June 15, 2014
June 15, 2014
June 18, 2014
K-12 & Pre-College Engineering
24.208.1 - 24.208.10
Assessing the Versatility of STEM Explore, Discover, Apply – A Middle School STEM Course (research to practice)Improving the quality of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) programsin K-12 schools is a nationwide initiative. School administrators and teachers are experimentingwith innovative curricula that will engage students in STEM subjects. However, teachers andadministrators are cautious about employing new techniques due to concerns like timelimitations on lessons, the plethora of content required to be covered in the school year, andresource restraints. Therefore, it is critical that any new curricula be beneficial to all involvedparties: school administration, teachers, and students. The new curricula must reach the goal ofthe aforementioned initiative – to improve the quality of STEM education.In order to answer the initiative curriculum development specialists created middleschool elective curricula for grades 6 , 7 , and 8th. The curricula use science and design projects th thframed by the engineering design process to engage students. For each level of the curricula, thecontent is presented in a modular approach increasing in difficulty through the grade levels. Eachmodule consists of a design project lasting approximately three weeks if presented in a singularclass.This paper assesses the first-year implementation of STEM Explore, Discover,Apply (STEM EDA) curricula at three diverse K-12 schools. Through the pilot schools, theversatility of the curricula can be evaluated. The curricula are being piloted by a public, charter,and private school, all of which are conducting the courses in different manners. The publicschool implements the curricula as a standalone elective course. The charter school presents eachmodule over one-week periods, where a cohort of teachers integrates the content throughoutmultiple classes. The private school chooses specific modules that are applicable to lessons in itscurrent science curricula and presents those lessons using the STEM EDA module.Administrator and teacher feedback provides the data that will be the basis of the assessment.Taking into consideration the varying implementations of the curricula, the successes, failures,and future directions of the curricula are evaluated and presented in this paper.
Corbett, K. S., & Coriell, J. M., & Hahler, S. (2014, June), Assessing the First-Year Pilot of STEM: Explore, Discover, Apply – STEM Curricula for Middle Schools (work in progress) Paper presented at 2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Indianapolis, Indiana. https://peer.asee.org/20099
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