Faculty Adoption of STEM Education Reforms: From Constraint to Possibility

Wednesday, January 17th

9:30 am PT | 10:30 am MT | 11:30 am CT | 12:30 pm ET

Presenter: Dr. Cassandra Volpe Horii (Founding Director, Center for Teaching, Learning, and Outreach at the California Institute of Technology; President-Elect of the POD Network in Higher Education)

Registration is closed.


With decades of growing evidence on effective teaching practices in STEM disciplines, much of it field-specific thanks to the Discipline Based Education Research (DBER) communities, information about what to do to improve STEM education is readily available. Yet, national adoption of evidence-based teaching practices in STEM fields lags behind, with abundant examples of short-lived individual efforts and institutional reforms that don't "stick." Something else is going on. One factor at play may be the deeper tensions between new approaches to teaching and faculty members' concepts about identity and the nature of their work in higher education. This webinar will explore key ideas from the literature on faculty work/life, identity, and adoption in an approachable way. Participants will interactively explore tools for identifying and resolving tensions, guiding faculty toward sustainable adoption of evidence-based teaching practices, and engaging or changing institutional structures to address these tensions.


This webinar is designed for faculty, disciplinary, and institutional change agents (e.g., department chairs, vice provosts, administrators, educational developers, faculty learning community facilitators, disciplinary association members and leaders) who are interested in moving the needle on adoption of research-based instructional strategies in STEM fields.


Following the webinar, participants will be prepared to:

  • Recognize the complex interplay between disciplinary/institutional STEM reform efforts and individual adoption.
  • Diagnose roadblocks to adoption using a framework that includes conceptions of faculty identity and work.
  • Apply tools for identifying and resolving tensions that may influence faculty adoption at individual, departmental, institutional, and disciplinary scales.


Registration is closed.

Time - 9:30 am PT | 10:30 am MT | 11:30 am CT | 12:30 pm ET
- 1 hour
Format - Online web presentation via Zoom web meeting software with questions and discussion.
Detailed instructions for joining the webinar will be emailed to registered participants one day prior to the webinar.
Preparation - There is no advance preparation required for this webinar.

Please email Mitchell Awalt (mawalt@carleton.edu) if you have any technical questions about this event.


Cassandra Horii
California Institute of Technology
Dr. Cassandra Volpe Horii (pronounced Vol'-pee Hor-ee') is the Founding Director of the Center for Teaching, Learning and Outreach at the California Institute of Technology. She serves on the Executive Committee and is currently the President-Elect of the POD Network in Higher Education—an organization dedicated to advancing the research and practice of educational development, and one of the largest and oldest educational development organizations in the world. With a background in the sciences, including a BA in Physics (Summa Cum Laude) from the University of Colorado at Boulder and a PhD in Earth and Planetary Science from Harvard University, Dr. Horii has worked at the intersection of faculty development, STEM education, and organizational change for past several decades. Her prior roles have included Dean of the Faculty and Founding Director of the Faculty Center for Professional Development and Curriculum Innovation at Curry College in Milton, MA; Associate Director of the Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning at Harvard University; and lectureships in expository writing, engineering, and applied sciences. She is a regular contributor to the American Association of Physics Teachers Workshop for New Physics and Astronomy Faculty and has received grants, fellowships, and awards from the Association of American Universities, National Science Foundation, Davis Educational Foundation, NASA Earth System Science program, American Geophysical Union, Merck Foundation, Phi Beta Kappa, and Boettcher Foundation.


1) Welcome and introductory remarks by Inese Berzina-Pitcher, ASCN

2) Presentation by Dr. Cassandra Volpe Horii

3) Q&A

4) Webinar Evaluation

Resources and References

Click to watch the webinar screencast (MP4 Video 86.2MB Jan17 18).

Click to download the presentation slides (Acrobat (PDF) 19.7MB Jan17 18).

Click to download the webinar chat (Text File 11kB Jan17 18).

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