other activities or accomplishments relevant to graduate student supervision and mentorship.
  • *Please indicate publications and presentations with current or former graduate student co-authors or co-presenters using the following notations:
    • highlighting the publication/presentation in yellow; and
    • underlining the names of doctoral students within each publication/presentation.

Nomination Process

Faculty nominations are due to the Dean of Graduate Studies and Vice-Provost, Graduate Research and Education through the Faculty Dean or Vice Dean Graduate Office.

Students, faculty members and staff wishing to submit a nomination package for consideration by their Faculty should contact their home graduate unit to inquire about the selection process and local deadlines.

Faculties may nominate one candidate in each of the four divisions (Humanities, Social Sciences, Physical Science, Life Science ) to a maximum of four nominees per award, i.e. up to four nominees for the JJ Berry Smith Award and up to four nominees for the Early Career Supervisor Award. Requests for an additional quota may be considered by SGS where a Faculty has two exceptional candidates from within the same discipline.

Each nomination package is to be submitted electronically as a single PDF file via email; please retain the original application materials until June 30, 2021.

Nominations are due to SGS from Faculties by April 1, 2021 to:

Dean of Graduate Studies and Vice-Provost, Graduate Research and Education
c/o Graduate Awards Office
School of Graduate Studies
Tel: 416-946-0808

Contacts & Resources

Olivera Joksimovic, Graduate Awards Officer
School of Graduate Studies

See also: CTSI Resources​.