Science/Mathematics Department in the News 

Listed below are current and previous news stories about the Science/Mathematics Department and its programs.


Accolades: Science/Math Educator, Doctoral Student Earn Recognition

Urquhart Recognized for Efforts to Support Science Teachers

Dr. Mary Urquhart, associate professor and head of the Department of Science/Mathematics Education (SME) at UT Dallas, was recently honored for leading programs that educate and support Texas science teachers.

Urquhart received the Nita Beth Camp Legacy Award for a science project director from the Texas Regional Collaboratives for Excellence in Science and Mathematics Teaching. The award honors a “lifetime of dedication and commitment to quality education for Texas teachers and students,” according to the citation.

For the past nine years, Urquhart has led the UT Dallas Texas Regional Collaborative for Excellence in Science Teaching, part of the statewide network that provides high-quality professional development to teachers. The collaborative hosts programs and workshops for in-service teachers aimed at enhancing their science content knowledge, improving their instructional skills and building their leadership capacity. In more recent years, she also has overseen collaboratives in math and computer science.  Read full story here


UTeach Dallas Staff Member Earns Association Award

Dr. Kim Distin

Dr. Kim Distin receiving award at the UTeach Annual Conference May 2018

August 29, 2018  UTDallas Intercom

Dr. Kim Distin MAT’09, program coordinator, materials manager and intern coordinator for UTeach Dallas, recently received the 2018 Outstanding Staff Award from the UTeach STEM Educators Association.

Distin has been the program coordinator for UTeach Dallas since its inception in 2007. Her duties include overseeing class, lab and lesson materials management; web and social media; data reports; and alumni tracking. Before joining the UTeach Dallas program, she taught high school science in the Dallas area for 10 years.

Based in the Department of Science/Mathematics Education, UTeach Dallas prepares science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) teachers for U.S. classrooms. The program allows college students majoring in STEM fields to combine their degrees with secondary teaching certifications without adding time or cost.

Science, Math Instructors Receive Excellence in Teaching Honors

Dr. Stephanie Taylor BS’06

The School of Natural Sciences and Mathematics at UT Dallas recognized five educators this spring with Outstanding Teacher Awards.

Lecturer: Dr. Stephanie Taylor BS’06, senior lecturer in Science and Mathematics Education

Since 2013, Taylor has taught a variety of courses, including general chemistry, environmental science for non-majors and graduate courses for the Master of Arts in Teaching program.

“For me, teaching is about enthusiasm and relating the topic back to the everyday world,” she said. “It is easy for students to get bogged down in details or only see the next exam coming, so even small voyages to incorporate present-day research, biology, history or engineering allows chemistry to have context and meaning outside of a single semester.”


Researchers are Putting a Multidisciplinary Spin on Teaching Physics

National Science Foundation Grant Will Fund Study That Employs Computer Programming Concepts

February 5, 2018  UTDallas News

UT Dallas researchers are launching a three-year research project that uses specialized computer programs to teach children physics, thanks to a recent grant of more than $1 million from the National Science Foundation’s STEM + Computing (STEM+C) program.

The study, Scaffolded Training Environment for Physics Programming (STEPP), will test a novel approach for teaching physics to high school students — computer-based learning programs that require no prior coding experience. Read full story here


Fox4ward: The Hunt for a “Missing” Planet

January 29, 2018 Fox 4 News

Scientists refer to it as “Planet 9”. It’s apparently located in the far reaches of our solar system, and yet, we can’t seem to find it. For this Fox4ward, we learn more about the search, from a planetary scientist, Dr Mary Urquhart, Dept Head of SME Dept at UT Dallas. View video here


UTeach Dallas Project Spawns Partnership with Texas Parks and Wildlife.

 Alluring Middle School Lesson Plans Combine Bass Fishing, Conservation to Teach Science, Math

January 29, 2018  UTDallas News 

The University of Texas at Dallas is partnering with the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department on a project that incorporates bass fishing and conservation into science and math curricula for middle schoolers.

The project began last year as lesson plans drafted by UT Dallas students as part of their training to become science and math teachers. The students were in a program called UTeach Dallas, where undergraduates earn their degrees in a STEM field — science, technology, engineering and math — concurrently with teacher training and certification. Many graduates go on to teach in North Texas schools and earn master’s degrees.

Each year, teams of those students are challenged to design science and math lessons that meet state standards.

