Vice Provost for Academic Innovation

Steven J. Jackson

The Office of the Vice-Provost for Academic Innovation (VPAI) works with college, department, and faculty leaders to promote and support excellence and innovation in teaching at Cornell. It seeks to extend the standing and commitment of Cornell as a community of teachers, grounded in common pedagogical purposes and practices (building from distinct disciplinary strengths and traditions), a common interest in ongoing learning and improvement (including as guided by educational theory and research), and a shared commitment to evolving our pedagogical practice through ongoing feedback, experiment, and innovation (only some of which involves technology).

The VPAI oversees Cornell’s excellent Center for Teaching Innovation (CTI) and works closely with several other members of the Provost’s leadership council, including the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education, Vice Provost for Engagement and Land Grant Affairs, Vice Provost for External Education, Deputy Provost, and the Deans of the Graduate School and the School of Continuing Education. They also work closely with the leadership, faculty and staff of all Cornell schools and colleges to support and promote more effective and innovative teaching at all scales and levels.

Current initiatives in the VPAI office include support for the university’s ongoing Active Learning Initiative; efforts to improve the fairness and effectiveness of student course evaluations; research and piloting of alternative assessment mechanisms (including in large and introductory classes); efforts to support cross-campus learning and improvement in teaching modalities beyond traditional lecture formats (studio, clinical, lab-based, seminar, etc.); efforts to improve the evaluation of teaching for purposes of hiring, promotion and tenure; and initiatives to respond to the distinct challenges and opportunities of generative AI tools in the teaching and learning context.