Nanak Hikmatullah

Nanak is a first-year PhD student in Teacher Education and School Improvement (TESI) in the College of Education at UMass. He is the holder of Edgar Brood Academic Chair, based in Brussels, Belgium, and a lecturer of English at Siliwangi University in Tasikmalaya, West Java, Indonesia, where he teaches several courses such as Educational Technology, Literature in English Language Teaching, and Sociolinguistics.


He earned his bachelor’s degree in English Language and Literature from STBA Yapari (School of Foreign Languages) Bandung, Indonesia, and his master’s degree in TESOL  from the University of Edinburgh, UK. He also did a one-year exchange program at Humboldt State University in California. Prior to his current career, he worked as a teaching and research assistant at STBA Yapari and as an English teacher and Academic Manager at Wall Street English Indonesia.


His primary research interest is in teacher personal and professional development. He found that small things teachers do in their classrooms can result in a significant impact on learning outcomes. He has been practicing and campaigning for a movement called #HumanisingEducation for the last three years. He believes that the approach can improve teacher-student interaction, the key to successful classroom management. His teaching has received a high approval rating from his students for his campaign. He has also been awarded many national and international scholarships such as Chevening, Fulbright, Edinburgh Teaching Awards, Edinburgh Scholar, UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office Bronze Awards, and many others.


Currently, he is focusing on humanizing online learning, looking for ways to facilitate personal connections in technology-mediated teaching. He is also a reviewer for the Journal of Teaching and Learning English in Multicultural Contexts and for the Journal of Education, Language Innovation, and Applied Linguistics of Siliwangi University, Indonesia.


“I am always fascinated by the idea of teaching with a heart. Too often, we are preoccupied with innovations in many teaching aspects, from technology integration to curriculum and assessment. Yet, we forget the basic idea of teaching: understanding our students and their needs, and whether they learn. I aspire to be those educators who strive for innovations but stick to the basics. Humanizing education is my teaching philosophy, practice, and the manifestation of myself as a teacher, a learner, and a human being.” [2-22]




Entrance Year: 
5-year span: 
On-Campus Student