Book Reviews

Book by Roger G. Baldwin
Review by: Kimberly Klein
Normandale Community College
Bloomington, Minnesota


Within higher education, a buzz surrounds science, technology, engineering and math majors, known collectively as STEM majors. This is particularly true when discussing increasing STEM graduates and producing a greater number of competent STEM practitioners. 

There are multiple programs and workshops designed to encourage and educate kindergarten through college students in STEM fields. Furthermore, there are local and national grants and scholarships that reach out to students pursuing STEM majors. Depending upon our institutional roles, Improving the Climate for Undergraduate Teaching and Learning in STEM Fields, may be the perfect resource guide for understanding the importance of a solid STEM education for all students, as well as creating a new formula for success in STEM classrooms. 

As an academic advisor, I was excited to learn more about how I could assist in bridging the STEM education gap. However I quickly realized this book was not going to give me that information. Instead, this book provided insight on possible barriers to student success in STEM classrooms, as well as what changes need to be made within the classroom to encourage, retain, and promote STEM students. 

Within this volume of the New Directions for Teaching and Learning series, the editor included chapter from a variety of STEM professionals and educators. Each chapter contributed to the overall discussion, the status of STEM education in the United States, and what action steps are needed to improve student learning. Readers can expect to gain insight into current STEM educational models, research findings, and information on strategies faculty and administration can use to formulate changes in STEM curriculum on campuses. 

Improving the climate for Undergraduate Teaching and Learning in STEM Fields is a great resource for faculty, STEM advisors, and administrators. It is a quick read with an abundance of information, points of view, and examples of how individuals or small groups have spearheaded the change in STEM education. Although some of the information seemed redundant, overall the book provided insight into the importance of STEM education reform. 

Though this book may be of the most benefit to those in faculty teaching or administrator roles, as a STEM advisor, I gained a better understanding and a more comprehensive view of current STEM education and what collaborative changes must happen in order to improve teaching and learning in STEM education.


Improving the Climate for Undergraduate Teaching and Learning in STEM Fields (New Directions for Teaching and Learning #117). (2009) Book by Roger G. Baldwin. Review by: Kimberly Klein San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass. 107 pp. $29.00 ISBN 978-0-470-49728-9
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