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UIC Dental Faculty Leader Builds a Learning Community for Educators, Honored with Prestigious Award

Alison Doubleday

Alison Doubleday, PhD, director of faculty development for the UIC College of Dentistry and interim executive director of UIC’s Center for the Advancement of Teaching Excellence, recently was one of three dental educators nationwide honored for her commitment to oral health, innovation and excellence in dental education.

Doubleday, a biological anthropologist and anatomy educator at the college for 14 years, was named a recipient of the American Dental Education Association ADEAGies Foundation’s prestigious William J. Gies Award for Eminence in Innovation in the field of oral health and dental education. The Gies Awards will be presented during the ADEA’s annual exhibition on March 11, 2024 in New Orleans.

“The tireless work of the 2024 Gies awardees has resulted in lasting change, extraordinary advances and vital solutions to current and emerging challenges facing oral health and dental education,” said Marsha Pyle, DDS, MEd, president of the ADEAGies Foundation. “The profound impact and visionary leadership of these luminaries will be revered throughout our next century.”

Combatting Isolation in Dental Healthcare Education

The honor recognizes Doubleday’s contributions to the development of the ADEA Micro-credential Program, as well as her efforts to combat isolation for dental faculty at institutions across the country. Realizing the importance of infusing teaching and learning practices with new concepts in the ever-evolving field of dental medicine, she helped create the Dental Education Exchange, a multi-institutional learning community that shares research, new ideas for curriculum development, assessment methods, engagement and professional development. Once or twice a month UIC faculty connect with their colleagues from Rutgers School of Dental Medicine, Boston University Henry M. Goldman School of Dental Medicine, University of Pittsburgh School of Dental Medicine, and the Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry at the University of the Pacific.

“I’m very honored, but this honor is not mine alone, it is for the colleagues I work with who are highly collaborative and amazing people,” said Doubleday. “The support and connection we make through the exchange really is incredible because we are always growing and changing. I’m very lucky to be surrounded by a group of professionals who are curious and generous in sharing their ideas and experiences.”

Advancing Professional Advancement and Innovation

An associate professor in oral medicine and diagnostic sciences, Doubleday has been a member of the College of Dentistry faculty since 2010 and holds an affiliate appointment in the department of anthropology in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. She has extensive experience in faculty professional development, including leading workshops on instructional innovation in didactic, clinical and laboratory teaching, as well as administering faculty development certificate programs on curriculum design, pedagogy, assessment and program evaluation.

Lauded for Achievements in Dental Education

Doubleday is named the Chicago Dental Society Clinical Professor, has won numerous awards for teaching, including the UIC Teaching Recognition Program Award, the College of Dentistry Jon Daniel Teaching Award, the student-selected Golden Apple Teaching Award and the Excellence in Teaching Award from the American Dental Education Association. Her interdisciplinary scholarship focuses on student learning in higher education, faculty perceptions of their teaching and the design of technology-based learning environments.

Outside of her professional life, she is a certified dog trainer, dog mom to Fox and Rocket, Australian Cattle dogs, and enjoys indoor rock climbing and gardening.

“The mental health and wellbeing of our community of students and faculty are very important to me,” Doubleday says. “My goal is to make sure they have all the resources they need and to intentionally help them build connections.”