MPS Research & Data

The Mathematical & Physical Sciences Division (MPS) Diversity Office academic and administrative staff work with faculty, students, and staff to assist with the development of diversity-focused policies, projects, programs, and initiatives, and offering a wide range of varied resources. Our work contributes to an array of research projects and committee work both locally on campus and nationally.  

MPS Internal Assessment Efforts

The MPS Dean’s Task Force on Undergraduate Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Advancement (UDEIA)

The Mathematical and Physical Sciences Dean’s Task Force on Undergraduate Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Advancement was established for 2019-2021 to enable a coordinated approach to providing faculty, students, and staff insight and input to the Mathematical and Physical Sciences (MPS) Divisional Dean and other MPS and campus leaders. The Task Force focused on opportunities for Berkeley to increase diversity and attain equitable outcomes for all undergraduates in our diverse community.

CHARGE: The Task Force was charged with reviewing data on Berkeley undergraduate STEM intended and declared majors’ persistence to STEM degrees and providing  advice and recommendations about opportunities and challenges, strategies, and choices that UC Berkeley should consider related to improving retention rates and increasing greater diversity, inclusion, and equity. 

MEMBERSHIP: The Task Force consisted of twenty five members, including faculty, administrators, staff, graduate students, and undergraduates from the five MPS departments. Five working groups were established: and met for over a year to develop recommendations. They focused on Advising and Mentoring; Climate; Skills; Data; Survey Analysis. For the purpose of program assessment and improvement, an open-ended survey about the undergraduate experience and choice-making related to the selection of majors was sent to all intended and declared MPS majors. The results were analysed by the Survey Analysis working group. 

Group final recommendations coming soon!

Notable Scholarly Publications

Title: Go beyond bias training 

Subtitle: "Ambiguity in expectations and evaluations harms progress, say Rodolfo Mendoza-Denton and colleagues."

Authors: Rodolfo Mendoza-Denton, Colette Patt & Mark Richards

Title: Differences in STEM doctoral publication by ethnicity, gender and academic field at a large public research university

Authors: Rodolfo Mendoza-Denton, Colette Patt, Aaron Fisher, Andrew Eppig, Ira Young, Andrew Smith, Mark A. Richards

Title: Structure and belonging: Pathways to success for underrepresented minority and women PhD students in STEM fields

Authors: Aaron J. Fisher, Rodolfo Mendoza-Denton, Colette Patt, Ira Young, Andrew Eppig, Robin L. Garrell, Douglas C. Rees, Tenea W. Nelson, Mark A. Richards

Ongoing Projects

Innovations in Graduate Education- Identity, Structure, Belonging (IGE-ISB)

The NSF-funded IGE, Identity, Structure and Belonging (ISB) project tackles the persistent problem of underrepresentation not at the level of individual faculty or student perceptions, actions, or interactions, but rather, at the level of the organizational structure of graduate programs. 

IGE-ISB uses a mixed methods research approach that begins with synthesis of existing data, followed by extensive qualitative data collection (participant-driven semi-structured interviews), rigorous analysis, development of a “blueprint” describing how features of graduate programs work to create equitable career outcomes; and a quantitative self-assessment tool (a Likert-type questionnaire) by which departments and universities can assess their graduate program design. 

IGE-ISB addresses these key research questions: How might departments alter their structures to establish processes, procedures, and climate that are effective at preparing all, equitably, for the full array of careers that lead from a PhD education, including academic careers? What are the specific methods by which departments establish clarity of expectations and a sense of belonging at critical stages of the doctoral programs to enhance equitable outcomes? What are the underlying graduate program structures reflected in everyday practices and routine day-to-day ways of doing things in doctoral programs that produce equitable outcomes for their students?

IGE-ISB will develop a blueprint of graduate program features that lead to equitable career outcomes for students, one that is pragmatic and applicable across departments, and that can be applied at a national scale. 

Read the National Science Foundation's (NSF) abstract for IGE here

Questions about the research project? Contact the Berkeley IGE-ISB Research Team at


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Office: Dwinelle Hall, Room 2409

Phone: 510-642-0919 (accepting vm only)

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