Last spring, UTeach Dallas instructors added a twist to the challenge: Design a unit of lessons that could be used in the classroom to complement the Toyota ShareLunker bass conservation program, which is run by the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center in the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department.  Read the full story. 


Innovations in Project-Based Instruction

June 12, 2017 UTeach STEM Educators Association (USEA) Newsletter – UTeach Institute page

When faced with the choice to “go big, or go home” in facilitating Project-Based Instruction (PBI) at UTeach Dallas, Master Teachers Kate York and Katie Donaldson have definitely chosen the former. Pre-service teachers enrolled in this course over the past five semesters have broadened their PBI skill set by engaging in global and informal science collaboration projects. Not only has this allowed students to delve more deeply into their content acquisition and add to their instructional pedagogy toolbox, it has also strengthened their 21st century skills.  Read full story


UTeach Dallas Celebrates 10th Anniversary

May 5, 2017  City of Richardson – Week in Review 

UTeach Dallas Celebration at Berkner HS
Richardson Mayor Pro Tem Mark Solomon visited the engineering class at Berkner High School as part of the UTeach anniversary celebration. The instructor of the class is a UTeach Dallas graduate.

UT Dallas’ UTeach program marked its 10th anniversary today (and the 20th anniversary of the national UTeach program) with a celebration at Berkner High School. Special guests, including Richardson Mayor Pro Tem Mark Solomon, and media representatives were invited to visit classrooms to see the program in action and learn about its positive impacts. UTeach, which began at UT Austin in 1997 and expanded to UT Dallas in 2007, strives to rectify the shortage of qualified U.S. workers available to fill jobs in STEM fields (science, technology, engineering and math) by encouraging STEM majors to become teachers. Area school districts, including RISD, help train the STEM majors by providing teaching internships, and eventually hire many of the graduates. (There are 24 UT Dallas graduates currently teaching at RISD schools.)

Friday’s event included a visit to an engineering class taught by a UT Dallas graduate, where students demonstrated the use and importance of engineering automation and discussed skill sets needed for those planning careers in STEM. About 370 UT Dallas students participate in the program each year, reaching 38,000 area secondary students since the program began.

For more information about UTeach and UTeach Dallas, visit


Meet three Inspiring Women in STEM “Hidden Figures”

March 1, 2017 Sponsored by the Office of Diversity and Community Engagement and the Galerstein Women’s Center

This year, award-winning Hidden Figures cast Taraji P Henson, Octavia Spencer, and Janelle Monae brought to light the untold story of women mathematicians who served an essential role in NASA: the launch of astronaut John Glenn into orbit. In Women’s History Month, meet these three inspiring women in STEM who played a key role in NASA reaching for the stars.  UT Dallas’ own Mary L. Urquhart, Ph.D. Associate Professor in the Department of Physics will introduce the film and take Q&A after the movie. Dr. Urquhart is also the head of the Department of Science/Mathematics Education, Co-Director, U-Teach Dallas. Mary L. Urquhart spent time at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory and at NASA’s Ames Research Center, Center for Mars Exploration. Dr. Urquhart will be joined by Dr. Marc Hairston, who is a Research Scientist at the William B. Hanson Center for Space Sciences. March 31, 2017 2-4PM


3-D Models Become Integral Visualization Aids for Calculus Students  

Using the 3-D models, the active learning sessions help students mature in the subject by forcing them to explain things to each other, Zweck said.

February 6 , 2017  UTDallas News 

… “I’d been thinking about how to solve this visualization problem, and I read the title of a blog post about 3-D printing your own flip-flops,” Zweck said. “I realized, if you can print your own flip-flops, you can print anything.” That year, the National Science Foundation announced a call for researchers to improve the success of first- and second-year STEM students in mathematics courses. Dr. Mary Urquhart, the head of the Department of Science and Mathematics Education in the School of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, and Dr. Sue Minkoff, a professor in the Department of Mathematical Sciences who also teaches Multivariable Calculus, already shared an NSF grant with Zweck that supported the UTeach Dallas Robert Noyce Scholarship Program. “We partnered with Dr. Urquhart to secure an $80,000 supplement to the Noyce award,” Zweck said. “That paid for the models to be produced, and for the undergraduate teaching assistants that help facilitate our small-group problem-solving sessions.”… Read the full story. 

