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Iterative Design to Engage All (IDEA) Learners is a teacher professional development program grounded in design thinking and centered on cutting-edge research on per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). The IDEA Learners program builds the capacity of STEM teachers to engage all learners and cultivate a diverse biomedical workforce.

Participants in IDEA Learners:

  • Collaborate with PFAS researchers to co-develop and then use standards-aligned curricula for high school science classrooms
  • Incorporate PFAS research findings, including data, into STEM instruction to promote data literacy
  • Increase student knowledge of and interest in biomedical research careers
  • Use varied strategies to engage students in learning about a timely and relevant environmental health issue

This Multiple Principal Investigator Project is led by Dr. Kathleen Gray, Research Associate Professor in the UNC Institute for the Environment, and Dana Brown Haine, K-12 Science Education Manager for the UNC Institute for the Environment.

Program Contact

Lynn Chesnut,

Research Associate, Center for Public Engagement with Science

(919) 423-5600


Made Possible by:

Funding Source

This project is administered by the UNC Center for Environmental Health and Susceptibility, with support from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences, the National Institutes of Health (NIH), Award Number R25GM142060-01. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the NIH.

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