This course was eye-opening, life-changing, and just fascinating… Dr. Rappaport’s clinical expertise and willingness to share her experience is invaluable, and the choice of course of readings is clearly purposeful and gives a good grounding for discussion. This course is so unique and a very special learning experience.

— Harvard student

From Dr. Rappaport’s early career teaching elementary school in Harlem, to teaching psychiatry residents, to her current Harvard Freshman Seminar, she has always been a dedicated, passionate teacher. She loves the opportunity to work with students of all ages and invite them to ask big questions, share paradigms that give insight into challenging situations, and develop practical strategies that meet the needs of families, children, and schools.

Dr. Rappaport currently teaches the following courses:

Frameworks for Understanding Psychological Development, Disorder and Treatment:Learning through Literature and Research, Harvard Freshman Seminar 25n | Course Description
  • The innovative Freshman Seminar program for Harvard undergraduates exposes first year students to a unique learning experience through close interaction with senior faculty. This small group freshman seminar introduces students to a number of topics relating to psychological and mental illness early in their college careers. The seminar combines medical readings that provide practical knowledge, narrative readings to understand how patients experience the meaning of illness and how development-related mental illness is portrayed in the press, and discussions with visiting speakers who are living with mental illness. Understanding how conditions such as autism, depression, and loss are described in both clinical research and literature helps students appreciate the biological vulnerabilities and relational patterns that may disrupt human connections. Freshmen facilitate and create final projects as varied as research projects, dance performances, and creative essays.
School Consultation Seminar and Supervision, Cambridge Health Alliance Child Psychiatry Residency Program
  • Dr. Rappaport developed a ten-month school consultation rotation for child psychiatry fellows to teach them the necessary skills to provide assessments and consultations in schools. Skills for special education advocacy and school consultation are taught through a case-based model and review of assessments. The fellows are trained in how to communicate effectively with educators and provide professional development that enhances teachers’ efficacy with students. This rotation has been referred to as a “cutting-edge paradigm shift,” as child psychiatry programs generally provide little guidance in school consultation.
Medicine and Literature, Harvard Medical School elective
  • Dr. Rappaport and Dr. Wes Boyd teach a spring elective course for medical students that uses close reading of classic and modern fiction and non-fiction to explore questions of mortality, ethics, and compassion that arise in the practice of medicine. Students will consider how we preserve our compassion and care for dying patients in the face of our own mortality, the arbitrariness of sickness and health, and other ethical and existential issues that arise in the daily practice of medicine.

Dr. Rappaport has previously taught the following course:

Frameworks for Understanding Child and Adolescent Development, Cambridge Health Alliance Adult Psychiatry Residency Program
  • Dr. Rappaport developed and taught a year-long course on normal and abnormal child development for adult psychiatry residents. The curriculum was selected as a model curriculum in 2013 by the American Association of Directors of Psychiatric Residency Training. The curriculum, refined over eight years, brings together dynamic lecturers and pertinent readings to provide the residents with both a conceptual overview of development and specific information and strategies they need to improve their practice with adults and families. The course exposes adult residents to critical information including how to assess family functioning, strengths, and vulnerabilities, normal and atypical child development, diagnostic formulation in children and adolescents, and differential diagnosis and assessment of suicidality in children and adolescents.