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Our mission is to enrich, enhance, and support STEM education in K12, higher education, and the local community.


We pursue two interrelated goals: (1) improving educational outcomes for students in the region, and (2) generating new knowledge related to STEM education practices.

Center activities include faculty development, community engagement and outreach, recruiting and supporting STEM teachers, STEM curriculum innovation, and STEM education research.


Edward Price, CRESE Director. Dr. Price is a Professor in the Department of Physics. His interests in physics education research include curriculum development and the impact of technology on the classroom environment. This work includes studying how tools mediate group interactions, students’ use of representations, and student learning. He is principle investigator of the STEM Mobile Making and Next Gen PET FOLC projects.

Sinem Siyahhan, CRESE Associate Director. Dr. Siyahhan is an Associate Professor of Educational Technology and Learning Sciences in the School of Education. She is the Co-Director of the CSUSM-UCSD Joint Doctoral Program in Educational Leadership. Over the last decade, Dr. Siyahhan received grants from federal agencies like NSF and foundations likeHeising-Simons Foundation. Siyahhan’s scholarship uses design-based research to understand the affordances of digital media technologies with a focus on gameplay and game design for human-computer interaction, teaching, learning, and social change in the context of formal and informal learning environments. She is the Director of the iTeachSTEM Program.     

April Nelson, CRESE Director of Programming. April Nelson has been active in K-12 education for the past 14 years, having owned and managed a large-scale tutoring company in San Diego North County. Additionally, she spent 8 years in various product management and marketing roles, primarily in the high-tech sector. 

Kayleen Diaz, CRESE Coordinator of Programming. Kayleen Diaz is a CSUSM alumni from the Master of Arts in Sociological Practice (MASP) program. Her previous role as a Promoting Achievement and Student Success (PASS) Americorps mentor demonstrates her dedication to serving K-12 students in North County San Diego. Kayleen is also a part-time Sociology professor at Palomar Community College. She sees education as a vital opportunity and continues to promote success throughout our various programs.