This story was also referenced in a Dallas Morning News article on 3D Printing: Why some North Texas hospitals are turning to 3-D technology to prep for surgery

UTD Broadens Efforts to Teach Computer Skills to Children, Teachers Across North Texas

December 6, 2016  UTDallas News

The University of Texas at Dallas is expanding its ongoing efforts to promote computer science education to K-12 students — and teachers — throughout North Texas.  The University currently coordinates programs that range from providing training and professional development for science, math and computer science teachers, to year-round coding camps and workshops for students of all ages and skill levels. Adding to those efforts, UT Dallas recently was selected as a Regional Partner.  ..Sidebar comments on Teacher Training and SME .. “In addition to fostering interest in computer science among K-12 students, it’s vitally important to support the educators who are and will be teaching computer science skills,” said Dr. Mary Urquhart, head of the Department of Math and Science Education (sic) in the UT Dallas School of Natural Sciences and Mathematics. Read the full story. 

Texas teachers learn coding at UTD, hoping to bring lessons to their classrooms

July 14, 2016  Dallas Morning Newsnews-trc-cs-story-cover-pic

The sound of water splashing, followed by a chorus of laughter, echoed around a large room at the University of Texas at Dallas. School was out for students, but not for the 11 teachers in the class.  Science, math and computer science teachers from across Texas smiled at their blue and purple laptops. With a click, they tried to make an animated frog jump from one moving yellow circle to the next. Every time a frog missed, there was the sound of a splash…..During a one-week coding camp earlier this month, the teachers created various projects through Alice, a 3D programming environment. The virtual platform has built-in animated objects that users can control through drop-down menu options, making it possible to program and create games like the leapfrog one. Read the full story. <<Shown in the foreground are two UTD TRC Science Teacher Mentors. One of these STMs is also a Mentor teacher for UTeach Dallas.>>


FOX 4Ward: Planet Life

June 13, 2016 Fox 4 News Television Interview 

We humans have long wondered whether we’re alone in the universe. And just in the last four or five weeks, scientists have developed a much better idea of where to look for life beyond our planet. FOX 4’s Dan Godwin talks to Professor Mary Urquhart, a planetary scientist from the University of Texas in Dallas.  watch video on FOX 4 


UT Dallas Joins National Network to Grow STEM Teaching Force



March 21, 2016   UT Dallas News Center   

UTeach students

From left: UTeach Dallas students Brea Baygents, Bernadette Charba, Alex Kangethe, Udit Bhatt and Zachary Regetz learn the ins-and-outs of managing a middle school science lab experience.

UT Dallas has been selected to join a national network of organizations and universities dedicated to bringing 100,000 new exceptional science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) teachers into classrooms by 2021.

Dr. Urquhart Comments on new images of Pluto from New Horizons spacecraft on Fox 4

Jan 18, 2016 Fox 4 Television 

“We’re seeing an incredible diversity in the geologic features on this world, we see older cratered plains, we see mountains and a very young surface — a frozen nitrogen sea.”  Dr. Mary Urquhart, planetary scientist and head of UT Dallas’ Department of Science/Mathematics Education — watch video on FOX 4


Sparking imaginations of young and old

September 1, 2015     Richardson Living magazine

When I [Dr Mary Urquhart] was little girl growing up in Richardson in the decades following Apollo astronauts walking on the moon, I was fascinated by space. Yet truly falling in love with the sky didn’t really happen for me until I was in an afterschool program in fourth grade that brought me to the Richardson ISD planetarium every week. Touring the night sky and solar system, and flying through the known universe was all possible in that cherished room with the domed ceiling and projectors along the walls. My excitement for the sky only grew when with my first telescope I could see craters on the moon and the birthplace of stars in the Orion Nebula right from my parents’ yard. Read the full story


University Plants Seeds of Science at Dallas Arboretum for Earth Day

April 16, 2015

 More than 50 faculty and students from the UT Dallas School of Natural Sciences and Mathematics will be cultivating budding scientists this month when they present dozens of activities for children at the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden. In celebration of Earth Day, the Dallas Arboretum’s Rory Meyers Children’s Adventure Garden partnered with the University to stage science and mathematics activities for K-12 students from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday at the garden. Each activity is run by a different UT Dallas group or an external collaborator.  …Faculty from the departments of biological sciences, physics, and science and math education also will participate. Representatives from UTeach Dallas, an academic program at the University that trains science and math teachers, will also be on hand. … Read the full story


