Members of the Quality Council

The Quality Council is the provincial body responsible for assuring the quality of all programs leading to degrees and graduate diplomas granted by Ontario’s publicly assisted universities and the integrity of the universities’ quality assurance processes.

Council membership includes experts spanning the Ontario university sector, as well as an out-of-province expert, a bilingual member, and a citizen member.

Paul Gooch

P. Gooch

Paul W Gooch holds a Ph.D. in philosophy from the University of Toronto, where he has taught for four decades.  His academic administrative experience has been at many levels, as chair of humanities at the Scarborough campus, as associate dean, vice-dean and acting dean in the School of Graduate Studies, and as Vice-Provost dealing with faculty issues, academic integrity, and academic policy including reviews.  From 2001 until June 2015 he was president of Victoria University, federated with the University of Toronto.   His research and publications are in ancient philosophy, philosophical theology, philosophy of religion, and ethics.

Professor Gooch has broad knowledge of Canadian universities, and extensive experience in conducting, commissioning and appraising academic and institutional reviews.  He was chair of the Standing Committee on Acts and Bylaws of Universities Canada (formerly the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada), dealing with questions of academic freedom and conditions of membership.  He has reviewed academic programs in several provinces, and has been a member of the Campus Alberta Quality Council since 2012.

Neil Besner

Neil Besner
Member / Out-of-Province Quality Assurance Expert

Born in Montreal, Neil Besner grew up in Rio de Janeiro and has travelled and taught widely in Brazil.  He taught Canadian literature at the University of Winnipeg from 1987 to 2017, and has spoken about or taught Canadian literature in many countries. He held various senior administrative posts at UW since becoming Chair of the English Department (1993-2000), including Dean of Humanities; Dean of Arts; Associate Vice-President, International; Vice-President, Students and International; and Vice-President, Research and International. He served as Provost and Vice-President, Academic from 2012 until his retirement in 2017.  From 2013-16 he was a member of CAQC, Campus Alberta Quality Council. He was responsible for the University of Winnipeg’s first Integrated Research and Academic Plan (2016) and for the design and implementation of the requirement for all entering students of a half course on Indigenous Knowledge (2016).

He writes mainly on Canadian literature, with books on Mavis Gallant, Alice Munro, and an edited collection on Carol Shields; his prize-winning translation into English of a Brazilian biography of the poet Elizabeth Bishop in 2002 (Flores Raras e Banalíssimas: A História de Elizabeth Bishop e Lota de Macedo Soares) was the major source for the award-winning 2013 feature film “Reaching for the Moon” (“Flores Raras”). In 2001-02 he was the Seagram’s Chair at the McGill Institute for the Study of Canada, and from 2002-04 he served as President of ACCUTE (Association of Canadian College and University Teachers of English). Since 2004 he has been General Editor of the Laurier Poetry Series (LPS) with Wilfrid Laurier University Press, with over thirty volumes in print.

Alice Hovorka

Member / Faculty Dean Representative

Alice J. Hovorka is Professor and Dean at the Faculty of Environmental and Urban Change, York University. She earned her PhD in Geography from Clark University in 2003 and became a Humboldt Research Fellow in 2009. Her research program broadly explores human-environment relationships, with specializations in animal geographies (currently leading the SSHRC-funded The Lives of Animals research group), gender and environment, urban geography, Southern Africa, and the scholarship of teaching and learning. As Dean at York University, she is focused on enhancing experiential education, research excellence, and international partnerships in the realm of environmental and urban change. An award-winning instructor, Hovorka is passionate about teaching and learning. She has led numerous curriculum development and quality assurance processes at departmental, faculty and institutional scales, in multiple university settings (York University, Queen’s University and University of Guelph), with a particular interest in instructor development, program-level visioning, and student learning experiences and outcomes.

Shirley Hoy

S. Hoy
Citizen Member

Shirley Hoy worked in the public service of the City of Toronto and the Ontario provincial government in different capacities for over 30 years.  She served as City Manager of Toronto from 2001 to 2008.  From 2009 to 2014, she was the CEO of the Toronto Lands Corporation, a subsidiary of the Toronto District School Board, responsible for the management and disposal of surplus school properties. Currently, in semi-retirement, she is a Senior Advisor at Strategy Corp, a public affairs & management consulting firm.

In her volunteer activities, she served one term on the Board of Regents of Victoria University, U of T, and 3 terms on the Governing Council of U of T, with responsibilities as vice-chair for 3 years, and in 2016 -17, as Chair of the Council.   Shirley also served on the board and its Chair at the United Way of Greater Toronto.

