Sea Grant Professor of Free-Choice Learning at Oregon State University and Director, OSU Center for Research on Lifelong STEM Learning
Dr. John H. Falk
Dr. John H. Falk, Sea Grant Professor of Free-Choice Learning at Oregon State University and Director, OSU Center for Research on Lifelong STEM Learning, is internationally acknowledged as a leading expert on free-choice learning; the learning that occurs while visiting museums or parks, watching educational television or surfing the Internet for information. Dr. Falk has authored over one hundred fifty scholarly articles and chapters in the areas of learning, biology and education, more than a dozen books, and helped to create several nationally important out-of-school educational curricula. He serves on numerous national and international boards and commissions and has been Associate Editor of several internationally prominent journals. Before joining the faculty at Oregon State University, he founded and directed the Institute for Learning Innovation where for twenty years he oversaw more than 200 research and evaluation projects involving a wide range of free-choice learning institutions. He also worked as an early child science educator at the University of Maryland and spent fourteen years at the Smithsonian Institution where he held a number of senior positions including Director, Smithsonian Office of Educational Research. In 2006 Falk was recognized by the American Association of Museums as one of the 100 most influential museum professionals of the past 100 years. In 2010 he was further recognized by the American Association of Museum’s Education Committee with its highest award, the John Cotton Dana Award for Leadership. In 2013 the Council of Science Society President’s gave Falk their Educational Research Award for his outstanding achievement in research that improved children’s learning and understanding. Falk earned a joint doctorate in Ecology and Science Education from the University of California, Berkeley.