Mental Math Wiz to Reveal the Magic of Calculations at Free Event

 Feb. 11, 2015

A mathematician known for his feats of mental calculation will demonstrate his math magic during a free event Saturday at UT Dallas. As a special guest of the Metroplex Math Circle (MMC), Dr. Arthur Benjamin, a magician and professor of mathematics at Harvey Mudd College, will share his mental math secrets during his “Mathemagics” presentation…Read the full story


Tuesday’s Total Lunar Eclipse Ushers in Series of Four

 April 10, 2014

In the early morning hours of Tuesday, April 15, a total lunar eclipse will be visible across North America, turning the moon blood red or orange as the moon passes through Earth’s shadow. The colorful eclipse ushers in an unusual series of astronomical events, said Dr. Mary Urquhart, associate professor and head of the Department of Science and Mathematics Education at The University of Texas at Dallas. Read the full story


Researchers Educate, Entertain Teens with Third Issue of Space Science Comic Book  

CINDI comic book cover

UT Dallas researchers have produced three comic books to help middle and high school students understand space science. The newest is “Cindi in the Solar Wind.”

UT Dallas researchers have produced three comic books to help middle and high school students understand space science. The newest is “Cindi in the Solar Wind.”

 Feb. 18, 2014

What does an orange-haired, comic book superheroine have in common with a science experiment orbiting the Earth on board a satellite? Plenty. Both share the name CINDI, shed light on discoveries in space science and are the creations of researchers at The University of Texas at Dallas. Read the full story


Alumna Brings Science Experiment to Life

 Feb. 18, 2014

Like mild-mannered reporter Clark Kent, UT Dallas alumna Christine Rittenhouse has a day job. But when she was a master’s student at the University, her super-woman alter ego was a high-flying role model for young girls interested in science. Rittenhouse recently hung up the bright orange wig and spandex costume she donned to play Cindi. Although no longer in costume, as a physics teacher at Liberty High School in Frisco, Rittenhouse does retain Cindi’s superpower: helping students understand science. Read the full story


Communities Foundation of Texas Awards More Than $1.3 Million in Grants to Improve Middle School Education in North Texas

February 17, 2014
$74,812 to provide gender equity training to pre-service teachers through the UTeach Dallas program. UTeach recruits students from UTD’s pool of undergraduate STEM majors to consider a career teaching in middle and high school math and science classrooms. Read full story


5 More Universities Will Create STEM Teacher-Training Programs

Feb 2, 2014      U.S. News & World Report  

Universities are responding to President Obama’s State of the Union call to better educate the future workforce.  Five more universities will start UTeach programs in the fall of 2014 to simultaneously award undergraduates STEM degrees and teaching credentials.  Read full story 


UTeach Dallas: Transforming Science and Math Education

April 2013     The President’s Viewpoint  

In 2007, Amiee Himler enrolled in UT Dallas’ School of Natural Sciences and Mathematics to pursue a bachelor’s degree in a field she loves—mathematics. The Terry Scholar was given an opportunity to try out a new initiative at the University called UTeach Dallas, and she fell in love again—with teaching. …..  Read full story 


A Dozen Universities Share $12 Million to Bolster the UTeach Program

April 18, 2013    Dallas Morning News

The National Math and Science Initiative has awarded $12 million in challenge grants to UTeach programs at 12 universities. Each school will get $1 million to help implement the program, which recruits and trains college students to become math and science teachers. The schools are Florida State University, Louisiana State University, Northern Arizona University, Temple University, University of California, Berkeley, University of California, Irvine, University of Colorado at Boulder, University of Florida, University of Houston, University of North Texas, University of Texas at Dallas and Western Kentucky University. The grants were announced at an event at the Perot Museum of Nature and Science in Dallas. Read the full story


UTeach is Transforming Teacher Preparation in North Texas

April 3, 2013      National Math + Science Initiative Blog

A special event was held today at the Perot Museum of Science and Nature celebrating the impact of the UTeach program on education in the DFW area. The three UTeach programs in the North Texas region have experienced rapid growth in recent years:

UTeach Dallas at UTD has grown from 24 students the first semester to its current 350 students, a 1350 percent increase.   Recent graduates are all employed in school systems or science learning centers or have gone on the graduate school.  The 100-plus graduates since the program’s inception could potentially impact about 79,000 middle and high school students by 2019.  Read the full story


UTeach Dallas Meets Fundraising Challenge, Receives $2 Million

Grants Will Further Advance Math and Science Teacher Training in Growing Program.  

