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Mind the gap: Active learning improves equity in STEM classrooms
Despite widespread efforts to increase access to and inclusion in STEM, minoritized students remain excluded from both STEM majors and STEM professions. The reasons for this are complex, but instructors can play an active role in disrupting these inequities. Although active learning techniques have been shown to improve student performance on average, Elli will address the question of whether active learning can also be a partial solution to achieving equitable student outcomes. In this webinar, she will share recent work demonstrating that opportunity gaps—differential performance between PEERs (Persons Excluded due to Ethnicity or Race) and over-represented students—were reduced by 75% in college STEM courses when instructors incorporated active learning strategies, but only when active learning was implemented in a majority of class time. Elli finds these data hopeful, albeit demonstrating only a partial solution to inequity in higher education.

Nov 5, 2020 03:00 PM in Eastern Time (US and Canada)

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Elli Theobold
Assistant Teaching Professor in the Department of Biology @University of Washington
Prior to Elli's current position as Assistant Teaching Professor in the Department of Biology at the University of Washington, she worked as a middle school and high school teacher, completed her PhD in ecology, and transitioned to discipline based education research as a postdoc. All of her research revolves around how to be a better teacher, with particular emphasis on how to achieve equity in college-level STEM classes.