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Mike Stieff named Vice Provost of Faculty Affairs

Dear faculty, staff, and students,

I am happy to announce that Professor Mike Stieff, PhD, has been named Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs, effective June 16, pending approval by the University of Illinois System Board of Trustees.

Professor Stieff currently serves as a tenured professor of chemistry as well as the co-director of the Learning Sciences Research Institute, has been a member of the UIC faculty for 12 years, is an Honors College faculty fellow, and in August of 2021 was awarded the Honorary Professorship of Learning Sciences in the School of Education at the University of Nottingham in the United Kingdom. Professor Stieff earned his PhD in Learning Sciences with a Certificate in Cognitive Science from Northwestern University and has served as a Humboldt Fellow at the Leibniz-Institut für Wissensmedien in Germany, as an Assistant Professor at the University of Maryland, College Park in addition to the University of California, Davis, and also taught at Harold Washington College as well as Northwestern University prior to joining UIC in 2010.

Professor Stieff’s interdisciplinary research focuses on the design and study of educational technologies, faculty development, and organizational change in higher education with an emphasis on dismantling deficit thinking with respect to both students and faculty, and his work has been funded continuously by the National Science Foundation and the U.S. Department of Education since 2004 with funding currently secured through 2026. Recognized by numerous awards, Professor Stieff is a Humboldt Fellow for Experienced Researchers, a Spencer Foundation Fellow, and a recipient of the UIC Teaching Recognition Award as well as the ACS Editors’ Choice Article Award for work appearing in the Journal of Chemical Education. His work has been featured in more than sixty peer-reviewed publications, dozens of conferences and seminars, and his research has been highlighted in multiple published books.

Prior to his service as the co-director of the Learning Sciences Research Institute, Professor Stieff also served as the director of undergraduate studies in the Department of Chemistry from 2017-2020 and has a well-documented track record of service to the university, including service as a member of the LAS Faculty Advisory Committee on Online Teaching and Learning, serving as a member of the Center for Advancement of Teaching Excellence Launch Committee in 2021, a member of the Senate Faculty Affairs Committee from 2015-17, co-chair of the Provost’s 2014 Targeted First-Year Curriculum Task Force, and many others. In addition to his outstanding and continued service to the university, Professor Stieff continues to demonstrate dedication to advancing research on teaching and learning at the national level, serving as a member of multiple Editorial Boards, including the Journal of Learning Sciences since 2014 and as an Organizing Committee member of Spatial Cognition, 2020 and co-chair of the 2017 Gordon Research Conference on Visualization in Science & Education.

In Mike’s own words, “UIC faculty are among the best educators and researchers working in higher education. I am excited to join the Office of Faculty Affairs to help our faculty thrive and to work together to promote faculty success from recruitment to retirement.”

I would like to thank the search committee, chaired by Karen Colley, dean of the Graduate College, for its outstanding work over the course of the search process and selection of an incredible group of finalists for the role.

Please join me in congratulating Mike Stieff, PhD, and welcoming him to the team.


Javier Reyes
Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs


For more information, please contact:
Tyler Nielsen