Affiliated Faculty

Dr. Leonard Albright (Website)

Dr. Leonard Albright
School of Education
College of Health and Human Sciences
Len Albright is a professor in the School of Education. Over the past ten years Dr. Albright has focused his work on the evaluation of formal and informal STEM education and outreach programs. He is presently the lead evaluator for seven multi-year NSF funded projects in collaboration with colleagues from CSU, Rutgers University, University of Colorado Denver, and the American Institute of Mathematics. His most recent STEM evaluation research initiative is with Wings over the Rockies, Colorado’s official Air and Space Museum, where he is examining the impact of an aerospace science education curriculum for K-8 teachers and students in Colorado.


Dr. Meena M. Balgopal (Website)

Dr. Balgopal
Department of Biology
College of Natural Sciences
Meena M. Balgopal is a biologist whose research centers on how to increase K-16 students’ scientific literacy. She has led several federally funded research projects ranging from increasing the ecological literacy of elementary teachers to using writing to learn strategies in postsecondary biology laboratory courses. Dr. Balgopal also teaches Science Teaching Methods and Interdisciplinary Teaching Methods; presents PD workshops on science pedagogy, science content, or writing in the sciences; and does STEM-related outreach to K-12 students and their families. ¬†She recently completed a curriculum evaluation project with the Colorado Department of Education and has also evaluated education and outreach efforts of NASA’s CloudSat team. Her current research collaborations with the STEM Center include projects on:

  • Defining STEM according to school communities (with two Poudre School District schools);
  • Formalizing informal science education resources to support elementary teacher instruction of Earth System Sciences (with STEPP, Little Shop of Physics, and Atmospheric Sciences);
  • Teaching science teachers how to develop assessments to improve learning outcomes (with the School of Education and Atmospheric Sciences).
  • Teaching undergraduate students about climate change (with Agricultural Economics, Bioagricultural Science & Pest Management, Ecosystems Science and Sustainability, the USDA and ARS).
  • Evaluation study of participants’ perceptions of STEM careers after participating in an informal STEM program


Dr. Thomas Birner (Website)

Photo of Dr. Birner
Department of Atmospheric Science
College of Engineering
Thomas Birner is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Atmospheric Science at CSU. His group studies the dynamics of the coupled troposphere stratosphere system with funding from NSF, DOE, NASA. In 2012 he received an NSF Faculty Early Career Development Award, which includes an education and outreach component that aims to bring the history of science to students and the general public through tales of major scientific discoveries. The historical perspective emphasizes that science is a human and social endeavor that occurs within a particular historical context. His educational work takes place in collaboration with Prof. Leonard Albright’s group at CSU’s School of Education to develop and evaluate the education and outreach activities.


Dr. Michael A. de Miranda (Website)

School of Education
College of Health and Human Sciences
Michael A. de Miranda is a Professor of Engineering Education in the School of Education and Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Colorado State University. Michael’s current responsibilities are to provide leadership in the development of young STEM educators for the future of our profession and conduct research on learning, cognition, and instruction in engineering and technology education. A graduate of the University of California in Educational Psychology, his research is focused on the study of cognitive process and complex classroom interventions associated with achieving scientific and technological literacy through engineering content. He has published over 33 journal manuscripts, 10 book chapters, one edited book, and made over 67 national and international presentations in more than nine countries. In December of 2000 he was awarded the manuscript of the year award by the peer review board of the Journal of Industrial and Technology Education.