Academic Researchers' Joint Ventures toward Undergraduate STEM Teaching Improvement at Major Research Universities

Presentation Date: 

Sunday, May 2, 2010


American Educational Research Association Annual Meeting - Poster Session (Denver, Colorado)

Presentation Slides: 

Based on a qualitative study of 20 research-active science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) professors’ teaching improvement efforts, this paper suggests that some academic researchers engage in highly-intensive, joint ventures to enhance their introductory pedagogy at major research universities. The study casts professors’ participation in such communal teaching activities as voluntary and as enacted despite problematic career structures that promote collaboration in research, not in teaching. Based on interviews, observations and documentary analysis, the study posits that conceptualizations of academic researchers as overly solitary in their teaching may need revision. To substantiate this claim, the paper provides an in-depth analysis of professors’ stated and observed collaborative efforts to improve their teaching. The paper concludes with implications for what institutions can do to foster joint teaching improvement ventures and the potential benefits of so doing.