Congratulations to Renee Bayer and Ella Greene-Moton for HFRCC award

CREATE is delighted to share that Irene "Renee" Bayer, Principal Investigator of Health in Our Hands (HiOH), and Ella Greene-Moton, Co-Chair of the HiOH-Flint Genesee Partnership, Administrator of the Community Based Organizations Partners - Community Ethics Review Board, and President of the American Public Health Association were honored with the Community-Academic Partnership Award at the Healthy Flint Research Coordinating Center Research Symposium (HFRCC) this fall. 

This award is presented to “one community and one academic person working in partnership with each other where they have demonstrated their commitment to moving Flint forward. These individuals have made positive contributions within the Flint community through their active engagement in community-academic partnerships". 

Ella and Renee have been colleagues for more than 25 years, having met while Renee was working at the University of Michigan. 

We are proud of Renee's and Ella's accomplishments, and for what they have done for the Flint community. 

Read the entire article on the HiOH website:

Photo of Renee Bayer and photo of Ella Greene-Moton

November 8 is National STEM Day - learn more

National STEM/STEAM Day, inaugurated in 2015 by MGA Entertainment, serves the purpose of instilling inspiration and motivation among students to foster greater engagement in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) and the integrated field of science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics (STEAM). 

STEM-related occupations constitute approximately 7% of the total employment opportunities in the United States, and this proportion is anticipated to experience continued growth. Sectors such as medical science, engineering, sociology, information security, and many others rely heavily on the contributions of STEM and STEAM professionals.

On National STEM/STEAM Day, we celebrate those who are already interested in STEM fields and hope to attract new students to STEM disciplines. 

Read more at:


Happy National STEM Day 2023 from you friends at CREATE for STEM

Rick Stiggins Endowment; Call for proposals!

Guidelines for the Rick Stiggins Endowment for the Improvement of the Classroom Assessment Literacy

of Teachers and School Leaders 2023 Submission Process

The Rick Stiggins Endowment for the Improvement of the Classroom Assessment Literacy of Teachers and School Leaders is intended to advance the college’s and the nation’s understanding of how to ensure and provide high-quality pre-service preparation in classroom assessment for teacher candidates. A secondary purpose is to advance understanding of how to build pre-service training in assessment for those enrolled in leadership preparation program. As such, priority work should include:

• Research on the barriers that have kept this content from becoming a regular part of these pre-service curricula in the past.

• Development and field-testing strategies and tactics for removing those barriers.

• The presentation of conferences, seminars, and other similar events to bring visibility to the need for improved pre-service assessment training for teacher and administrator candidates.


Application Process:

1. Candidates shall be College of Education faculty members in a tenure-system appointment engaged in work regarding developing classroom assessment literacy practitioners needed to enhance the achievement of students.

2. In the Fall 2023 competition, candidates may apply for up to $70,000 to be expended over a two-year period (January 1, 2024-December 31, 2025)

3. The selection of the recipient(s) will be made by the Selection Committee, appointed by the Associate Dean of Research of the College of Education. 

4. Applicants must submit a concept paper of not more than five single-spaced pages plus a budget (the budget must include fringe benefits, as appropriate). Applicants are encouraged to consult with ORA staff as they prepare their budgets. Applicants also will participate in an interview process with the Selection Committee. Concept papers and the proposed budget should be uploaded to a Microsoft Team Folder: The concept paper and budget should be compiled in one pdf document, labelled “Rick Stiggins Endowment [Applicant’s Name] 2023.” Applications are due by Friday, November 10, 2023. Results will be announced in December.

5. Recipients are required to provide a report to the Associate Dean of Research at the end of the grant period detailing outcomes of the research. For this grant period, reports should be submitted to the Associate Dean of Research by February 1, 2026. All publicized or presented research will recognize The Ricks Stiggins Endowment as providing support. Recipients are not precluded from applying for subsequent awards.

6. Questions about the application process or other aspects of the award should be directed to Emily Bouck, Interim Associate Dean for Research (

Rick Stiggins Endowment; submissions being accepted

CREATE featured at October 3rd Inform(ED) session hosted by Dean Jerlando Jackson

The CREATE for STEM Institute was asked to give a 20-minute presentation about what we do, where we are, and what makes us unique as part of the October 3, 2023 Inform(ED) webinar series, hosted by College of Education Dean Jerlando Jackson. What an honor to be able to share our varied and multi-faceted work with others in the college!  There were over 70 virtual attendees at the session, which also featured Dr. Kathy Wilbur, Sr. Vice President of MSU's Government Relations office. 

CREATE team members spoke about their role in CREATE, discussing aspects of the Institute's work in which they are a part. It was wonderful to share with others, and also to work on a presentation about the entire CREATE team together!

Many thanks to Dean Jackson for providing an opportunity to explain how we innovate, investigate, and inform as part of our overall goal to improve the teaching and learning of STEM K-16. 

To view the presentation, see the file below. 

College of Education, INFORM(ED), An all-college meeting

CREATE's Renee Bayer promoted to Senior Academic Specialist

Congratulations to Renee, who recently received the new title of Senior Academic Specialist. 

Irene 'Renee' Bayer joined CREATE for STEM in 2012, having spent many years at the University of Michigan. Her area of expertise is in community-academic-practice partnering. Renee has helped to forge a fantastic relationship with administrators in Flint Schools as PI of the Health in Our Hands project, which was recently featured in MSU Today. 

We are so happy for Renee receiving this richly-deserved accolade!


Irene 'Renee' Bayer photo

2023 CREATE Mini-Conference recap

On May 15, 2023, ninety MSU STEM community members (and a few guests from outside of MSU!) convened at the STEM Teaching & Learning building to present posters, share their work, converse with others about theirs, build community, and enjoy a fantastic presentation from our keynote speaker, Dr. Megan Bang, from Northwestern University in Chicago. 

We are delighted that reconstituting this event after the COVID-hiatus brought together so many colleagues from across campus and beyond. The STEM building was a wonderful venue, and we are grateful for the support of the facilities team there, especially Sheena Ballbach. Thank you! And many thanks to those of you who attended and presented a poster. We appreciate it!



Photo of Kevin Haudek presenting poster to an attendee at Mini-Conference
Supporting Photos

Congratulations to Dr. Terrance Burgess on new NSF CAREER grant!

Terrance Burgess, an assistant professor in MSU's College of Education, has been awarded a nearly $630,000 grant from the National Science Foundation. The NSF Faculty Early Career Development Program (CAREER) "supports early-career faculty who have the potential to serve as academic role models in research and education and to lead advances in the mission of their department or organization."

Burgess' work will take place in a Lansing elementary school and focus on students grades 3-5. The goal is to help implement methods by which schools can involve youth in the curriculum development process. Having students be part of the curriculum-making process may help increase excitement and engagement in science - and possibly help students see themselves as scientists. 

Read the entire article on the College of Education website. 



Dr. Terrance Burgess, Assistant Professor of Science Education

Dr. Consuelo Morales selected for MSU's inaugural Community Engaged Research Fellowship

University Outreach and Engagement has launched an exciting new initiative, the Community Engaged Research Fellows Program, beginning Fall, 2023. The program offers a year-long, cohort-based, faculty and academic staff development opportunity. Up to four early and mid-career faculty and four academic staff are chosen from among the applicants to strengthen their community-engaged research (CER) skills, develop CER projects in partnership with communities, and produce scholarly products.

