Beth Maloch

Jo Worthy, language and literacy studies professor and Tasha Beretvas, associate dean for research and graduate studies, received the College of Education’s Dean’s Distinguished Teaching Award. 

Photo Credit: Marshall Tidrick | Daily Texan Staff

Jo Worthy, language and literacy studies professor, and Tasha Beretvas, associate dean for research and graduate studies in the College of Education, both received the College of Education Dean’s Distinguished Teaching Award, the college’s most prominent award, last week. 

Worthy, a former elementary and middle school teacher, specializes in children’s reading interests and bilingual education. She also focuses on the alternatives to ability grouping, which she said is the method of categorizing and sectioning young students based on expectancy of success in academics.

“Putting kids into these ability groups can be really harmful,” Worthy said. “If we’re not teaching them as a whole, then they don’t get the equal treatment that encourages success.”

Worthy said group categorizing students discourages them to break apart from the labels they are given. The most well-known categorization is to break up students into gifted and talented in middle school and regular or distinguished in high school.

According to Worthy, her method of teaching involves getting to know students on a personal level.

“It is important to me to know what the students need and especially what they’re interested in learning,” Worthy said.

Beth Maloch, associate dean of teacher education and chair of the award’s committee, said Worthy has designed and taught a signature undergraduate studies course, which has received exceptional course evaluations.

Beretvas teaches statistics and psychometrics in the Department of Educational Psychology. Her course, “Introduction to Statistics,” helps students understand how to apply statistics to their own respective fields.

“There are a lot of people coming in who are fearful of math,” Beretvas said. “When they’re shown in a way that they can grasp it, they can easily use [statistics] with their own interests.”

According to Maloch, the committee bases its decisions off student and faculty-peer evaluations for both graduate and undergraduate teaching.

“Research is important at a top-tier institution like UT,” Beretvas said. “But we also value teaching and seeing these awards really does substantiate that.”

Both Worthy and Beretvas have previously received honors, including the Regents’ Outstanding Teaching Award.

“They’ve invested all across the college throughout the years,” Maloch said. “It’s a long way to say that it was not surprising that they were nominated.”

The annual Elizabeth Shatto Massey Award for Excellence in Teacher Education recognizes UT professors considered exceptional by faculty and alumni, and those bestowing the award deem the 2011 recipient a leader in his or her field.

A committee of UT alumni and faculty, under the direction of the Texas Exes, granted the award to Beth Maloch, associate professor in the College of Education for her efforts in and dedication to developing future educators. The committee takes the references of colleagues, program directors and students as well as student evaluations into account when choosing a recipient. The recipient receives $12,000.

“She knows how to get teachers excited about teaching,” said Randy Bomer, chair of the Department of Curriculum and Instruction. “She has UT students work at Austin elementary schools and gets them involved in how [the students] are thinking and therefore how they themselves are thinking. It also makes them more professional.”

Maloch came to UT in 2000 and teaches both undergraduates and graduate students. She is primarily concerned with the methods of teaching young children how to read and write and communication methods in the classroom. She does research on those topics and had a major role in amending undergraduate curricula at UT.

Since joining the UT faculty, Maloch was named a fellow of the Charles H. Spence Centennial Associate Professorship in Education, given a place in the Academy of Distinguished Teachers and received the Regents’ Outstanding Teaching Award, the Dean’s Distinguished Teaching Award and two Dean’s Faculty Integration Awards.

“She is one of the finest professors in the University, as evidenced by all the awards she has received,” said College of Education professor Jo Worthy. “[Maloch] has been here for only 10 years and she’s been excited [about teaching] the whole time.”

The Massey Award was established by UT law alumnus John H. Massey in 2003 as a way to honor his wife, Elizabeth “Libba” Shatto Massey and her passion for public education. Massey earned a degree from UT in education in 1961 and went on to have a career in teaching. The award is given to a UT faculty member who is a “teacher of teachers” — someone who aims to prepare education students to be influential elementary and secondary school teachers, according to the Texas Exes.

“[Maloch] embodies the spirit of the award,” said Kim Gundersen, Texas Exes director of Outreach and associate executive director.

Printed on Friday, September 23, 2011 as: "Education professor wins teaching award from UT colleagues."

The annual Elizabeth Shatto Massey Award for Excellence in Teacher Education recognizes UT professors considered exceptional by faculty and alumni, and those bestowing the award deem the 2011 recipient a leader in his or her field.

A committee of UT alumni and faculty, under the direction of the Texas Exes, granted the award to Beth Maloch, associate professor in the College of Education for her efforts in and dedication to developing future educators. The committee takes the references of colleagues, program directors and students as well as student evaluations into account when choosing a recipient. The recipient receives $12,000.

“She knows how to get teachers excited about teaching,” said Randy Bomer, chair of the Department of Curriculum and Instruction. “She has UT students work at Austin elementary schools and gets them involved in how [the students] are thinking and therefore how they themselves are thinking. It also makes them more professional.”

Maloch came to UT in 2000 and teaches both undergraduates and graduate students. She is primarily concerned with the methods of teaching young children how to read and write and communication methods in the classroom. She does research on those topics and had a major role in amending undergraduate curricula at UT.

Since joining the UT faculty, Maloch was named a fellow of the Charles H. Spence Centennial Associate Professorship in Education, given a place in the Academy of Distinguished Teachers and received the Regents’ Outstanding Teaching Award, the Dean’s Distinguished Teaching Award and two Dean’s Faculty Integration Awards.

“She is one of the finest professors in the University, as evidenced by all the awards she has received,” said College of Education professor Jo Worthy. “[Maloch] has been here for only 10 years and she’s been excited [about teaching] the whole time.”

The Massey Award was established by UT law alumnus John H. Massey in 2003 as a way to honor his wife, Elizabeth “Libba” Shatto Massey and her passion for public education. Massey earned a degree from UT in education in 1961 and went on to have a career in teaching. The award is given to a UT faculty member who is a “teacher of teachers” — someone who aims to prepare education students to be influential elementary and secondary school teachers, according to the Texas Exes.

“[Maloch] embodies the spirit of the award,” said Kim Gundersen, Texas Exes director of Outreach and associate executive director.