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American Sociological Association: Katherine Rowell Award Statement
Dr. Katherine Rowell, Professor of Sociology at Sinclair College, has demonstrated distinction by advancing quality teaching at her institution, by relating strategies of teaching sociology in community college settings at regional and national organizations, and by advancing quantitative literacy and experiential learning as core objectives within the sociology curriculum.
At her institution, Dr. Rowell served as the founding director of the Applied Social Issues Research Center and in 2008 became the founding director of the Center for Teaching and Learning. Through this work, she moved her institution to integrate social science research into the curriculum of a community college and has established Sinclair College as an exemplar for other comparable institutions. For these efforts, Dr. Rowell has received significant professional and public recognition, including being selected in 2005 as the Carnegie Foundation National Outstanding Community College Professor of the Year.
Dr. Rowell’s publications reflect numerous contributions to a far-ranging set of issues and topics, and she has developed a host of innovative teaching activities distributed for public use. She organized and presented a remarkable number of workshops, symposia, and regional and national meetings. In these activities she disseminated innovative teaching techniques, as well as helped train sociologists to become better teachers. Her development of pedagogies and curricular materials relate to a wide range of concerns, including service learning, engagement of students in data analysis activities, peace studies, and social entrepreneurship. She achieved an impressive record of internationalizing sociology curricula, from working with the United States Institute of Peace Summer Training Program, to her work with the Midwest Institute of International Education to create online teaching modules. She made remarkable contributions to the Integrating Data Analysis in the curriculum initiative, authoring the application that included Sinclair College as the only community college included in this National Science Foundation funded project for the American Sociological Association. Her teaching modules have been published through the Social Science Data Analysis Network and KIDSCOUNT. She has also served as consultant on means of assessing quantitative literacy through her work the Interuniversity Consortium for Political and Social Science Research.
She is an incredibly active member of both the American Sociological Association and its Section on Teaching and Learning. She served as the Section on Teaching and Learning as its newsletter editor, serves as an advisor for the Teaching Resources and Innovations Library for Sociology (TRAILS), frequently reviews for the journal Teaching Sociology, and is engaged with the Department Resources Group. She has filled numerous roles in regional associations, including President of the North Central Sociological Association. In her capacity in those positions, she has worked to advance the cause of quality teaching.
As her nominator Jill Bouma writes:
“Through Professor Rowell’s long and distinguished record of excellent teaching, steady stream of publications and presentations on curricular and teaching topics, leadership in workshops at the local, regional and national levels, innovative program development, and overall contributions to the advancement of Teaching Sociology, Professor Rowell is an ideal recipient for this award.”