AAC&U Leads STEM Faculty and Administrators in Curriculum Reform on the White House’s Active Learning Day
Washington, DC—Led by the Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) and its Project Kaleidoscope (PKAL), over four hundred STEM faculty and administrators— representing more than 160 institutions or higher education and STEM professional societies—pledged to participate in Active Learning Day, organized by the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy as part of its nationwide Call to Action to improve education in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). These educators pledged to support the kinds of active teaching and learning strategies in STEM classrooms that are culturally responsive to today’s undergraduate population.
Throughout Active Learning Day, STEM faculty and administrators spent at least ten minutes implementing active teaching and learning strategies, identifying innovative ways to deepen and extend institutional commitments to active teaching and learning, sharing best practices with colleagues, and producing videos of active teaching strategies in practice.
“What is most significant about these pledges is that they extend beyond mere symbolism of a shared interest in active learning in STEM, and reveal a deeper commitment to the systematic and systemic reform changes in undergraduate STEM education that must take place if we are ever to overcome institutional barriers, expand beyond localized classroom successes, and achieve universal understanding and adoption of active teaching strategies across all of US STEM higher education,” says Kelly Mack, vice president for undergraduate STEM education at AAC&U.
Over the next few weeks, AAC&U will use its STEM Central web platform as a vehicle for launching an online video library of Active Learning Day activities that occurred. This library will provide STEM faculty with necessary resources for more effectively implementing active teaching and learning methods.
“Active learning is central to preparing students for the challenges of the twenty-first century,” says AAC&U President Lynn Pasquerella. “AAC&U is proud to support best practices in advancing skills that will help students thrive in the classroom and beyond.”
AAC&U is the leading national association concerned with the quality, vitality, and public standing of undergraduate liberal education. Its members are committed to extending the advantages of a liberal education to all students, regardless of academic specialization or intended career. Founded in 1915, AAC&U now comprises more than 1,350 member institutions—including accredited public and private colleges, community colleges, research universities, and comprehensive universities of every type and size.
AAC&U functions as a catalyst and facilitator, forging links among presidents, administrators, and faculty members who are engaged in institutional and curricular planning. Its mission is to reinforce the collective commitment to liberal education and inclusive excellence at both the national and local levels, and to help individual institutions keep the quality of student learning at the core of their work as they evolve to meet new economic and social challenges.
Information about AAC&U membership, programs, and publications can be found at www.aacu.org.