April 3, 2013

Dallas-area foundations and industry partners in science and technology have provided $2 million to support an innovative program at The University of Texas at Dallas aimed at training the teachers who will inspire the next generation of scientists, engineers, doctors and entrepreneurs. Read the full story  


Q&A: Fred Fifer

March 19, 2013     Lake Highlands Advocate magazine

Before its winter 2012 opening, the Perot Museum of Nature and Science garnered tremendous buzz for its state-of-the-art design and unique exhibits. Most brag-worthy, perhaps, was the museum’s debut of a full-scale model Alamosaurus, one of the largest dinosaurs ever to roam North America, accompanied by a display comprising several of the dinosaur’s real-life bones. In 1997, a group of science-education students from University of Texas at Dallas discovered the bones — the first-ever from an Alamosaurus cervical vertebrae (neck) — while on a field trip to Big Bend National Park in West Texas. Lake Highlands resident Fred Fifer, who worked as a professor at UTD from the late 1960s until 2001, was part of the crew that made the enormous discovery and undertook the painstaking excavation. – Read the full story


Middle-School Girls to Get Taste of Science at STEM Academy

Jan. 25, 2013

Sixty-five African-American middle-school girls from the Dallas Independent School District will visit the UT Dallas campus this Saturday to walk on a liquid and solve a “whodunit” using fingerprint analysis. A STEM academy session allows girls to meet with professional women in STEM-related careers, as well as female graduate students who are pursuing STEM degrees. The activities are part of a STEM academy called “Passport to STEM,” a half-day workshop aimed at fostering girls’ interests in science, engineering, technology and math (STEM).


UT Dallas Scientists Dispel Dec. 21, 2012 Rumors

December 19, 2012

Dr Mary Urqhart and Dr Marc Hairston dispel rogue planet, galactic alignment, solar flares, and magnetic field rumors.  See YouTube video here


“Communities Foundation of Texas Grants Over $2 Million to Improve Middle School Education.”

October  15, 2012    Communities Foundation of Texas Press Release.

“The Communities Foundation of Texas has announced eight grants totaling more than $2 million to seven nonprofits working to improve middle school education in the Dallas area.  Awarded through the foundation’s community impact funds, the grants will support efforts to recruit and train high-quality teachers and administrators to serve in at-risk middle schools across North Texas. Grant recipients include the University of Texas at Dallas (UTeach Dallas), which was awarded $500,000 over three years to actively recruit, through its UTeach Dallas program, STEM majors to teach in high-need urban middle school math and science classrooms;”…..Read full press release  


Letter to the Editor: UTeach is the key for our STEM education goals

August 22, 2012      Dallas Morning News

Re: “DISD’s Math Deficit — Here’s how to start improving high school scores,” Friday Editorials.

Your editorial encouraged Dallas ISD superintendent Mike Miles to look to UTeach for well-prepared teachers of mathematics and science. This is far from impossible. University of Texas at Dallas and the University of North Texas began UTeach replication in 2008. University of Texas at Arlington is in its third year of replication. Together, we will graduate 100 new secondary mathematics and science teachers this year.  Read the full letter here


Annual Physics Camp Aims to Hook Girls on Science

June 18, 2012   UT Dallas News Center

Giant slingshots, model rockets and home-made hot air balloons are all part of the plan at the annual UT Dallas Physics Camp for Girls to inspire more girls to study science. Read the full story


Students Watch Venus Cross Between Earth and Sun

Jun. 06, 2012

“As a planetary scientist, I am very excited about this. An astronomical phenomenon like this is a very rare event, and it will also coincide with the research found with NASA’s Kepler [telescope].” — Dr. Mary Urquhart, head of the Department of Science and Mathematics Education Read the full story


Sky Watchers Await a Rare Celestial Experience

Venus Won’t Make a Similar Pass Between Sun and Earth Again for Another 105 Years

May 31, 2012

During the transit of Venus — the astronomical term for the event — the silhouette of the planet will appear as a tiny black spot moving across the disk of the sun. A Web animation shows how the event will appear to viewers in Richardson, Texas. On June 5, sky watchers will be in for a rare treat as Venus passes directly between Earth and the sun, an astronomical alignment that won’t occur again for another 105 years. Read the full story


Math and Science Teacher Program Gets a Boost

JPMorgan Chase Makes $50,000 Gift to Support UT Dallas Certification Plan

Apr. 18, 2012
 An innovative program at UT Dallas aimed at improving the quality of math and science teachers recently received part of a $200,000 grant from JPMorgan Chase through the National Math and Science Initiative (NMSI). Read the full story


