Five– Year Initiative for Improving Undergraduate STEM

Report
AAU Undergraduate
STEM Initiative
Tobin Smith
AAU Vice President for Policy
Mission Statement

The goal of the AAU Undergraduate STEM
Education Initiative is to help influence
change in the culture of STEM
departments at AAU universities so that
they will use evidence-based, studentcentered, active, sustainable pedagogy in
their classes, particularly at the freshman
and sophomore levels.
The Motivation…
The Five Minute University
Rationale
 Workforce needs → Competitiveness

Desire for a scientifically-literate population

New scholarship on what works in the
classroom: evidence-based teaching methods

Several AAU institutions are already at the
forefront of improving STEM undergraduate
education
Problem

Completion

Broad based literacy

Research universities don’t produce
as many STEM majors as other
colleges and universities
Key Components

Framework (Goal #1)

Demonstration Projects (Goal #2)

Incentives (Goals #3 and #4)

Promising Practices (Goal #5)
Framework [Goal #1]
What is the Framework?
A taxonomy of evidence-based practices that can be used to improve STEM
teaching and to measure these improvements.
Core Component  Pedagogy
Who will use it?
The framework is designed to be used by several
different stakeholders including:




Faculty
Administrators
Departments
Institutions
How will it be used?
The framework is usable along several dimensions:
 To improve teaching and learning in the classroom
 To coordinate courses within the department
 To determine how broadly evidence-based techniques are being used
Out with the old…
In with the new…
Demonstration Projects [Goal #2]
A subset of AAU institutions will
be identified to serve as
demonstration sites that will
implement the framework.
Activities will include
developing tools to
measure:
 The quality of teaching
and learning in STEM
classes
 How evidence-based
teaching methods are
being used
 The effects of improved
teaching on STEM and
Non-STEM majors
Vs.
Incentives [Goals #3 and#4]
FEDERAL

Work with federal
agencies on mechanisms
to encourage good
teaching
INSTITUTIONAL
Explore institutional and
departmental incentives for
good teaching
Including:
◦ Working with HHMI and
others on promising
practices for evaluating
teaching in promotion and
tenure
Promising Practices [Goal #5]
To develop effective means for sharing information
about promising & effective undergraduate STEM
programs, approaches, and methods.
Key Projects


Promising Practices Resource Booklet &
Workshop
Program Evaluation Techniques
Other Parallel Efforts

Association of Public Land-grant Universities (APLU)

Business Higher-Education Forum (BHEF)

Project Kaleidoscope (PKAL)
Primary Area(s) of Emphasis
Course
Pedagogy Content/Curriculum
Association of American Universities
(AAU): Undergraduate STEM Education
Initiative
Broader
Institutional
Policies and
Practices
Workforce Development
l
Target Institutions
Retention of
Women, Minorities
Graduate Student
and other UnderTraining/Future represented groups
Faculty Development Faculty Development
in STEM
l
Bay View Alliance (BVA)
l
Association of Public Land-grant
Universities(APLU): Minority Male STEM
Initiative
l
Association of Public Land-grant
Universities(APLU)/American
Association of Community Colleges
(AACC)/Open Learning Initiative (OLI):
Cognitive Coursewares Design
l
Business Higher Education Forum (BHEF):
STEM Higher Education Workforce
Projects

Many others…
l
Center for the Integration of Research,
Teaching, and Learning (CIRTL)
l
l
l
l
Project Kaleidoscope (PKAL): STEM
Student Transfer Success
Bay View Alliance (BVA)
l
Reinvention Center
Vision and Change in Undergraduate
Biology Education
l
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Research
Study
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Course Re-design
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Framework
l
University of Texas-Austin/U-Teach
Institute/National Math & Science
Initiative (NMSI): U-Teach Program
American Physical Society: Support
Programs for Undergraduate Instruction
American Association of Community
Colleges (AACC): Advanced Technical
Education Program
l
l
l
Project Kaleidoscope (PKAL): Leadership
for 21st Century STEM
Mechanisms for Implementation
Community
Demonstration Workshops/Forums/
Colleges Incentives
Projects
Conferences/Seminars
l
l
Project Kaleidoscope (PKAL): Framework
for Institutional Effectiveness in STEM
Learning
Minority
Serving
Institutions
l
l
Howard Hughes Medical Institute
(HHMI): Society of HHMI Professors
Comprehensive
Research and Liberal Arts
Universities
Colleges
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Association of Public Land-grant
Universities (APLU): Science and
Mathematics Teacher Imperative (SMITI)

K-12 Teacher
Development
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Complementary Reports

President’s Council of Advisors on Science &
Technology (PCAST):
Engage to Excel Report

National Research Council (NRC): DisciplineBased Education Research Report (Expected mid2012)
Discussion
and
Q&A

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