Dr. Kristen Lee Costa honored with Teaching Excellence Award for depth of knowledge and engaging teaching style

April 21, 2012

kristen costaDr. Kristen Lee Costa, a faculty member in Northeastern University College of Professional Studies master's and doctoral-level courses, is a recipient of the Northeastern University College of Professional Studies Teaching Excellence Award, which annually recognizes two faculty members for knowledge, skill, creativity and innovation in teaching. Nominations for the award are made by currently enrolled students.

Dr. Costa earned the praise of her students for teaching excellence as well as for being immersed in their learning experiences. One student nominator noted, "Her intellectual standards are top-notch. Given that she was working toward completion of her doctorate while teaching, she was empathetic to the fact that we were working full-time jobs while taking the program. She remained rigorous in her standards of grading, ethics, and progress."

Students cited Dr. Costa's passion and knowledge, as well as her engaging teaching style. One student described her class assignments as "well-planned, organized, thoughtful, detail-oriented, fact-filled, enjoyable, and rewarding learning experiences."

Another student described the learning experience this way: "Professor Costa's course was the most interactive online experience out of all the courses in the program. She not only modeled the use of technology as a teaching tool, but also required students to develop their skills in the use of multimedia communication tools to enhance the online learning experience." Further, the nomination reads, Dr. Costa "used multiple means of instructional delivery to ensure that student learning styles were accommodated. For example, video lectures and feedback were provided, relevant articles and videos were used to augment textbook and lecture topics, and projects and assignments ranged from self-reflective written exercises to multimedia online presentations to the entire class. The scope and sequence were logical and clear, and the activities in the course culminated in a final project that incorporated all of the materials covered during the course."

Prior to joining the College, Dr. Costa founded and ran Helping Helpers in Westport, Massachusetts, providing grant-writing and stress-management training to "helpers." She was an instructor at the University of Massachusetts where she taught such courses as Fundamentals of Teaching and Learning and Learning and Managing Inclusive Classrooms. Dr. Costa also served as a psychotherapist and clinical social worker in private practice, and was a resource developer and clinical social worker for a social services agency in Fall River, Massachusetts.

Dr. Costa earned an Ed.D. in Organizational Leadership & Communication at Northeastern University College of Professional Studies and a MSW in social work at Boston University.

Excellence in Teaching Award
Each year, Northeastern University College of Professional Studies honors two faculty members for their excellence in teaching.

In considering nominations, the committee seeks indication of especially high intellectual standards in terms of course content, rigor, and integration of the best scholarship, depth of knowledge in the subject and evidence of scholarly and pedagogical growth as new knowledge is created and new classroom technology is developed. 

The Excellence in Teaching Award is given once each calendar year, and this year the awards are presented at the College of Professional Studies spring 2012 graduation on April 21, 2012. 

More about graduation
To read about Teaching Excellence Award recipient, Dr. Amy Lantinga, visit Dr. Amy Lantinga honored with Teaching Excellence Award for focus on student success.

To learn more about graduation, visit Northeastern University College of Professional Studies graduates largest class to date.

To read about the Doctoral Hooding Ceremony, the first phase of the celebration of the completion of doctoral studies, visit Northeastern University's Newest Doctorates Receive Doctoral Hoods in Ceremony.

To read about the Compass Award, visit CPS 2012 Compass Award recipient, Christina McMahon, demonstrates leadership in every line of work.

The College of Professional Studies celebrates two graduations, fall and spring, in keeping with the College's flexible approach to education offering an array of options to students including part-time and full-time studies, Fast-Track, online, and hybrid formats. Graduates earned diplomas in 61 different degree programs at the associate, bachelor, master's, and doctoral levels.

To learn more about graduation, visit our 2012 graduation web page.

Northeastern University's College of Professional Studies (CPS) is committed to providing career-focused educational programs that are designed to accommodate the complex lives of motivated learners. Offered in a variety of innovative formats, CPS courses are taught by accomplished scholars and practitioners who have real-world experience. The result is an educational experience founded on proven scholarship, strengthened with practical application, and sustained by academic excellence.

Northeastern University is a global university with a tradition of partnership and engagement that creates an innovative, distinctive approach to education and research. Northeastern integrates classroom studies with experiential learning opportunities in 70 countries, and pursues use-inspired research with a focus on global challenges in health, security, and sustainability. 

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