Shirley has a BA, and MSW from University of Toronto, and a MPA from Queen’s University.

Michael Khan

Member / OCAV Representative

Dr. Michael Khan has been Trent University’s Provost and Vice-President Academic since August 2020. He was previously the Dean of Human Kinetics at the University of Windsor where he oversaw the Department of Kinesiology and Athletics & Recreational Services. Prior to his appointment at the University of Windsor, he was the Head of the School of Sport, Health and Exercise Sciences at Bangor University, Wales, UK.  In both the UK and Canada, Dr. Khan led strategic growth and capital development in the face of financial challenges; introduced new undergraduate and graduate programs; was active in marketing, recruitment, and fundraising; increased research grants and productivity; established links with industry and public sector; promoted equity, diversity, and inclusion; reflecting his strong belief in investing in people and infrastructure.

Dr. Khan grew up in Trinidad and Tobago, holds a Ph.D. in Human Kinetics from the University of British Columbia, an M.A. in Kinesiology from the University of Western Ontario, and a B.Sc. in Geophysics from McGill University.

With a research background in cognitive processes underlying movement control and learning, Dr. Khan’s research focuses on the visual control of manual movements. As a former elite athlete and coach, Prof. Khan also has an interest in talent identification and expertise development. He has published on a range of topics including the role of visual feedback in skill acquisition, target-directed movements, selective attention, dual-task interference, and rapid decision making.

Susan McCahan

Photo of Susan McCahan with brick wall background
Member / OCAV Representative

Susan McCahan is the Vice-Provost, Innovations in Undergraduate Education and Vice-Provost, Academic Programs at the University of Toronto.  She is a professor in the Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering.  Her research area is in engineering education and specifically universal instructional design and assessment practices. She is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and has been the recipient of several major teaching awards including the 3M National Teaching Fellowship. Her office manages quality assurance reviews and the governance of new programs. As Vice Provost, Innovations in Undergraduate Education, her portfolio revolves around the quality of the academic experience for the University’s 71,000 undergraduate students.  In addition, her portfolio includes educational technology, online learning, and the Centre for Teaching Support and Innovation, which is the University’s central teaching center.

Andrew McWilliams

A. McWilliams
Member / University Representative

Andrew McWilliams earned his BSc from Dalhousie University in 1996, and both his MSc (1999) and PhD (2001) from the University of Toronto. For two years he worked as a Post-Doctoral Fellow at the University of Calgary. In  2003, he was hired as faculty at Ryerson University, where he is currently an Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Chemistry and Biology. His research interests include the development of new materials with anti-microbial properties, as well as development and validation of new teaching technologies with applications in introductory, organic and inorganic chemistry courses.

Dr. McWilliams has served as a member of the Ryerson University Senate since 2014. During his tenure at Ryerson, he has held several roles related to program planning and development including serving as a member of the Senate Sub-Committee on Experiential Learning, acting as the Co-op Faculty Advisor for the Chemistry, Biology and Contemporary Science Programs, serving as the Academic Coordinator for the First Year and Common Science Office, and, serving as the Academic Coordinator member for Chemistry and Biology programs at the G. Raymond Chang School of Continuing Education. He also currently serves as the Academic Colleague for Ryerson University

Brittany Paat

Member / University Representative

Brittany Paat is from Sault Ste. Marie where she has been working at Algoma University since 2012 in various capacities as both a staff member and a faculty member. Since 2015, Brittany has been responsible for assisting with all quality assurance activities and policies at the university and championing the continuous quality improvement of the university’s academic programming.  She brings a wealth of practical, first hand knowledge and experience in working with academic programs to the Quality Council. Brittany is a graduate of both Algoma University and the University of Ottawa where she received her Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts degrees, respectively.

Patrice Smith

Member / Graduate Dean Representative

Patrice Smith is the Dean of the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Affairs (FGPA) at Carleton University.  Prior to beginning her role as Dean of FGPA, Dr. Smith was the Associate Dean (Academic Affairs) in the Faculty of Science.

In her role as Dean of FGPA, she oversees all aspects of the graduate student experience, from recruitment to graduation.  She also plays a critical role in curriculum planning/design and graduate program governance, and is a member of the Carleton University Senate. She has also served as a member of Carleton’s Board of Governors.

