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Equity. Access. Excellence.

Headshot of Dr. David Kung

Dave Kung, Ph.D.
Director, Policy


Dana Center Role

Dave leads the policy work at the Center, which includes in-depth policy analysis and the development of tools, briefs, and guidance to help equitably implement modern math pathways at scale. His portfolio includes equitable state-level implementation work, especially concentrating on the transition years from high school into higher education.

As a mathematician with deep experience across mathematics organizations, Dave serves as a liaison to partner professional organizations. He also directs MAA Project NExT, a professional development program for new faculty in the mathematical sciences.

Before Joining the Dana Center

Prior to joining the Center, Dave served as a mathematics professor for more than two decades at St. Mary’s College of Maryland. During his time at Maryland’s Public Honors College, he served as chair, lead revisions of the core curriculum, and established an Emerging Scholars program focused on racial equity.

Dave has also worked for Transforming Post-Secondary Education in Math (TPSE-Math), and done stints at Fudan University in Shanghai and Lingnan University in Hong Kong. He has served on numerous national committees, advisory boards, and editorial boards.

When travel is safe, he regularly engages audiences on topics from diversity in STEM fields, to mathematics and music, to mind-bending paradoxes. His two video series for The Great Courses have been best sellers.


Ph.D., Mathematics (Harmonic Analysis), University of Wisconsin, Madison
M.A., Mathematics, University of Wisconsin, Madison
B.A., Mathematics, University of Wisconsin, Madison

Selected Professional Activities

Member, MAA Committee on the Inclusivity Prize (2020–2022)

Founder and director, Southern Maryland Math Circle, a math enrichment program for local middle school and high school students (2014–present)

Member, Dana Center Mathematics Pathways Leadership Fellows (2017–2020)

Co-organizer, Math Chairs for Racial Justice (2020)

Member, TPSE Math’s Mathematics Advisory Group (2016–2020)

Editorial board member, MAA’s Math Horizons (2013–2020)

Panelist, Teaching for Mathematical Sciences Research Institute’s Postdoctoral Fellows (2020)

Selected Publications

Kung, D., & Speer, N. (2020). What could they possibly be thinking!?! Understanding your college math students (MAA Notes series, Vol. 90). Washington, DC: Mathematical Association of America.

Kung, D. (2019). Math for social justice: A last math class for responsible citizens. In G. Karaali & L. S. Khadjavi (Eds.), Mathematics for social justice: Resources for the college classroom (AMS/MAA Classroom Resource Materials, Vol. 60, pp. 61–66). Providence, RI: American Mathematical Society.

Hamman, K., & Kung, D. (December 2016/January 2017). A delicate balance: Quantitative literacy and equity. MAA FOCUS, 36(6), 14–15. 

Hauk, S., Speer, N. M., Kung, D., Tsay, J.-J., & Hsu E. (2013). Video cases for college mathematics instructor professional development. Retrieved from

Kung, D., & Speer, N. (2013). Do they really get it? Evaluating evidence of student understanding of power series. PRIMUS: Problems, Resources, and Issues in Mathematics Undergraduate Studies, 23(5), 419–433.

Developed Courses

Mind-Bending Math: Riddles and Paradoxes, The Teaching Company’s Great Courses (July 2015): 
This 24-lecture course explores the ageless riddles that have plagued even the greatest thinkers in history—confounding the philosophical, mathematical, and scientific minds grappling to solve them. Students learn how to break down, examine, and solve these famous quandaries.

How Music and Mathematics Relate, The Teaching Company’s Great Courses (February 2013): 
This 12-lecture course gives students a new perspective on two of the greatest achievements of human culture—music and math—and the fascinating connections that help them more fully appreciate the intricacies of both.

Selected Presentations

From teaching math to teaching students: Transforming classroom norms among college math instructors. Presented at Johns Hopkins University’s Workshop on Mathematical Norms, Baltimore, MD (September 2019).

The state of professional development in higher ed mathematics: Today and what’s NExT. Presented at MAA MathFest, Cincinnati, OH (August 2019).

The roles of pedagogy and educational research in diversifying STEM fields. Invited plenary speaker at Transforming Research in Undergraduate STEM Education conference, St. Paul, MN (June 2017).

Selected Honors

Deborah and Franklin Tepper Haimo Award: Top honor in college mathematics teaching in the United States, given annually to three people by MAA (2021)