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We welcome new members who will contribute to the mission of the Center. 

Learn more about the benefits to being a member of the STEM Education Research Network.

New faculty wishing to become affiliated with the Center should follow the "Join our STEM Education Research Network" link to the right.

West Virginia University Faculty

Benjamin M. Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources

Ordel Brown, Ph.D., Teaching Assistant Professor
Fundamentals of Engineering.

Todd Hamrick, Ph.D., Teaching Assistant Professor
Efficiency improvement in well drilling and organic solar cells, and works on freshmen Engineering retention.

Robin Hensel, Ph.D., Assistant Dean for Freshman Experience

Melissa Morris, Ph.D., Teaching Assistant Professor
Energy and thermodynamic related topics. Recruiting and outreach for the Statler College.

Stefanos Papanikolaou
Primary research interest in in the theory and application of statistical methods towards the theoretical and computational modeling of mechanical behavior of materials. Overall research interests lie in the application of statistical methods for the theory and modeling of highly frustrated systems and networks.

Lizzie Santiago, Ph.D., Teaching Assistant Professor
The retention of engineering students and how classroom experiences affect students' interest in engineering, as well as understanding the development of critical thinking skills in first year engineering students.

Frances Van Scoy Ph.D., Associate Professor
Information Assurance - information dissemination, virtual environments.

Gary Winn, Ph.D., Professor & Coordinator, Occupational Safety and Health Doctorate
Transportation and program evaluation, safety legislation and compliance issues, experimental methods, advanced manufacturing, and construction safety. STEM education interests include STEM recruiting and retention, including freshmen, Appalachian students and Appalachian female students. Also interested in STEM summer camp data collection strategies.

Ryan Sigler, Ph.D., Coordinator of Enrollment Management

College of Education and Human Services

Curriculum and Instruction Literacy

Johnna Bolyard, Ph.D., Associate Professor
Development of pre-service and in-service mathematics teachers and teacher leaders. Development of knowledge for mathematics teacher educators, Uses of representation and technology in mathematics.

Jeffrey Carver, Ph.D., Professor
Improvement of teaching and learning in the STEM disciplines at all levels, particularly in ways that help students connect science to daily life.

Reagan Curtis, Ph.D., Professor & Department Chair
Mathematical and scientific knowledge across the lifespan; online delivery methods and pedagogical approaches to university instruction; research methodology; program evaluation; and data analysis.

Melissa Luna, Ph.D., Assistant Professor
Learning Science, focusing on elementary teachers' noticing and sense-making of students' scientific thinking.

Jim Rye, Ph.D., Professor
Using concept maps as a communication, learning, and research tool in science education; Science-Technology-Society (STS) education for investigating built environment issues that bring together human and environmental health.

Sarah Selmer, Ph.D., Assistant Professor
The development of pre-service elementary teachers’ mathematical knowledge of teaching in the area of algebraic reasoning.

Keri Valentine, Ph.D., Assistant Professor
Cognitive flexibility on the part of middle school mathematics learners using design-based research strategies in conjunction with phenomenological research methods; and  informal STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Mathematics) learning environments in the context of summer game design camps for 11-17 year olds.

Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design

Agricultural & Extension Education

James Anderson, Ph.D., Professor
Ecology and management of wetlands, with a focus on evaluating ecological differences between created and natural wetlands.  Wildlife ecology and management including scientific investigations and habitat restoration for birds, mammals, amphibians, and reptiles. Interested in collaborating on STEM education initiatives for research projects and in the classroom.  

Jessica Blythe, Ph.D., Assistant Professor
School of Design and Community Development. Agricultural and Extension Education. Focus on the need for secondary agriculture teachers to be engaged in professional development activities that increase their STEM literacy and ability to effectively teach STEM concepts.

Deborah Boone, Ph.D., Associate Professor
Impacts of extension and 4-H youth development activities, information transfer from extension to constituents, problems faced by agriculture teachers and extension agents, job satisfaction and stress and burnout agriculture among teachers and extension agents.

