Dr. Timothy P. Scott, associate dean for undergraduate programs in the Texas A&M University College of Science and a co-director of the Center for Mathematics and Science Education (CMSE), has been selected to serve a two-year term on the Executive Committee of the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities (APLU) Commission on the Science and Mathematics Teacher Imperative (SMTI).

The 20-member group represents a cross section of faculty, deans, provosts and presidents from some of the nation's premier public research universities who serve in an advisory capacity in support of the SMTI initiative, launched in November 2008 as one of seven APLU commissions focusing on vital issues in higher education. The effort seeks to transform middle and high school science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education by improving science and mathematics teacher preparation and development programs.

Since 2001, Scott has been integral to Texas A&M's campus-wide commitment to STEM education and advancement as well as to national efforts in this regard. In addition to serving as one of four CMSE co-directors, he is the founder and head of the university's aggieTEACH program, a nationally peer-reviewed teacher recruitment and preparation model that has helped Texas A&M lead the state in university certified teacher production for the past seven years. During this same period, the CMSE has conducted more than $26 million in funded science- and mathematics-related research to benefit preK-16 programs throughout the state and nation.

"Timothy Scott continually brings value to the SMTI network with his ability to translate issues and make connections between education faculty, science faculty and administrators," said Howard Gobstein, SMTI co-director and APLU executive vice president. "With his deep expertise in science and mathematics teacher preparation, he is a great addition to the SMTI Executive Committee."

Executive committee members meet once each year in conjunction with the APLU Annual Meeting, set for November 10-12 in Washington, D.C. In addition, they are expected to participate in regular conference calls throughout the year as well as additional engagement opportunities as they arise.

During the past five years, the APLU's STEM-related efforts have spawned a dedicated network that includes 132 campuses across 13 university systems and 45 states. Collectively, SMTI members prepare more than 8,000 science and mathematics teachers annually, making it the largest STEM new teacher initiative in the country. SMTI also serves as the primary means of discerning member perspectives on the appropriateness, efficacy and adequacy of federal and state programs targeting science and mathematics teacher preparation as well as overall STEM education.

Founding SMTI executive committee member Dr. Lee J. Todd Jr., president emeritus of the University of Kentucky and a Sputnik-era-inspired engineer, compared the state of STEM education across the nation to a jigsaw puzzle.

"People are doing good things independently, almost on an ad-hoc basis," Todd said. "We need to pull that together in this Teacher Imperative and say we want to own this piece of the puzzle."

In support of the APLU's national movement to enhance the priority of science and mathematics teacher preparation and development, SMTI holds annual meetings to energize faculty and administrator engagement and to challenge member institutions to excel in their teacher preparation efforts and underlying reform of undergraduate disciplinary education. In addition, the initiative undertakes externally funded projects that offer opportunities for SMTI members work with colleagues from other institutions, including a Math and Science Partnership, an adjunct Mathematics Teacher Education Partnership involving 68 universities, 87 school systems and nine community colleges and most recently a network of university STEM education center directors. The initiative has received almost $4 million from the National Science Foundation, the Helmsley Charitable Trust and the Sloan Foundation.

To learn more about the Science and Mathematics Teacher Imperative, visit http://www.aplu.org/SMTI.

For more on the Texas A&M Center for Mathematics and Science Education or aggieTEACH, go to http://cmse.tamu.edu.


Contact: Shana K. Hutchins, (979) 862-1237 or shutchins@science.tamu.edu or Dr. Timothy P. Scott, (979) 845-7373 or tim@science.tamu.edu

Hutchins Shana

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