Oren L. McClain, Ph.D.

Oren McClainAssistant Professor of Mathematics and Urban Education
Undergraduate Class of 2018 Advisor
Beatty Hall 121-1


Ph.D., Education – Mathematics Education 
University of Virginia, Curry School of Education Charlottesville, VA
M.E., Mechanical Engineering 
Old Dominion University, College of Engineering and Technology Norfolk, VA
B.S., Mechanical Engineering (Minor in Mathematics)
Old Dominion University, College of Engineering and Technology Norfolk, VA 


A native of Portsmouth, Va., Dr. McClain began his career in education as a National Science Foundation STEM Teaching Fellow, teaching elementary mathematics and science in Norfolk, Va. public schools. He later taught middle school mathematics in his hometown before serving as a secondary mathematics instructional specialist, where he provided professional development for middle and high school teachers across the Portsmouth school district. Broadly speaking, Dr. McClain’s research is focused on issues of equity, diversity, and inclusion in STEM education.

Research Interests

Mathematics teaching and learning
Diversity and equity in STEM education
Mathematics identity construction of Black students
Politics of diversity surrounding STEM pipeline(s)

Selected Publications

McClain, O. L. (2014). Negotiating Identity: A look at the educational experiences of Black undergraduates in STEM disciplines. Peabody Journal of Education, 89(3), 380-392. 
Berry III, R. Q., Henderson, H. & McClain, O. L. (2013) A critical review of American K-12 mathematics education, 1900-Present: Implications for the Experiences and Achievement of Black Children. In J. Leonard and D. B. Martin (Eds.), The brilliance of Black children in mathematics: Beyond the numbers and toward new discourse (pp. 23-53). Charlotte, NC: Information Age Publishers.
Berry, III, R.Q., Thunder, K. & McClain, O. L. (2011). Counter Narratives: Examining the mathematics and racial identities of Black boys who are successful with school mathematics. Journal of African American Males in Education, 2(1), 10-23.
Berry III, R. Q. & McClain, O. L. (2009). Voices, Power, and Multiple Identities: African American boys and mathematics success. New England Mathematics Journal, 41, 17-26.
Berry III, R. Q. & McClain, O. L. (2009).  Contrasting pedagogical styles and their impact on African American students.  In D. B. Martin (Ed.), Mathematics teaching, learning, and liberation in the lives of Black children (pp.123-144). Mahwah, NJ: LEA Publishers.

Professional Activities/ Organizations

National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM)
American Educational Research Association (AERA)
National Society of Black Engineering (NSBE)
SREB Doctoral Association