Dr. Christopher Perumalla is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Physiology and Director of the Division of Teaching Laboratories in the Faculty of Medicine. Chris obtained his Bachelor and Master’s Degrees from Osmania University in India, and a second Master’s and his Doctoral Degree from the University of Waterloo, Canada. He moved to the University of Toronto for postdoctoral training in 1986, and it was during this period that he discovered his passion for teaching. He joined the Department of Physiology in 1993.
Chris has demonstrated sustained excellence in both didactic teaching in large classes and in hands-on teaching in laboratory courses. His ability to communicate effectively and connect with students in various programs has been acknowledged by his receipt of several teaching awards including the W.T. Aikins Award (2006) in the category of large classroom teaching and the Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching in the Life Sciences Award (2007), and and Department of Physiology’s Excellence in Teaching Award multiple times.
Chris has led the design, development and delivery of the Faculty of Medicine’s first online course in Basic Human Physiology in collaboration with the School of Continuing Studies. Hundreds of students have taken his online physiology course over the past several years. Chris is the co-recipient of the Faculty of Medicine’s 2013 W. T. Aikins Award in the Innovative Course Development category. He has served as the Director of The Division of Teaching Laboratories (DTL) since 2005. Under his leadership DTL provides research-intensive laboratory experiences to undergraduate students, introducing them to rapid advances in technology by incorporating cutting-edge research technologies into lab courses in the Life Science programs. He has been instrumental in creating the Faculty of Medicine’s Youth Summer Program (MED YSP), which provides high school students with an exclusive glimpse into the world of medicine, medical research and other health science professional programs. In the past three years of its operation, MED YSP has impacted over 1200 high school students who have attended the program from 15 countries around the world.
Chris has been recognized as an exemplary advocate for student engagement. In 2010, he was the recipient of the University of Toronto Alumni Association’s (UTAA) Joan Foley Award, presented annually to a member of the University of Toronto who has made a distinctive and lasting contribution to enhancing the quality of the undergraduate or graduate student experience at the University of Toronto. In the same year, under his leadership, DTL was the recipient of the prestigious UTAA Northrop Frye award for linkages between teaching and research.