Preeti Gupta

headshot of Preeti Gupta

Director of Youth Learning


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Dr. Preeti Gupta, Director for Youth Learning and Research, is responsible for strategic planning and program development for out of school time youth initiatives at the American Museum of Natural History. She leads a research agenda centered on youth learning and serves as faculty for the Masters of Arts in Teaching program for Earth Science teachers. Prior to this she was serving as Senior Vice President for Education and Family Programs at the New York Hall of Science. In that role, she led the internationally replicated Science Career Ladder Program, key initiatives in school change, teacher professional development, and family programs. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Bioengineering from Columbia University, a Master’s Degree in Education from The George Washington University and a doctoral degree in Urban Education from the City University of New York Graduate Center. In 1999, she was selected as one of forty-two women who have contributed to the community in unique ways showcased in a photo exhibition, The Many Faces of Queens Women. In 2005, she won the Inaugural National Roy L Schafer Leading Edge Award for Experienced Leadership in the Field from the Association for Science Technology Centers. Her research interests include science teacher preparation, youth employment and workforce development and the role of cultural institutions in mediating identity development in youth. Her recent and more notable projects included the the NSF-funded study, Staying in Science, a longitudinal tracking of high school youth to examine persistence with STEM careers, an NSF-funded project focused on studying what and how middle school youth learn computational thinking skills and an IMLS-funded program to prepare college youth to effectively engage visitors in practices of science while interacting with exhibits.


The Graduate Center of the City University of New York, Division of Urban Education
Ph.D. in Urban Education, Program Advisor: Dr. Kenneth Tobin.    2009

The George Washington University, School of Education and Human Development
M.A. in Education.    1999

Columbia University in the City of New York, Fu School of Engineering and Applied Science
B.S. in Bioengineering.    1995

Select Publications

Journal Articles

Tran, L. & Gupta, P. (accepted). Rebuilding education teams to be critically conscious. Journal of Informal Science and Environmental Learning, 1(1).

Habig, R. Gupta, P. & Adams, J. (2021). Disrupting deficit narratives in informal science education: applying community cultural wealth theory to youth learning and engagement. Cultural Studies of Science Education.

Tran, L.U., Gupta, P., Bader, D. (2019). Redefining Professional Learning in Museum Education. Journal of Museum Education, 44(2), pp. 135-146

Chaffee, R & Gupta, P. (2018).  Accessing the elite figured worlds of science. Cultural Studies of Science Education. 13, pp. 797-805

Habig, B., Gupta, P., Levine, B., Adams, J. (2018) An Informal Science Education Program’s Impact on STEM Major and STEM Career Outcomes. Research in Science Education. 50, Pp 1051-1074

Adams, J. & Gupta, P. (2017). Informal Science Institutions And Learning To Teach: An Examination Of Identity, Agency And Affordances. Journal of Research in Science Teaching. 54(1) pp 121-138

Book Chapters

Chaffee, R., Gupta, P., Jackson, T., Hammerness, K. (in press). Centering equity and access: An examination of a museum’s mentored research youth program. In B. Bevan & B. Ramon (Eds.), Making Museums More Equitable: Structural Constraints and Enduring Challenges Surfaced through Research and Practice Perspectives. Taylor and Francis.

Chaffee, R., Hammerness, K., Gupta, P., Anderson, K., Podkul, T. (in press). Re-examining Wenger’s

community of practice theoretical framework: Exploring youth learning in science research. In P. Patrick (Ed.), Applying Learning Theories in Research Outside the Classroom. Springer.

Gupta, P. & Correa, J. (2017). There is no “Off Button” to Explaining: Theorizing identity development in youth who work as floor facilitators. Book Chapter. In Patrick, P. (Ed) Preparing Informal Educators. Springer Publications