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New Waterbury Chair in College of Education will Focus on STEM Education

Dr. Richard A. Duschl will join the Penn State College of Education as the new Waterbury Chair in Secondary Education, effective August 15, 2008.

By Suzanne Wayne (February 2008)

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – Dr. Richard A. Duschl will join the Penn State College of Education as the new Waterbury Chair in Secondary Education, effective August 15, 2008.

Duschl.jpgAs Waterbury Chair, Duschl will focus his research efforts on advancing teacher education programs and on the design of learning environments that seek and promote collaborations among mathematics, science, technology and engineering education.

“I am very excited and honored to be joining the College of Education faculty as the Waterbury Chair in Secondary Education. The outstanding faculty at Penn State and the resources provided by the Waterbury Chair endowment will make it possible to pursue innovative and collaborative research and development activities in STEM education domains,” said Duschl.

“My long-term goal is to make Penn State a destination for learning sciences and science studies applications to secondary education,” he continued.

Duschl’s appointment is part of the College’s continued focus on STEM education at all levels. Other recent College of Education initiatives include the establishment of a new Kahn Professorship in Education, which is designed to support STEM education research. Dr. Carla Zembal-Saul has been appointed as the new Kahn Professor. The College’s Center for Science and the Schools also recently won a major contract from NASA to coordinate NASA education programs to K-12 schools throughout the nation.

“Rick Duschl is an outstanding science educator who is well known throughout the world for his work on science education in middle/secondary schools and in informal science education settings.  We are delighted to welcome him to the Penn State team and look forward to efforts he will be making to strengthen connections between education and the various STEM colleges and units throughout Penn State,” said College of Education Dean David Monk. 

Duschl comes to Penn State from Rutgers University where he was a Professor of Science Education in the Graduate School of Education and a member of the executive committee of the Rutgers Center for Cognitive Sciences.

Duschl earned his B.S. in Earth Science Education from the University of Maryland, his M.A.T. in Geology from Michigan State University, and his Ph.D. in Science Education from the University of Maryland.

He has published numerous articles, book chapters, and books. His latest books include Teaching scientific inquiry: Recommendations for research and implementation (SensePublishers) and Taking Science to School: Science Learning and Teaching Grades K-8 (National Academy Press).

The Waterbury Chair in Secondary Education is funded by an endowment contributed by Dr. Kenneth Waterbury. The endowment is designed to fund an outstanding scholar’s work in the field of education, with particular emphasis in secondary education.