Diane O’Dowd, Ph.D.

Vice Provost for Academic Personnel
HHMI Professor of Developmental and Cell Biology

UC Irvine


Bio: In her position as Vice Provost, Academic Personnel, Dr. O’Dowd reports to the Provost and oversees academic personnel processes for the main campus and medical school including merits, promotions, recruitment, and retention. In addition, she is in charge of a wide range of academic policies and programs including: family friendly policies, annual pay equity studies, professional development, and discipline. Dr. O’Dowd has been a Professor at UC Irvine since 1989 and her research lab focuses on exploration of the cellular mechanisms underlying epilepsy disorders. She also conducts science education research with a focus on developing strategies that increase student learning in large introductory biology classes. Dr. O’Dowd received her B.S. in Biology at Stanford University (1979), her Ph.D. in Biology at the University of California, San Diego (1985) and completed a postdoctoral fellowship in Neuroscience at Stanford University (1986-89).  She became a Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) Professor in 2006, a National Academies Education Mentor in the Life Sciences and an AAAS Fellow in 2008. Dr. O’Dowd has also received a number of awards including Bio Sci Golden Apple Award (2005), UC Irvine’s Distinguished Faculty Teaching Award (2005-2006), Faculty Senate TA development award (2007), UCI Faculty Award, Extension Distance Learning (2009), UCI Professor of the Year (2011), Student’s Choice: Best Biology Professor Award (2012), UCI Postdoctoral Service Award (2014), Living our Values Award, UCI (2014).

Title: Valuing and Evaluating Teaching in the Merit Review and Promotion Process

Abstract: In this session we will be looking at how teaching is evaluated in the merit review and promotion process at UCI, which is a story of incremental change. The goal is to stimulate a discussion of ways to continue to develop more effective methods for evaluating and valuing teaching at RI Universities.