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The Science Teaching Experience Program (STEP)

STEP is an educational opportunity that engages a diverse pool of postdoctoral fellows at the University of Washington and affiliate institutions in a closely mentored apprenticeship to learn how to teach scientifically with inclusive, demonstrably effective, student-centered pedagogies. The component has two programs: STEP-UP for graduate students and STEP-WISE for postdocs.

Interested postdocs may also wish to apply for the UW Medicine Future Faculty Fellows Program.

For more information on the STEP program, please see the website and contact program co-director Dr. Eva Y Ma (

Facets of the STEP Program:

STEP-UP (Science Teaching Experience Program for Upcoming PhDs) is for graduate students who want to learn and practice the best practices in inclusive and active teaching methods. Students develop their courses with consultation from a mentor and their courses to UW STEM undergraduates. STEP-UP is supported by NSF #1855841 through the Innovations in Graduate Education program.

STEP-WISE (Working in Science Education) is a mentored teaching apprenticeship for postdoctoral scholars that provides training and experience in course design and teaching using student-centered pedagogies. This program is designed specifically for postdocs who would like additional training in teaching in higher education but have 100% research appointments. Since 2011, over 220 postdocs have participated in this teaching apprenticeship.

The postdocs design and teach innovative seminar courses for undergraduates at UW Bothell, UW Seattle, and the University of Puget Sound. These seminars enrich our undergraduate curricula and provide opportunities for students to learn about cutting edge research and to benefit from highly interactive discussions with their instructors and peers.

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