UTeach Grad Strives to Build Science Excitement

Feb 8, 2012

UTeach alumnus Gianfranco Herrera knows kids can be a tough crowd when he is presenting one of his science demonstrations. But more often than not, they’re in awe.  Read the full story  


Grant Aids Push to Train Math and Science Teachers

Dec. 1, 2011

UT Dallas’ efforts to train and support top-notch science and math teachers in traditionally underserved areas has received a big boost,  thanks to a grant that provides tuition support and training resources. The Teacher Enhancement Academy in Mathematics and Science (TEAMS) provides tuition support of $480,000 for 30 educators currently teaching in high-needs schools who have committed to remaining with those schools an additional two years after completing their master’s degrees.  Read the full story


TI Program Energizes Science and Math Teachers

July 25, 2011

Eighteen educators from area school districts spent part of their summer at UT Dallas in a program sponsored by Texas Instruments to improve the teaching of science, technology, engineering and mathematics.  Read the full story


UT Dallas Wins Communications Awards

Mar 24, 2011uteachposter-wtopline-promotional

For the third year in a row, the UT Dallas Office of Communications has earned multiple awards for innovative print design projects in a contest judged by peers in higher education…  A poster promoting the UTeach program was awarded silver in the Visual Design – Poster category, and the UTeach Banner took bronze in the Visual Design – Illustration category. Read the full story


Comic Book Translates Space Science for Teens

New Installment in Cindi Series Explores Disturbances in Earth’s Ionosphere

Oct. 27, 2010

Complex science can be captured in comic-book form — a fact two UT Dallas researchers set out to prove five years ago, and are doing again with the second installment of a comic book series aimed at high-school students.   Associate professor Mary Urquhart and  research scientist Marc Hairston created the comic books to help explain the science behind NASA’s CINDI mission built at the UT Dallas William B. Hanson Center for Space SciencesRead the full story


Teachers working to boost science emphasis to overcome lagging interest, lower test scores

August 12, 2010     Dallas Morning News

…. In middle and high school teachers probably have a degree in some science but may be teaching out of their field because of the shortage of science teachers, he said. Texas teachers can be certified as a generalist in high school science. That means they may have a degree in chemistry but be teaching biology. Time is also an issue. “To teach a subject like cell division, I can tell a student everything they need in a couple of days. But for them to actually see it, to see the cell mitosis, to count the number of cells – I can’t devote that time,” said Bill Neal. He heads the UTeach program at the University of Texas at Dallas. The UTeach programs – Read the full story


UTD program challenges the best and brightest young mathletes

July 21, 2010     Dallas Morning News

For the select group of academically gifted middle and high school students training intensively this summer at the University of Texas at Dallas, math is a sport. The problems they work in geometry, algebra, combinatorics and number theory far exceed the curriculum used at Texas high schools. “These are the athletes of the mind,” said Titu Andreescu, 53, director of the three-week AwesomeMath program. Read the full story


Gift to Boost Ranks of Math and Science Teachers

February 9, 2010

A $500,000 gift from the O’Donnell Foundation will support the UTeach Dallas endowment and provide flexibility to support scholarships, internships, and other aspects of the program. Read the full story


UTeach Dallas Awarded Support for Master Teachers

Texas Instruments Foundation Funding to Help Mentor Future Science Teachers

September 10, 2009

Increasing the supply of qualified math and science teachers in America’s secondary schools received a big boost Wednesday when the Texas Instruments (TI) Foundation awarded a $450,000 grant to UTeach Dallas. Read the full story


UTeach Dallas Lauded as a Bridge to the Future 

Tech Titan Award From left: Barbara Curry, senior lecturer; Bill Neal, master teacher; Dr. Mary Urquhart, associate professor; and Dr. David E. Daniel, president of UT Dallas.

Tech Titan Award From left: Barbara Curry, senior lecturer; Bill Neal, master teacher; Dr. Mary Urquhart, associate professor; and Dr. David E. Daniel, president of UT Dallas.

Tech Titan Award Recognizes Program to Interest Students in Math and Sciences

September 1, 2009

The Metroplex Technology Business Council (MTBC), the largest technology trade organization in Texas, has awarded UTeach Dallas the 2009 Tech Titan of the Future award in the university category at a ceremony. The award recognizes educational programs designed to address critical shortages of students interested in technology disciplines. UTeach Dallas was created to increase the number of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) majors interested in becoming new secondary science or mathematics teachers. Replicated at 14 universities around the country, the original UTeach program was founded at UT AustinRead the full story.


