Dr. Christian Castro has been with Madison Teaching and Learning Excellence since the fall of 2015; he assumed the role of program director in January 2019. In his time with MTLE, Chris has worked as a core-facilitator and mentor for twelve of the most recent cohorts, including over 120 faculty fellows. He has taught in a variety of academic fields (English as a second language, medical education, music, psychology, theology) and has been an expert-facilitator and educational consultant in higher education for the past 13 years. His research examines faculty professional identity development and self-efficacy and the effects of instructional interventions on student learning.
Prior to joining MTLE, Chris was the Assistant Director for Faculty Development at Florida International University Herbert Wertheim College of Medicine in Miami, where he designed and implemented the college’s first peer and student review of teaching program. He also served as an instructional/classroom mentor, working with medical faculty members to develop their facilitation and pedagogical skills through ongoing, deliberate practice and feedback, specifically in active learning methods spanning Team-Based Learning, Problem-Based Learning, and Cased-Based Learning. He was instrumental in the college’s initiative to evaluate and redesign its core curriculum to include evidence-based, learner-centered teaching and assessment methodologies.
A classically-trained musician and practical theologian, Chris is a self-professed “educational mutt”, deeply committed to finding cross-disciplinary ways of understanding — those boundless golden threads that allow us to learn in various contexts. His professional journey through seemingly unrelated academic fields has enriched his educational philosophy and experience, and he cherishes every opportunity to join fellow educators in their pursuit of excellence in the art and science of teaching and learning.
Schoenlein, M.A., Miller, N., Racey, C., Smith S., Treddinick, R., Castro, C., Rokers, B., Schloss, K.B., (2020, June 19 -24). UW Virtual Brain Project: Assessing Benefits of VR Education [Conference presentation]. Virtual Vision Sciences Society 2020.
Lupi C, Ward-Peterson M, Castro C, Splinter A, 2018, ‘Four Years of Experience Using Problem-Based Learning as a Platform to Develop Student Teaching Skills: A Preliminary Report’, MedEdPublish, 7, , 19, https://doi.org/10.15694/mep.2018.0000157.1
Lupi, C.S., Ward-Peterson, M., Castro, C.A., Non-directive pregnancy options counseling: online instructional module, objective structured clinical exam, and rater and standardized patient training materials. MedEdPORTAL. 2017;13:10566. https://doi.org/10.15766/mep_2374- 8265.10566
Most important teaching tip: Always remember your students are human beings, not just thinking beings: they feel, they hope, they fear, they dream, just like you do – so do what you can to create an environment where everyone’s humanity is honored and respected.