Catherine Snyder is the chair of the Department of Education and Associate Director of the Institute for STEM Education at Clarkson University’s Capital Region Campus. Dr. Snyder has been with Clarkson for 11 years, after a career teaching at the secondary level. She has taught students ranging from middle school to graduate school in the US and in China.
Dr. Snyder has her bachelor’s degree in economics and Chinese from Smith College; a Master’s in Business Administration and Master of Arts in Teaching from Union College; and a PhD in Curriculum and Instruction from the State University of New York at Albany. She is also a National Board Certified Teacher, placing her among 1% of the New York State teaching force with this elite designation.
Her research interests include the transformative nature of graduate education and inquiry strategies in secondary teaching. She is the co-author of a book on inquiry methods in the social sciences and has presented work on inquiry and curriculum development nationally and internationally including at universities in China and Russia. Most recently, Dr. Snyder was an invited presenter at Beijing Normal University where she shared her work in inquiry learning.
At Clarkson, Dr. Snyder has spearheaded the new Summer Institute for Early Career Teaching which now has 22 graduates - newly accepted Arts and Sciences PhD candidates who received five weeks of intensive pedagogy coursework in preparation for their undergraduate teaching duties and their teaching careers. This program was highlighted in the Chronicle for Higher Education as a model induction program for new professoriate.
Dr. Snyder is most proud of the work she oversees in the Department of Education’s national award winning Master of Arts in Teaching program. The program features a year-long residency with an intentionally structured induction process which insure novice teacher success. The program boasts 100% job placement among its graduates, and near 100% pass rates on the rigorous New York State Teacher Certification Exams (a margin of 20-50% above average). In 2016 the Presidential Award for Excellence in STEM teaching was given to two teachers from each state. Both of the New York State winners were Clarkson Master of Arts in Teaching alumni.