Grant Means More Masterful Math, Science Teaching

Funding to Help 25 Experienced Teachers Earn Grad Degrees and 25 Undergraduates to Mentor With Them

July 31, 2009

Science and mathematics education in Texas will soon enjoy a major boost, thanks to a $699,663 grant from the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. The grant award stems from the Coordinating Board’s Educator Quality Division and supports a proposal put forth by Dr. Robert C. Hilborn, head of UT Dallas’s Science/Mathematics Education Department, and a team of 11 UT Dallas faculty educators.  Read the full story  


Nobel Prof Gives Schools High-Powered Science Help

Physicist says Project-Based Learning Helps Build Interest and Aptitude Early

May 28, 2009

The scientist who co-discovered the first binary pulsar is tackling a new challenge these days: how to invigorate science education in the nation’s K-12 classrooms. Dr. Russell Hulse, along with Dr. Joe Taylor from Princeton University, received the 1993 Nobel Prize in physics for discovering two dense, collapsed stars closely orbiting each other.  One of these stars is a pulsar, which can be detected by its emission of regular pulses of radio waves. The discovery of the first binary pulsar provided the first way to test Albert Einstein’s prediction that moving objects emit gravitational waves. … UT Dallas also has four of its UTeach students participating in the classrooms, helping the teachers and the students. …  Read the full story  


Science Education Prof Helps Kids With Unique Needs

Dr. Cynthia Ledbetter Developing Curriculum for Children at Oak Hill Academy

March 23, 2009

It started with a phone call from the Oak Hill Academy about ways to improve science education for students with learning differences.Then, in mid-February, the hard hats came out and Oak Hill’s old Assessment Center came down in a pile of rubble. It was time to make way for a brand new science center. Dr. Cynthia Ledbetter, professor of science/mathematics education, the team at the Oak Hill Academy and generous donors including T. Boone Pickens had merged efforts to make way for a state-of-the art facility to teach science to some special students. Read the full story


U.S. Culture Blamed for Lack of Girl Math Experts

Study Blames Peer Pressure and Lack of Challenging Coursework as Obstacles

Oct. 10, 2008

A new study published in the Notices of the American Mathematical Society says there’s no shortage of American girls with an aptitude for math, but the crux of the study reveals a troubling trend.  The study, Cross-Cultural Analysis of Students with Exceptional Talent in Mathematical Problem Solving, identifies obstacles such as peer pressure and other societal issues that keep girls from pursuing education and careers in mathematics. Study co-author Titu Andreescu, UT Dallas associate professor and director of AwesomeMath, said the problem is largely domestic. Read the full story


NSF Grant Supports Teacher Training Initiative

$749,225 Earmarked for Science and Math Majors Participating in UTeach

Oct. 2, 2008

UT Dallas has received a $749,225 grant from the National Science Foundation to support The Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program. Named in honor of the co-founder of Fairchild Semiconductor and of Intel, the Robert Noyce program will provide five years of summer research stipends and internships and 45 $10,000 scholarships for UT Dallas science and mathematics majors who intend to become K-12 teachers. Read the full story  


Girls + Physics Summer Camp = Energy + Fun

University Student Club Hopes Program Helps Rewrite Science Gender Equation

June 20, 2008

From rockets to edible car races, middle-school girls are exploring the fun of physics at UT Dallas again this summer, courtesy of the university student group Women in Physics (WiP). This year’s theme is space, with a nod to the university’s mascot, the Comets. “Middle school is when the interest of girls in science and mathematics tends to decline dramatically,” said Dr. Mary Urquhart, UT Dallas assistant professor of science/mathematics education and WiP adviser. Read the full story


Foundation Gift Helps UT Dallas Scholars Thrive

July 10, 2008

The Greater Texas Foundation has given $200,000 to support three key UT Dallas programs. This gift will provide need-based scholarships to students in the Academic Bridge Program and to community college students transferring to UT Dallas through the Comet Connection program. The gift will also offer program support for UTeach DallasRead the full story  


UTeach Dallas Receives $200,000 from Fort Worth Foundation

May 5, 2008

Efforts by The University of Texas at Dallas to graduate more math and science teachers for Texas middle and senior high schools have received a $200,000 gift from the Sid W. Richardson Foundation. UTeach Dallas, which enrolled its first cohort of students in January, is aimed at drawing more math, science, engineering and computer science majors to the profession of teaching. Students are exposed to the inside of a classroom as early as their freshman year and can complete their major and teacher certification within four years. UTeach Dallas also provides students with financial support and pairs them with a mentor teacher.     Read the full story


