The CTL Mentors contribute to the professional development of Brandeis educators in several ways. First, they act as faculty allies by offering confidential mentoring on teaching and career development and informal, confidential peer teaching observations. Their approach is consultative and dialogic, grounded in mutual learning. Second, they lend their disciplinary expertise to CTL-offered faculty development programs such as pilot programs for mentoring new faculty of color and contract faculty. Third, the Mentors provide insights and knowledge from across the schools and disciplines about emerging pedagogical development needs at Brandeis in areas such as faculty pedagogical development, TA training, inclusive pedagogy, assessment of teaching strategies, innovations in teaching, learning design, educational technology, and universal design.
The Mentors maintain confidentiality as recommended in the POD Network Ethical Guidelines for faculty development. Interactions with CTL Mentors will not be connected to promotion or tenure review, although you may choose to include them in your promotion portfolio as evidence of your own teaching development.
Membership and Terms
The Mentors are nominated by their dean or division chair and usually serve 2-3 year terms.
Aparna Baskaran is a physicist whose scholarship focuses on understanding emergent phenomena in nonequilibrium systems in general and the light this understanding can shed on biological function. She teaches courses across the undergraduate and graduate physics curriculum. Aparna is happy to talk about all things teaching and learning, with particular topics including assessment of student learning, active learning strategies and enhancement of student engagement in the quantitative sciences.
Deborah Garnick teaches in the doctoral and executive education programs at the Heller School and Health: Science, Society and Policy for undergraduates. She is pleased to share her experience in two areas: logistics and relationship building. The logistical challenge requires building an organized syllabus to guide students through a swath of material, developing and evaluating assignments, sometimes directing teaching assistants, and communicating content (including active learning approaches and collaborative projects).
Ben Gomes-Casseres has been teaching by the case method for 35 years, and finds the process of remote teaching both fascinating and impactful for teachers and students. He is available to help you think about pedagogy and practices of using case discussion to teach analytical thinking. His research is in business strategy, international business, and strategic partnerships, and he is happy to discuss synchronous case teaching in any field, remotely or in person.
Melissa Kosinski-Collins' areas of expertise include protein folding and aggregation, science policy, and biology education. She supports research-level opportunities for K12 biology students, and directs the Brandeis STEM Posse program. Her work as a CTL Mentor focuses on STEM education and inclusive ways to support student success in large STEM courses and lab courses.
David Sherman teaches in the English Department, and is a co-founder of the Brandeis Educational Justice Initiative (education in the criminal justice system). His research focuses on the politics of commemoration, public sphere theory, comedy, literature in the criminal justice system, and literature and philosophy. He offers mentoring on teaching that involves civic engagement, creative assignment design, interpretive and reflective writing, and participatory class discussions.
Past CTL Scholars
Susan Birren, Zalman Abraham Kekst Chair in Neuroscience
Joel Christensen, Associate Professor of Classical Studies
Joel Cutcher-Gershenfeld, Professor - The Heller School for Social Policy and Management
George Hall, Professor of Economics and International Business School
Dan L Perlman, Professor of Environmental Studies and of The Heller School for Social Policy and Management
Rajesh Sampath, Associate Professor of the Philosophy of Justice, Rights, and Social Change
Aida Yuen Wong, Professor of Fine Arts, and East Asian Studies - Nathan Cummings and Robert B. and Beatrice C. Mayer Chair in Fine Arts