Teaching passion recognised with top award

Dr Kylie Burns.

A background as a personal injury lawyer set the scene for Dr Kylie Burn’s career in higher education.

Disillusioned with what the law could achieve for injured people she left legal practice and joined the Griffith Law School in 2005.

“I aim to make things different for my students, through a commitment to deep engagement in learning and the development of ethical and authentic legal professionals,’’ she says.

Her passion for engaging students in the study of negligence and accident compensation has been rewarded with a 2014 Office for Learning and Teaching Citation for Outstanding Contributions to Student Learning.

Dr Burns said she aimed to create a learning environment where “students understand the social and individual context of law, take responsibility for their own learning and emerge as ethical legal professionals with a passion to make things better for injured people.”

She is co-author of the leading Australian text book, Torts Cases and Commentary, now in its seventh edition and used in many Australian universities.

Since joining the Griffith Law School she has convened and taught eight undergraduate courses from first to final year. She has been the co-recipient of four Griffith learning and Teaching Grants and presented on her teaching practices and research nationally and internationally.

“I encourage my students to understand and critique the law in action, drawing on interdisciplinary research about the incidence and causes of injury and accidents and the operation of negligence law including my own research.”

No stranger to awards, Dr Burns has been consistently recognised for her Griffith teaching over the past nine years winning prizes for excellence in teaching, Pro Vice Chancellor’s Commendations and other university and school awards.

This latest award is testament to her teaching talents and Griffith students are also the winners.

Dr Burns was presented with her award at the Celebrating Teaching Gala Night at Nathan Campus on November 6.