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About the Center for STEM Learning

Project Management Team

Paul Chinowsky is the Mortenson Professor of Sustainable Development in the Department of Civil, Environmental, and Architectural Engineering at the University of Colorado. Professor Chinowsky is currently conducting research in the areas of infrastructure adaptation to climate change and community response to extreme events. In the area of climate change, he has developed one of the first models that addresses an engineering perspective on infrastructure adaptation in direct response to climate change. He is currently working on research for groups including the Environmental Protection Agency, United Nations, and the World Bank to continue to refine these models and provide a global baseline for infrastructure adaptation costs. Professor Chinowsky is actively collaborating on these topics with experts from economics, engineering, and climate in a global collaboration network. Professor Chinowsky received his Bachelor and Master in Architecture from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo in 1987 and 1988 respectively. He received his PhD in Civil Engineering from Stanford University in 1991. Email

 

Stanley Deetz is a professor in the Graduate School, a Presidential Teaching Scholar, and Director of the Center for the Study of Conflict, Collaboration and Creative Governance and the Peace and Conflict Studies Program. He is author/co-author of over 140 scholarly articles and author/co-editor of twelve books including the award winning Democracy in an Age of Corporate Colonization. His research focuses on alternative conceptions and practices of communication and democracy and the micro-practices of power focusing primarily in the organizational context. In his professional practice professor Deetz has worked with institutional change and the design of interaction processes for cross-functional and multi-party decision making both within organizations and between organizations and external communities. He has lectured and worked on projects in nineteen countries. He has served as a Senior Fulbright Scholar and is a National Communication Association Distinguished Scholar and an International Communication Association Past-President and Fellow. Email

 

Noah Finkelstein is a Professor of Physics at the University of Colorado Boulder and conducts research and publishes widely in and physics education, specifically studying the conditions that support students’ interest and ability in physics – developing models of context. He is a director of the Physics Education Research (PER) group and a Director of CU’s Center for STEM Learning. He is involved in education policy serving on many national boards (for the APS, AAPT, APLU and AAU), is a Fellow of the American Physical Society, and a Presidential Teaching Scholar for the University of Colorado system. Email

 

Michael Klymkowsky, Professor, Molecular Cellular and Developmental Biology, Organizer of DBER, Co-Director of CU Teach (with Valerie Otero). Klymkowsky has been active in the LA program and course transformation in Molecular Biology. His biology education research focuses on student understanding of foundational concepts in the biological sciences and together with Kathy Garvin Doxas, has developed a Biology Concept Inventory (BCI) as cell as virtual laboratories used as part of the MCDB course Bio fundamentals. Email

 

Daria Kotys-Schwartz, Instructor and MSC-CU Mechanical Engineering Partnership Faculty Coordinator in the Department of Mechanical Engineering. Kotys-Schwartz received classical training in mechanical engineering with a doctoral dissertation focus in engineering education. Her research aims to add to the body of knowledge in three research areas identified by the Engineering Education Research Colloquies: Engineering Learning Mechanisms Research, Engineering Diversity and Inclusiveness Research, and Engineering Learning Systems. Her major projects examine the impacts of altruistic engineering on learning, attitudes, recruitment and retention; the longitudinal technical and professional skill development of engineering students in problem-based learning classes; and, the effectiveness of pre-exam oral assessment. Email

 

Valerie Otero, Associate Professor, School of Education. Otero is the Director of the NSF-DRL Colorado Learning Assistant program, the NSF-DUE Noyce Fellowship program, and Co-Director (with Klymkowsky) of the CU-Teach program. Otero serves on three national boards including American Institute of Physics National Task Force for the Professional Preparation of Teachers of Physics. Her research program investigates the recruitment and development of future science teachers and how these students’ identities shift as science majors become science teachers and as non-science majors become elementary science teachers. She has published broadly from Science Magazine to Science and Children Magazine. Otero is author of two nationally recognized curricula in physical science. Otero and her colleagues have brought in an excess of $10 million to fund their efforts in discipline-based education research. Email

 

Robert Parson, Professor, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, and Fellow of JILA. Professor Parson's formal engagement with STEM education began in 2006, when he became the Chemistry and Biochemistry director for the CU Science Education Initiative. Since then, he has participated in the development and assessment of interactive tutorials for use in chemistry recitation sections, training programs for graduate teaching assistants, models for using Learning Assistants in large chemistry classes, and instruments for measuring students' understanding of fundamental concepts in undergraduate physical chemistry. He is also a co-principal investigator for the PhET project which develops interactive computer simulations for enhancing science education across multiple disciplines and carries out research on the impact of these simulations on student learning and on students' attitudes and beliefs about science. Email

 

Diane Sieber is the Associate Dean for Education in the College of Engineering & Applied Science. Before her appointment, she served as the director of the Herbst Program of Humanities in Engineering and co-directed the ATLAS (Alliance for Technology, Learning, and Society) from 2000 to 2007. Dr. Sieber has numerous accolades for her teaching excellence and research on improving higher education learning and teaching from organizations including the Boulder Faculty Assembly, the CU Alumni Association, and the College of Engineering & Applied Science. She is a President's Teaching Scholar (2009) and Carnegie Teaching Scholar. Before joining the Engineering Faculty, she was an assistant and associate professor in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese here at CU Boulder. Email

 

Eric Stade is a Professor of Mathematics and President's Teaching Scholar at the University of Colorado Boulder. He currently directs the Libby Arts Residential Academic Program, a campus living-and-learning community with an academic focus on the visual and performing arts, and on creativity. For much of his career, Dr. Stade has been actively involved in the mathematical training of future K12 teachers. He regularly coordinates and teaches the Math Department's Spirit and Uses of Mathematics (a.k.a. Math for Elementary Education) course sequence, and presently helps lead the Mathematics Teacher Education Partnership (MTE-P), a nationwide initiative whose goal is "To transform the preparation of secondary mathematics teachers." In recognition of his successful teaching, Dr. Stade was selected by the Rocky Mountain Section of the Mathematical Association of America as the recipient of a 2010 Burton W. Jones Award for Distinguished College or University Teaching of Mathematics. Email