Wilbert J. McKeachie

Wilbert McKeachie
Born (1921-08-24) August 24, 1921
Nationality American
Alma mater University of Michigan
Known for McKeachie’s Teaching Tips
Scientific career
Fields Psychology
Institutions University of Michigan
Doctoral advisor Donald Marquis

Wilbert James "Bill" McKeachie (born August 24, 1921) is a retired American psychologist. He served as president of the American Psychological Association, the American Psychological Foundation and the American Association of Higher Education. He was a longtime faculty member at the University of Michigan and is the author of a widely read textbook on college teaching.



In 1949, McKeachie earned a PhD from the University of Michigan,[1] where he joined the faculty for the rest of his career. In 1950, McKeachie distributed a manual to his teaching assistants that covered educational strategies. The manual evolved into McKeachie’s Teaching Tips.[2]

McKeachie served as the 1976 president of the American Psychological Association (APA). He had been the president of the Society for the Teaching of Psychology (APA Division 2) in 1955-1956.[3] McKeachie was president of the American Psychological Foundation (APF) and he delivered the APF's Arthur W. Staats Lecture for Unifying Psychology in 2011.[4] He also chaired divisions of the American Association of University Professors, the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the Center for Social Gerontology.[5] McKeachie was an editorial board member for twenty journals.

Honors and awards

Later life

Dr. McKeachie continued to teach until the age of 85, when he had his hips and shoulder replaced. He said that the surgeries were a result of a 50-year career as a fast-pitch softball pitcher; he cited his three softball no-hitters in 1976, the year of his APA presidency, as proud moments.[2]


The Society for the Teaching of Psychology created the Wilbert J. McKeachie Teaching Excellence Award in 1980. Through 2004, it was awarded to an early career teacher or a graduate student. The award has recognized graduate students since 2005, as a separate award honors early career teaching.[6]

Selected works


  • McKeachie’s Teaching Tips (1950)


  1. Bembenutty, Hefer (October 2008). "The Teacher of Teachers Talks about Learning to Learn: An Interview with Wilbert (Bill) J. McKeachie". Teaching of Psychology. 35 (4): 363–372. doi:10.1080/00986280802390787. Retrieved June 14, 2013.
  2. 1 2 "One on One - with Bill McKeachie" (PDF). The Psychologist. 22 (7): 648. 2009. Retrieved June 14, 2013.
  3. "Division 2 Presidents". American Psychological Association. Retrieved June 14, 2013.
  4. "Arthur W. Staats Lecture for Unifying Psychology". American Psychological Foundation. Retrieved June 14, 2013.
  5. "Wilbert McKeachie". Learning Support Centers in Higher Education. Retrieved June 14, 2013.
  6. "Excellence in Teaching Award Winners". Society for the Teaching of Psychology. Retrieved June 14, 2013.
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