by Emily Miller, Associate Vice President for Policy, Association of American Universities
While there has been significant research conducted demonstrating that with evidence-based pedagogies, undergraduate STEM students – including underrepresented students – learn more, persist, and complete their undergraduate degrees, these proven teaching practices are not yet the norm in most undergraduate science courses. Through the Association of American Universities’ (AAU) Undergraduate STEM Education Initiative, the nation’s top research universities are identifying successful strategies to overcome the cultural and institutional barriers to achieving wide-spread and long-lasting improvement to introductory STEM courses. AAU’s five-year status report on the undergraduate STEM education initiative, Progress Toward Achieving Systemic Change, provides detailed analysis of STEM educational reforms at eight seed-funded AAU STEM project sites and highlights numerous evidence-based educational innovations implemented at AAU universities. The report also identifies key factors necessary to improve the quality and effectiveness of STEM instruction.
Road Map to the Report
Section 1 provides information about the approach and process undertaken by AAU to develop, launch, and implement an initiative in collaboration with our member universities to improve the quality and effectiveness of under- graduate teaching and learning in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields.
Section 2 provides detailed description and analysis of the eight seed-funded AAU STEM project sites. Included in this section are cross-cutting strategies aligned to core elements of AAU’s Framework for Systemic Change in Undergraduate STEM Teaching and Learning and a number of vignettes profiling specific institutional approaches and supporting evidence of their impact.
Section 3 discusses the broader AAU STEM Network and highlights additional institutional commitments to advancing the goals of the Initiative.
Section 4 examines both evidence of and keys to successful institutionalization of undergraduate STEM education reforms at two levels – the campus and AAU as an association.
Online Appendix The online appendix contains numerous documents used to implement the Initiative. Throughout the four sections of the report specific appendix materials are referenced. www.aau.edu/STEM/online-appendix
Inside Higher Education featured a story on the report.