The mission of the Center for Science, Mathematics and Computer Education (CSMCE) is to support UNL faculty engaged in educational activities focused on improving the teaching and learning of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) at both the PK-12 and collegiate level. With support from UNL’s Colleges of Arts and Sciences, Education and Human Sciences, and Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, the CSMCE works to build partnerships among leaders in the higher education and PK-12 education sectors that further our basic mission.
News and Events
- Kevin Lee, a research associate professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy and the Center's technology director, was interviewed by Channel 10/11 regarding a 2004 video that was released purporting to show a UFO off the coast of California. The incident is one of 12,000 encounters investigated by the recently declassified Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program. Lee said it's important to remember the "u" in UFO: unidentified. He said connecting alien visitors from another solar system to the video is not a good extrapolation of the data.
- CSMCE Director Jim Lewis has been named a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the largest general scientific society in the world. Lewis, Aaron Douglas Professor of Mathematics, was selected for distinguished contributions to mathematics and mathematics education, particularly his leadership and ability to bring diverse stakeholders together in support of positive change in mathematics teaching and learning. Fellows are chosen by peers for scientifically or socially distinguished achievements that advance science or its application. Currently, Lewis is acting assistant director of the NSF's Education and Human Resources Directorate.
- Nearly 250 people attended the 2nd annual statewide Nebraska K-12 Science Education Summit on Dec. 11, 2017, at Nebraska Innovation Campus in Lincoln. The summit gave participants the opportunity to get an update on Nebraska’s new College- and Career-Ready Standards; explore 3-dimensional learning, phenomena, and integrated science; learn about innovative K-12 science curriculum, resources, and programs developed by university faculty; and engage with science education stakeholders from across Nebraska. More than 150 K-12 teachers attended and were joined by Nebraska Department of Education officials; school district science directors; ESU science staff developers; and University of Nebraska-Lincoln faculty, staff, and graduate students.
Meeting Challenges of 21st Century Classrooms
To meet the state’s and the nation’s need for more highly qualified science teachers, the 14-month Master of Arts with emphasis in science teaching (MAst) program was established in the College of Education’s Department of Teaching, Learning, and Teacher Education at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, along with a Robert Noyce, Track I, Phase I grant from the National Science Foundation, awarded in 2010. This report presents a summary of the accomplishments of this Noyce grant, in which 60 post-baccalaureate science majors and professionals were provided with Noyce stipends to become science teachers. The MAst program is now in its sixth year, producing an average of 10 new science teachers per year. The project team, led by Dr. Elizabeth Lewis, was also awarded a second Noyce grant in 2015 to support 30 more individuals to become science teachers along with funding to continue to research the practices of beginning science teachers. The MAst program engages science professionals in a research-informed program of study that supports them in developing the knowledge, skills, and dispositions necessary to meet the challenges of the modern American secondary science classroom.