Nominated by peers and students, professors in brain and cognitive sciences and biology are recognized for excellence in graduate and undergraduate education.

Mehrdad Jazayeri and Hazel Sive awarded 2019 School of Science teaching prizes


The School of Science has announced that the recipients of the school’s 2019 Teaching Prizes for Graduate and Undergraduate Education are Mehrdad Jazayeri and Hazel Sive. Nominated by peers and students, the faculty members chosen to receive these prizes are selected to acknowledge their exemplary efforts in teaching graduate and undergraduate students.

Mehrdad Jazayeri, an associate professor in the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences and investigator at the McGovern Institute for Brain Research, is awarded the prize for graduate education for 9.014 (Quantitative Methods and Computational Models in Neuroscience). Earlier this year, he was recognized for excellence in graduate teaching by the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences and won a Graduate Student Council teaching award in 2016. In their nomination letters, peers and students alike remarked that he displays not only great knowledge, but extraordinary skill in teaching, most notably by ensuring everyone learns the material. Jazayeri does so by considering students’ diverse backgrounds and contextualizing subject material to relatable applications in various fields of science according to students’ interests. He also improves and adjusts the course content, pace, and intensity in response to student input via surveys administered throughout the semester.

Hazel Sive, a professor in the Department of Biology, member of the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research, and associate member of the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, is awarded the prize for undergraduate education. A MacVicar Faculty Fellow, she has been recognized with MIT’s highest undergraduate teaching award in the past, as well as the 2003 School of Science Teaching Prize for Graduate Education. Exemplified by her nominations, Sive’s laudable teaching career at MIT continues to receive praise from undergraduate students who take her classes. In recent post-course evaluations, students commended her exemplary and dedicated efforts to her field and to their education.

The School of Science welcomes nominations for the teaching prize in the spring semester of each academic year. Nominations can be submitted at the school’s website.