All events are in Central time unless specified.

Equity and Efficacy: Why Structural Change is Needed in Intro STEM Courses

3:30 pm – 5:00 pm
Jorgensen Hall Room: 136
855 N 16th St
Lincoln NE 68508
Target Audiences:
Nick Monk,
Foundational STEM courses at research universities often adopt a shared set of structures, including large class sizes, passive lectures, high stakes, inauthentic examinations, extensive content coverage, and more. Decades of research suggest that many of these structures are both less effective and less equitable than alternative approaches. Continued reliance on them has earned these courses a long-standing, nation-wide reputation as exclusionary; as driving away capable students interested in STEM disciplines; and as constructing inequitable barriers to success for a variety of student groups.

On Thursday, March 7th the University of Michigan’s Tim McKay will review some of this research, including new multi-institutional, multi-disciplinary results from the Sloan Equity and Inclusion in STEM Introductory Courses (SEISMIC) collaboration, to argue that increasing the efficacy and equity of these courses requires structural change. Structural change is challenging, and often requires institutional support. McKay will discuss examples of reform efforts that have successfully encouraged and enabled lasting change. His presentation will be from 3:30-5:00 pm in room 136 Jorgensen Hall. No rsvp required.

Tim McKay is the Arthur F. Thurnau Professor of Physics, Astronomy, and Associate Dean for Undergraduate Education in the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts, and Professor of Education in the School of Education at the University of Michigan. McKay received a BS in Physics from Temple University, where he was a first-generation, commuter student. He received his PhD in Physics from the University of Chicago in 1992, and joined the faculty at the University of Michigan in 1995.

McKay’s team has applied observational and experimental data science methods to astrophysics, cosmology, and education. They have probed the growth of cosmic structure as well as the expansion history of the Universe, especially through studies of galaxy clusters and gravitational lensing. They have discovered prompt optical counterparts to gamma-ray bursts and many other astrophysical transients.
Since 2008, McKay’s team has been using classroom and institutional data to make higher education more equitable, inclusive, and effective. In the last few years, McKay has helped to launch the Foundational Course Initiative, the Sloan Equity and Inclusion in STEM Introductory Courses (SEISMIC) project, the Mellon College and Beyond II study, and the Mellon Transfer Bridges to the Humanities Project.

Download this event to my calendar

This event originated in Center for Transformative Teaching.