By supporting experimentation, innovation, and evidence-based practices, the Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning seeks to create transformational learning experiences for faculty, graduate students, and undergraduates in Harvard's Faculty of Arts and Sciences.

Mission & History

Our mission includes:

  • discovering new and better ways to teach by partnering with faculty and students to catalyze creativity, experimentation and innovation
  • cultivating excellent instruction through effective training and support for faculty, graduate students and undergraduates in teaching and scholarly communication


The Bok Center was established in 1975 to enhance the quality of undergraduate education in Harvard College. Originally named the Harvard-Danforth Center (in recognition of the Danforth Foundation grant that funded the Center at the outset) it was renamed in 1991 to honor former Harvard President Derek Bok, an active supporter of the Center both during his presidency (1971–1991) and today. Traditionally, retiring Harvard presidents have had buildings named in their honor; President Bok is the first to have his name given instead to an organization. Harvard's continuing support of the Center in the years following its founding reflects a belief that research, teaching, and learning are compatible at the very highest levels.

Professor Robert Lue was named the inaugural Richard L. Menchel Faculty Director of the Bok Center in February 2013.

Past Annual Reports

2017-2018 annual report cover 2017-2018
2017 Annual Report 2016-2017



three glasses of white wine touching in "cheers"

Congratulations to the 2020 Derek C. Bok Award recipients

July 1, 2020

Congratulations to the recipients of the 2020 Derek C. Bok Award!

The Derek C. Bok Award for Excellence in Graduate Student Teaching of Undergraduates is given each year by the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences to five teaching fellows who have been nominated by their departments. The award includes a $1,000 prize from a gift given by David G. Nathan '51, M.D. '55 (Robert A. Stranahan Distinguished Professor of Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School) and his wife Jean Louise Friedman Nathan.

Read more about these accomplished teaching fellows...

Read more about Congratulations to the 2020 Derek C. Bok Award recipients
Erin Hutchinson

Reflections from a Recently Graduated Pedagogy Fellow

June 30, 2020

With the celebration of Harvard’s first-ever virtual Commencement now complete, the Bok Center bids a fond farewell to another cohort of alumni, including dozens of undergraduate and graduate student fellows. Though they may have received their degrees in topics ranging from Hebrew Philology to Human Evolutionary Biology, their shared commitment to cultivating a community of thoughtful and reflective teachers and communicators here at Harvard will serve all of them well in their future careers. We are proud of their many accomplishments, and look forward to hearing great things...

Read more about Reflections from a Recently Graduated Pedagogy Fellow
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Contact Us

50 Church St. Office

Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning
50 Church Street
3rd Floor
Cambridge, MA 02138-2901

125 Mt. Auburn St. Office

Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning
125 Mount Auburn Street
3rd Floor
Cambridge, MA 02138-2901



Join Our Team

With over two dozen staff and more than one hundred undergraduate and graduate student fellows, the Bok Center is building a community of people dedicated to enhancing teaching and learning at Harvard. Don't miss your opportunity to find out how you can contribute to our mission!

See open positions