University of Montana-Missoula, The
Kathleen M. Harper has held a part-time faculty position in the University of Montana Geosciences Department since 2008. She received her PhD from the University of Wyoming in 1997, where her research involved characterization of the timing and intensity of metamorphism along the 1.78 Ga Cheyenne Belt collision in Southeastern Wyoming. She then spent several years teaching introductory courses in physics, astronomy, as well as courses in physical science topics for elementary education majors at the University of Wyoming. Following this, she became the Assistant Director of Wyoming NASA Space Grant for several years, supporting science education through research fellowships and development of student and faculty interaction with NASA scientists.
At the University of Montana, Kathleen teaches introductory geology and designs curriculum for the introductory geology lab. She has been working to reform the teaching approach to support student learning, to promote student understanding of the process of geoscience (and science in general); to increase student engagement in the large-enrollment lecture course; and to design lab activities that help students explore regional geoscience issues.