Associate Dean for Research and Faculty
Kevin Crowley was named the Associate Dean for Research and Faculty at the University of Pittsburgh School of Education in August 2018 after nearly 20 years as a faculty member in the school. He also serves as a professor of the Learning Sciences and Policy, senior scientist in the Learning Research and Development Center, and Director of the University of Pittsburgh Center for Learning in Out-of-School Environments (UPCLOSE). He works in partnership with museums, community organizations, and other informal educators to develop innovative out-of-school learning environments.
Crowley’s group conducts basic learning sciences research in informal settings and develops new theories of how people learn about science, technology, engineering, and art. Much of the work takes place in the context of two long-term partnerships with the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh and the Carnegie Museum of Natural History.
Recent research projects include creating city-wide networks for climate change education, supporting making and tinkering in museums and libraries, natural history museums and 21st century naturalism, family learning in and out of museums, and the role of early interest in and exposure to science in sparking lifelong STEM learning. [see: upclose.pitt.edu]. Crowley also is a co-PI for the NSF-funded Center for Advancement of Informal Science Education.
He currently is involved in editing two publications, as the co-editor of the journal of the Visitor Studies Association and a member of the editorial board for the Journal of the Learning Sciences.
Crowley has been at the University of Pittsburgh since 1997. Before that he did postdoctoral training at the University of California, Santa Cruz and received a master’s and Ph.D. in Cognitive Psychology from Carnegie Mellon University and a bachelor’s degree in psychology and education from Swarthmore College.