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Julie Gess-Newsome



  • Higher Ed: Science, Higher Ed: Education, Higher Ed: Administrator, Researcher 


Julie Gess-Newsome, Ph.D., is the J. Lawrence Walkup Distinguished Professor of Science Education at Northern Arizona University. Within this role, she is the Director of the Center for Science Teaching and Learning and holds joint appointments in the College of Engineering, Forestry and Natural Sciences and the College of Education.

Her research interests include teacher cognition and development with an emphasis on teachers' understanding of content and pedagogy as it relates to instruction. Recent work has focused on the knowledge and beliefs of college science faculty; the impacts of curriculum implementation and professional development on teacher cognition, classroom practice, and student achievement; and the role and impact of elementary science specialists on student learning.

Currently, Dr. Gess-Newsome of the co-director of NAUTeach, a replication of the highly successful science and mathematics teacher certification program developed at the University of Texas at Austin. As the co-principal investigator on the NSF-DRK12 grant, she is examining biology teachers' pedagogical content knowledge as influenced by educative curriculum materials and professional development. The NSF-GK12 grant places graduate students with research interests in biotechnology in local and reservation schools.

Dr. Gess-Newsome attended Oregon State University, where she received her Ph.D. in science education.


Science Education
Pedagogical Content Knowledge
Teacher knowledge, beliefs, and practice
Impact of Professional Development 


Schwartz, R.S., & Gess-Newsome, J. (2008). Elementary science specialists: A pilot study of current models and a call for participation in the research. The Science Educator. 17(2), 19-30. Also available for free download at:

Gess-Newsome, J., Luft, J., & Bell, R.L. (Eds.) (2009). Reforming secondary science instruction. Reston, VA: NSTA Press. Recipient of the Distinguished Achievement Award from the Association of Educational Publishers for the book "Reforming Secondary Science Instruction" in the category of Professional Development/School Improvement, grades 9-12.

Luft, J., Bell, R.L., & Gess-Newsome, J. (Eds.). (2008). Science as inquiry in the secondary setting. Reston, VA: NSTA Press.

Bell, R.L., Gess-Newsome, J., & Luft, J. (Eds.). (2008). Technology in the secondary science classroom. Reston, VA: NSTA Press.

Gess-Newsome, J., Southerland, S.A., Johnston, A, & Woodbury, S. (2003). Educational reform, personal practical theories, and dissatisfaction: The anatomy of change in college science teaching. American Educational Research Journal, 40(3), 731-768.

Southerland, S.A., Gess-Newsome, J., & Johnston, A. (2003). Portraying science in the classroom: The manifestation of scientists' beliefs in classroom practice. Journal for Research in Science Teaching, 40(7), 669-691.