Harry Boone, Ph.D., Professor & Chair
Teaching methods and experiential learning.

Stacy Gartin, Ph.D., Professor
Descriptive survey research in the areas related to agricultural education, communications, youth leadership development, teaching and learning theory, adult education and agricultural mechanics.

Doug LaVergne, Ph.D., Assistant Professor
Teacher education, multicultural education, agricultural mechanics, program planning, teaching methods, and cultural pluralism.

Nicolas Zegre, Ph.D., Associate Professor 
Teaches courses related to hydrological sciences, climatology, and water resources; and is developing a course on science communication. Research interests include w atershed and forest hydrology, land use and climate change effects on water resources, forest watershed management, ecological and hydrological linkages, riparian processes, hydrologic behavior change detection, hydrologic modeling and statistics, and water quality.

Human Nutrition and Foods

Melissa Olfert, Ph.D., Assistant Professor
The prevention of chronic disease across the lifespan using lifestyle behavior change interventions (with community based participatory research methods) to minimize risk of disease in populations, especially in health disparate regions.

WVU Extension

Susan Gamble, Ed.D., Extension Specialist - Afterschool Grants Program 

Directs the West Virginia Statewide Afterschool Network, an organization working to complete systems building to support high quality out-of-school time STEM opportunities for all West Virginia school-age youth. 

Jennifer Robertson-Honecker, Ph.D., Adjunct Professor & STEM Specialist
The development and assessment of laboratory and classroom exercises, analysis of efficacy of technology use in the classroom, and the development of chemistry outreach programs.

Litha Sivanandan, Ph.D., WVU Extension Specialist - Food Safety and Preservation 
Working to help increase training opportunities available for West Virginians to become successful food entrepreneurs. She hopes to accomplish this by increasing the food business in the state and with training on byproduct utilization and sustainability. Research interests include Communications in Science and Engineering of Food, and the use of animations and videos to explain these topics.  

Jean Woloshuk, Ed.D., WVU Extension Specialist
Provides the overall leadership for all statewide agriculture educational opportunities. Responsible for developing the 4-H agricultural curriculum and pursuing funding to support the 4-H agricultural programming.

Eberly College of Arts and Sciences


Jonathan Cumming, Ph.D., Professor
Teaches labs and conducts interactive classrooms in plant physiology and methods in environmental Biology.  Undertakes research on soil stress resistances in plants, biofuel feedstocks production, and the role of soil microbes in moderating plant response to soil limitations.

Dana Huebert Lima, Ph.D., Teaching Assistant Professor
Teaches upper level courses in molecular and cell biology. Biotechnology and medicine emphasizing mechanisms and processes. Current and emerging knowledge in these applications, and touch on the ethical and legal ramifications.

Kevin Lee, Ph.D., Assistant Professor
Teaches upper level courses in molecular and cell biology. Topics covered in the context of biotechnology and medicine emphasizing mechanisms and processes. Explores current and emerging knowledge in these applications and touches on ethical and legal ramifications.

Michelle Withers, Ph.D., Associate Professor
Assesses the impact of curricular and pedagogical reforms on student learning; and evaluating paradigms for effective pedagogical training on current and future faculty.  The impact of novel uses of formative and summative assessments to improve student learning and the efficacy of interactive Scientific Teaching workshops on adoption of active, student-centered teaching approaches.  

Jennifer Stueckle, Teaching Assistant Professor
Aquatic toxicology and fish physiology. Program coordinator for the non-majors biology sequence (BIOL 101-104).  Providing hands on, real world experiences to students including inquiry-based labs and applying scientific topics to their lives.  In the past, have inquired about students’ experiences in biology in high school and how that prepared them for college.

Elizabeth Thomas, Ph.D., Senior Lecturer
Teaching General Biology, Environmental Biology, and Biotechnology and Society along with Honors Biology seminars.