We are delighted that our own Dr. Consuelo Morales, an Academic Specialist (Research) in the CREATE for STEM Institute, has been selected for the Fall '23 cohort! Competition for this program was intense, with nearly four times as many applicants as available slots. Principles of diversity, equity, inclusion and justice are central to Consuelo's work at CREATE on the Health in Our Hands project, and her colleagues at CREATE are so proud and happy about this recognition. 

Congratulations, Consuelo!!


Photo of Dr. Consuelo Morales, Academic Specialist, CREATE for STEM Institute

Devastating earthquakes in Turkey and Syria - please consider donating

Dear Michigan State University Community, 

We are writing to inform you of a devastating series of earthquakes that has struck Turkey on February 6. After 2 earthquakes with a magnitude of 7.8 and 7.6 in Kahramanmaras, a total of 243 earthquakes occurred. Earthquakes caused great damage in the various provinces of Turkey.

More than 35,000 people, including children, were killed and thousands more injured. Unfortunately, the number of people who lost their lives and injured is increasing rapidly. We need immediate support to help residents escape the rubble and provide medical assistance, shelter, clothing, and other equipment to the injured. You can check the following live article to keep updated with the latest news: 

We are asking for your help through this disaster. Please help alleviate this humanitarian crisis by Venmoing @msuturk however much you can. Donations of any amount are incredibly helpful ($1 dollar = 18 Turkish liras, $5 dollars = 3 meals). With the money collected from this Venmo account, we will wire this money to Turkish organizations that directly assist with the relief efforts. Alternatively, you can also directly donate to the organizations like Ahbap itself via Ahbap is a local voluntary network that is currently very active in the affected areas.  

Please reach out to or via Instagram @msu_tsa for any questions or concerns.

Thanks in advance for your support,

Turkish Student Association, Michigan State University



QR code for Venmo donations to earthquake relief

Developing NGSS-aligned 3-Dimensional Learning Assessment Workshop

October 27th (Thursday) -29th (Saturday), 2022

The CREATE for STEM Institute at Michigan State University, with support from Counseling, Educational Psychology and Special Education (CEPSE), held a two and half day workshop to build capacity in lead science teachers, science teacher facilitators and science district leaders to design and develop assessment tasks that align with the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS).

The goals of the workshop:

  • Build capacity to create, evaluate, and use classroom-based formative assessment aligned to NGSS for secondary science classrooms. 
  • Develop a professional learning community for all participants who are middle and high school teachers including state leaders in science education and assessment.

The challenge we face is how to develop 3-dimensional learning assessments. In this workshop, participants learned a research-based systematic process for developing NGSS-aligned 3-dimensional learning assessment. Participants gained hands-on experience working on each phase of the process including unpacking of performance dimensions, developing integrated dimension maps, articulating learning performances, specifying design patterns, and designing tasks and associated rubrics. The process stems from work conducted by the Next Generation Science Assessment collaborative (NGSA process)   

Workshop Objectives:

  • Use a systematic research-based approach (NGSA process) for developing NGSS-aligned 3-dimensional learning assessment.
  • Create, share and evaluate assessment tasks based on the NGSA process.
  • Develop the capability to evaluate and modify existing assessment tasks to determine whether they align with NGSS 3-dimensional learning. 

Workshop Highlights:

  • Rick Stiggins, Founder of the Assessment Training Institute and Christopher Harris, WestED provided a keynote. Link to video.
  • Participants had  time to interact with colleagues and university researchers to design NGSS aligned assessments.
  • Workshop materials and the assessment tasks developed at the workshop are available for public use.
  • All participants had travel, subsistence, and lodging paid for by a gift from Dr. Rick Stiggins who graduated from MSU’s Department of Counseling, Educational Psychology and Special Education.
Rick Stiggins on Zoom; Essential Insight screen; Peng He at podium, Christopher Harris talking

Danny Caballero honored by American Physics Society

We are delighted to share that our colleague Associate Professor Danny Caballero, along with his research team, is being recognized by the APS with an Excellence in Physics Education award. 

Caballero and his team have made great strides in advancing computational skills and incorporating these skills into the physics curricula. PICUP (Partnership for Integrating Computation into Undergraduate Physics) was founded 15 years ago with the focus of offering a portal through which high quality instructional materials can be made available to educators; it is through PICUP that Caballero's team has helped create a much-needed collaboration space for physics and computational science instructors alike.  

Congratulations to the entire team!

Read the entire story in the MSU News. 



American Physics Society, picture of Danny Caballero

Dr. Beth Herbel-Eisenmann named new Director of PRIME

Beth Herbel-Eisenmann, mathematics education faculty member and Professor from the Department of Teacher Education (TE) at MSU, has been named Director of the Program in Mathematics Education (PRIME) and the Mathematics Education Graduate Program Director, effective August 16, 2022. Beth is a 2000 MSU graduate, and returned to MSU in 2008, saying that she "returned to Michigan State after being in academia for seven years, because of the quality of the teacher education and PhD programs and the opportunities to work with many amazing students and the really exceptional faculty.” 

Dr. Herbel-Eisenmann has been an active contributor to the PRIME program since her return, as well as teaching, serving on committees, and mentoring and graduating many PhD students. Beth has been very active in the national mathematics education realm for years, has won several awards and and from 2019-2022, was on assignment at the National Science Foundation where she was a Program Officer. 

Dr. Ralph Putnam served as the PRIME Director until August, 2022. He was a mathematics education faculty member from the Department of Counseling, Educational Psychology and Special Education (CEPSE), who held the position since January 2019, and was a faculty member at MSU since 1986. He officially retired on August 15, 2022. Congratulations to Dr. Putnam for the leadership he showed during his directorship, and best wishes on his retirement!

To read more about the PRIME director transition, click here



Photos of Ralph Putnam and Beth Herbel-Eisenmann

International VARTEL (Virtual & Augmented Reality in Technology-enhanced Learning) Conference

The University of Johannesburg, through its strategic focus on 4IR initiatives is at the forefront in research in the development and use of virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) in STEM education subjects. In recognition of this leadership role, the university has been invited to host the International Virtual and Augmented Reality Technology-Enhanced Learning (VARTEL) Conference, which will take place on December 1-2, 2022, and will bring together top scholars and researchers from around the world to share cutting-edge research with the community of lecturers and teachers in STEM.

For more information about the conference, deadlines for submissions, and registration, go to:


VARTEL logo and University of Johannesburg logo

Haudek and Krajcik receive NSF grant for automatic feedback of constructed response (CR) assessments

Kevin Haudek and Joe Krajcik have been awarded funds from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to design and test an automatic assessment scoring system which provides individualized feedback in the context of a designed NextGeneration Science Standards (NGSS) aligned high school Physical Science curriculum. The project builds on results of previous NSF-funded grants.

This project will a) Study how automatic feedback affects students’ ability to develop scientific models and explanations in the NGSS classroom, b) Demonstrate that complex, three-dimensional learning progression (3D LP) aligned items can be automatically scored to a high degree of accuracy and c) Develop an assessment system integrated with automatic feedback in the context of high quality NGSS aligned curriculum and aligned to previously validated 3D LP.

