Emilie Hancock (Math Education), Brandy Wiegers (Mathematics)
Engaging more faculty in Discipline-Based Education Research (DBER) can increase the number of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) faculty utilizing evidence-based practices for undergraduate teaching and learning, as well as the number of contributors effectively addressing critical issues in STEM education. DBER is a rapidly evolving discipline that requires both a mastery of quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methodologies and a nuanced understanding of breadth of topic, questions, and theoretical frameworks. The fundamental interdisciplinarity, blending discipline-specific content with educational theories and methods, is a particular challenge for new DBER researchers who are often switching into DBER with only discipline-specific content and research training. A collaboration between STEM educators from different disciplines is essential for providing both the fundamental knowledge of educational theories and research methodologies, but also an interdisciplinary lens. This research project is one part of a larger collaboration between STEM education experts in DBER professional development from two different disciplines, math and physics. The leadership on the overarching project represents collaborative work between active participants in the Research in Undergraduate Math Education (RUME) and Physics education communities who have organized various workshops to bring STEM and STEM education researchers together. Together, this interdisciplinary team would like to continue to develop more accessible ways to provide professional development and sustainable mentorship, and the team is actively researching how to best develop these supports. In this project we seek to answer the central research questions: What are new DBER researchers’ needs and intentions in participating in DBER research?
Keywords: Mathematics Education, DBERs, Professional Development