Economics and finance of higher education, state higher education policy, labor market outcomes of graduate students, and quantitative research methods
social/political cognition, civic education cross-nationally, cross-cultural and inter-cultural studies, research related to social policy, Interaction in technology-rich environments, social studies and history learning. <em>Areas of Student Supervision:
a) culturally responsive and rigorous instruction for African American elementary readers, b) preparing socially-just and equity-minded K-5 literacy teachers, and c) college and career readiness in K-5 literacy classrooms.
Research focuses on teaching and teacher education, cultural diversity, and school-community partnerships.
Rebecca Vieyra headshot
Degree Program: 
Mathematics and Science Education, Ph.D.

Rebecca Vieyra is a doctoral student studying science education. She is also employed full time as Coordinator of the Inter-American Teacher Education Network of the Organization of American States. Previously, she was the K-12 Program Manager at the American Association of Physics Teachers, and, separately, co-founder with her husband of Vieyra Software, which provides free and low-cost apps to more than 1 million users worldwide. Through her collective work, she manages collaborative grants totalling over $8.5 million. Although her interests span education from the classroom to the international arena, her current projects provide focus areas for her doctoral work, and can be seen below in her publications and grants.

Previously, Rebecca was a high school physics and engineering teacher in Illinois public schools. She earned National Board Teacher Certification in AYA/Science-Physics in 2011, was awarded the Presidential Award for Excellence in Math and Science Teaching in 2013, and served as an Albert Einstein Distinguished Educator Fellow at NASA HQ in 2014-2015. She earned her B.S. in Physics Education from Illinois State University (2007) and an M.A.S. in Science Education from the Illinois Institute of Technology (2010).

See Rebecca's full professional experience in her Curriculum Vitae.


Rebecca's selected publications include the following:

  • Vieyra, R.; Fisler, K.; Megowan-Romanowicz, C.; Lerner, B. S.; Gibbs Politz, J.; Krishnamurthi, S.; & Rutberg, J. (July 2018 - Submitted). Using physics as a context for teaching computational modeling. Journal of Science Education and Technology.

  • Bundy, B.; Dahl, J.; Guiñals-Kupperman, S.; Hengesbach, J.; Martino, K.; Metzler, J.; Smith, J. F. "Trey"; Spencer, N.; Vargas, M.; Vieyra, R.; Whitehurst, A. (March 2019). Aspiring to lead: Physics teacher leaders influencing science education policy. The Physics Teacher, 58(3), 210-213.

  • Lopez, R. E.; Ambrose, B. S.; Bailey, J. M.; Cid, X.; Vieyra, R.; & Willoughby, S. D. (April 2017). Connecting undergraduate instruction to the 2017 solar eclipse. The Physics Teacher, 53(4), 250-251.
  • Vieyra, R. (2018). “Teaching students metacognition through discipline-based research and technology” in Einstein fellows: Best practices in STEM education, 2nd Ed. Peter Lang Inc.
  • Vieyra, R.  [Editor]. & AAPT Physics Master Teacher Leader Task Force. (June 2017). Aspiring to lead: Engaging K-12 teachers as agents of national change in physics education.
  • Vieyra. R. (9 January 2016). Physics and 21st Century Science Standards: The Role of Physics in the NGSS.
  • Wenning, C. & Vieyra, R. (2020 - in preparation). Teaching High School Physics: The Nature of Physics Teaching. AAPT / AIP Press.

  • Wenning, C. & Vieyra, R. (2020 - in preparation). Teaching High School Physics: Interacting with Physics Students. AAPT / AIP Press.

  • Wenning, C. & Vieyra, R. (2020 - in preparation). Teaching High School Physics: Managing the Physics Classroom. AAPT / AIP Press. 

  • University of Maryland's Dean's Fellowship, 2018 & 2019
  • Albert Einstein Distinguished Educator Fellowship, placed at NASA HQ (Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate), 2014-2015
  • National Science Teachers Association New Teacher Academy Fellow, 2009
Honors & Awards: 
  • University of Maryland Dean's Fellowship, 2018 & 2019
  • Illinois State University Outstanding Young Alumni Award, 2017
  • Albert Einstein Distinguished Educator Fellowship, 2014-2015
  • Presidential Award for Excellence in Math and Science Teaching, 2013
  • National Board Teacher Certification, Adolescent/Young Adult, Science-Physics, 2011
  • Illinois Science Teacher Association New Teacher of the Year, 2011
  • National Science Teachers Association New Teacher Academy Fellow, 2009
  • Robert G. Bole Scholar, top 14 of graduating class, Illinois State University, 2006
  • Laurine E. Reiske Scholarship, C.A.S., Illinois State University, 2006
  • Delta Kappa Gamma In-State Grant Aid Scholarship for Teachers, 2006
  • Barbara Lotze Scholarship for Future Teachers, American Association of Physics Teachers, 2005
  • Undergraduate Research Award, American Physical Society, Division of Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Physics, 2005
  • Girl Scout Gold Award, 2003
  • 4-H Legacy of Leadership Scholar and National Conference Delegate, 2003
Grants & Projects: 
  • Computational Modeling in Physics: NSF 1640791, co-PI, Conference on Advancing the Integration of Interdisciplinary Computational Thinking in the Physical Sciences and Life Sciences (STEM+C)
  • Computational Modeling in Physics: NSF 1640791, co-PI, Research on the Integration of Computational Modeling and Algebra-Based Physics to Improve Teaching and Learning of Computational Thinking (STEM+C) [Project Page]
  • Teacher Recruitment in Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics: NSF 1821462, co-PI, Collaborative Research: Get the Facts Out: Changing the Conversation around STEM Teacher Recruitment (IUSE) [Project Page]
  • Women's Physics Identity and Career Aspirations: NSF 1720869, prior PI, Collaborative Research: Mobilizing Teachers to Increase Capacity and Broaden Women's Participation in Physics (DRK12) [Project Page]
  • Physics Learning with Mobile Sensors: NSF 1822728, co-PI, Mapping Fields in Augmented Relaity with Personal Mobile Devices: Enhancing Visualization Skills for Education and Industry (Cyberlearning) [Project Page]
  • Physics Teacher Policy Leadership: AIP Venture Partnership Fund, PI, AAPT/AIP Master Teacher Policy Fellowship [Project Page]
  • Physics Learning with Mobile Sensors: APS Mini Grant, PI, Family Mobile Physics Challenge [Project Page]
  • Teaching and Learning Physics in an Earth and Space Science Context: NASA NNX16AR36A, PI, Research-Based Teaching Resources for Undergraduate Physics and Astronomy Education [Project Page]
Research Interests: 
STEM Teacher Leadership, Physics Teacher Education, Computational Modeling in Physics, Teaching and Learning with Mobile Sensors
Influence of art making on critical and creative thinking skills; maintaining relevancy in art curriculum with contemporary artists; connecting traditional handwork processes to contemporary art making; community based art education
My research focuses on the teaching and learning of mathematics, and of algebra in particular. I examine how teachers' attend to student algebraic thinking during instruction and how pre-service teachers can learn to attend productively to student algebraic thinking through the use of video.
Bullying and bullying prevention, school-based mental health services and prevention of mental health problems, mental health literacy, help seeking among culturally and linguistically diverse (CLD) students, parenting practice and family involvement
language and reading acquisition, cross language and writing system comparisons, second language/bilingual literacy development
Computational Thinking & Computational Literacy, Computer Science Education, Broadening Participation in STEM, Human-Computer Interaction, Computational Methodologies, Educational Technology, Design of Learning Environments