Congratulations, Kevin and Joe!

NSF logo

OpenSciEd Research Seed Grant

CREATE's Christie Morrison-Thomas and Mary Starr, director of the Michigan Mathematics and Science Leadership Network (MMSLN), have received a seed grant to be used for "identifying strategies and resources that support goal-oriented professional communities and developing and piloting scorning rubrics and grading in ways that support students' equitable science achievements". 

Congratulations, Christie and Mary!

To read the entire article, go to:


OpenSciEd logo

Peng He and Namsoo Shin receive NSF DRK-12 award

Dr.'s He and Shin are delighted to receive nearly $450,000.00 for their research project titled Developing and Testing a Learning Progression for Middle School Physical Science incorporating Disciplinary Core Ideas, Science and Engineering Practices, and Crosscutting Concepts.

This project will develop and test a learning progression for middle school physical science that incorporates the three dimensions identified in Next Generation of Science Standards (NGSS): the Disciplinary Core Ideas of matter, interaction, and energy; the Science and Engineering Practices of constructing explanations and developing and using models; and the Crosscutting Concepts of cause and effect and systems and system models. Student learning pathways will be studied as they apply the scientific knowledge and practices they have learned. Participating middle school science teachers from a range of schools representing diverse communities will receive professional learning and guidelines using the learning progression to adapt their local curriculum and instruction materials.

Findings from the project will expand the current knowledge and research on learning progression with multiple intermediate learning pathways for three-dimensional learning that provide all students the opportunity to learn in science.

Congratulations to Peng and Namsoo!

National Science Foundation logo

CREATE's Peng He joins Journal of Research in Science Teaching editorial board

Congratulations to Peng for being selected as a manuscript reviewer for the Journal of Research in Science Teaching (JRST)!  Dr. He will be a member of the editorial board until April 2025. 

JRST is the official journal of NARST: A global organization for improving science education through researchThe journal publishes reports for science education researchers and practitioners on issues of science teaching and learning and science education policy. 

Peng He, Journal of Research in Science Teaching, Editorial Board, photo of Peng

Shin and Krajcik revise chapter in classic, updated publication

Cambridge University Press just released the 3rd edition of an essential resource for researchers, policymakers, teachers, and anyone interested in creating productive and positive learning environments both inside and outside of the classroom. 

The original publication was in 2006, and has been heavily revised by leading scholars to incorporate latest research. We're delighted to note that CREATE's Joe Krajcik and Namsoo Shin are the authors of Chapter 4 on Project-Based Learning. 

For more information and to order, go to: and enter code TCHLS2022


The Cambridge Handbook of the Learning Sciences, 3rd edition, edited by R. Keith Sawyer, Univ. of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

Michigan Department of Education looking for M-STEP item developers

MDE's Office of Educational Assessment and Accountability is looking for science educators interested in developing science item clusters for the Science M-STEP. This week-long meeting will be held the week of July 25-29. We are hoping to hold the meeting in the U.P. if we can recruit enough educators from the northern part of our state. The alternate location is Lansing, MI.

The week will include professional learning regarding evidence-centered design methods to create valid assessment tasks for large-scale assessments. The outcomes of the week include:

  • learn how to unpack bundles of standards to identify evidence of student mastery
  • develop phenomena and problem based storylines for large scale assessment tasks
  • consider issues of equity and bias in the assessment design process
  • communicate and collaborate with other science educators and assessment specialists in the design process
  • present work-in-progress to receive and incorporate feedback
  • complete one science item cluster by the end of the week

This is a great opportunity to learn about the large-scale assessment design and development process in Michigan and to contribute your expertise to that process. 

Benefits of working as an item writer include:

  • $1250 stipend
  • SCECHs
  • lodging*, meals, and mileage covered (*if over 50 miles from location)
  • partner with another science educator
  • a mind-blowing week of science fun with TJ Heck!

If you are interested, please complete this google form prior to June 10

If you have any questions about this work, please email Dr. TJ Heck at

Michigan Department of Education logo

AI-based Assessment in STEM Education Conference: Potential, Challenge, and Future.

AI4STEM at the University of Georgia and the CREATE for STEM Institute are jointly organizing an international conference, funded by National Science Foundation, on May 26-27, 2022 at the Georgia Center, Athens, GA.

Achieving the vision put forth by the Framework for K-12 Science Education requires a transformation of assessment practices from relying on multiple-choice items to performance-based knowledge-in-use tasks. Historically, assessments of student learning are performance-based constructed-response items that often prohibit timely feedback (NGSS Lead States, 2018). This, in turn, has hindered science teachers from using these assessments on a large scale.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) has demonstrated great potential to meet these assessment challenges, which is the foundation upon which this conference is being built. The invited participants are known experts in the areas of STEM domain-specific learning, assessments and measurement, learning technologies, computer sciences, and pedagogy. The outcome of the conference will include a published book, entitled Applying AI in STEM Assessment.

AI4STEM and CREATE for STEM Institute logos

Krajcik invited to international panel of experts examining Grand Challenges

CREATE Director Joe Krajcik will participate in a convening of international experts in Cologne, Germany, as part of a conference focusing on the Grand Challenges from May 16-20, 2022. Grand Challenges refer to the global issues of water shortages, pandemics, climate change, and others. Research has shown that students around the world are interested in learning about these challenges in school, yet science curricula rarely incorporate these issues. The Grand Challenges conference proposes to address how a shift to radically altering science education on an international scale might happen. The final result will be a white paper made widely and freely available. 

This work is being funded by the Fritz Thyssen Stiftung Foundation

Fritz Thyssen Stiftung with design of rectangles underneath

New article by AACR members published in Journal of Biological Education

"Developing assessments to elicit and characterize undergraduate mechanistic explanations about information flow in biology", written by Juli Uhl, Megan Shiroda and Kevin Haudek from MSU's Automated Analysis of Constructed Responses team was recently published. 

To read about and link to full article:

To learn more about the Beyond Multiple Choice project:

AACR logo, photo of cover of Journal of Biological Education, MSU logo

"Inspiring interest in STEM careers"; HiOH article published in MSTA Journal!

A new journal article published by Michigan Science Teachers Association (MSTA) shows how Health in Our Hands (HiOH) inspires interest in STEM careers for underrepresented middle school students both in and out of school. Studies show that students are losing interest in STEM careers. Recommendations suggest that we must do a better job of supporting students' interests from a young age through awareness and encouragement.

The article provides an example of how career exploration is embedded in “What Controls My Health”, an NGSS-aligned middle school unit about diabetes.  Through investigations and discussions, students are introduced to different careers in health and science which help increase student awareness, build interest in STEM careers, and introduce role models and mentors for students. The article gives tips to science teachers about how they can promote STEM careers in their instruction that supports students in building their STEM identity and connects activities to the home and community.

For more information about HiOH, visit

Health in Our Hands logo with photo of MSTA Journal cover Winter 2021

2021 University Distinguished Professor Award video - Joe Krajcik

Joe is the Director of CREATE for STEM, Lappan-Phillips Professor of Science Education, and now, a member of one of the most prestigious faculty cadres at the university.  The 2021 University Distinguished Professor Awards were given at a ceremony on November 18th at the University Club of MSU. 

