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Headshot of Dr. Katie Stofer, Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Agricultural Education and Communication

Kathryn "Katie" Stofer

Research Associate Professor

215 Rolfs Hall
PO Box 110540
Gainesville, FL 32611

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Dr. Katie Stofer is a research associate professor in the Department of Agricultural Education and Communication (AEC). She focuses her research on Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) education, especially in free-choice or informal education and outreach settings, with an emphasis on making STEM evident in agricultural education.

Stofer's primary interests center on how the public gathers, makes meaning from and uses current scientific research findings, and how that use relates to their science identities. In particular, she examines science communication using visualizations of data and models.

Stofer collaborates with scientists doing basic research to help them design innovative outreach projects around their work. She turns her research into practice by helping scientists and formal and informal educators improve their public engagement.  

Originally from Lake Jackson, Texas, Stofer’s lifelong love of learning has shaped her career and led her all around the country. Her original interests in neuroscience led her to receive her bachelor’s degree from the California Institute of Technology in 1998, studying biology.

She went on to earn her master’s degree at Boston University in science journalism (2002). Stofer began working in outreach at the Museum of Science there. She spent two years as a video news release producer at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center outside of Washington, DC, and then moved to full-time education and outreach at the Maryland Science Center, managing an exhibit on Earth Science news. There, she began education research in evaluation in the museum setting.

In 2013, Stofer obtained her Ph.D. from Oregon State University, studying science education. Her doctoral work ultimately brought her interests in research, education and communication together and set up her long-term research agenda at the University of Florida.

For more information, check out Stofer's CV or blog!

Awards & Honors

2016 Outstanding Article, Journal of Geoscience EducationWhen a Picture isn't Worth 1000 Words: Learners Struggle to find Meaning in Data Visualizations

2015-16 eXtension Citizen Science Fellow

2014 Faculty Fellowship Summer Institute in Israel

2014 Jhumki Basu Equity Scholars Award, National Association for Research in Science Teaching