Gov. Perry: UTeach, UT Dallas to Help Close Math and Science Gap

Rick Perry

Governor Rick Perry announces the UTeach Dallas replication grant at UTDallas. Dec 2007

December 06, 2007

DALLAS – Gov. Perry today participated in the presentation of a $2.4 million grant over a five year period from the National Math and Science Initiative (NMSI) to the University of Texas (UT) at Dallas to replicate the UTeach program, which will certify UT Dallas undergraduates to become high school math and science teachers. UT Dallas is one of 12 sites nationally to be awarded a replication grant. “Texas is once again leading the nation with winning ideas, such as the UTeach program, which will help us close the math and science gap in today’s schools, before it becomes a salary gap in tomorrow’s workplace and an opportunity gap for Texas families.”    Read the full story   



Aiming to Multiply Math, Science Teachers

UTD Founds Training Program with Funds from Dallas Nonprofit

December 5, 2007  Dallas Morning News

Math and science whizzes aren’t necessarily good at teaching. And teachers don’t always know their calculus or chemistry.  The University of Texas at Dallas aims to marry those skills with a new teacher training program that campus officials will announce today. The program, modeled after one at UT-Austin, is designed to address a shortage of math and science teachers and ultimately turn more young people on to careers in those fields. Read the full story: 2007-12-05_Aiming_to_multiply_math science_teachers_DMN



Governor Says UTeach Funds Will Help Reverse Math-Science Trend

$2.4 Million from NMSI to Help Head Off Shortage of Instructors in Texas

Dec. 5, 2007   UT Dallas News Center    

Gov. Rick Perry visited Wednesday to help UT Dallas celebrate $2.4 million in funding for a program to help the state increase its ranks of math and science teachers. The university will receive the money over the next five years following a competition that included submissions from more than 50 universities nationwide.  Read the full story


Older stories:

(December 19, 2007) Dr. Robert C. Hilborn Appointed Program Head of the Department of Science/Mathematics Education

(December 2, 2007) UT Dallas Team Ranks 95th Percentile at the national Putnam Mathematical Competition

(June 7, 2007) New UTEACH-DALLAS program invited to compete for a National Math and Science Initiative (NMSI) grant for up to $2.4 million

(June 4, 2007) UT Dallas Lecturer Develops Earth Science Training Program for Elementary School Teachers

(May 29, 2007) Drs. Rebekah Nix and Cynthia Ledbetter win the UT Library Director’s Award for Excellence in Library Resource Integration

(March 29, 2007) UT Dallas Team Ranks 95th Percentile at the national Putnam Mathematical Competition

(January 29, 2007) Awesome Math Program Makes X Y Z as Easy as 1 2 3!

(November 16, 2006) Nobel Laureate Russell Hulse of UT Dallas Named Director of Science, Technology Firm

(September 21, 2006) Change in Pluto’s Status Opens Door To Teach Students about Scientific Study

(September 18, 2006) Metroplex Math Circle Kicks off Sunday September 24

(August 11, 2006) UT Regents OK $27 Million for Specialized Math, Science, Engineering Education Building at UTD

(May 2, 2006) 2006 Online Mathematics Meet Co-Sponsored by UTD and UWW: A Success

(April 18, 2006) Nobel Laureate to Pitch Science as Fun To 1,000 Metroplex High School Students

(March 22, 2006) Using LEGO bricks and Robotics–education for all; Tufts University guest lecturer Dr. Chris Rogers on April 4, 2006.

(March 7, 2006) UTD Science/Mathematics Education Department Head, Recipient of the 2006 Unsung Shero of the Year

(February 7, 2006) Lifelong Learners Series Present: Mathematical Induction, an Elegant and Powerful Method on Feb. 13

(January 31, 2006) Three School of Natural Sciences and Mathematics Professors Featured in the “Super Women & SuperScientists” Exhibit at The Science Place

(January 19, 2006) Mathematical Reflections, Online Publication for High School and Undergraduate Students Interested in Mathematics, Launched by UTD Mathematics Education Professor

(Feb 3, 2003)  UTD Professor Awarded Skoog Cup: Fred Fifer Named Outstanding Contributor To Science Education