Orange Alert

Skip to main content
Syracuse University, College of Arts and Sciences

Science Teaching professor to lead national organization

John Tillotson will lead Association for Science Teacher Education

March 4, 2011, by Judy Holmes

John Tillotson, associate professor of science education with a dual appointment in Syracuse University’s College of Arts and Sciences and the School of Education, was recently sworn in as president-elect of the Association for Science Teacher Education (ASTE).  The 800-member, non-profit organization promotes excellence in science teacher education worldwide through scholarship and innovation.

As president-elect, Tillotson will also serve as the ASTE representative to the National Science Teacher Association’s (NSTA) Alliance of Affiliates and the NSTA Council. Founded in 1944, the NSTA is the largest organization in the world committed to promoting excellence and innovation in science teaching and learning for all.

“Professor Tillotson’s leadership position in the ASTE recognizes his service to the teaching profession,” says College of Arts and Sciences Dean George Langford. “His service to the ASTE and the NSTA will help shape both national policy and scholarship in the teaching of science in our elementary, secondary, and post-secondary schools and colleges to our country’s future innovators, scientists, and engineers.”

Tillotson, who has been a member of ASTE since 1994, received the organization’s Outstanding Science Teacher Educator of the Year award in 2006.  His term in office in the ASTE will span three years, during which he will serve as president-elect, president, and past-president. 

Tillotson chaired the Department of Science Teaching in The College of Arts and Sciences from 2008 to 2009. He currently coordinates the Adolescence Science Teacher Education Program and directs the graduate program in science education. His research focuses on science education reform in high-needs rural schools and on the influence of pre-service teacher education programs on science teachers’ beliefs and classroom practices.

Tillotson has received more than $4 million in funding to support his research and is currently the co-principal investigator for the University’s Noyce Scholars Program and the IMPPACT Project, both of which are supported by grants from the National Science Foundation (NSF).  IMPPACT is a collaborative project with the University of Iowa and North Carolina State University that is investigating the role of science teacher education programs on science teachers’ professional development at varying stages of their careers. The Noyce Scholars Program provides critical support for students and professionals who want to pursue science or mathematics teaching careers in high-needs K-12 schools.

Tillotson holds a Ph.D. in science education and a master’s degree in chemistry from the University of Iowa and a bachelor’s degree in secondary chemistry education from the State University of New York at Cortland.