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Michael Erickson, Assistant Professor of Psychology Awarded Teaching Innovation Award


By Christine Kitano, Editor Intern of CHASS College Computing

Michael EricksonIn a celebration held January 23rd at Bourns Hall, the UCR Academy of Distinguished Teaching honored Assistant Professor of Psychology Michael Erickson and Professor of Entomology Thomas Perring with the first annual Teaching Innovation Award. Selected by members of the UCR Academy of Distinguished Teaching, both professors have shown a demonstrated commitment to innovative teaching.

Professor Erickson earned his B.S. in Cognitive Science from UC San Diego and went on to earn PhDs in Cognitive Science and Cognitive Psychology from Indiana University. After conducting research at Carnegie Mellon University and the Center for Neural Basis of Cognition, Erickson returned to his native Southern California to teach in the Psychology Department at UC Riverside.

The Academy of Distinguished Teaching found Erickson to be especially capable of engaging even the largest of lecture classes. He has worked closely with the Office of Computing and Communications to learn how best to utilize technology in the classroom. His classes have been known to include robot demonstrations where students buzz in “game show style” to predict answers to questions.  “It takes time to do the technology,” Erickson said. “But it’s worth it.”


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