Alan Colburn

I am a Professor of Science Education at California State University Long Beach. Before coming to CSULB in 1995, I taught in the Science Education Center at the University of Iowa–where I received my Ph.D. in Science Education. I also have a master’s degree in Biology, taught high school Chemistry in Haverford, PA, and briefly taught Physical Science in Iowa City.

I have taught a variety of courses at CSULB, but mostly SCED 401, 550, 560, and (until recently) 404. SCED 401 is a science class for prospective elementary teachers. SCED 550 is the first class new graduate students take. SCED 560 is a research methods class. And SCED 404 is about the nature of science and scientific reasoning. I also work with graduate students, student teachers, and new university faculty. I am a recipient of the Distinguished Faculty Teaching Award and the Nicholas Perkins Hardemann Academic Leadership Award.

My research interests include inquiry-based science teaching, misconceptions, the nature of science, and issues related to evolution, creationism, science & religion.

I’m dedicated to helping students have great experiences with the classes they take from me.

Selected Publications

The Lingo of Learning: 88 terms every science teacher should know explains educational “jargon” in plain English and provides fairly brief introductions to common teaching-related ideas.

I wrote the monthly Prepared Practitioner column in The Science Teacher from 2007-2010.

The Condensed Framework: a reader's guide to the California Science Framework is my synopsis of key Framework chapters. "I read the Framework so you don't have to!"