Congratulations, Joe! 

Watch Joe's video here.

See all ten recipient videos here.  

Photo of Joe Krajcik by river on Farm Lane

AACR research featured on SimBio webinar, Thursday, Nov. 18, 2021

Dr. Juli Uhl, from the AACR group, presented at a webinar hosted by SimBio about her recent study: Automated Writing Assessment of Undergraduate Learning After Completion of Cellular Respiration Explored. This webinar highlighted a recently published, collaborative study in CBE-Life Sciences Education focused on student learning after completing a SimBio developed module.

The webinar was held Thursday, November 18th.  Watch the recording here:

Learn more about Beyond Multiple Choice.

Photo of Juli Uhl and Kevin Haudek

CREATE/PBL highlighted in U.S News & World Report

CREATE's "Multiple Literacies for Project Based Learning" was featured in a recent article written by Katherine Hutt Scott that looks at the ways in which Project Based Learning is different than traditional ways of teaching in classrooms. PBL is active, not passive, and it is changing the way students are learning. Teachers Billie Freeland and Nicole Andreas share how their teaching has been transformed using PBL. 

ML-PBL, developed at Michigan State University and funded by Lucas Education Research (LER), is a project focusing on elementary grades that has gained national attention.

Read the full article

U.S. News & World Report logo

AERA 2022 Annual Meeting Call for Volunteers; Chairs and Discussants

Consider volunteering for the upcoming national meeting! Panel Discussants and Roundtable Chairs are needed and are crucial to the success of the conference.

Persons interested in serving are encouraged to volunteer early. The portal for volunteers will remain open until August 31, 2021. After that date, program chairs and committees will be constituting sessions; chairs and discussants will be identified for their units’ paper sessions and roundtables.

For more information, go to

Photo of San Diego coastline with AERA logo in front

AACR team collaborates with SimBio - a constructed response study

CREATE's Automated Analysis of Constructed Response (AACR) research group worked together with SimBio, a company that develops multi-media tutorials and simulated modules for undergraduate biology, in a research study.  AACR developed questions that were embedded into a SimBio learning module about Cell Respiration; then compared student performance pre/post module. The results showed that students from all institution types (geographically diverse institutions including two-year colleges, undergraduate institutions, and research-focused universities) included more scientific ideas in constructed responses (CR) after working through the tutorial. 

SimBio has just recently published an article on the study and findings - read it here

Read the artlce written by the AACR team and Eli Meir, lead by Juli Uhl, published in CBE-Life Sciences Education

Congratulations to everyone involved! 

John Merrill, Megan Shiroda, Mark Urban-Lurain, Juli Uhl, and Kevin Haudek

Krajcik/Delen article top 2019 download from Journal of Science Teacher Education

The Journal of Science Teacher Education has released its most downloaded article of 2019, with 2098 downloads.

Joe Krajcik and Ibrahim Delen authored "The Benefits and Limitations of Educative Curriculum Materials" in 2017. Krajick is the Director of CREATE for STEM, a Lappan-Phillips Professor of Education, and recently named an MSU University Distinguished Professor. Delen is a former visiting scholar in CREATE and is currently an Associate Professor at Usak University in Turkey.

Congratulations, Joe and Idel!

Read the entire article.

Photo of JSTE cover

Check out Three Dimensional Learning for Undergraduate Science's Podcast!

Three-dimensional learning (3DL) in STEM education is a model described in the National Research Council’s Framework for K-12 Science Education, a document outlining a research-based approach toward facilitating a coherent, in-depth understanding of the sciences for K-12 students. 3DL posits that teaching and learning of a scientific discipline should involve three features:

  1. disciplinary core ideas (the fundamental themes at the center of a scientific discipline),
  2. crosscutting concepts (ideas that span across disciplines), and
  3. scientific practices (the skills that scientists use to study and make sense of the world).

The 3DL for Undergraduate Science (3DL4US) project has adapted this framework for teaching and learning at the university level, with a particular emphasis on transforming introductory (“gateway”) courses in biology, chemistry, and physics. 

3DL4US has created an amazing - and entertaining - series of podcasts featuring many of our STEM colleagues at MSU!

List of Podcasts 

Learn more about project and team  


3DL4US logo and podcast information

Book Talk replay: Preparing Science Teachers through Practice-Based Teacher Education

In case you missed it on April 2nd, please enjoy the recording of "Book Talk", hosted by Stanford’s Graduate School of Education’s Science in The City Research Group.

Dr. David Stroupe, Dr. Karen Hammerness, Dr. Scott McDonald, & Dr. Kirsten Mawyer were guests and discussed their new text that explores and challenges how we train modern science teachers. 

They raise the question: How are we using core practices to prepare modern science teachers for the rigors of teaching NGSS based science? “Preparing Science Teachers Through Practice-Based Teacher Education” explores how teacher educators across the nation are preparing science teachers through different methods. 

View the recording and the slide deck from the original presentation 






Photo of cover of Stroupe, Hammerness, McDonald book

CREATE's Selin Akgun on College of Natural Science's 'Sci Files'

If you've never checked out the Sci Files, now is a great time to do so!

Our own Selin Akgun was featured on the February 22, 2021 episode! Selin shares her thoughts about doing research in an epidemic; she is a Ph.D. student doing research with the Multiple Literacies in Project-Based Learning team in CREATE. 

Check out the episode here!

Sci Files is Impact’s (WDBM, 88.9) podcast, hosted by Chelsie Boodoo and Daniel Puentes, featuring student researchers discussing what projects they are working on. Sci-Files airs new episodes every Sunday at 9:30 AM on Impact 89FM, and the episodes are available as a podcast the next day. You can find the archives of past episodes here. The interviews are fascinating and are worth a listen.

Sci-Files is a great source of the latest research happening at Michigan State University!


Photo of Selin Akgun

Project-Based Learning improves COVID learning loss

There is much concern about student's losing ground in school during the pandemic; this article discusses two projects, one housed in CREATE with design help from University of Michigan researchers, and the other, a literacy researcher at the University of Michigan works with a Co-PI from MSU's College of Education. Both research projects show promising results for Project-Based Learning!

This story originally appeared on MSU Today. Read the entire article here.

Read the full related news release and research briefs from Lucas Education Research.

Learn more during a free live event, “Learning We Need: The Case for Rigorous Project-Based Learning“, from 7-8 p.m. EST Feb. 22. Krajcik and Deborah Peek-Brown of MSU’s CREATE for STEM Institute will be among the featured speakers.

African-American female teacher at front of class

Teena Gerhardt wins President’s Distinguished Teaching Award

The President’s Distinguished Teaching Award recognizes MSU faculty that have a sustained record of creating innovative environments that enable student learning within and across disciplinary, cultural, and ethnic boundaries. Gerhardt’s student reviews certainly reaffirm that her focused, well-crafted lectures achieve this criterion.

Dr. Gerhardt has been instrumental in revamping MTH 124, a course that historically has had a high drop-fail-withdraw (DFW) rate. Along with her colleague, Benjamin Schmidt, retooling the class has led to an almost 50% reduction in DFW. 

