Since 2018, it has been possible for scientists with excellent performance in both research and education to progress at the University of Twente to the position of professor with a focus on education. From the 1st of April, Justine Blanford – associate teaching professor at Penn State University in the USA - will be the first professor with a focus on education at the University of Twente. She will start in the department of Earth Observation Science (Faculty of ITC).
Her research will focus on how healthcare professionals can be better prepared to use geospatial data and technologies to map health and disease. This is particularly relevant in these days of corona spread. She will also investigate how teachers can better prepare themselves and students to work seamlessly in both face-to-face and online environments. Prof dr. ir. Alfred Stein, portfolio research at the Faculty of ITC says: “We are proud that the ITC is at the forefront of these developments and has the opportunity to maintain and further improve its already excellent quality of education, in particular in the domain of GeoHealth.”
Professor with a focus on education
The latter is part of her role as a professor with a focus on education. A scientist with a talent for education and research can grow into this new position. In addition to research in one's discipline, this position also includes research into discipline-specific education. Twente is part of a select group of institutions throughout the world that are taking this approach to evaluate teaching achievement at the university level.