Exemplary Course Award

Every year the Learning and Teaching Enhancement Unit oversee the Exemplary Course Award. This award aims to celebrate the very best practice in Blackboard course design from modules and teaching across the University and is based on Blackboard’s very own Exemplary Course Programme. Any member of staff can submit an application for the Exemplary Course Award. All you have to do is fill in the Exemplary Course Award form and submit to the Learning and Teaching Enhancement Unit (via email: elearning@aber.ac.uk) before 12pm on 31st January 2022.  

Applicants are asked to identify their exemplary practices on the module and are awarded marks across four main criteria: 

  • Course Design 
  • Interaction and Collaboration
  • Assessment
  • Learner Support 

In order to support this process, the E-learning Group offer an E-learning Excellence: Submit an ECA Application training session. You can book your place here.   

The Exemplary Course Award is now in its sixth year and, since its inception, we have seen five modules awarded the Exemplary Course Award, twelve modules achieved Highly Commended status and seven modules attained Commended standards.  

In addition to rewarding the very best practice, the AU Exemplary Course Award supports staff to enhance their modules on Blackboard and share good practices across the University. Winners of the Exemplary Course Award often go on to present at the Annual Learning and Teaching Conference.  

If you are thinking of submitting an Exemplary Course Award Application: 

  • Download a copy of the Exemplary Course Award application form
  • Sign up for an E-learning Excellence: Submit an ECA application training session 
  • Book a consultation with a member of the E-learning Group to do a module MOT 
  • Complete the self-assessment application form and submit to the E-learning Group before 12pm on 31st January 2022. 



2020-21 Winners

We are delighted to announce the winners of the 2020-21 competition:

  • Winner: Hanna Binks, PS11320: Introduction to Research Methods in Psychology, Psychology
  • Highly Commended: Martine Garland, AB27120: Marketing Management, Aberystwyth Business School
  • Highly Commended: Rhianedd Jewell, CY10920: Trafod y Byd Cyfoes Twy'r Gymraeg, Welsh and Celtic Studies
  • Highly Commended: Prysor Mason Davies, ED30620: Children's Rights, Education
  • Highly Commended: Mary Jacob, PDM0530: Action Research and Reflective Practice in HE, Learning and Teaching Enhancement Unit

2019-20 ECA Winners

We are delighted to announce the winners of the 2019-20 ECA competition:

For examples of the winning modules' exemplary practices see this video:

2018-19 ECA Winners

2018-19 AU ECA Winners

The diverse range of teaching and learning styles evidenced in this year’s applications reflects the innovative work that is taking place across the institution.

We are delighted to announce the winners of the 2018-19 ECA competition:

For examples of the winning modules' exemplary practices see this video:

2017-18 ECA Winners

2017-18 ECA Winners

The panel found that this was a particularly close competition, with most of the applications clustering in teh Accomplished Category, the second level in the rubric just below Exemplary. While none of the modules were deemed to be exemplary in all areas, they contained many exemplary practices. For this reason, the panel has decided to issue only Highly Commended awards. 

We are delighted to announce the winners of the 2017-18 ECA competition:  

For examples of the winning modules' exemplary practices see this video. 

Comments from participants: 

“I found that the ECA guidelines offered good food for thought when designing online supplementary materials for my module. Along with numerous innovative and exciting uses of technology by my colleagues in the mathematics department, I hope that such efforts ensure that the Aberystwyth mathematics student experience continues to be an excellent one. Many thanks are due to the students who took the module, both this year and last, for their encouraging and useful feedback.” - Adam Vellender, Highly Commended 

“Having to design a new module this year, I took the opportunity to develop the Blackboard pages in line with the Exemplary Course guidance. The process helped me recognize the good aspects I already provide and also think about and develop ways in which my Blackboard presence can be enhanced. I found the whole process invaluable.” – Daniel Low, Highly Commended 

Quotes from the Panel: 

“The entries to this year’s ECA all included distinct and innovative ways of presenting large amounts of module content and information, it’s great to see some really creative approaches to the process.”- Panel Member 

“This year’s winners show the high standard of learning and teaching at Aberystwyth University. Their exemplary practices serve to inspire others to innovate and engage students in active learning.” - Panel Member