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Professor Weliweriya Recognized for Superior Teaching

March 30, 2021

Franklin College will hold a virtual Celebration of Academic Excellence on April 21

Please join us in congratulating Professor Weliweriya for his recent recognition as Franklin College of Arts and Sciences Outstanding Teacher. The award is given in honor of a professor's exemplary commitment to student learning and success. 

Of his work, Professor Weliweriya says, "We all need things that make us excited to be alive, making us glad to wake up in the morning and push our limits during the daytime. Looking at groups of students who make arguments over problem-solving approaches, fist bumps, or loud shootouts as they come across an 'Aha Moment!' and comments like 'This guy made me reclaim my love for physics after the horrors of high school'  takes my job satisfaction to another level."

NW_square.pngProfessor Weliweriya has an impressive body of pedagogical research, the most recent of which is "Student Feedback on Transition to Online Instructions During the COVID-19 Pandemic." In this study, Professor Weliweriya, Dr. Tara Cotten and their research students collected data about student responses to virtual learning. In another recent study, Professor Weliweriya and others studied the processes students use to problem-solve when interpreting classroom materials such as sketches, diagrams, pictures, graphs, tables, and mathematical equations. That study can be found here.  

This year, Professor Weliweriya received an EETI Augmented, Remote, and Virtual Experimentation Grant from the Engineering Education Transformations Institute (EETI) in UGA's College of Engineering. The study's title is "Exploring XR Technologies to Augment and Transform Textbook Problems and Enable Remote, Collaborative Problem Solving in Engineering Course." This work is done in collaboration with professors in the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering and the College of Engineering. 

When he talks about his goals, in his teaching and in is research, Professor Weliweriya says, "I want every student who took my class to finish the semester with the idea, 'Physics is more fun than I anticipated, and the world is full of unknowns to be solved, just like any other physics problem.'" 

Professor Weliweriya will be recognized during the Virtual Celebration of Academic Excellence that will premiere on the University’s YouTube channel at 2 p.m. on Wednesday, April 21. 

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