Alexandra Werth

Alexandra Werth

Assistant Professor
Meinig School of Biomedical Engineering


Alexandra Werth is an assistant professor at the Meinig School of Biomedical Engineering, having joined the faculty in Fall 2023. Her work focuses on Engineering Education Research (EER), a branch of discipline-based education research (DBER) that examines the unique educational aspects within engineering contexts. She is particularly interested in developing evidence-based teaching methodologies and educational tools to foster authentic learning environments.

Dr. Werth is both an education researcher and trained engineer, holding dual bachelor's degrees in engineering and physics from Swarthmore College, as well as a Ph.D. in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Princeton University. During her doctoral studies, she specialized in developing a non-invasive mid-infrared glucose sensor using quantum cascade laser spectroscopy for diabetes management. Subsequently, she pursued postdoctoral research at the University of Colorado Boulder in physics education research, with a specific focus on undergraduate instructional labs. Notably, she played a pivotal role in developing, implementing, and assessing the first large-enrollment introductory physics course-based research experience (CURE).

Research Interests

Dr. Werth's research is dedicated to advancing evidence-based teaching practices and tools to enhance access to and efficacy of authentic learning environments. She focuses particularly on disciplinary-based research within engineering contexts, with a specific interest in biomedical engineering, although her work often transcends disciplinary boundaries. Her work delves into three interconnected components of the educational system:

(1) Values: Through the BEEAR research group, Dr. Werth seeks to understand the values of engineers and how these values manifest as learning objectives in engineering curricula. She investigates potential variations in these values across engineering disciplines and their distinctions from those in other experimental sciences.

(2) Pedagogy: Dr. Werth explores innovative pedagogical approaches aimed at engaging and inspiring engineering students while simultaneously fostering essential skills such as teamwork, technical proficiency, creativity, innovation, and the application of fundamental scientific knowledge to engineering challenges.

(3) Assessment: The BEEAR research group endeavors to develop research-based assessment instruments to gauge the effectiveness of engineering education interventions. These assessment tools enable instructors and researchers to gain insights into students' learning processes. Dr. Werth and her team create and refine these instruments to gather reliable data and provide evidence-based recommendations for enhancing engineering education. Through continual refinement and adaptation of assessment methods, they strive to contribute to the ongoing improvement of engineering education practices.

Selected Publications

  • K. A. Oliver, A. Werth, H. J. Lewandowski, “Student experiences with authentic research in a remote, introductory course-based undergraduate research experience in physics.” Phys. Ed. Res. (2023) 19: 1.
  • N. Sulaiman, A. Werth, and H. J. Lewandowski, “Students’ views about experimental physics in a large-enrollment introductory lab focused on experimental scientific practices.” Phys. Rev. Phys. Ed. Res. (2023) 19: 1.
  • A. Werth, K. Oliver, C. G. West, and H. J. Lewandowski, “Student engagement with teamwork in an online, large-enrollment course based undergraduate research experience in physics.” Phys. Rev. Phys. Ed. Res. (2022) 18: 2.
  • A. Werth, J. R. Hoehn, K. Oliver, M. F. J. Fox, and H. J. Lewandowski, “Rapid transition to remote instruction of physics labs during spring 2020: Instructor perspectives.” Phys. Rev. Phys. Ed. Res. (2022) 18: 2.
  • A. Werth, C. G. West, and H. J. Lewandowski, “Impacts on student learning, confidence, and affect in a remote, high-enrollment, course-based undergraduate research experience in physics.” Phys. Rev. Phys. Ed. Res. (2022) 18: 1.

Selected Awards and Honors

  • Postdoctoral Teaching Award, University of Colorado Boulder, 2021, Boulder, CO
  • Innovation Grant, New Jersey Health Foundation, 2018, Princeton, NJ
  • First Place Winner, Princeton Entrepreneurs’ Network Startup Competition, 2018, Princeton, NJ
  • Best Poster Award, NJEN’s Poster, Pitches, and Prizes at Princeton, 2018, Princeton, NJ
  • First Place Winner, BEN Health Innovation Pitch Competition, 2018, New Brunswick, NJ


  • B.A. (Physics), B.S. (Engineering), Swarthmore College, 2014
  • M.A. (Electrical Engineering), Princeton University, 2016
  • Ph.D. (Electrical and Computer Engineering), Princeton University, 2019
  • Postdoc (Physics Education Research), University of Colorado Boulder, (Advisor: Dr. Heather Lewandowski) 2019-2023


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