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ERIC Number: EJ840888
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2006
Pages: 9
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 8
ISSN: ISSN-1931-7913
On Hiring Science Faculty with Education Specialties for Your Science (Not Education) Department
Bush, S. D.; Pelaez, N. J.; Rudd, J. A.; Stevens, M. T.; Williams, K. S.; Allen, D. E.; Tanner, K. D.
CBE - Life Sciences Education, v5 n4 p297-305 Win 2006
In this article, the authors highlight an issue in science education facing many university and college science departments: hiring faculty who can bring to the department specialized expertise in science education. To begin to address this issue, a collaborative team of tenure-track faculty--all of whom are primarily trained in science and have pursued additional professional development to become education specialists within their discipline--have contributed their collective wisdom on this topic. The aim of this article is to share a variety of perspectives on the goals for hiring and retaining Science Faculty with Education Specialties (SFES), the potential roles of the appointed SFES, and to provide a document to foster and guide conversations among faculty who are considering hiring a science educator for their science department. The authors of this article represent seven universities and occupy different points along the career trajectory as SFES. In particular, the authors of this article have been informed by conversations around these questions in two key venues. First, the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) held a Workshop for Discipline-based Science Education Research in December 2005 (NAS, 2006). This meeting brought together administrators who have pioneered the hiring of these positions at their universities and colleges, along with junior faculty who have been recently hired as "science educators" within science departments. In addition, the California State University (CSU), which is the largest university in the country and serves more than 400,000 students on 23 campuses, held a System-wide Colloquium on Science Education in May 2006 to explore a variety of topics, one of which was how to better engage the scientific disciplines in K-16+ science education reform efforts (CSU, 2006). What emerged at this Colloquium on Science Education was the conclusion that the integration of specialists in science education within science departments was a key, yet underdeveloped, approach to that goal. The following questions are addressed: (1) What do "SFES" look like?; (2) How are these positions similar to and different from other tenure-track faculty positions in science departments--with respect to research, teaching, or service?; (3) Why create these positions within science departments?; (4) What are common myths associated with the hiring of new faculty in these positions?; (5) What conversations should take place before a department decides to hire an SFES?; and (6) How can individual faculty members support the integration of an SFES in their department? (Contains 1 table.)
American Society for Cell Biology. 8120 Woodmont Avenue Suite 750, Bethesda, MD 20814-2762. Tel: 301-347-9300; Fax: 301-347-9310; E-mail:; Website:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: Administrators
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California