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New book about OISE honours those 'who opened doors for the future'

Prof. Emeritus David Booth launches new book, OISE: 50 Years of Impact

March 1, 2017


Professor David Booth

In recognition of his new book, OISE: 50 Years of Impact, below, author David Booth, Professor Emeritus, gives an inside look at his latest project which celebrates the history of the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education.

Prof. Booth, who began teaching at the Faculty of Education at the University of Toronto in the 1970s, then began at OISE in the late 1980s, says part of his inspiration for writing the book was to, “recognize those who opened the doors for the future.”

Briefly describe your new book, OISE: 50 Years of Impact. What can a reader expect to learn?

David Booth: This book, in a magazine format, celebrates the 50 years of achievement of the place called OISE, snapshots in words and images, of the five decades of graduate research and teaching that have led to the outstanding reputation of OISE internationally.

Readers will discover the beginnings of OISE, and its development over the years. The strength of the departments is a hallmark of OISE, and the records of their research, writings, awards, and conferences, as well as the variety and comprehensive nature of their course offerings, are testaments to this faculty’s success. As well, readers will find a brief history of teacher education, from Bachelor of Education to Master of Teaching, with school partnerships, alongside the many contributions of continuing education. And the enormous value of the OISE support staff is evident throughout the book.

I personally enjoyed reading about the new student services unit, the overview of our library and the education commons in the lives of students and faculty. I want to mention the information in the book about the students at OISE: their studies, their awards, their research, their academic and social contributions. Readers will also see the images of the building itself, its changes over the years, the art on the walls, the old and new facilities.

Why did you feel it was so important to document these moments, stories and achievements?

David Booth: I have worked at the faculties of education of the University of Toronto for over 40 years, and personally wanted a memory book of the space and place called OISE. Discovering the wide-ranging aspects of this building was such an eye-opener, even after living inside it for as long as I have. It is so important that we learn about each other in this 12-storey high rise, and that we recognize those who opened the doors for the future.


OISE building under constructionFrom the archives: Construction of the OISE building


What has been the most memorable or meaningful part of this experience for you?

David Booth: Working with the committee, we explored the OISE archives, and realized the significant history of this place, the quality of the faculty and staff and their contributions over the years, and the progressive changes as OISE continued to evolve.

In researching and writing this book, did you learn anything that surprised you? Share that with us.

David Booth: Discovering the beginnings of OISE revealed the story of the academic journey of bringing graduate education to our province. OISE began as an idea that became a reality.

Anything you’d like to add?

David Booth: Thanks to our team, and especially to Lisa’s design, the book is beautiful outside and inside, and a gentle album of the life of OISE over 50 years.

For a copy of OISE: 50 Years of Impact, please contact Danny Cavanagh at or David Booth at 416-978-0320 or

David Booth also thanks Sim Kapoor, Lisa Rupchand, Danny Cavanagh, Lara Cartmale, Dorian Nicholson and everyone else who was part of this book’s creation.