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How U of T is re-thinking higher education for a changing world: President Meric Gertler in India's BW Education

(photo by Lisa Sakulensky)

From re-imagining the physical design of classrooms to encouraging students to apply knowledge to real-world problems, the University of Toronto is constantly looking to improve how education is imparted in a rapidly changing world, U of T President Meric Gertler said in a wide-ranging interview with India’s BW Education.

"Learning will work best when it is situated in a rich environment where there are real problems at hand, on your doorstep,” President Gertler said, citing the challenge of expanding affordable housing in Toronto as an example of a pressing societal problem that U of T students and faculty are tackling from several perspectives, from urban planning and architecture to civil engineering and economics.

Students immersed in active problem-solving expand their skill-sets and boost their career prospects, but they also contribute to making Toronto a more livable city, which ultimately benefits U of T in what President Gertler termed “a case of enlightened self-interest.”

President Gertler also noted how U of T is experimenting with classroom designs – notably in the Myhal Centre for Engineering Innovation & Entrepreneurship – to accommodate the shift towards increasingly interactive and group-focused education.

Read President Gertler’s full interview with BW Education

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