Dr. Carol B. Brandt's research and teaching interests include science education, educational ethnography, and alternative learning environments such as the design studio. Her research explores the sociocultural dimensions of learning environments that result in more equitable approaches to science teaching. Dr. Brandt’s expertise focuses on problem-based learning, the studio as a learning environment in design-based education, and understanding equity in science inquiry through discourse practices. Her research contexts include school classrooms and informal learning environments such as after-school programs, science museums, and maker spaces. She is published in several journals including Science Education, Ethnography & Education, and Cultural Studies of Science Education. Currently, she is a recipient of three National Science Foundation grants for science and mathematics research.

Research Interests

  • Anthropology
  • Discourse Processes
  • Science Education

Courses Taught




EDUC 5244

Class Discourse


EDUC 5262

Introduction to Qualitative Research


EDUC 8102

Ethnographic Research Methods


EDUC 8502

Social Contexts of Learning


EDUC 8545

Social Cntxt Math Sci Ed


ECED 4207

Mathematics and Science Pedagogical Content Knowledge


ECED 5109

Science Education for the Early Years: PreK to 4


Selected Publications

  • Lombardi, D., Bickel, E.S., Brandt, C.B., & Burg, C. (2017). Categorising students' evaluations of evidence and explanations about climate change. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL of GLOBAL WARMING, 12(3-4), pp. 313-330. doi: 10.1504/IJGW.2017.10005879

  • Lombardi, D., Bickel, E.S., Brandt, C.B., & Burg, C. (2017). Categorising students' evaluations of evidence and explanations about climate change. International Journal of Global Warming, 12(3-4), pp. 313-330. doi: 10.1504/IJGW.2017.084782

  • Rahm, J. & Brandt, C.B. (2016). Reimagining Science Education in Neoliberal Global Contexts: Sociocultural Accounts of Science Learning in Underserved Communities. Mind, Culture, and Activity, 23(3), pp. 183-187. doi: 10.1080/10749039.2016.1201514

  • Lombardi, D., Brandt, C.B., Bickel, E.S., & Burg, C. (2016). Students’ evaluations about climate change. International Journal of Science Education, 38(8), pp. 1392-1414. doi: 10.1080/09500693.2016.1193912

  • Evans, M.A., Schnittka, C.G., Jones, B., & Brandt, C. (2016). Studio STEM: A model to enhance science and technological literacy through engineering design practices. In L. Annetta & J. Minogue (Eds.), Connecting Science and Engineering Education Practices in Meaningful Ways Building Bridges (pp. 107-137). New York: Springer. Retrieved from

  • Jones, B.D., Chittum, J.R., Akalin, S., Schram, A.B..., Fink, J., Schnittka, C., Evans, M.A., & Brandt, C. (2015). Elements of Design-Based Science Activities That Affect Students' Motivation. School Science and Mathematics, 115(8), pp. 404-415. Wiley. doi: 10.1111/ssm.12143

  • Griffin, J., Brandt, C., Bickel, E., Schnittka, C., & Schnittka, J. (2015). Imbalance of power: A case study of a middle school mixed-gender engineering team. ISEC 2015 - 5th IEEE Integrated STEM Education Conference, pp. 64-69. doi: 10.1109/ISECon.2015.7119947

  • Christensen, L., Nielsen, J.H., Brandt, C.B., Madsen, C.B., Madsen, L.B., Slater, C.S., Lauer, A., Brouard, M., Johansson, M.P., Shepperson, B., & Stapelfeldt, H. (2014). Dynamic stark control of torsional motion by a pair of laser pulses. Physical Review Letters, 113(7). doi: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.113.073005

  • Brandt, C.B. & Carlone, H. (2014). Ethnographies of science education: situated practices of science learning for social/political transformation /. London: Routledge. Retrieved from