Thomas Higginbotham

Office: Education, Morrill Hall Rm 206A, Durham, NH 03824
headshot of Thomas Higginbotham

Tom Higginbotham is the Director of Science Education for TRRE, and a postdoctoral research and teaching associate at UNH, roles through which he gets to teach the TRRE Science Methods class and to facilitate science learning opportunities for TRRE residents and inductees, such as a winter trip up to the Mt. Washington Weather Observatory. His practical and research interests include finding ways to demystify STEM fields for teachers, and making Community-Based Design Projects a habitual practice in the TRRE program. His career in education has been diverse and well-traveled. Tom has taught outdoor education, secondary science and math, and served for over a decade as a school administrator in both primary and secondary schools. Along the way, he earned his PhD from Boston College in Curriculum & Instruction, studying gender issues in the K-12 science classroom and educational technology. He has also worked as a consultant for school leaders, focusing on Common Core Standards (both math and ELA). Tom teaches science methods, educational technology, and Introduction to STEM education at UNH. Tom joined the TRRE project not only because it offered an ideal blend of research and teaching, but also because the project’s outcomes are so important and resonate so strongly with his beliefs about the importance of recognizing and honoring local knowledge. He has a strange talent for remembering the scientific names of plants that he learned 25 years ago.?


  • Ph.D., Curriculum and Instruction, Boston College
  • M.S., State University of New York at Potsdam
  • B.S., SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry

Courses Taught

  • EDUC 500: Exploring Teaching
  • EDUC 703F: Teaching Elem School Science
  • EDUC 703F/803F: Teaching Elem School Science
  • EDUC 710: Navigating Difficult Dialogue
  • EDUC 720: Ed Tech
  • EDUC 791/891: Mthds Tchng Secondary Science
  • EDUC 797: SpcTopEd/NavDifficult Dialogue
  • EDUC 803F: Teaching Elem School Science
  • EDUC 810: Navigating Difficult Dialogue
  • EDUC 820: Ed Tech
  • EDUC 897: SpcTop/Nav Difficult Dialogues
  • EDUC 900A: Intrnshp & Sem/Teaching
  • EDUC 901A: Intrnshp & Sem/Teaching

Selected Publications

Reagan, E. M., Hambacher, E., Schram, T., McCurdy, K., Lord, D., Higginbotham, T., & Fornauf, B. (2019). Place matters: Review of the literature on rural teacher education. Teaching and Teacher Education, 80, 83-93. doi:10.1016/j.tate.2018.12.005