Read the entire story here

Photo of Dr. Teena Gerhardt

PERL's Vashti Sawtelle wins 2019 Spirit of Ability Award

(originally published March 12, 2019)

MSU's Physics Education Research Lab co-director Vashti Sawtelle has won the Spirit of Ability Award. The award "commemorates the empowering heritage of founders who saw beyond disabilities". They opened higher education to people whose disabilities were commonly perceived to preclude excellence.

Read the entire article here

Photo of Vashti Sawtelle with heading Spirit of Ability Award

Congratulations! Julie Libarkin - A 2020 MSU Supervisor of the Year

The Outstanding Supervisor Award honors Michigan State University supervisors who have consistently demonstrated worklife sensitivity and support of the professional/personal needs of the employees in their unit. Members of the MSU community nominate a supervisor/administrator who supports the worklife (professional/personal) needs through positive leadership and managerial practices.

Dr. Julie Libarkin is a professor of Earth and Environmental Sciences and leads the Geocognition Research Lab at MSU.  She has worked at MSU for two decades and oversees a staff of mostly students and researchers.  She clearly gets to know and support her staff on a personal level.  Many staff members wrote about how she saw them through the journey from undergrad to a graduate degree.  She exudes inclusion and makes it clear that all individuals have a place on her team and can play a significant role in the success of the lab.

Best wishes to Julie and to the team of staff people who nominated you!

Photo of Julie Libarkin and staff members from lab

Congratulations to MSU's Dr. Melanie Cooper and Dr. James McCusker

(originally published on June 26, 2020)

Melanie Cooper, Lappan-Phillips Professor of Science Education, and James K. McCusker, Michigan State University Foundation Professor of Chemistry, each received a prestigious award from the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC). Cooper received the 2020 Education Award from the RSC’s Education Division; McCusker received the 2020 Chemical Dynamics Award from the RSC’s Faraday Division. Both are professors in the MSU Department of Chemistry in the College of Natural Science.

Cooper was recognized for her outstanding accomplishments in designing, implementing, and evaluating evidence-based chemistry curricula and catalyzing the careers of many chemistry education researchers.

McCusker received his award in recognition of his outstanding, innovative research on the dynamics of molecules, including spectroscopy, kinetics, or molecular interactions in the gas, liquid, or solid phase.

Read the entire article here.

For more information about Cooper and McCusker’s respective awards, careers and research and the Royal Society of Chemistry, visit here and here.

Photo of front of MSU Chemistry building

MSU-lead research: implicit biases in kid's STEM educational programming

(originally published Oct. 15, 2020, in MSU Today)

Children’s television programming not only shapes opinions and preferences, but its characters can also have positive or negative impacts on childhood aspiration, says a new study from Michigan State University.

The study is the first large-scale analysis of characters featured in science, technology, engineering, and math-related educational programming. It was published in the fall 2020 edition of the Journal of Children and Media. Results revealed that of the characters appearing in STEM television programming for kids ages 3 to 6, Latinx and females are left behind.

“Children soak up subtleties and are learning and taking cues from everything; by age 5, you can see that they understand implicit biases,” said Fashina Aladé, lead author of the study and assistant professor in the College of Communication Arts and Sciences. “With the recent proliferation of STEM television over the past five years or so, I wanted to see who was showing kids how to solve problems, who is teaching STEM foundations, and who is modeling what it looks like to engage in STEM.”

Read the entire article here


cartoon drawing of desk with lab supplies

Toby Citrin Memorial Fund established for youth researchers

On Tuesday, October 27, we paid tribute to Toby Citrin, our public health colleague and partner in Health in Our Hands, at the American Public Health Association Virtual Annual Meeting. Toby passed away in January of this year from a chronic respiratory illness. A lawyer by training, Toby served as an adjunct professor in the Department of Health Management and Policy at the University of Michigan School of Public Health. An articulate advocate of the need to include community members’ input in public health programs and policies, Toby was honored in this session organized by the Community-Based Public Health Caucus of APHA by his colleagues in academia and in the community. The session was attended by about 75 colleagues, family members, and dear friends.

In his honor, the Toby Citrin Memorial Fund for Youth Researchers was announced to support the attendance and participation of youth researchers in future APHA conferences. To contribute, visit the GoFundMe site:


Photo of Toby Citrin attending HIOH event

STEM fields include agriculture, energy and the environment

Article originally published January 19, 2017.

Thousands of jobs in the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) fields of food, energy and the environment are going unfilled in the U.S. today. These applied biological disciplines are vital to our national and global security and economy, but graduate too few students to meet current and projected workforce demands.

A team of Michigan State University (MSU) researchers are working to recruit, nurture and graduate students who are prepared for these careers. They’ll do it with the help of a $1 million National Science Foundation (NSF) Scholarships in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics grant (S-STEM).

Read the entire article here

Photo of Eunice Foster

New game app developed at MSU gets young girls involved in STEM

(originally published December 16, 2019)

Huey-Wen Lin, assistant professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy and Computational Mathematics, Science and Engineering at Michigan State University, developed the new game app “Quantum 3” to get the general public and K-12 children involved in learning more about Quantum Chromodynamics, or QCD, a theory that governs the interactions of subatomic particles that form all stable matter.

The game allows you to build subatomic particles, learn about the mysteries of fundamental physics, and deploy antimatter to clear the way. The game has a premise similar to Candy Crush. You puzzle out the quantum properties of color, flavor, and spin. The main components of the game quarks and gluons are the smallest particles we know about often referred to as “fundamental” particles. 

Read the full article here.

Photo of young girls looking at test tubes

Congratulations, Joe! Watch the 2020 McGraw Prize celebration.

Congratulations to CREATE Director Joe Krajcik, recipient of the 2020 McGraw Prize in K-12 Education. We are delighted! This is an extraordinary honor for an extraordinary science education researcher. 

The McGraw Prize was established in 1988 by the Board of Directors of McGraw-Hill to honor Harold W. McGraw, Jr., the former Chairman, and CEO, to honor his lifelong commitment to education, literacy, and learning. Since its creation, nearly 100 remarkable leaders in all fields of education have been recognized and celebrated, many of whom continue to play transformative roles today.

Link to the awards ceremony.

Read more about the McGraw Prize.

Photo of 2020 McGraw Prize winners

Zimmerman Implementing Innovative Curriculum in College Algebra

(article originally printed Sept 15, 2019)

Jane Zimmerman, mathematics education doctoral student and MSU math instructor, teamed up with Teena Gerhardt, associate professor of mathematics at MSU, to develop a new curriculum to help incoming freshmen interested in a STEM career master college algebra.

In the past, students with lower scores on their math placement test embarked on a non-credit-bearing pathway prior to enrolling in MTH103, or college algebra. Zimmerman and Gerhardt helped lead the effort to replace that course with a credit-bearing one they believe will result in increased student participation. Alongside the semester-long MTH103, Zimmerman and Gerhardt created a new, two-semester course, MTH103A, and 103B, to provide more time for students to master college algebra material.

Results were positive; pass rates increased and students showed improved test scores. 

Read the entire article here.

Learn more about the MSU Mathematics Department. 

