Associate Professor of Clinical Education
Ed.D., University of California, Los Angeles
Phone: (213) 740-6351
Dr. Scott has dedicated his professional career to urban education and most recently has been the LAUSD Local District #7 Coordinator of Secondary Mathematics and Science Programs.
He started his career at Crenshaw High School in the Los Angeles Unified School District and within a couple of years helped to establish and teach mathematics and science in the school-within-a-school (SWAS) at Crenshaw. This experience not only shaped his pedagogy but equally important, developed his understanding of and commitment to social justice.
Shortly thereafter, Gary took a leave of absence from teaching to participate in a research program at California State University at Dominguez Hills leading to a Masters in Biology. The depth of the scientific investigation conducted for the M.A. broadened his understanding and appreciation for the scientific inquiry process but he also realized how much he missed teaching mathematics and science. As a result, he decided to broaden his experience and understanding of the ways in which early adolescents develop mathematically and scientifically, by deciding to teach mathematics and science at Muir Middle School for four years.
Gary left Muir Middle School and went to Banning High School. While at Banning he focused on developing classroom projects integrating mathematics and science concepts. This required learning how to write grants to fund these ideas, which in turn, improved his instructional practices and led to creative collaborations with colleagues at Banning and at several universities. One of these connections led him to faculty members at UCLA and inspired him to enroll in the Ed.D. Program at UCLA. This included becoming a co-principal investigator on a National Science Foundation (NSF) grant with one of his committee members. His dissertation focused on developing an understanding of middle school students problem solving processes in a computer-based environment. Sharing his dissertation work with other teachers brought him to the realm of teacher professional development, not as a more knowledgeable expert but rather as being a co-inquirer into student learning, to improve instructional practices.
These professional development experiences culminated in a full time position as math/science advisor for a NSF grant awarded to the Los Angeles Unified School District. He asked to work with teachers in the same geographical area where he had taught, as a way to continue to address his commitment to urban education. Shortly after becoming a math/science advisor, in LAUSD, Gary was asked to teach classes for California State University at Dominguez Hills, CSU Los Angeles, and USC.
The adjunct teaching experiences at USC and USC's commitment to urban education resulted in Gary accepting a position in the Rossier School of Education. His research interests are centered on applying cultural-historical theory to the teaching and learning of mathematics and science.