2013 OUSTA Winner

Klymkowski Photo

Dr. Klymkowsky is a Professor of Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology at the University of Colorado Boulder. Driven by a recognition of the deficiencies in student understanding due to defects in course and curricular design, since the early 2000’s he has been involved in developing assessment methods, including the NSF funded Biology Concept Inventory, and educational materials, including a re-designed introductory molecular biology course, Biofundamentals, and an on-line laboratory course (

2012 OUSTA Winner

Kimberly TannerDr. Kimberly Tanner is Associate Professor of Biology at San Francisco State University. A neurobiologist by training, Tanner is an innovative teacher who employs inquiry-based learning and interactive methods in her highly rated classes for biology majors, non-majors, and science education graduate students. She is a national leader in biology education research whose groundbreaking work has helped to define and raise the visibility of science education specialists in the higher education community.  Her current research addresses the impact of scientist-teacher partnership models, the development of novel approaches to classroom assessment, and the effectiveness of approaches to promoting gender equity in the sciences.


2011 OUSTA Winner
image of Stephanie Cooper
 Melanie Cooper: A faculty member in the Clemson University Chemistry Department since 1987, Melanie M. Cooper is the alumni distinguished professor of Chemistry there. She was also recently appointed interim chair of the Department of Engineering and Science Education at Clemson.

Her research has focused on methods to assess and improve students’ conceptual understanding and problem-solving abilities and strategies, using interventions that promote metacognitive activity. An outgrowth of this research has been the development and assessment of evidence-driven, research-based curricula, including the NSF-funded general chemistry curriculum, Chemistry, Life, the Universe, and Everything. Dr. Cooper received her undergraduate, graduate, and PhD degrees from the University of Manchester in England, and she carried out her postdoctoral work in organic chemistry before turning to chemistry education as her area of research.

2010 OUSTA Winner

BeichnerDr. Robert Beichner delivered the Marjorie Gardner Lecture on Friday, March 11 at the NSTA/SCST National Meetings in San Francisco.  The title of his lecture is “The Student-Centered Active Learning Environment for Undergraduate Programs (SCALE-UP) Project.” In this talk, Dr Beichner discussed the need for reform, the SCALE-UP classroom environment, and examine the findings of studies of learning.

A recipient of numerous awards for teaching, use of educational technology and service, Dr. Beichner has made significant contributions to undergraduate science education through his innovative work with the “Student-Centered Active Learning Environment for Undergraduate Program (SCALE-UP).  The SCALE-UP project takes teaching practices that have proven effective in small classes, such as group learning, and amplifies them into classrooms for large classes. Dr. Beichner is also a national leader in publishing and scholarship. In addition to authoring nine books, including the leading introductory calculus-based physics text in the country, Dr. Beichner was founding editor of Physical Review Special Topics – Physics Education Research, a journal of the American Physical Society. Dr. Beichner received his award at the SCST Luncheon during the NSTA/SCST National Conference in Philadelphia, PA on March 20, 2010.

2009 OUSTA Winner

SilverthornThe 2009 winner of the Society for College Science Teachers (SCST) Outstanding Undergraduate Science Teacher Award (OUSTA) is Dr. Dee Silverthorn.

Dr. Silverthorn is currently a Senior Lecturer in the School of Biological Sciences at the University of Texas at Austin. Dr. Silverthorn was selected for her innovative work in teaching physiology.  More specifically, for her efforts at increasing the use of inquiry-based teaching methods at her own University, where she has previously won 12 teaching awards, and also for helping instructors around the world learn and implement innovative teaching strategies that promote active learning.  In addition to her numerous key-note speeches and published research articles, Dr. Silverthorn served as Editor and Chief for Advanced in Physiology Education from 2001 to 2007. Dr. Silverthorn received her award at the SCST Luncheon during the NSTA/SCST National Convention in New Orleans, LA, on March 21th, 2009.

Thank you to Springer for their continued support of our OUSTA Award