Dr. Peter Cormas

Associate Professor

Department of Education


Dr. Cormas joined California University of Pennsylvania in 2013, and teaches science and mathematics education courses. He often centers his courses on problem-solving approaches. Problem-solving is central to the questions scientists and mathematicians ask, and it is important for teachers to understand and employ these approaches when teaching children. Dr. Cormas has published problem-solving lessons with undergraduate education majors in Science Scope, Science and Children, and Mathematics Teaching.  

Dr. Cormas also studies integrated courses and National Science Foundation STEM programs. His work has been published in the Journal of Science Teacher Education, International Journal of Science and Mathematics Education, and Science. He has presented at the Association for Science Teacher Education, American Educational Research Association, The Geological Society of America, and National Association for Research in Science Teaching annuals meetings.   

He is an Ethics Committee board member at the Carnegie Museum of Natural History, has created professional development for K-12 geoscience educators through the Allegheny Intermediate Unit, and is a research advisor for WQED.  

In his free time, Dr. Cormas enjoys playing bass guitar and soccer, listening to music, and following Pittsburgh sports teams.


  • EDE 753 - Integrative STEM Pedagogy and Instructional Design - Fall 2020

  • EDU 375 - Introduction to Integrative STEM Education


  • Cormas, P. C. (2020). Preservice Teachers’ Beliefs in a Mathematics/Science Course. Research in Science & Technological Education, 1-17.  doi.org/10.1080/02635143.2020.1784126

  • Cormas, P. C., & Middlemiss, S. (2019). Preservice Teachers’ Use of Mathematics and Science Learning Processes.  School Science and Mathematics, 119(8), 432-445.   doi.org/10.1111/ssm.12374

  • Cormas, P. C. (2016). Preservice Teachers' Reconciliation of an Epistemological Issue in an Integrated Mathematics/Science Methods Course. International Journal of Science and Mathematics Education, 14, 1-21. doi: 10.1007/s10763-016-9755-5

  • Cormas, P. C. (2016). Sequenced Integration and the Identification of a Problem-Solving Approach through a Learning Process. Eurasia Journal of Mathematics, Science and Technology Education, 12, 2557-2574. doi: 10.12973/eurasia.2016.1258a

  • Cormas, P. C. (2014). An Evolved Psychological Structure for Dealing, Food Sharing, and Mathematical Division, Psychological Topics, 23, 243-263

  • Hurley, S., Murray, A., & Cormas, P. C. (2014). Friction in Different Languages. Science and Children, 51, 36-40. doi: 10.2505/4/sc14_051_08_36 (co-authored with undergraduate students)

  • Murphy, A., Terrizzi, M., & Cormas, P. C. (2012). Getting Beyond the Guess. Mathematics Teaching, 227, 27-30 (co-authored with undergraduate students)

  • Cormas, P. C. (2011). Empirical Tests for NSF Classroom Programs. Science, 334, 453.  doi: 10.1126/science.334.6055.453-a

  • Cormas, P. C., & Barufaldi, J. B. (2011). The Effective Research-Based Characteristics of Professional Development of the National Science Foundation's GK-12 Program. Journal of Science Teacher Education, 22, 255-272. doi: 10.1007/s10972-011-9228-1

  • Anderson, L., Nobile, N., & Cormas, P. C. (2011). Tried and True: Teaching the Combined Gas Law. Science Scope, 35, 60-63 (co-authored with undergraduate students)

  • Cormas, P. C. (2009). An Introduction to Water Pressure. Science Scope, 32, 42-44.

  • Cormas, P. C. (2009). Maps, Representations of the Earth, and Biases. Middle Level Learning, 36, 8-11.

Selected Media and Popular Writing 

  • The Conversation, Boston, MA
    Future teachers often think memorization is the best way to teach math and science — until they learn a different way, September 2020 
  • WESA-NPR, Pittsburgh, PA
    How to fight fake news with scientific literacy, March 2018
  • B.A. Interdisciplinary Studies: University of Pittsburgh
  • Post Baccalaureate, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology: Yale University
  • M.S. Geosciences: University of North Carolina at Charlotte
  • Ph.D. Science Education: The University of Texas at Austin

Email: cormas@calu.edu

Phone: 724-938-4018

Office: Keystone Hall Room 319