Doris Ash, Ph.D.


UC Santa Cruz

Dr. Ash was awarded the Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley in science education in 1995 after working for many years with Ann Brown and Joseph Campione in the Fostering a Community of Learners (FCL) classroom project. She is a biologist and has been a science teacher for many years at elementary, high school, Junior College and University levels. She has been at UCSC since 2000. She was a science educator at the Exploratorium for five years and has just become an emeritus professor. Dr. Ash's dual research focus is on learning in formal (teacher professional development, student learning) and informal (museums, aquarium, gardens, etc.) learning and teaching, specifically attempting to understand the thematic content as well as the social repertoire of skills that students, teachers and families use in conversations about science topics as part of the scientific sense-making process. Ash takes a resource view of learners' understanding both in and out of the classroom. As informed by sociocultural theory, specifically Vygotsky, Engestrom, Wells, Wertsch and others, all of her research is focused on issues of equity, specifically working to invite ‘STEM outsiders' to participate in the ideas and practices embedded in STEM.