Areas of Expertise

Curriculum and Instruction; Multiculturalism; Race and Racism; Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM); Teacher Education

  • Multicultural Science Education: Teaching science with an emphasis on diversity, equity, and cultural inclusion in K-5 classrooms.
  • Nature of Science (NOS): Teaching and research related to investigating the views of science held by K-5 children and pre-service teachers, specifically as it relates to people of color.


Selected Publications

  • Walls, L., (2014). Females of color in science: The play within a play. In M. M. Atwater, M. Russell, & M. Butler (Eds.), Multicultural Science Education: Preparing Teachers for Equity and Social Justice (pp. 41-59). New York: Springer.  [abstract]
  • Walls, L. (2016). Equitable research: A bridge too far? Cultural Studies in Science Education. (Accepted 27 August 2016, early version published online).
  • Walls, L. (2015). African American science education in the 21st century: Claiming a seat at the table. In D. Pardlow & M. A. Trent (Eds.), Cultivating visionary leadership by learning for global success: Beyond the Language and Literature Classroom (pp. 89-105). New Castle: Cambridge Scholars Publishing
  • Walls, L. (2015). Awakening a dialogue: A critical race theory analysis of U. S. nature of science research from 1967 – 2013. Journal of Research in Science Teaching (Accepted 6 June 2015, early version published online).
  • Walls, L., Buck, G., & Akerson, V. L. (2013). Race, culture, gender, and nature of science in elementary settings. In J.A. Bianchini, V. L. Akerson, A. Calabrese Barton, O. Lee, & A. J. Rodriguez (Eds,), Moving the equity agenda forward: Vol 5. Cultural Studies of Science Education (pp. 131-151). Netherlands: Springer Publishing.  [abstract]
  • Walls, L. (2012). Third Grade African American Students' Views of the Nature of Science. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 49 (1), 1-37.  [abstract]

Selected Presentations

  • Walls, L. (2012, March). Teaching and Assessment of Inquiry and Nature of Science with Early Childhood Students. Panel presentation at the 2012 NARST Annual Convention, Orlando, FL.
  • Walls, L. (2011, April). Culture, gender, and nature of science in elementary settings. Poster presented at the 2011 NARST Annual Convention, Orlando, FL.
  • Walls, L. (2011, April). Identify-A-Scientist: How third grade African American elementary students see scientists. Paper presented at the 2011 NARST Annual Convention, Orlando, FL.
  • Walls, L. (2010, March). Third grade African American elementary students views of the nature of science. Poster presented at the 2010 NARST Annual Convention,
  • Walls, L., & Bryan, L.A. (2009, April). Awakening a dialog: Examining gender and race in NOS studies from 1967 to 2008. 2010 NARST Annual Convention, Garden Grove, CA

Awards and Recognition

  • Faculty Resource Network, Scholar-in-Residence New York University from : (2012)
  • International Network of Teacher Education Institutions, U.S. Delegate Member from UNESCO: (2012)
  • Jane and Michael Wilson Doctoral Award in Science Education from Purdue University: This award recognizes an outstanding doctoral dissertation. Nominations are handled through the departments. Each department has one winner, and one of them is selected for the College award. A certificate and monetary award is given. (2008)
  • Bilsland Strategic Initiatives Fellowship from Purdue University: The Bilsland Dissertation Fellowship is a Graduate School fellowship which provides support to an outstanding College of Education Ph.D. candidate in the final year of doctoral degree completion. Applicants must have completed their coursework, passed their qualifying examinations, and have an approved dissertation proposal. (2008)

Professional Associations

  • American Anthropological Association (AAA), Association for Science Teacher Education (ASTE), National Association of Research in Science Teaching (NARST), National Science Teachers Association (NSTA), North American Association for Environmental Education (NAAEE)

Licensure or Certifications

  • Wisconsin Educator License, 5-8
Leon Walls


    • Ph.D. in Geoenvironmental Science Education from Purdue University
    • M.A. in Instructional Leadership from Marquette University
    • B.S. in Electrical Engineering from St. Mary's University, TX


    Phone: (802) 656-2274
    Office: Waterman 532
    Find me online:

    Courses Taught in the Last 5 Years

    Laboratory Experience in Inquiry; Laboratory Experience in Literacy; Race and Racism in the U.S.; Science of Sustainability; Teaching Science for Meaning