Robert A. Lue, professor of the practice of molecular and cellular biology, is the inaugural Richard L. Menschel Faculty Director of the Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning. Lue is nationally recognized as an innovator and visionary in life sciences education.
Established in 1975, the Bok Center seeks to enhance the quality of undergraduate education by serving faculty and graduate students and promoting pedagogical innovation informed by research. Its efforts include video consultations, work on classroom dynamics, course design, creative assignments and the uses of multi-media in the classroom, as well topical seminars and events. The Center assists faculty early in the process of conceiving their courses, and offers short, topical seminars to graduate students through a Certificate Program. The new faculty director position is made possible by Richard Menschel, M.B.A. ’59.
In making the announcement, dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences (FAS) Michael D. Smith called Lue one of Harvard’s foremost leaders in innovative teaching. Smith expects Lue’s directorship will position the Bok Center at the center of FAS’s efforts to strengthen teaching and learning.
Says Lue, “As a graduate student in MCB, I was fortunate enough to have Dan Branton as an adviser and a department that supported my dual interests in cell biology research and teaching. This was a truly formative period for me when I realized that there needn’t be a dichotomy between scholarship and teaching – indeed they are mutually reinforcing in many important ways!”
In addition to his new post, Lue is the faculty director of HarvardX (Harvard’s online education portal), the faculty director of Harvard’s Allston Education Portal, and the director of Life Sciences Education. He also co-leads the National Academies Summer Institute for Undergraduate Education and has co-authored two freshman biology textbooks. His appointment at the Bok Center “enables our best pedagogical development towards rigorous and broad education at Harvard and beyond our local campuses,” said Doris Sommer, the Ira and Jewell Williams Professor of Romance Languages and Literatures and African and African American Studies, as reported in the Harvard Gazette.
“The Bok Center is beautifully positioned to play a very important role in fostering not just faculty experimentation in the classroom, but also in working to identify what the best ways are for us to teach our students,” Lue told the Gazette. “I’m excited about this opportunity to build on that remarkable foundation. This is a perfect moment for the Bok Center, and for other efforts across campus in the teaching and learning space, to come together in a mutually reinforcing way.”
Read more in the Harvardgazette