Susan M. Kowalski

Division Director, Research / Senior Research Scientist


We look at science as something very elite, which only a few people can learn. That's just not true. You just have to start early and give kids a foundation. Kids live up, or down, to expectations.

~Mae Jemison



Susan M. Kowalski

Division Director, Research / Senior Research Scientist


Bio

Dr. Susan M. Kowalski joined BSCS as a Science Educator in May 2007. She is currently the Principal Investigator (PI) for two NSF-funded research and development projects: A Medical Mystery and STeLLA Online.

A Medical Mystery involves designing and studying an 8th grade body systems unit aligned with the NGSS. In collaboration with Oregon Public Broadcasting, BSCS is developing digital curriculum materials and a fully online teacher professional development (PD) course to accompany the unit. BSCS is also conducting a quasi-experiment to examine the impact of the curriculum and PD on teacher and student outcomes.

The goal of the STeLLA Online is to translate the highly successful STeLLA professional learning program into a fully online format. BSCS is iteratively designing, testing, and revising mini-modules in phase 1, while phase 2 will involve the use of a quasi-experiment to compare the efficacy of the online format to the face-to-face format.

Sue taught high school science for 10 years in Bloomington, MN. While in Bloomington, she taught a sheltered physical science course for English Language Learners, general and AP physics, and all levels of physical science. Sue was also an active member of her teachers’ union, serving on the contract negotiations team for six years. She has presented papers at the National Association for Research in Science Teaching (NARST) conferences, and at the American Educational Research Association (AERA) conferences. Her primary research interests relate to teaching science for both excellence and equity.

Sue received a BA in Physics from Colorado College, and an MA and PhD in Curriculum and Instruction, Science Education at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. Her dissertation examined the intersection of race and gender in high school physics group work conversations. Her hobbies include keeping up with her two small children, hiking, camping, running, biking, fishing, and reading.

Selected Publications

Kowalski, S. M., Taylor, J. A., Askinas, K. M., Wang, Q., Zhang, Q., Maddix, W. P., & Tipton, E. (2010). Examining Variation in Teacher Outcome Effect Sizes from Studies of Science Teacher Professional Development. (under review)

Taylor, J. A., Kowalski*, S. M., Polanin, J. R., Askinas, K., Stuhlsatz, M. A., Wilson, C. D., ... & Wilson, S. J. (2018). Investigating Science Education Effect Sizes: Implications for Power Analyses and Programmatic Decisions. AERA Open, 4(3), 2332858418791991. *Kowalski and Taylor are co-equal first authors on this manuscript.

Kowalski, S. M., & Taylor, J. A. (2016). Analyzing funding and publication patterns in STEM education research: Establishing a baseline for improved monitoring to advance STEM education. Poster presented at the STEM Indicators Convening, Washington, D.C.

Taylor, J., Furtak, E., Kowalski, S., Martinez, A., Slavin, R., Stuhlsatz, M. and Wilson, C. (2016), Emergent themes from recent research syntheses in science education and their implications for research design, replication, and reporting practices. Journal of Research in Science Teaching. doi:10.1002/tea.21327

Taylor, J. A., Kowalski, S. M., Wilson, C. D., Getty, S. R., & Carlson, J. (2013). Conducting studies of causal effects in science education: Considering trade-offs to accommodate methodological requirements and the policy constraints affecting research in schools. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 50(9), 1127-1141.

Kowalski, S. M., Stennett, B., Bloom, M., Westbrook, A., & Van Scotter, P. G. (2015). Pairing lesson analysis with constructivism: Designing and studying an online energy course for teachers. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the National Association for Research in Science Teaching, Chicago, IL.

Bourdelat-Parks, B. N., Stennett, B., Buck Bracey, Z. E., Mohan, A., Bintz, J., & Kowalski, S. M. (2017, April). Three-dimensional teaching and learning: Rebuilding and researching an online middle school curriculum to support the NGSS. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the National Association for Research in Science Teaching, San Antonio, TX.

Kowalski, S. M., Stennett, B., Bloom, M., Askinas, K., Lukondi, A., & Van Scotter, P.G. (2016). Online video-based lesson analysis professional development for high school science teachers. Paper set presented at the annual meeting of the National Association for Research in Science Teaching, Baltimore, MD.

Kowalski, S. M., & Stimac, C. S. (2016). EMAT: Online Video-Based Lesson Analysis Professional Development for High School Science Teachers. [video] Retrieved from http://stemforall2016.videohall.com/presentations/658

Taylor, J. A., Getty, S., Kowalski, S. M., Wilson, C. D., Carlson, J., & Van Scotter, P. G. (2015). An efficacy trial of research-based curriculum materials with curriculum-based professional development. American Educational Research Journal, 52(5) 984-1017.

Wilson, C. D., Taylor, J. A., Kowalski, S. M, & Carlson, J. (2010). The relative effects and equity of inquiry-based and commonplace science teaching on students’ knowledge, reasoning and argumentation: A randomized control trial. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 47(3), 276-301.


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