CREATE Presentation: Charles Henderson


Tuesday, December 13, 2016 - 3:45pm to 5:15pm


133E Erickson Hall

Presenter: Charles Henderson, Professor, Department of Physics, Mallinson Institute for Science Education, Western Michigan University

Title: The Challenges of Spreading and Sustaining Research-Based Instruction in Undergraduate STEM

Abstract: There have been many calls for the reform of introductory Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) courses.  These calls have resulted in a cadre of researchers who study the teaching and learning of undergraduate STEM and have developed instructional methods that improve student learning.  There currently exists a substantial gap between research-based knowledge of ‘best practice’ instructional methods and the teaching practices of typical STEM faculty.  This talk will connect data about the spread of research-based instructional strategies in college-level STEM to ideas from the change literature.  Recommendations will be made for how to decrease the knowledge-practice gap

Bio: Charles Henderson is a Professor at Western Michigan University (WMU), with a joint appointment between the Physics Department and the WMU Mallinson Institute for Science Education. He is the co-founder and co-director of the WMU Center for Research on Instructional Change in Postsecondary Education (CRICPE). His research program focuses on understanding and promoting instructional change in higher education, with an emphasis on improving undergraduate STEM instruction. Dr. Henderson’s work has been supported by over $7M in external grants and has resulted in many publications (see  He is a Fulbright Scholar and a Fellow of the American Physical Society. Dr. Henderson is the senior editor for the journal Physical Review Physics Education Research and has served on two National Academy of Sciences Committees: Undergraduate Physics Education Research and Implementation, and Developing Indicators for Undergraduate STEM Education.