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Project Team

Meet Our Project Team

Dr. Carol Hood

Carol Hood

Professor, Director of the Murillo Family Observatory

Carol Hood is a Professor in the Department of Physics and Director of the Murillo Family Observatory at California State University, San Bernardino. She is heavily involved in increasing the participation of under-represented students in physics and astronomy, including but not limited to her involvement with the CSU-based research and scholarship program Cal-Bridge, particularly as Associate Director of Cal-Bridge; STEM faculty development in evidence-based pedagogies; educational outreach to the local community; and K-12 teacher preparation workshops on the Next Generation Science Standards. She is PI of the CSUSB-based ISSUES-X project designed to help improve student success through faculty investigation and implementation of evidence-based pedagogies in STEM. Dr. Hood’s additional research interests involve studying the properties of galaxies and super-massive black holes via multi-wavelength observations to learn about their formation and growth over time.

Dr. Sara Callori

Sara Callori

Associate Professor

Sara Callori is an Associate Professor in the Department of Physics. Her research background is in experimental condensed matter, with a focus on magnetic and ferroelectric thin films. Her teaching interests include instructional laboratories with a particular focus on upper division coursework. As part of the ISSUES X team she has facilitated learning communities on online teaching, writing intensive courses, and for new faculty.

Dr. Mike Chao

Mike Chao

Professor, Department Chair

Mike Chao is Professor and Chair of  the Department of Biology. His research focuses on the neurobiology of animal behavior using Caenorhabditis elegans as a model system. His current research focus is on using CRISPR genome engineering to study gene expression patterns of dopamine receptors. His teaching interests at the university include culturally responsive pedagogy and alternative ways of student assessment. He joined ISSUES-X activities as a department chair in the Chair's Learning Community in 2018 and subsequently joined the facilitator team in 2019.

Dr. Anthony Metcalf

Anthony Metcalf


Tony Metcalf is a Professor in the Department of Biology. His laboratory research area examines molecular variation at the population level with a focus on the genetics of threatened and endangered species. His teaching interests at the university include the development and implementation of Faculty Learning Communities. He has worked with K-12 pedagogy in STEM for over 20 years, and at the university level with the 2012 WIDER grant and the current ISSUES-X grant. 


Dr. Sally McGill

Sally McGill

Professor, Associate Dean 

Sally McGill is Associate Dean of the College of Natural Sciences and Professor of Geology.  Her research interests are in active faults and prehistoric earthquakes. She started teaching at CSUSB in 1991 and has been co-facilitating Faculty Learning Communities with the ISSUES-X team since 2018-19.

Dr. Kimberley Cousins

Kimberley Cousins

Professor, Department Chair

Kimberley Cousins is a Professor and Chair, in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry. In addition to laboratory research, she has had a long interest in promoting student learning, particularly in organic chemistry. She has used a variety of EBTs  including POGIL (Process Oriented Guided Inquiry). Her understanding of student learning and evidence-based teaching practices has been enhanced through faculty learning communities, including the current ISSUES-X project, on which she serves as a facilitator.


Karen Cerwin

Karen Cerwin 

WestEd/K-12 Alliance Regional Director

Karen Cerwin is a Regional Director with the STEM division of WestEd Regional Lab working as a designer of professional learning for teachers in K-16.  She has a long interest in understanding cognition and the conditions that enhance learning.   Her knowledge and understanding of the pedagogy that facilitates learning is grounded in the seminal documents How People Learn I and How People Learn II.  She has contributed to professional learning in the 2012 Wider grant as well as the current Issues X by working with learning communities and conducting observations of instructors working on best practices in their classrooms.

Dr Becky Talyn


Becky Talyn 


Becky Talyn is a lecturer for the College of Natural Sciences and the Department of Biology. Her research group studies the toxicity of and exposure to agricultural herbicides, in humans, livestock, and model organisms, focusing on lifespan, reproduction, and social justice. Most of her teaching is in General Education and teaching science to non-science majors. She has taught at CSUSB since 2002 and worked with the ISSUES-X team on the STEM I, large lecture, online teaching, and culturally responsive teaching learning communities.

Dr. Laura Woodney


Laura Woodney


Laura Woodney is a Professor in the Department of Physics.  She is a planetary scientist currently specializing in ground based optical observations of small icy bodies in the solar system (comets, Centaurs).  She has been working with the ISSUES-X team developing evidence-based teaching practices with an equity lens for her own classrooms and facilitating faculty learning communities since the project began as a WIDER grant in 2012.

Lamies Nazzal

Lamies Nazzal 

Lecturer, 130x Course Coordinator 

Lamies Nazzal is a lecturer and course coordinator in the Department of Mathematics at California State University, San Bernardino. Dr. Nazzal has taught a wide range of undergraduate and graduate courses in mathematics, mathematics education, and STEM education. Her research broadly focuses on studying creativity and creative problem-solving in STEM education. Her current research focus is on investigating the creative process in mathematics education, assessing students’ perceptions of the role of creativity in Mathematics and their level of self-efficacy for math creativity, and how these constructs may impact students’ academic outcomes. She joined the ISSUES-X leadership team in January 2022.