Mark Goorsky, professor of materials science and engineering is among six across the campus who have received a 2016 UCLA Distinguished Teaching Award. The award, first handed out in 1961 by the UCLA Academic Senate, recognizes extraordinary teachers who have made a significant impact on their students through classroom teaching and curriculum development. This is the first time that two engineers have received the honor in the same year. (Professor Margulis from Civil Engineering is the other HSSEAS recipient).
Goorsky, who teaches several courses in materials science, started at UCLA in 1991. He noted that while the underlying concepts of his undergraduate courses has remained much the same, the technology and therefore the course content has changed significantly over the decades. “For courses that involve technology, it is imperative to present new technological developments,” he said. “In many cases, however, the principles behind the technology have not changed so it is important to start with the foundational issues and explain their relevance.
In addition to the distinguished teaching award, Goorsky was also named as the recipient of the Harvey L. Eby Award for the Art of Teaching. He is also the department’s vice chair for graduate studies. Goorsky agrees that the best part of teaching at UCLA are all of the bright students who bring enthusiasm to the classes, he noted it’s particular rewarding to hear students questions that go beyond the course. “When students ask such follow-on question, it shows that they understand the concept and have considered how that concept applies to real world situations,” he said.
Goorsky, and the other recipients of the 2016 distinguished teaching awards will be honored in fall quarter at UCLA’s annual Andrea L. Rich Night to Honor Teaching ceremony. Selected by the senate’s committee on teaching, winners receive an honorarium of $6,000.