Special Education Assistant Professor Jessica Toste has been selected as part of the 2018 cohort of Provost’s Teaching Fellows (PTF), one of only five from the College of Education and the first from the Department of Special Education.
The 36 fellows will engage in a two-year project initiative. Toste’s project, STAMP of Success in Doctoral Education: Student Training, Advising, and Mentorship Practices, looks at the role of supervisory relationships in shaping doctoral students’ training and success.
The project states that mentoring junior scholars requires unique pedagogical considerations to ensure successful development and timely completion of their doctoral programs.
Toste will assess current practices, develop a mentorship model, and disseminate her findings to the university community. Through exploring mentorship across disciplines, this mentorship model will provide best practice guidelines for facilitating success in doctoral education.
“I was delighted to hear that Dr. Toste received this prestigious award,” says Mark O’Reilly, department chair. “The Provost’s Teaching Fellowship will support Dr. Toste as she explores innovative mentoring protocols for advanced graduate students. I expect that the results of her work will inform the teaching mission of the Department of Special Education.”
This PTF-supported initiative will provide Toste with the opportunity to partner with the Faculty Innovation Center and the Provost’s Office to expand the project, solicit input from a wider range of disciplines, and ensure sustainability of practices that improve mentorship in doctoral education.
“I am honored to have been invited to join the 2018 class of fellows,” Toste says. “I consider teaching and learning on campus to be an important part of my job—and I try to continuously reflect upon and improve my own practices related to teaching and mentoring. The Provost’s Teaching Fellows program provides me with the opportunity to explore these ideas more in-depth and to enrich my thinking through conversation with scholars from other disciplines.”
In partnership with the Faculty Innovation Center, fellows also facilitate Eyes on Teaching, a series of classroom observation opportunities aimed to create meaningful conversations around teaching and learning university-wide.
The Provost’s Teaching Fellows program seeks to empower faculty to advance education through individual initiatives that improve teaching and learning at the University of Texas at Austin by embracing creativity, innovation, and passion for teaching, learning, and research.