Photo of Jane Zimmerman with students

October 2019: MSU Hosts Symposium, Unveils $5M Cryo-EM Facility

Cryo-electron microscopy is becoming mainstream for studying molecular details such as the architecture of cells, viruses as well as nucleic acids, small molecules, and protein assemblies. Recent developments in microscope design and imaging hardware, automation, and advances in camera technology have greatly advanced the effectiveness of cryo-EM methods. We are now living in the area of the “Cryo-EM resolution revolution”. 

“The new Cryo-EM Core Facility makes available to MSU researchers the most powerful tool in biology since Next Generation DNA sequencing,” said Dave DeWitt, senior associate dean for budget, planning, research and administration in the MSU College of Natural Science. 

MSU hosted a symposium on October 4-5, 2019, which featured 12 speakers and drew researchers from several universities, including the University of Michigan, Ohio State, Penn State, Cornell, and Harvard.

Kristin Parent, Associate Professor, and J.K. Billman, Jr., M.D. Endowed Research Professor, is the director of the new facility, which is located near the corner of Bogue and Service Roads on the southeast edge of the MSU campus.


Photo of students around Cryo-EM

American Public Health Association Annual Meeting: Celebrating Tony Citrin

This session is dedicated to the memory of Toby Citrin, JD, who, among his many accomplishments, played a key role in starting APHA’s Community-Based Public Health Caucus and its affiliated National Community-Based Organization Network. 

Toby died in January 2020 at the age of 85, after a long career dedicated to advocacy for social justice through public health. Toby was well-loved by his colleagues in academia and in the community. On this 20th anniversary of the founding of the CBPH Caucus, we come together in this session to pay tribute to his life and work.

**To attend, you must be registered for the American Public Health Association Meeting.

Photo of Toby Citrin on flyer for APHA Annual meeting.

View the videos from the 2020 event highlighting innovations in STEM education

This flashback is highlighting the 2020 STEM Video Showcase, which took place in May, 2020. 

If you missed this back in May, make sure to take a look now! Sponsored by NSF and TERC, this event provides a wonderful opportunity to learn about STEM education research happening around the country.

Make sure to filter your search so that you can see and support MSU submissions! 

You can watch all of the videos from this year's event, and visit the STEM FOR ALL MULTIPLEX which brings together all of the videos from 2015 - 2019. Read the article featured in College of Natural Science News  


Read the article featured in College of Natural Science News  



Photo of 2020 STEM for ALL Video Showcase

Is an intense focus on STEM education a good idea? Most would say yes.

Reread, or enjoy for the first time, an article written by Sarah Galey (originally printed Apri 8. 2015).

The article makes the case that pitting STEM education against the humanities may hurt students' creativity, innovative thinking, and imagination. Fareed Zakaria, a well-known and respected journalist, shares his thoughts about focusing too heavily on STEM education at the expense of the arts, when balance may be the best solution for students and for jobs of the future.  

Read the full story.

Picture of pencils and equations

We appreciate and thank our post-docs!

On September 21, Joe gathered CREATE's research associates and the colleagues with whom they work most closely for a virtual appreciation event. The 11th official, national post-doctoral appreciation week was held September 21-25, 2020. 

We could not do what we do in CREATE without our wonderful post-docs! Please accept our gratitude for everything you do that pushes us forward in our efforts to advance STEM education research. 

Photo of virtual post-doc appreciation participants on 9.21.20

Joe awarded the 2020 McGraw Prize for Pre-K-12 education

Congratulations to Joe! We are so happy that Joe's relentless work to improve science education for all students is being recognized with this prestigious award.Image removed.

“I am honored to receive the McGraw Prize for innovation in education,” Krajcik said. “Throughout my professional life, I have been driven by a passion to work with teachers and other educators to create and explore learning environments that engage all children. I’m dedicated to helping ignite the joy and desire to learn in students in order for all of us to live in a knowledgeable, just and sustainable world.”

Robert E. Floden, dean and University Distinguished Professor in the College of Education, said Krajcik is an international leader in working with scientists, teachers and scholars, to produce “effective curriculum materials being adopted by school districts around the country.”

Read the full story at:

Photo of Joe Krajcik and McGraw Prize info

HiOH professional learning workshop focused on challenges of remote teaching

Amidst the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, more and more classrooms are moving partially or completely online. The shift is creating many changes in the ways we think about learning; teachers in particular are having to adapt quickly in order to engage students virtually. The challenges of doing so were a main topic of discussion during Health in Our Hands’ professional learning workshop, which took place virtually at the end of July.

For those who may not be familiar, Health in Our Hands (HiOH) is a project led by CREATE for STEM, in association with several other education, health and community partners from the Flint/Genesee area. Using the science curriculum developed through the HiOH project, students learn about gene-environment interactions, natural selection, and evolution. Most importantly, they learn about these concepts by applying them to important community health issues that affect their lives, such as diabetes and addiction. For their final project, students conduct an action research project to improve their school or neighborhood to help prevent or reduce diabetes and addiction. Students present the results and recommendations at a Youth Health Summit to their peers, family and community. CREATE for STEM received funding for this project from the Science Education Partnership Award, National Institute of General Medical Sciences.

As an important part of implementing the curriculum in classrooms, the HiOH team has led professional learning (PL) workshops and seminars for participating teachers for several years. However, the workshop this summer marked the first time the PL was presented completely online. During the PL, the HiOH team led by research associate Consuelo Morales tried out many of the same virtual learning strategies with the teachers that they can use with their own classes, using technology such as Zoom and Jamboard.

“Hosting the workshop virtually really gave us insights into the challenges teachers are dealing with right now,” says Morales. “Almost all of the districts that currently use the HiOH curriculum are teaching remotely this semester, making these discussions an essential component of the workshop.” Many of the discussions included space for teachers to ask questions and strategize together about ways to approach the HiOH curriculum and their lessons in general, learning to use technology as a tool rather than a hindrance.

Despite the move to an online forum, the number of districts represented for the four-day workshop was even higher this summer than previous years. Teachers resoundingly said that they appreciated the opportunity to work through curriculum virtually and try out new strategies for teaching online.

When asked what she liked best about the PL, Ashley Booker, returning 8th grade teacher from Atherton Community Schools responded, “Seeing the curriculum in action and the facilitators! I was able to see the curriculum and how it's going to be enacted. Since we will start online this fall, we will be troubleshooting as we go. So, I appreciate the follow-up Professional Learning Community sessions.”

As teachers start using the HiOH curriculum in their classes this fall, the HiOH team will continue to host bi-monthly virtual learning sessions. These will give teachers an opportunity to discuss their experiences with HiOH in class, figure out what’s working and what isn’t, and build upon their understanding of the content as they move forward through the curriculum. It’s unclear how long classrooms will have to remain remote, but with supportive virtual learning opportunities like these, the future of online learning is bright.

HiOH is a project lead by the CREATE for STEM Institute at Michigan State University in collaboration with the Health in Our Hands-Flint/Genesee Partnership: Community Based Organization Partners of Flint, CRIM Foundation, Flint Community Schools, Atherton Community Schools, Genesee County Health Department, Genesee Intermediate School District, Genesys Health System, Greater Flint Health Coalition, Health Alliance Plan, Michigan State University (Human Medicine & Extension) and the University of Michigan-Flint (Discovering PLACE).

