UMBC joins international network of top research universities producing STEM PhDs

UMBC is one of 25 new members of the Center for the Integration of Research, Teaching and Learning (CIRTL), a network of U.S. and Canadian universities with STEM graduate programs that are committed to improving the teaching skills and increasing the diversity of future STEM faculty members.

Janet Rutledge, vice provost, dean of the graduate school, and associate professor of computer science and electrical engineering; Anne Spence, professor of practice in mechanical engineering; and Renetta Tull, associate vice provost for graduate student development and postdoctoral affairs, form the core leadership team for UMBC’s participation in CIRTL.

As a member of CIRTL, UMBC will develop and promote learning communities for STEM graduate students. CIRTL now has 46 members, which together produce one-third of U.S. doctoral degrees in STEM fields.

“We are looking forward to being part of this renowned national network that focuses on teaching, learning, and associated research,” said Tull. She added, “CIRTL will be a rich resource for us as we develop more training opportunities to prepare our graduate students for the professoriate.”

Through evidence-based strategies, CIRTL helps STEM students succeed throughout graduate study and complete their degrees. These teaching strategies include focusing on real-world topics in classroom teaching, promoting inclusive learning, and encouraging teamwork and peer support through collaborative projects and study groups.  

CIRTL was created in 2003 through the Wisconsin Center for Education Research, and is supported by the National Science Foundation.

Photo by Marlayna Demond ’11 for UMBC.