June 26, 2011
June 26, 2011
June 29, 2011
K-12 & Pre-College Engineering and Design in Engineering Education
22.372.1 - 22.372.20
Connecting Science with Engineering: Using Inquiry and Design in a Teacher Professional Development CourseAs more emphasis is placed on integrating STEM into the curriculum (National ResearchCouncil, 2009) there is a need to enhance the capacity for k-12 teachers. Responding to this callour Colleges of Engineering and Education collaborated to offer an intensive three day summerinstitute to address the preparation of elementary school teachers (grades k-5) to teach STEMcurriculum. The focus of our institute curriculum was on the use of both inquiry and design asapproaches for integrating STEM content. In particular we explicitly stressed the link betweenscience and inquiry and engineering and design, how these processes differ, how they cancomplement each other and how they can be used instructionally to teach a wide range of STEMcontent. We engaged the participants in a series of hands-on activities focused on the inquiryprocess of manipulating variables to gather data to explain phenomenon or design processes thatfocus on creating and refining the best solution given constraints.To determine the effectiveness of our workshop we gathered pre and post data to assess our 58participants’ comfort for teaching STEM, their STEM pedagogical discontentment, theirimplementation of inquiry curriculum, and their knowledge of the design process. Our initialresults indicate significant increases in comfort teaching STEM (t = 12.761, p < .01), decreasesin STEM pedagogical discontentment (t = 7.281, p < .01), and increases in the design processknowledge (t = 6.072, p < .01). Post data collection for the implementation of inquiry will takeplace in Fall 2010 allowing time for the participating teachers to apply their learned knowledgeand develop a post conference context for their instructional practice with students. Allinstruments used for data collection were extant and had established reliability and validity.Our results indicate that our three day summer institute increased our participants’ knowledge ofdesign along with comfort for teaching STEM. Also, the institute decreased the teachers’pedagogical discontentment for teaching STEM. We will be collecting another round of data infall, 2010 to determine how the teachers are applying what they learned in terms ofimplementing inquiry and design with their students. All results will be reported in the finalpaper.
Nadelson, L. S., & Pyke, P., & Callahan, J., & Hay, A., & Pfiester, J., & Emmet, M. A. (2011, June), Connecting Science with Engineering: Using Inquiry and Design in a Teacher Professional Development Course Paper presented at 2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Vancouver, BC. https://peer.asee.org/17653
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