(written by Katherine Stark)




Group photo of Hioh Professional Learning event July 2020

Grant project to produce STEM leaders in urban schools

(Originally printed in MSU Today Dec 19, 2013)

Michigan State University is partnering with global tech giant Wipro Ltd. to help meet the demand for math and science teachers who will be leaders in America’s urban school districts.

Faculty members in the College of Education will use a $2.8 million, multi-year grant from the India-based company to offer a unique fellowship program to more than 100 teachers, starting this summer in Chicago.

“There is a critical shortage of excellent math and science teachers nationwide and even more so in urban school districts,” said project co-leader Sonya Gunnings-Moton, assistant dean in the College of Education. “We need leaders among teachers who can build not only their own capacity to improve learning, but also the capacity of their colleagues.”

The Wipro STEM Fellowship Program will include coursework leading to a Graduate Certificate in STEM Teaching and Leadership. STEM stands for science, technology, engineering and mathematics. All expenses will be covered for participants, who must commit to continue teaching in an urban school for at least two years.

Participants will be expected to implement innovative teaching strategies in their own classrooms and develop professional learning communities through which fellow STEM teachers in their school can share ideas and support one another.

“This program is designed to develop each of these teachers into catalysts of change in disadvantaged communities of urban areas,” said Anurag Behar, chief sustainability officer for Wipro.

Read the entire article

Punya Mishra, professor of educational psychology and educational technology, is co-director of the fellowship. Assistant Professor Leigh Graves Wolf also is assisting.

Media Contacts

Punya Mishra & Nicole Geary & Andy Henion

Photo of teacher with student at whiteboard

Connected Mathematics Project 2 Funds Lappan-Phillips Endowment

(originally published March 26, 2013)

Melanie Cooper was installed as the first Lappan-Phillips Professor of Science Education in the Michigan State University Department of Chemistry.

Cooper comes to MSU from Clemson University, where she was an Alumni Distinguished Professor of Chemistry. She is jointly appointed in the departments of chemistry and teacher education, and in the CREATE for STEM Institute. Cooper received her B.S, M.S. and Ph.D. in chemistry from the University of Manchester, England. 

Read the entire article here.

Flashback Friday image with Melanie Cooper photo

Best wishes to Dr. Lynmarie Posey in her new role!

Lynmarie Posey, professor of chemistry, was selected as associate dean for undergraduate studies in the Michigan State University (MSU) College of Natural Science (NatSci), effective Aug. 16.

“I am excited to have the opportunity to engage with the entire NatSci community in efforts to promote the success of all undergraduate students,” Posey said. “These efforts are more important than ever as we face the unprecedented challenges presented by COVID-19. I am especially interested in supporting initiatives to enhance curricular coherence, promote faculty adoption of evidence-based approaches to instruction and prepare students to engage in fulfilling careers.”

Read entire article here.

photo of Lynmarie Poset

Calling it a 'war on science' has consequences

(originally printed January 11, 2019 in MSU Today)

What happens when a cover boils a measured article down to this provocative headline?

National Geographic’s March 2015 cover story provided a thoughtful discussion around the question of “Why Do Many Reasonable People Doubt Science?” The actual cover, however, simply said “The War on Science.”

There are books to tell readers “who’s waging it,” “why it matters,” and “what we can do about it” and many opinion articles and editorials in reputable publications describing its battles. Communication experts have long expressed concerns that framing an issue as a conflict might make finding a reasonable path forward harder by suggesting that people need to choose sides and vanquish their opponents in order to succeed.

Read the entire article here.

MSU's John C. Besley, Ellis N. Brandt Professor of Public Relations; Bruce W. Hardy, assistant professor of communication and social influence, Temple UniversityMeghnaa Tallapragada, assistant professor of strategic communication, Clemson University; and Shupei Yuan, assistant professor of public relations, Northern Illinois University, wrote this piece for The Conversation, an independent collaboration between editors and academics that provides informed news analysis and commentary to the general public. See the entire list of articles written by MSU faculty for The Conversation.

 Cover photo from Natural Geographic

MSU student earns prestigious 2020 national STEM scholarship

Isabella Ginnett, an Honors College sophomore majoring in physics and advanced mathematics in the College of Natural Science, is MSU's 47th Goldwater Scholar.

Goldwater Foundation seeks scholars committed to a career in science, mathematics, or engineering who display intellectual intensity and who have the potential for significant future contributions in their chosen field. Those students are awarded funding for undergraduate tuition and living expenses.

For the 2020 competition, 1,343 outstanding undergraduates were nominated by 461 institutions. Ginnett was one of 396 scholars selected. The funding for these awards is a collaboration between the U.S. Congress and the Department of Defense’s National Defense Education Program.

Read the entire story at

(Originally published March 30, 2020)

Photo of Barry Goldwater

Learning Science: The Value of Crafting Engagement in Science Environments

An innovative, internationally developed system to help advance science learning and instruction for high school students, this book tells the story of a $3.6 million research project funded by the National Science Foundation aimed at increasing scientific literacy and addressing global concerns of declining science engagement.

Studying dozens of classrooms across the United States and Finland, this international team combines large-scale studies with intensive interviews from teachers and students to examine how to transform science education. Written for teachers, parents, policymakers, and researchers, this book offers solutions for matching science learning and instruction with newly recommended twenty-first-century standards. 

Barbara Schneider is a professor of education and sociology at Michigan State University. Joseph Krajcik is professor and director of CREATE for STEM at Michigan State University. Jari Lavonen is a professor of physics and chemistry education and department head at the University of Helsinki. Katariina Salmela-Aro is a professor of educational sciences and psychology at the University of Helsinki. Margaret J. Geller is a senior scientist, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics.

Available at Yale University Press 

Photo of cover of Learning Science book

Science Gallery is the world’s only university network dedicated to public engagement with science and art.

Science Gallery Detroit, launched in summer 2018, is a collaborative initiative between Michigan State University and Science Gallery International with a $1 million grant from its founding partner, MSU Federal Credit Union. Currently, the Science Gallery Network consists of seven locations worldwide: Dublin, London, Venice, Bengaluru, Melbourne, Rotterdam, and Detroit, which is the first city in North America to have its own Science Gallery. Science Gallery is an award-winning international initiative pioneered by Trinity College Dublin that delivers a dynamic new model for engaging 15- to 25-year olds with science and art.

Click here to read the article in MSU Today.

To learn more about the Science Gallery, and the upcoming exhibit FuturePresent, click here.

Flashback Friday MSU Science Gallery

A global event to protest the perception of disregard for evidence-based knowledge

"There is a fine line between science and advocacy, and if the research community strays too far away from it on either side, it risks either isolating itself from meaningful political discussions or discrediting itself as a body of unbiased experts."

This topic is as timely today as it was over three years ago.

Revisit the full article here in the College of Education's Green & Write column from April 5, 2017. 

Flashback Friday photo

Xiaoming is off to the University of Georgia

CREATE is saying goodbye to Dr. Xiaoming Zhai, who will be starting a new position as Assistant Professor of Science Education at the University of Georgia. We are sad to see him leave but are excited for him in this new opportunity. Xiaoming worked with the Automated Analysis of Constructed Responses (AACR) project since late 2018 and has been a wonderful colleague. His constant smile and cheerfulness will be missed.

