The Inquiry-Based Learning Workshop Model: Professional Development of Undergraduate Math Instructors

Project No.
PI Name
Stan Yoshinobu
Cal Poly San Luis Obispo

Abstract 1

The Inquiry-Based Learning Workshop Model: Professional Development of Undergraduate Math Instructors

Presentation Type
Stan Yoshinobu, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo Sandra Laursen, CU Boulder Julian Fleron, Westfield State University C. Yousuf George, Nazareth College Matthew G. Jones, Cal State Dominguez Hills Carol Schumacher, Kenyon College Dana Ernst, Northern Arizona University Angie Hodge, University of Nebraska Omaha Xiao Xiao, Utica College Jane Cushman, Buffalo State University Patrick Rault, SUNY Geneseo Ryan Gantner, Saint John Fisher College Christine von Renesse, Westfield State University Volker Ecke, Westfield State University Philip Hotchkiss, Westfield State University


Low instructor uptake of empirically validated teaching methods, such as Inquiry-Based Learning is a central issue in STEM education. While instructors are aware of the existence of student-centered teaching methods, use of these methods is still uncommon.


The main goal of this project is to increase the use of IBL in undergraduate Mathematics via increasing the capacity of the Mathematics profession to offer professional development in IBL. Thus, this project increases the opportunities for instructors to learn how to implement IBL.


Our work is based on the successful implementation of the intensive IBL Workshop Model and follow-up support program, where we have achieved at 74% uptake rate for our target audience. The IBL Workshop model has been under development since 2005, and has been supported by funds from the Educational Advancement Foundation and the National Science Foundation (TUES Type II NSF-1225833).


We are at the initial stages of the project. We expect to have 3 teams prepared and ready to offer workshops. We will have materials and resources for conducting 4-day and short (half to one day) workshops. We also expect about 300 math instructors to have attended the workshop, and new research results on faculty professional development.

Broader Impacts

We expect that IBL will be more broadly used in undergraduate Mathematics. Mathematics profession will have a significantly greater capacity to offer professional development and mentoring of new IBL instructors, and we will have a better understanding of the issues and challenges facing faculty switching from non-IBL to IBL instruction. We hope that the landscape for teaching and learning in undergraduate Mathematics will be significantly changed with the increase in number and type of opportunities for professional development in IBL and the overall greater number of faculty successfully implementing IBL.

Unexpected Challenges