Erin Battin, Ph.D., Teaching Assistant Professor
Teaching General Chemistry, Organic Chemistry and Bioinorganic Chemistry.

Lisa Holland, Ph.D., Professor
The use of miniaturized separation techniques to shed light on physiological dysfunction by measuring thermodynamic and kinetic parameters, elucidating binding affinity, and screening for molecular interaction; endocrine disruption in a local watershed, Appalachian botanical medicine, and distance mentoring using the internet.

Joshua Osbourn, Ph.D., Teaching Assistant Professor
Teaching Organic Chemistry.

John Penn, Ph.D., Professor
Development of new techniques for Internet-based teaching methods, chemistry of electron-transfer organic molecular complexes, determination of unusual reaction mechanisms, microscale chemical techniques, excited state behavior, and environmental chemistry.

Betsy B. Ratcliff, Ph.D., Teaching Associate Professor
Teaching Introductory, General, (OB (General, Organic, and Biological), and Physical Chemistry.

Tabitha Razunguzwa Ph.D., Teaching Associate Professor
Teaching General Chemistry.

Michelle Richards-Babb, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Director of Undergraduate Research in University College
Chemical education, particularly the freshmen chemistry learning experience, undergraduate research and STEM outreach.

Mark Schraf, Senior Lecturer & Teaching Professor
Teaching General Chemistry.

Mingming Xu, Ph.D., Teaching Associate Professor
Teaching General Chemistry.

Geology & Geography

Graham D. M. Andrews, Ph.D., Assistant Professor 
Dr. Andrews uses fieldwork, petrology, and geochronology to investigate the origins and architectures of volcanic deposits and regions.

Brenden McNeil, Ph.D., Assistant Professor
Fieldwork and geospatial tools of GIS and remote sensing to understand how global change affects the carbon, nitrogen, and energy cycles of forest ecosystems. Utilizing the Environmental Geoscience program to contribute, pilot, and/or serve as an integrator for STEM education initiatives.

Tim Warner, Ph.D., Professor
Spatial properties of remotely sensed images, lidar, high spatial resolution imagery, thermal imagery, biogeographical applications of remote sensing (especially the study of the invasive species, Ailanthus altissima) and information literacy.


Marjorie Darrah, Ph.D., Associate Professor
Algorithm development, artificial intelligence verification and validation, educational technology integration, haptics software development, and educational and program evaluation.

Jessica Deshler, Ph.D., Associate Professor
Mathematics graduate student professional development, developmental mathematics student profiles, the intersection of gender & mathematics in the undergraduate classroom, and how students use verbal and written language in calculus.

Edgar Fuller, Ph.D., Professor and Chair 
Dr. Fuller's doctoral work was in differential geometry and since then he has done work in a number of areas including the study of knot energies, data mining, software reliability, and mathematics education. His specialization is in the field of Geometric Knot Theory.

Michael Mays Ph.D., Professor
Technology in mathematics education, in particular the effectiveness of applets to support instruction in on line courses and large lecture sections of service courses and STEM education for underserved populations via the Kentucky-West Virginia.

David Miller, Ph.D., Associate Professor & Undergraduate Director
Cognitive science, problem solving, proofs, how worked examples help students learn in lower level classes, and cognitive load theory in relation to mathematics.

Laura Pyzdrowski, Ph.D., Professor & Pre-Collegiate Mathematics Coordinator
Cognitive science, problem solving, proofs, how worked examples help students learn in lower level classes, and cognitive load theory in relation to mathematics.


Paul Cassak Ph.D., Associate Professor
Theoretical and computational plasma physics, focusing on magnetic reconnection and its applications using analytical techniques and large scale numerical simulations, and observational data. Applications include solar flares and coronal mass ejections, geomagnetic activity including sub storms and solar wind-magnetosphere coupling in the geomagnetic field (relevant to the field of space weather), disruptive events in fusion plasmas, and various astrophysical settings.  Has interest in STEM education and physics education research.

