Clinical Professor, STEM Education/Science
Dr. Kristin Rearden is a clinical professor of science education at the University of Tennessee. Her father’s work as a chemist for Texaco and her mother’s long span of teaching junior high English were both inspirations for her to pursue a career in science education. Rearden earned a BA in physics from the University of Dallas and taught middle school math and science in Poughkeepsie, New York. During that time, she earned her master’s degree in educational psychology from Marist College and her permanent New York State teaching licenses in secondary math, physics, and general science. After earning a doctorate in curriculum and instruction from Texas A&M University, she joined the UT faculty in 1999.
Currently, Dr. Rearden is interested in effective practices in teacher preparation, the impact of place-based education, and the integration of children’s literature and science. She has served on NSTA’s Outstanding Science Trade Book committee and NSTA’s Best STEM Book committee for a total of seven years. She teaches graduate science education courses and leads the cohort of interns specializing in middle grades math and science. Her excellence in teaching has been recognized at various levels, including the Department of Theory and Practice in Teacher Education, the University of Tennessee Alumni Association, and the Tennessee Science Teachers Association. She is honored to work with outstanding teacher candidates at the University of Tennessee and with faculty members who strive for excellence in education at all levels.
Dr. Rearden’s three areas of research include effective practices in teacher preparation, place-based educational practices, and integrating science and literacy. She has worked with elementary, middle, and secondary science teacher candidates since her role as a graduate research assistant in the Salish I Research Project at Texas A&M University. As a faculty member of the University of Tennessee, she has led a cohort of interns since 1999 and has supported teacher candidates’ professional development through coursework as well as fieldwork in urban, suburban, and rural settings.
A second area of interest is place-based educational practices. This interest is related to her work in effective practice in teacher preparation, and is a component of her work with teacher candidates in elementary science. Additionally, she has conducted research with Dr. Joy Bertling (Art Education) on the implementation of place-based strategies in K-12 art education.
A third area of interest is the integration of science and literacy. Working with Dr. Amy Broemmel (Literacy Education), she has explored trends in high-quality science trade books and strategies for implementing those books. As a member of both the NSTA/Children’s Book Council’s Outstanding Science Trade Book review panel and NSTA’s Best STEM Book review panel, she has reviewed and rated over 1000 books, presented annually at NSTA conferences, and published research in both literacy and science research journals including The Reading Teacher and Journal of Elementary Science Education.
Doctor of Philosophy (Curriculum and Instruction), Texas A&M University, College Station, TX
Master of Arts (Educational Psychology), Marist College, Poughkeepsie, NY
Bachelor of Arts (Physics), University of Dallas, Irving, TX
University of Tennessee Faculty Senate (2017 – present)
- Teaching and Learning Subcommittee
- Athletics Subcommittee
College of Education, Health, and Human Sciences Assessment Committee (2008 – present)
Department of Theory and Practice in Teacher Education Executive Committee (2015 – present)
Department of Theory and Practice in Teacher Education Community Relations Committee (2014 – present)
Recent Disciplinary service
National Science Teachers Association Nominations Committee, 2018-19
Non-ELA Literacy Standards reviewer for the TN Dept of Education, Spring 2017 – present
Tennessee Science Teachers Association professional development cadre, Spring 2017- present
National Science Teachers Association Best STEM Book Committee, 2017
National Science Teachers Association/Children’s Book Council Outstanding Science Trade Book review panel, 2014 – 2017
Awards and Recognitions
Co-recipient of the Outstanding Service Award, Department of Theory and Practice in Teacher Education (2016)
Co-recipient of the Collaboration with the Field Award, Department of Theory and Practice in Teacher Education (2013)
Science Education Teacher of the Year for Higher Education, Tennessee Science Teachers Association (2012)
Outstanding Teacher Award, University of Tennessee Alumni Association (2010)
Selected articles, books, and book chapters
Rearden, K. T. (2018). From Point A to Point B: Using assessments to chart the path of integrated instruction. In C. Tai, R. M. Moran, L. Robertson, K. Keith, & H. Hong (Eds.), Handbook of Research on Science Literacy Integration in Classroom Environments (pp. 41-54). Hershey, PA: IGI Global.
Bertling, J., & Rearden, K. (2018). Professional development on a sustainable shoestring: Propagating place-based art education in fertile soil. Discourse and Communication for Sustainable Education, 9(2), 5-20.
O’Bannon, B., Waters, K.S., Lubke, J., Cady, J.A., & Rearden, K.T. (2017). Teachers and students poised to use mobile phones in the classroom. Computers in the Schools, 34(3), p. 125-141. doi: 10.1080/07380569.2017.1347454
Rearden, K. T., & Gilrane, C. (2017). Preparing exceptional teachers in a culture of evaluation checklists. In N. P. Gallavan & L. G. Putney (Eds.) Association of Teacher Education Yearbook XXV: Building upon Inspirations and Aspirations with Hope, Courage, and Strength Through Teacher Educators' Commitment to Today's Teachers and Tomorrow's Leaders (pp. 37-48). Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield.
Gilrane, C., & Rearden, K. (2015). What counts as a good job in teaching? Becoming a teacher as we race to the top. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield.
Cady, J., Aydeniz, M., & Rearden K.T. (2011). E-Learning environments for math and science teachers. Journal of Curriculum and Instruction, 5(1), 17-33.
Cady, J.A., & Rearden, K.T. (2009). Delivering online professional development in mathematics to rural educators. Journal of Technology and Teacher Education, 17(3), 150-166.
Rearden, K. T., & Broemmel, A. (2008). Beyond the talking groundhogs: Trends in science trade books. Journal of Elementary Science Education, 20(2), 39-49.
Bertling, J., & Rearden, K. T. (2018, April). Professional development on a sustainable shoestring: Propagating place-based art education in fertile soil. Poster presented at the American Educational Research Association Conference, New York, NY.
Rearden, K. T., & Broemmel, A., (2018, March) Exploring the science of sound. Session presented at the National Science Teachers Association National Conference, Atlanta, GA.
Rearden, K.T., & Gilrane, C. (2017, February). Preparing exceptional teachers in a culture of evaluation checklists. Invited session for the Association of Teacher Education National Conference, Orlando, FL.
Rearden, K. T., & Broemmel, A. (2016, April). Rhythm and blues: Exploring the science of sound. Session presented at the National Science Teachers Association National Conference, Nashville, TN.
Thomas, J., Rearden, K.T., & Broemmel, A. (2016, April). Presenting the best new children’s books to use when teaching elementary science. Session presented at the National Science Teachers Association National Conference, Nashville, TN.