When Professor Stephen Pape retires this August from the School of Education, he plans to take a well-deserved respite by traveling in the fall, no doubt with the same focus he gave to the school and the education field. He then plans to devote his attention to volunteerism and working in school districts to support mathematics teachers to create powerful learning environments for all students.
“From the first time that I met Stephen to this day, I am struck by his intellect, insights, and passion for excellence in everything he undertakes,” says Professor Emeritus Mariale Hardiman, innovator of SOE’s Mind, Brain, and Teaching program, a longstanding specialization within the EdD curriculum. “Stephen launched the EdD program in blazing time, excelled at guiding others in course design, and has been a valuable resource in developing research studies.”
Pape joined SOE in 2012 following faculty appointments at University of Florida and The Ohio State University. Within the year, he was director of the Doctor of Education program and creating a global, online EdD program.
“Stephen built and launched what continues to be the nation’s most innovative EdD program,” Dean Christopher Morphew says. “His vision for an empirically-based, rigorous, student-centered program that embraced students’ informal learning created the gold-standard for online doctoral programs.”
With research focused on technology-enhanced classroom contexts that foster mathematical understanding, Pape led many grants, including a national, randomized control trial examining the impact of classroom connectivity technology on Algebra I achievement. He was co-principal investigator on the Institute of Education Sciences-funded study of Prime Online, an online professional development program for general and special education teachers in grades 3 to 5. Currently, he’s co-PI on a $600,000-plus IES grant to conduct a meta-analysis of K–12 mathematics instructional technology effectiveness.
He also helped as PI to secure the NSF Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship funding for TeachingWell, SOE’s groundbreaking new MEd program that aims to create a diverse corps of master teachers equipped with skills and expertise in K-12 STEM instruction and culturally responsive teaching methods.
Creating tech-centered solutions to complex education challenges is a constant across his 35-year career, which began as a middle school mathematics and science teacher in New York City Public Schools. Pape is the past chair of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics Research Committee and served on the Association of Mathematics Teacher Educators board. At Johns Hopkins, he has also co-chaired SOE’s Doctoral and Promotions committees.
His legacy is as much about individual impact as innovation. “Stephen is amazingly generous with his time with colleagues and students, whether with one-to-one coaching or taking on complex committee assignments,” Hardiman adds. “His quick wit, friendship, generosity, and great spirit of fun will surely be missed.”