June 14, 2015
June 14, 2015
June 17, 2015
K-12 & Pre-College Engineering
26.984.1 - 26.984.7
Integrating a K-12 Education and Outreach Initiative into a Sustainability Research Network (Work in Progress)The National Science Foundation’s Sustainability Research Network (SRN) brings together adiverse body of stakeholders to conduct collaborative research into sustainability challenges. TheSRN under investigation, (Redacted), is focused on sustainable energy development within thecontext of hydraulic fracturing (fracking) and brings together researchers, government officials,and citizens to research and disseminate findings related to fracking in the Mountain West. Onecontext targeted for dissemination is the K-12 setting, where K-12 and university teachers andstudents are developing and teaching curriculum and activities designed to facilitateunderstanding of responsible energy development.The (Redacted) SRN Education and Outreach (E&O) team is composed of STEM educators witha variety of technical backgrounds and depth of experience in K-12 settings. The E&O team hasdeveloped a series of goals to guide programmatic activity and these are as follows: (1) Enhancemulti-disciplinary education across network stakeholders, (2) Expose minority populations tonetwork education and outreach activities, (3) Integrate SRN research, education and outreachActivities and (4) Incorporate SRN into graduate education Practices. All four goals aretargeted through K-12 programming.SRN E&O K-12 programming is currently being piloted through three activities. These are ayear-long teacher workshop, a project-based, learning air quality monitoring program in twoschool districts – one with a significant minority population – in geographical areas that areaffected by fracking, and a planned Open House to bring together K-12 teachers with otherstakeholders for networking and dissemination of SRN research findings. SRN graduate studentshave been integrated into the process by assisting with curriculum and activity development,giving talks to the online teacher courses, and advising and coordinating high school studentresearch projects.Currently, the teacher workshop has reached maximum enrollment and begun the on-line portionof programming. The air quality monitoring program has begun in 5 high schools, wherestudents have been introduced to the low-cost next generation air quality monitors developed bythe (redacted) SRN team and are beginning to formulate research questions on air quality andenergy development. The Open House has been schedule for March 2015 and is in the planningstages.For assessment purposes, measurable criteria have been established to track progress againstprogram goals. Each criterion is then matched with an assessment tool to measure success. Forexample, a criterion was set that three on-line courses would be developed for the year-longteacher workshop and accomplishment against that criterion has been measured, in part, via ateacher survey. Additional assessment results and evaluation of findings will be further discussedin the paper.
Knight, D. W., & Hannigan, M., & Polmear, M., & Gardiner, L., & Hafich, K. A., & Collier, A. M. (2015, June), Integrating a K-12 Education and Outreach Initiative into a Sustainability Research Network (Work in Progress) Paper presented at 2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Seattle, Washington. 10.18260/p.24321
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