Congratulations on your new position and best wishes to you and your family in your new home!

Photo of Erickson hall and Xhaoming Zhai

STEM Teaching & Learning facility is one-of-a-kind (2019)

Michigan State University’s future STEM Teaching and Learning Facility will be the first in Michigan to use an innovative wood product, rather than concrete and/or steel, for its load-bearing structure.

Known as mass timber, this framing style uses large solid or engineered wood. The $100 million facility will be constructed of glue-laminated wooden columns and cross-laminated timber, or CLT, a relatively new product for the floors and ceilings.

“As a leading public research university, MSU has the fantastic opportunity to showcase these innovative and sustainable construction methods in the state of Michigan,” said Satish Udpa, MSU’s acting president. “I am delighted to see university operations, including building construction, pull from our state’s history as a lumber leader, and mesh with the engineering capabilities of advanced materials.”

Read the entire article here.

Flashback Friday STEM Building

"The toll of the coronavirus on our nation’s school leaders is palpable."

Read the opinion article by Marc Brackett, Director of the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence, a professor in the Yale Child Study Center and author of the book Permission To Feel.

Mark Cannizarro is the president of the Council of School Supervisors and Administrators in New York City.

Scott Levy is the executive director of the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence in the Yale Child Study Center.

This story is part of an EdSurge Research series about how school communities across the country are connecting research and practice. These stories are made publicly available with support from the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative. EdSurge maintains editorial control over all content. (Read our ethics statement here.) This work is licensed under a CC BY-NC-ND 4.0.

EdSurge post 7.22.2020

David Stroupe and Amelia Gotwals win NARST/NSTA awards! (2017)

(Originally published in the College of Education News, May, 2017)

Michigan State University faculty member David Stroupe was recently honored for his innovative research in science teaching by the field’s leading organizations.

The National Association for Research in Science Teaching (NARST) presented Stroupe with the 2017 Early Career Research Award at the annual conference in April. This honor is granted to a researcher each year who shows the greatest potential to make outstanding contributions in science education within seven years after completing the doctoral degree.

One of the other three articles selected in the initiative, a partnership with the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA), was co-authored by fellow MSU College of Education faculty member Amelia Wenk Gotwals. She was recognized for her article with MSU graduate Hayat Hokayem: “Early elementary students’ understanding of complex ecosystems: A learning progression approach.”

The Research Worth Reading awards were presented to Gotwals and Stroupe on April 24.

To read the full article click here.

Flashback Friday photo of David Stroupe and Amelia Gotwals

Please join us in congratulating Dr. Lora Kaldaras!

We are so very excited for Lora, who passed her defense this week with flying colors. 

Her committee members were Dr. Joseph Krajcik, Dr. William Schmidt, Dr. Melanie Cooper, Dr. Gail Richmond, and Dr. Mark Reckase. Please join us in congratulating Dr. Kaldaras!

Lora Kaldaras dissertation announcement

What some foundations are doing differently because of the coronavirus pandemic

This is an interesting article on the future of foundation funding published in The Conversation on June 22, 2020.

Five prominent private foundations announced on June 11, 2020 that they would increase their grantmaking by more than US$1.7 billion over the next three years “to help stabilize and sustain a nonprofit sector facing devastating economic effects due to the global pandemic and the epidemic of social injustice.” We asked legal scholar Daniel Hemel, to help readers understand this move.

To read the full article, go to

The Conversation logo

MSU "Rising to Our Responsibility" Now Online - please share widely!


With your support, over 1,000 people registered for our recent forum for school leaders on addressing racial violence and anti-Blackness in Michigan schools. I want to thank our esteemed panelists and COE superstars Drs. Dorinda Carter Andrews, Alyssa Hadley Dunn, and Jada Phelps-Moultrie again for their timely and enriching comments. Since the event, many of you have asked to be notified when the video of the event is released. I am pleased to announce that the video recording (with captions) of the "Rising to Our Responsibility" forum is now online!  Please feel free to view and share it from here:


Dr. Carter Andrews shares important thoughts for school leaders considering making statements in support of BLM:

Dr. Hadley Dunn runs an AMAZING Facebook group on “Teaching on Days After” that is a wealth of resources:

Dr. Chambers hosted this podcast for school leaders combating hate after the 2016 election that remains relevant today:

Dr. Phelps-Moultrie offers ideas for talking about Black History Month all year round:        

Dr. Chambers talks about her research on supporting high-achieving Black and Latinx students in white-normed school spaces:

We look forward to hosting events like the “Rising to our Responsibility” forum in the future and will keep you informed about these and other events in the MSU College of Education.

Remember, what happens next depends on what YOU do now.

All the best,


photo of Rising to Our Responsibility panel speakers

Resources for STEM faculty to support Native American Students

Dr. Angie Kolonich, CREATE's Director of Professional Learning, has written a blog about her work with an MSU colleague, Dr. Cristie Poitra, Interim Director of the MSU Native American Institute. The two have recently published a workbook titled "Honoring the Whole Student: Developing Space for Native American Students in STEM by Supporting Complex Identities". 

The workbook responds to broad-sweeping deficit narratives about Native American students by providing STEM faculty with reflection activities specifically centered on asset perspectives. Angie and Christie invite you to read through the workbook and share your thoughts on this survey. They would appreciate all feedback!

Read the entire blog here.

Picture of cover of Honoring the Whole Student workbook

CREATE's Dr. David Stroupe co-edits new book due out this fall

We are so excited to announce the publication of "Preparing Science Teachers through Practice-Based Teacher Education", a new book co-edited by our own Dr. David Stroupe, along with colleagues Dr. Karen Hammerness (American Museum of Natural History) and Dr. Scott McDonald (Penn State College of Education). 

Read more and pre-order a book here:

Congratulations, David!

Book cover and CREATE news image

Joe Krajcik & Barbara Schneider featured on MSU Today

Dr. Joe Krajcik and Dr. Barbara Schnieder are bringing a sense of wonder to student learning of science, and revolutionizing how teachers help facilitate that 'wonderment' to get students excited and engaged with science.

Read the MSU Today feature about two of Dr. Krajcik and Dr. Schneider's funded projects, Crafting Engagement in Science Environments (National Science Foundation) and Multiple Literacies (George Lucas Educational Fund), both focused on turning the way students learn on it's side. Rather than memorizing facts and hearing about science, the students are doing science, through questioning, sharing ideas, working with each other, and being actively engaged in "figuring out". Research is showing that students are more interested in and excited by what they are doing when learning in this way; teachers - although this is a new method of teaching - are learning to prompt their students to think and question, and feel a sense of freedom from simply reciting from textbooks. 

You will not want to miss this!

Students around a table with teacher talking to them

Timothy Stark on NGSNavigators

CREATE communications team member Katherine Stark is happy to share that her brother, Timothy Stark, was recently featured on NGS Navigators! After graduating from the College of Education at Michigan State University, Timothy became a high school mathematics teacher. Here, he shares ideas about how he has incorporated teaching for social justice with an eye toward All Standards, All Students.

Photo of Timothy Stark on NGSNavigators tempate