Patti Bannister (SIM lecturer) has received the Faculty of Management Part Time Teaching Award. Patti teaches INFO 6800 (Archives) and INFO 6860 (Archives II) in the Master of Information (MI) program. Patti was nominated by MI students, and Acting SIM Director, Dr. Vivian Howard.
From the nomination letter:
SIM is extremely fortunate to have Patti as one of our instructors. As the Provincial Archivist, she brings a wealth of professional experience into her classes and provides students authentic experiential learning opportunities using actual archival fonds when completing assignments. She is always able to draw on practical examples and scenarios to illustrate theoretical concepts, an aspect of her teaching that students particularly appreciate. Typical comments from her MI students include:
- She brings a really contagious enthusiasm for archiving that impacts students positively
- The assignments were very well–designed and gave experience of the actual work that archivists do.
- Patti is a clear communicator and a very organized facilitator. Course expectations were clear from the beginning, and she offered help when needed. Patti answered all student questions effectively, and she really encouraged discussion and sharing – she isn’t afraid to stray from the Powerpoint slides and improvise as well as speak candidly about the realities of archiving practices. A very engaging, approachable, and knowledgeable instructor.
Hands-on experiential courses such as the ones Patti teaches were among the most challenging to transition to online delivery, but Patti rose to the task and adapted her assignments to be as realistic as possible during the 2020-21 academic year. Students appreciated her effort to give them as authentic an experience as possible despite the limitations imposed by the pandemic, working with archives staff and a Dalhousie videographer to create short videos that took students inside the archives and exposed them to the archival environment when in-person visits were not possible. As an Archives I student commented about their experience during the winter 2021 term:
Patti was always happy to answer questions in class and via email outside of class. I greatly appreciated the breadth and depth of her knowledge and expertise in archival practice and being willing to offer real–life examples of how the core archival functions are put into practice. I wish I could have taken this course at another time, when we could have met in person, as I’m sure that having physical access to records for assignments and in–class exercises would have further benefitted my learning. But Patti did an excellent job trying to adapt to the online environment nonetheless! Thank you, Patti!
In addition to teaching both of SIM’s archival courses, Archives I and Archives II, Patti helped design the curriculum for both classes, particularly for Archives II, a class that was developed in response for student demand for an advanced-level course. She has also supervised students in independent study projects and directed reading courses, and has provided mentorship that clearly extends beyond the expectations we usually have for part-time instructors.