NYU is one of only 12 universities selected for an AAU STEM Network Mini-Grant, which support the development of new ways to improve the teaching of STEM courses


New York University has received a grant from the Association of American Universities (AAU), the organization representing the foremost research universities in the U.S., to explore new ways to improve teaching and student engagement in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) courses. NYU’s proposal – Excellence in Undergraduate Laboratory Sciences Instruction by Design – was one of only 12 university proposals to receive an AAU STEM Network Mini-Grant.

Led by NYU President Andrew Hamilton, Deputy Provost Cybele Raver, CAS Dean Gene Jarrett, and Steinhardt Vice Dean Pamela Morris, the program will bring together a group of select NYU faculty in STEM disciplines to form the Faculty Innovators Network. During the two-year effort, Network members will pilot and evaluate new techniques for STEM teaching, particularly laboratory science instruction, and will be closely involved in the redesign of NYU’s teaching laboratories.

The goal of the project is to develop new teaching techniques and improve the student experience and student success for undergraduates taking science courses. Improvement in the physical sciences and engineering – including research, teaching, and facilities – has been a stated priority of President Hamilton. NYU has planned hundreds of millions of dollars of investments in the sciences, including new and improved space for science departments, renovating engineering laboratories, creating new research laboratories, and upgrading the laboratories used for undergraduate science instruction (the redesign of which will involve the members of the coming Faculty Innovators Network).

President Hamilton said, “In many, many fields, NYU’s faculty have built departments that stand beside those of the foremost universities in the world. However, the physical sciences are among the most challenging to build. But I know that our science faculty are not only accomplished scholars and gifted teachers—they are ambitious builders of excellence, too.

“We are grateful to the AAU for their backing. This grant from the AAU STEM Network aligns perfectly with our priorities for improving the physical sciences at NYU, and it validates our focus on this important area. And just as NYU will draw from the excellent lessons learned by peer institutions who have previously won AAU support for bettering undergraduate instruction in gateway laboratory sciences, so, too, will our efforts contribute to AAU’s worthy goal of improving STEM teaching nationwide."

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