The National Center for Science and Civic Engagement is committed to the idea that STEM education is civic education.  It aims to empower responsible, lifelong learners who can apply the knowledge, values, and methods of science to the civic challenges facing our local and global communities.

NCSCE is a national organization that supports a community of educators throughout the STEM learning ecosystem, from K-12 and undergraduate education, to "free-choice" and informal education. Over 7000 educators have taken part in NCSCE activities. Through professional development programs we support cross-sector collaboration, curriculum and course design, assessment, research, and mentoring.  We help educators in and outside the classroom make connections between the content they teach and real world issues of civic importance. Our goal is to  empower learners by showing them that STEM education is civic education, and what they learn today can help solve some of the biggest problems of tomorrow.  For a full picture of NCSCE projects, people, resources, and past activity, go to

SENCER is NCSCE's signature program. SENCER courses and programs strengthen student learning and interest in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) by connecting course topics to issues of critical local, national, and global importance.

Students and faculty report that the SENCER approach makes science more real, accessible, “useful,” and civically important.  For history, resources, the SENCER Course Model Series, and lots more go to



The SENCER "community of transformation" includes 9 regional Centers of Innovation. For the one nearest you go to:



The essays presented here are from new project funded by NSF and lead by Gordon Uno (U. of Oklahoma) and James Collins (Arizona State U.) that revisits and renew the 1990 AAAS project on Liberal Education and the Sciences.  The Liberal Art of Science: Agenda for Action

NCSCE's Peer-Reviewed Journal invites research, project reports, reviews 


Upcoming events


NCSCE Past Presentations:

NABT Professional Development Conference

November 11-14 Atlanta


Link to PPT presentation by Reilly and Smyth

Subscribe to our Youtube Channel!

NCSCE is recording content from our recent meetings and uploading videos to our NCSCE Youtube Channel.  Check out these presentations:

SENCER Summer Institute Panel: Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion-What the Research Shows.

Matt Fisher's SENCER, COVID-19, and the Next Decade of Undergraduate STEM Education.

Katayoun Chamany's Hela Cells and Black Lives Matter--An Intersectional Analysis of Race, Gender, Class and Biology

RECENT Meetings and Webinars:

SENCER Mid Atlantic held virtual meeting on WATER in January. For full program and link to recorded presentations (on NCSCE Youtube channel) go to

NATIONAL MEETING: The SENCER Summer Institute 2021 was held on-line August 5-22, 2021.  For information on the meeting program and presenters go to:

WEBINAR: GRASSROOTS, GRASSROOTS HISTORY, AND THE ARTS AND SCIENCES Simple, high impact strategies we can do now in our current classes that will develop our students' powers of visual, scientific and verbal expression.

Of Interest: 

Check out the talks, videos, and podcasts offered by an organization supporting our civic culture and deliberative democracy! Coming up:

Book Talk with Peter Smith October 14, 2021

Peter Smith is a former member of Congress and former Lieutenant Governor of Vermont who led the effort to create a community college in Vermont,…

How to Call Your Reps October 20, 2021

Think calling your elected officials is a waste of time? Worried you’ll get grilled and don’t have all the answers? Never fear, calling is easy…

Learn More


June, 2022

“Unless education has some frame of reference it is bound to be aimless, lacking a unified objective…There exists in this country such a unified frame. It is called democracy.” John Dewey. “Education and Social Change,” (1937)

“US sinks to new low in rankings of world's democracies”

The US has slipped 11 points in a decade – below Argentina and Mongolia – according the latest report by a democracy watchdog.  The Guardian, Levine, S. (2021, March 24)

“…what’s wrong with contemporary U.S. democracy….Where have we gone astray?...what part, if any, has our education system played in helping to create and perpetuate these problems?  In particular, what part has our higher education system played?  Alexander Astin, “Liberal Education and Democracy: The Case for Pragmatism” (1997)

The SENCER Summer Institute 2022 will explore these critical questions.

CRITICAL CONTEXTS AND CRITICAL PEDAGOGIES FOR STEM LEARNING—Advancing democracy, social justice, and care in STEM Education.  Share your teaching on:

--Climate Justice

--Inclusive Pedagogies

And Teaching STEM Through Democratic Challenges


--Food Security

--Health Disparities

--Gerrymandering and Representation

--Cyber Security, Privacy, Freedom

--Public Understanding of Science

--Data Literacy and Social Agency   

--Water, Air, and Human Rights

and more!

5-7, 2022

CALL FOR PROPOSALS, DEADLINE JULY 15! Click here for proposal submission form.

NCSCE Members get discounts on registration, so membership pays for itself! Before you register, join HERE!

Member Registration, 100.00

Non-Member Registration, 150.00

This year’s SENCER Summer Institute will take advantage our continuing virtual environment and combine synchronous and asynchronous content. Institute programming will be held online from August 5 through August 7, 2022. Our theme for this year’s Institute is:

--Cyber Security, Privacy, Freedom

--Public Understanding of Science

--Data Literacy and Social Agency   

--Water, Air, and Human Rights

and more!


In the winter 2022 issue of this journal, we are delighted to feature a collection of five project reports, plus a special tribute to Dr. David Ferguson, whose generosity of spirit and commitment to student success touched many within the SENCER community and beyond.


As of 2021, the National Center for Science and Civic Engagement is an independent 501c3 organization, eligible to accept tax deductible donations and gifts. All NCSCE and SENCER programs will continue to be available to everyone, not just members. However, as part of our new independent organizational structure, we are launching a member-donor program in order to identify our most active participants, provide more responsive networking, program, and leaderships development, and better serve the specific professional development needs of SENCER practitioners.  Basic membership is only 50.00 a year, and members receive reduced rates for meetings and workshops with fees, access to member-only networking sites (which will appear on the site menu after you join), and are eligible for leadership roles within the organization. Your donor memberships will support our ongoing Institutes and symposia, topical webinars, and the peer-reviewed journal Science Education and Civic Engagement (SECEIJ), as well as more individualized academic mentoring, networking, and project development.

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