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Dr. Dee Hansen, associate professor and chair of Graduate Studies in the Music Education Division, along with Ken Steen, associate professor of Composition, were recognized by the University at the 2009-2010 Faculty Staff Kickoff on Wednesday, August 26. Both Hansen and Steen received the award for Innovations in Teaching and Learning.

The Innovations in Teaching and Learning Award recognizes faculty members who have shown exceptional dedication, innovation, and effectiveness in their teaching, as well as extensive interactions with their students.

Dr. Hansen helps her students understand themselves as learners and communicators through a Learning Styles Inventory. Her Music Leadership and Administration graduate course is highly rated among her students, all of whom are working teachers.

Dr. Hansen received her undergraduate degree in music education and master's degree in music history from Southern Methodist University in Dallas. She holds a Doctorate of Musical Arts in music education from the University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory of Music.

Professor Steen, along with collaborator Professor Gene Gort of the Hartford Art School, were recognized for the creation and direction of the New Media Collaborative (NMC). The NMC links students in The Hartt School's composition department and the Hartford Art School's media arts department through a website (uhaweb.hartford.edu/nmc) that provides a portal for sharing media files with the intent of fostering collaborative productions. Beyond sharing substantive sound and media materials between classes, students are encouraged to become members of artistic/collaborative teams as composers/music technologists and video artists/producers. This has led to many dynamic independent artistic collaborations outside of class among students of the two schools.

The creation and implementation of the NMC was documented by Steen and Gort in a paper entitled Parallel Media: Convergence in the Classroom. It has been published in The International Journal of the Arts in Society and was presented by them in Kassel, Germany at the International Conference on the Arts in Society in conjunction with Documenta 12 in August of 2007, and in February 2008 at Connecticut College during New Creativity: the 11th Biennial Symposium on Arts and Technology. The breadth and scope of projects initiated by the NMC continues to grow offering students from across the university an opportunity to explore collaborative modes of learning and expression.

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