Dr. Smith holds a PhD in Neuroscience from the University of Ottawa.  Prior to pursuing her doctoral studies, she obtained a B.Sc. (Honours) in Biochemistry. Before joining Carleton in 2008, she held a CIHR-funded postdoctoral fellowship at Harvard University.  She continues to pursue her research as a Full Professor in Carleton’s Department of Neuroscience, in which she focuses on understanding the response of the nervous system to injury and disease. Her work attempts to identify novel mechanisms to promote recovery from ailments such as stroke and Parkinson’s disease. She also continues to supervise graduate and undergraduate trainees in her research laboratory at Carleton and is passionate about the development and delivery of high-quality programs at all university levels.

Pamela J. Bryden

Chair, Appraisal Committee / Ex-officio

Dr. Pamela J. Bryden is a Professor and Chair in the Department of Kinesiology and Physical Education at Wilfrid Laurier University. She has held administrative roles in the University including Chair, Associate Dean in the Faculty of Science, Acting Dean of Science, and founder and Director of the Sun Life Centre for Healthy Communities. Professor Bryden has engaged in the quality assurance process from several perspectives, including the creation and evaluation of new programs and cyclical reviews, a member of Laurier’s Program Review Subcommittee that oversees the quality assurance process, and as a member of the Appraisal Committee of the Quality Council since 2018.

Professor Bryden’s research has focused on the cognitive, perceptual, and motor determinants of behaviour in normal and clinical populations across the lifespan, and, in particular, on the mechanisms underlying lateral dominance. Currently, Pam and her team are exploring motor performances in typically developing children and youth, as well as individuals with developmental disabilities (e.g., ASD, ADHD). Her research program in motor development and control has been funded by an NSERC Discovery Grant continually for over 20 years. She has over 100 peer-reviewed journal articles (>1900 citations and h-index = 28) and book chapters, along with over 100 conference presentations. She is currently the Specialty Chief Editor for the Developmental Psychology section of Frontiers in Psychology.

Douglas McDougall

Chair, Audit Committee / Ex-officio

Professor Doug McDougall is Chair of the Department of Curriculum, Teaching and Learning (CTL), and a professor of Mathematics Education. He serves as a member of the University of Toronto Governing Council and Chair of Academic Board. Previously, he was Associate Dean, Programs (2015-2019), Chair of CTL (2010-2015), and Master of Teaching Coordinator (2000-2009). An experienced academic administrator, Dr. McDougall served on the Academic Board (2005-2014, 2020-present), was Chair (2012-2014) and Vice-chair (2006-2012) of the Committee on Academic Policy and Programs, and serves on the Academic Appeals Committee and Honorary Degrees Committee.

Professor McDougall has been a member of the Audit Committee of Quality Council since 2016 and has served as chair of the Audit Committee and Audit Executive Committee since 2021. He has been a member of six Audit Teams over these years. During his time as a faculty member at OISE, he has supervised 55 doctoral students and 23 master students to completion, and currently is supervising 10 doctoral students. Dr. McDougall’s research is directed at helping mathematics teachers provide better supports for students; particularly those situated in challenging circumstances. He has had research projects in China, Cuba, Greece, and Canada.

Chris Evans

Photo of Chris Evans, a white man with a white goatee and black frame glasses wearing a suit. The background is plain grey.
Executive Director / Ex-officio

Dr. Chris Evans holds a PhD in chemistry from the University of Ottawa. He held increasingly senior leadership roles at Toronto Metropolitan University (TMU), including department Chair, Associate Dean, inaugural Vice Provost Academic and Interim Provost. In these roles he contributed to the University’s trajectory of growth and innovation. Chris’ scholarly focus has always been cross-disciplinary and he has taught and performed research in the Faculties of Science, Engineering and Architectural Science and Communication and Design at TMU.

Chris has championed the promotion of curriculum quality assurance for many years. As Vice Provost Academic, he led the design, Senate approval and implementation of TMU’s Institutional Quality Assurance Policies and processes. He also worked closely with the Quality Council on planning key contact meetings, led the preparation for TMU’s first Quality Council audit and founded the University’s Office for Curriculum Quality Assurance. Chris also played a pioneering role in promoting the experiential learning curriculum for entrepreneurship, known as Zone Learning.

Prior to joining TMU, Chris was a faculty member at the University of Iceland. His scholarly interests include organic photochemistry, deterioration of archival photographic images and experiential learning pedagogy. He has served on TMU’s Board of Governors as well as on the Board of e-Campus Ontario.