Lian Li Ph.D., Professor 
Experimental condensed matter physics, focusing on structure and property relationship of condensed matter at the atomic scale. Current interests are the molecular beam epitaxial growth of quantum materials (e.g., graphene, topological insulators, and Weyl semimetals), Fe-based superconductors, and 2D transition metal dichalcogenides, and application of in situ low temperature scanning tunneling microscopy/spectroscopy and angle-resolved photoemission spectroscopy to gain new insights into these quantum phases of matter from the interplay of strain, proximity, correlations, and spin-orbit interactions.

Duncan Lorimer Ph.D., Professor
Research into pulsars and transient radio sources involves high school students and teacher through the Pulsar Search Collaboratory program. Astrophysical signal processing techniques; searching for and timing neutron stars; modelling the Galactic pulsar population and evolution; compact object binaries and their merger rates; white dwarf cooling; Galactic and extragalactic transient radio sources; supernova remnants; the interstellar medium and tests of general relativity.

Maura McLaughlin, Ph.D., Professor
Member of the NANOGrav collaboration, studies neutron stars and their environments through radio, X-ray, and gamma-ray observations. Involves students from middle-school to undergraduate level in searching for radio pulsars with the Green Bank Telescope in Pocahontas County, West Virginia.

Paul Miller, Ph.D., Teaching Associate Professor
Physics education, informal science education, and plasma physics.  Introductory physics for engineers and for elementary education majors.  Involved with the WVUteach and the PhysTEC projects.

Earl Scime, Ph.D., Professor  & Chair
Space and laboratory plasma physics. Focuses on the heating and energization of particles in a wide range of plasma environments: the heliosphere, the magnetosphere, magnetic fusion experiments, and low temperature plasmas. Measurement tools include plasma probes, tuneable lasers, microwave scattering, and emission spectroscopy. In addition to laboratory research, his group is also very engaged in STEM education in WV through the WV Robotics Alliance. Through the Robotics Alliance, they work with over 2,000 elementary, middle, and high school students each year in hands-on STEM programs.

Gay Stewart, Ph.D., Professor & Director of WVU Center for Excellence in STEM
Interested in all areas of research that help improve the recruitment, retention and success of STEM majors, with a particular interest in teacher preparation as part of the STEM major. Director of WVUCE-STEM to help forge partnerships to impact STEM education K-20 in West Virginia and help WVU become a national model for effective STEM education. Co-director of  WVUteach.

John Stewart, Ph.D., Associate Professor
Understanding of the performance of STEM students in science classes and how that performance affects retention to STEM majors. He also works on quantitative departmental transformation particularly those that support physics teacher training.

Women and Gender Studies

Kasi Jackson, Ph.D., Associate Professor
Science education research focusing on diversity, representation of science in popular film and science fiction literature, gender and animal behavior, and feminist analyses of emergent technology.


Vanessa Licwov-Channell, Clinical Associate Professor
Master Teacher for WVUteach, uniting in-depth science and mathematics education with teacher preparation.

Nancy Spillane, Ed.D., Clinical Associate Professor
Master Teacher for WVUteach, uniting in-depth science and mathematics education with teacher preparation.

Michael Tilley, Clinical Instructor 
Master Teacher for WVUteach, uniting in-depth science and mathematics education with teacher preparation.

Robert C. Byrd Health Sciences Center

Ann Chester Ph.D., Assistant Vice President for Education Partnerships
Designed, built, and shepherded a one-of-a-kind mentoring program in the state of West Virginia that helps underrepresented high-school students enter and succeed in STEM-based undergraduate and graduate degree programs.

WVU Center for Excellence in STEM Education

Lynnette Michaluk, Research Assistant Professor

Affiliate Members

Affiliate Faculty at WVU who have expressed an interest in collaborating with those active in STEM education research:

Feng Yang, Ph.D., Associate Professor   
Applied statistical methods, design of experiment methodology and application, and computer simulation of stochastic systems.