2014 Transforming STEM Higher Education: Conference Highlights & Podcasts

Thursday, November 6, 7:00–8:00 p.m.

Keynote Address 
Creating a Powerful Eco-system of STEM Success
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Jamie Maatkare Bracey, Director of STEM Education, Outreach and Research, College of Engineering, Temple University

The federal government invests more than $3 billion per year on hundreds of STEM programs, yet there has been little measurable change in STEM student retention, graduation, or workforce readiness, particularly for underrepresented groups.  Is it possible that the larger issue is not engagement, but rather inspiring motivation to persist? Answering this question requires that we rethink conventional wisdom about pedagogy, and incorporate the social reality of how students experience learning. Dr. Bracey will present outcomes from Temple University’s STE/A/M 2.0—an ecosystem approach to STEM teaching and learning that successfully integrates social, institutional, and domain cultures into rigorous learning strategies that promote STEM student retention. She will examine culture and cognition research, and explore evidence related to an integration of culture and teaching approaches that help address barriers to STEM learning.

Friday, November 7, 8:30–9:30 a.m.

Assessing STEM Education: Advancing Student and Faculty Success

Anthony L. DePass, Professor of Biology and Director of MBRS (NIH), ADVANCE (NSF) and Understanding Interventions (NIH) Programs, Long Island University Brooklyn Campus

As STEM educators move towards more integrative and active modes of teaching and learning, how can they ensure that the experiences they are designing are leading to the intended student learning outcomes? How are evaluation and assessment methods being designed in ways that connect quantitative and qualitative data to help refine learning environments so that all students benefit from high-quality, high-impact practices?  Dr. DePass will use the case study approach to examine how assessment might be designed, data collected, and findings used to both advance student success and contribute to faculty scholarship, promotion, and tenure.

Saturday, November 8, 8:30–9:30 a.m. 

Celebrating 25 Years of PKAL: Re-Focusing the Kaleidoscope

Allison Morrison-Shetlar, Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, Western Carolina University and PKAL Board Chair; and Kelly Mack, Vice President for Undergraduate STEM Education and PKAL Executive Director, AAC&U

Project Kaleidoscope has been instrumental in empowering STEM faculty to graduate more students in STEM fields who are competitively trained and liberally educated.  Today, PKAL exists as AAC&U’s center of STEM higher education reform and remains committed to its principles, which are also central to AAC&U’s Liberal Education and America’s Promise initiative. Please join us in celebration of 25 years of commitment to cutting-edge, integrative STEM education for all students, and to discuss PKAL’s next steps in leading the nation toward effective and inclusive STEM higher education.

Saturday, November 8, 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Closing Plenary
Transforming STEM Education:  Evidence Based Research on STEM Teaching and Learning

Susan Rundell Singer, Director, Division of Undergraduate Education, National Science Foundation

What strategies and policies are effectively connecting STEM innovation with relevant institutional change agendas such as those for underrepresented student success, general education reform, and assessment? How are campuses using evidence about what works in STEM education to enhance STEM learning for all students. Dr. Singer will share practices that are demonstrating the greatest promise for supporting inclusive approaches to advancing innovation and change in STEM teaching and learning across an array of institutional types.