Valerie
Executive Director
Learning Assistant Program

School of Education, Room 320D
University of Colorado Boulder
249 UCB
Boulder, CO 80309

Valerie Otero is a Professor of Science Education at the University of Colorado Boulder, specializing in Physics Education Research. She received her bachelor’s degree from the University of New Mexico and her M.S. and PhD from the University of California, San Diego. She is co-founder and executive director of the Colorado Learning Assistant program, the International Learning Assistant Alliance, and the Physics through Evidence, Empowerment through Reasoning (PEER Physics) Suite. Dr. Otero has advised the National Academy of Sciences, the American Physical Society, the National Governor’s Association, and NASA on issues in undergraduate STEM education, high school teacher preparation, and pre-college science. Her innovative instructional models have spread throughout the world, reaching hundreds of universities throughout the U.S. and in 14 other countries. In addition to her transformative work in STEM education, she is known for her work on the history of physics education reform. Dr. Otero is a Chicana, first generation college student, who grew up working after school at her parent’s grocery store and at the New Mexico State Fair, where she still works today. Dr. Otero is committed to building and sustaining programs that reach diverse stakeholders in STEM education with the ultimate goal of inspiring and supporting students from minoritized groups to find self-love, belonging, and advocacy through science