Review of the Office of Teaching Advancement at the University of Toronto

PDAD&C #23, 2007/08


To: Principals, Deans, Academic Directors and Chairs
From: Vivek Goel, Vice-President and Provost
Date: October 18, 2007
Re: Review of the Office of Teaching Advancement at the University of Toronto

The Report of the Committee to Review the Office of Teaching Advancement at the University of Toronto is now available online at

The Office of Teaching Advancement (OTA) was established in 2001 as an initiative to "enhance, inspire and reward good teaching across the University of Toronto, facilitate the growth and transfer of expertise in teaching throughout the community, link the many successful teaching initiatives and broad expertise across the University, and collaborate with them in the further development of programs and services." Since the term of Professor Ken Bartlett’s appointment as OTA’s first Director was nearing completion, I commissioned a review of the Office in early 2007. The Review was undertaken by David Farrar, then Deputy Provost, since the OTA reports to the Vice-President and Provost through the Deputy Provost.

Because the mandate of the OTA is to serve the entire University community, the review looked at what kind of leadership the OTA can provide across the institution, how it can best serve the University, its place in relation to other teaching services within the University, and the kind of leadership qualities most needed in the OTA during its next period of development.

The review committee’s report is now complete, and my administrative response is attached.

I wish to express my gratitude to the Committee, the many members of the University community who shared their views with the Committee, as well as the staff who took time to relate their experiences and thoughts to the Committee. I wish also to recognize the many staff and faculty across this institution who have contributed to the OTA’s programs, provided resources, and submitted teaching award nominations through the OTA. In particular, I acknowledge the tremendous contributions of Professor Bartlett in ensuring the success of the OTA. The accomplishments of the OTA are attributable to a wide group of people dedicated to the improvement of teaching at the U of T, as well as to the dedication of the OTA staff.