Dr. Kinnari Atit, School of Education, University of California at Riverside
In the U.S., there is a disparity between the number of students pursuing STEM and the number of professionals needed to meet global and economic demands. Of those that do pursue STEM, few are women or individuals from underrepresented minority backgrounds. Increasing the diversity within STEM disciplines can help alleviate this gap. Spatial skills, cognitive skills that enable us to manipulate, organize, reason about, and make sense of spatial relationships in real and imagined spaces, predict success in STEM disciplines. In this talk, I will present research in support of using gateway mathematics courses to bolster students' spatial skills as a way to help diversify the STEM workforce.