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New Director Named at CASTL


Last week, the Center for Advanced Study of Teaching and Learning (CASTL) announced a new acting Director. Jason Downer took over the reins as Robert Pianta, current Dean of the Curry School, stepped down from his role as CASTL Director after 7 years.

Jason T. DownerDowner is a Research Associate Professor, and has been one of the core CASTL investigators since its inception. He is nationally recognized for his work in understanding and facilitating the ways that classroom interactions foster children’s development.

When asked about the new role as CASTL’s Director, Downer indicated that he is “excited and honored by the opportunity, and looks forward to supporting and cultivating CASTL’s growth as a leader and innovator in the scientific study of effective teaching and student learning/development.”

CASTL was founded in 2006 by Robert Pianta and has grown into a multi-faceted, interdisciplinary research center with more than 40 full-time employees and over $30 million in sponsored research funding. As an interdisciplinary center, CASTL is working to advance the quality and impact of teaching through scientific study in educational settings from infancy to higher education.

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