Heather has a Ph.D. in the Learning Sciences from the University of Washington, with degrees in Museum Studies from the University of Washington and Science Communication from Cornell University. In her research, Heather analyzes the social and cognitive practices that people use to learn about science and technology in everyday settings. She studies how multiple learning experiences contribute to the development of scientific knowledge, practices, and affiliations towards (or away) from science. Her interests include parent-child interactions, designing for learning in informal institutions, the role of technology to support learning across settings, and gender issues that intersect with STEM disciplines. Prior to coming to Penn State, Heather worked in museums involved designing and implementing programs for families, youth organizations, and libraries—including an early childhood program called Storybook Science and a community-based program for rural and urban youth.