IUPUI Only University in Indiana Selected To Join Science and Math Teacher Leadership Collaborative

Release Date: 
Feb 13 2009

(February 13, 2009)-IUPUI has been chosen to join a select group of 27 universities that will take a leading role in addressing the lack of highly qualified science and mathematics teachers in middle and high school classrooms across America.

Some 107 members of the National Association of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges (NASULGC), including IUPUI, have committed themselves to what's called the Science and Mathematics Teacher Imperative (SMTI) to reverse the state of science and math education by increasing the pool of science and math teachers.

NASULGC formed The Leadership Collaborative (TLC), a group of 27 institutions drawn from universities making the SMTI commitment. The collaborative will examine ways to strengthen science teacher preparation at their institutions and work more intensively to develop a far deeper understanding of how to enhance the priority of teacher preparation and disseminate lessons learned throughout the community.

Sixty-one institutions applied to join the collaborative.


IUPUI's contribution to the collaborative will largely be coordinated through UCASE, the Urban Center for the Advancement of STEM education.

UCASE, a partnership between the IU School of Education, the Purdue School of Science, and the Purdue School of Engineering and Technology, was started in 2006 with IUPUI Commitment to Excellence funds with the specific focus of increasing the numbers of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics ) teachers from the IUPUI campus. (http://www.iupui.edu/ucase/)

Currently, UCASE coordinates three different scholarship programs for undergraduate or graduate students who seek to combine their degree in a STEM field with certification to teach those subjects in a high school or middle school. These include two Robert Noyce scholarship programs, funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF), as well as the Woodrow Wilson Indiana Teaching Fellowship, funded by the Lilly Endowment.

"Each of these scholarship programs, and almost all of the efforts of UCASE, have the goal of increasing the quality, quantity and diversity of STEM teachers," Kathy Marrs, Associate Professor of Biology and Assistant Director of UCASE, said. "Partnering with the Leadership Collaborative (TLC) and the Science and Math Teacher Imperative (SMTI) will become an important part of our efforts to substantially increase strengthen STEM teacher preparation in Indiana".

The Leadership Collaborative activities have been funded by a $1.5 million, three-year grant from the National Science Foundation's Math and Science Partnership: Research, Evaluation and Technical Assistance (MSP-RETA). The collaborative will enable universities to identify and address institutional constraints that often impede the formation of effective and sustained secondary science and mathematics teacher preparation programs. The outcome of the research will be widely disseminated through the Internet, collaborative meetings, and sharing of technical assistance.

For a complete list of NASULGC institutions that have committed to SMTI, visit http://www.teacher-imperative.org/