ASCN Blog

Funding Educational Change Projects: A Panel Discussion at the 2019 Transforming Institutions Conference


Posted: Apr 18 2019 by
Kate White
Western Michigan University
Kate White (Western Michigan University), ASCN Research Director
Institutional Change: Guiding Theories, Costs and Benefits
Target Audience: Post-doctoral Fellows, Graduate Students, College/University Staff, Tenured/Tenure-track Faculty, Non-tenure Track Faculty, Institution Administration
Program Components: Outreach:Presentations/Talks

The panel on funding at the 2019 Transforming Institutions Conference featured two representatives from funding agencies: David Asai (Senior Director for Science Education, HHMI) and Andrea Nixon (Program Director, Division of Undergraduate Education and Co-Lead, Improving Undergraduate STEM Education (IUSE) Program, NSF). Gita Bangera (Bellevue College, moderator) introduced our panelists, who started by discussing current initiatives at HHMI and NSF.

David Asai presented HHMI's new competition in the Inclusive excellence initiative; Andrea Nixon discussed NSF's programs in the Directorate for Education and Human Resources (EHR Core Research and Building Capacity in STEM Educational Research/BCSER) and their new solicitation for Improving Undergraduate STEM Education (IUSE) grants in the Institutional and Community Transformation Track.

Our panelists answered audience questions and we share some of their responses below. More

Breaking Down Silos meeting contributes to the goals of Working Group 1


Posted: Feb 12 2019 by
Daniel Reinholz
San Diego State University
Tessa Andrews
University of Georgia
Tessa Andrews (University of Georgia) and Dan Reinholz (San Diego State University)
Institutional Change: Guiding Theories
Target Audience: Post-doctoral Fellows, Institution Administration, Graduate Students, College/University Staff, Non-tenure Track Faculty, Tenured/Tenure-track Faculty
Program Components: Institutional Systems
Twenty-five researchers met for a 2.5-day meeting at the Center for Mathematics and Science Education at San Diego State University to discuss change theories. This working meeting was supported by a National Science Foundation conference grant (#1830897/1830860) and led by PIs Daniel Reinholz and Tessa Andrews. The meeting brought together early-career scholars to foster cross-disciplinary sense-making and collaborations around change theories. Meeting attendees included graduate students, postdoctoral researchers, faculty of higher education, project advisors, and Discipline-Based Education Research (DBER) faculty in the disciplines of mathematics, biology, physics, geoscience, chemistry, and engineering. More

Shared leadership for student success at UW-Whitewater


Posted: Feb 7 2019 by
Meg Waraczynski
University of Wisconsin-Whitewater
Jodie Parys
University of Wisconsin-Whitewater
Susan Elrod
University of Wisconsin-Whitewater
Susan Elrod, Jodie Parys, and Meg Waraczynski, University of Wisconsin-Whitewater
Institutional Change: Guiding Theories, Change Leaders
Target Audience: Institution Administration, Tenured/Tenure-track Faculty, College/University Staff, Non-tenure Track Faculty
Program Components: Outreach, Institutional Systems, Supporting Students

Colleges and universities across the country are facing increasing pressure to enroll, retain and graduate more students at a time when the environment for higher education is competitive and often contentious. In order for institutions to be successful in these student success endeavors, everyone must work together. We are all familiar with shared governance as a central tenet of higher education but those processes apply primarily to policy development and decision-making. We argue that shared leadership is required as a holistic approach to goal development and implementation of strategic priorities that foster student and institutional success. In this model, both administrators and faculty/staff leaders play key roles that are essential to the long-term success and sustainability of student success initiatives. Administrators provide a framework for initiatives as they relate to the broader campus community; foster connections between individuals engaged in similar work; provide strategic support and remove barriers to progress; and hold the campus accountable for achieving shared goals. Shared leaders capitalize on their discipline expertise and commitment to student success and program outcomes to fill in the pieces of the framework. They utilize their classroom and program experience to design, test, and apply proposed solutions and also retain ownership of the initiatives and solutions. More

Building on the BOSE Report of Indicators for STEM Education


Posted: Mar 23 2018 by
David Bressoud
Macalester College
David Bressoud, Macalester College
Institutional Change: Guiding Theories, Change Leaders
Target Audience: Non-tenure Track Faculty, Tenured/Tenure-track Faculty, Institution Administration, College/University Staff
Program Components: Professional Development:Diversity/Inclusion, Supporting Students:Academic Support, Professional Preparation

As everyone probably knows by now, the National Academies have released their Indicators for Monitoring Undergraduate STEM Education.

There clearly is much overlap with the charge to the Working Group on Demonstrating Change. We would appreciate informal discussion around two questions:
  1. Is there anything left for us to do?
  2. Assuming the answer to #1 is "yes," how can we shape our work so as to build on this report? More

Implementing Integrated Comprehensive Student Programs in STEM: Challenges and Facilitators from the CSU STEM Collaboratives


Posted: Mar 21 2018 by
Elizabeth Holcombe
Indiana University-Bloomington
Elizabeth Holcombe, University of Southern California
Institutional Change: Guiding Theories, Equity and Inclusion
Target Audience: Institution Administration, Tenured/Tenure-track Faculty, College/University Staff, Non-tenure Track Faculty
Program Components: Supporting Students:Academic Support, Institutional Systems:Strategic Planning, Supporting Students:Mentoring Program

In my last post, I described the benefits of integrated support programs for underrepresented students in STEM. These integrated programs bridge organizational silos and build a unified community of support, in which faculty and staff work together to break down barriers to student success. The campuses that participated in the CSU STEM Collaboratives project saw increased student success and other organizational benefits as a result of creating integrated programs.

While integration across functional areas represents a promising strategy for supporting student success, it represents a new way of working in higher education. Implementing integrated programs presents some unique challenges that may not be evident when implementing other types of interventions. In this post, I will briefly discuss a few of these challenges, as well as some strategies that STEM Collaboratives campuses used to overcome them. More

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