June 26, 2011
June 26, 2011
June 29, 2011
K-12 & Pre-College Engineering
22.1323.1 - 22.1323.18
The goal of this work was to implement and evaluate a model for bringing STEMprofessionals (hereafter STEMs) together with teachers and students to positivelyinfluence their understandings of science and attitudes toward science, and to enhanceSTEM understanding of science education. Teachers were immersed for one day in eachof three professional STEM labs, then STEMs reciprocally visited teachers’ classrooms.Although this in itself is not novel, the details and support for these interactions separatethis project from other scientist/teacher collaborations. Nine eighth grade teachers andnine STEMs were recruited for participation. A demographically similar control group ofteachers and students was assembled. Demographics primarily included AfricanAmerican, Asian, Hispanic and White ethnicities.Phase 1 was a kick-off meeting hosted at a STEM laboratory, including brief STEMpresentations about their work and descriptions of what teachers would do shouldteachers be immersed in their particular lab. The kick-off met the dual objectives ofacquainting teachers with the lab environment and initiating relationships betweenteachers and STEMs.In Phase 2 teams of three teachers spent a day with a STEM in his/her lab. Teachershelped conduct experiments, entered data into computer programs, set up equipment, satin on lab meetings, etc. The objective of these visits was to provide teachers with real-world science experiences.In Phase 3 STEMs visited the eighth grade classrooms of the teachers who wereimmersed in their labs. STEM visits began with a brief description of himself/herself, ofhis/her work, and moved on to an activity brought by the STEM that was representativeof the STEM’s work. Prior to the lab immersions and classroom visits, project staffinteracted with each STEM to ensure that experience-rich days were planned.Data collected by an external evaluator included: (a) online multiple choice responses toa pre/post student questionnaire, (b) classroom observations by the project evaluator, (c)teacher interviews to assess teachers’ perception of what they learned from the projectand how their students benefited from it, (d) STEM interviews aimed at understandinghow the project influenced the STEMS, and how they perceived the project benefit toteachers and students. Student questionnaire results were examined using a two-waypaired student's t-test analysis comparing pre/post data for each item. This analysis wasdone for the treatment as well as for the control group. A two-way unpaired student's t-test analysis comparing the change in the treatment group to the change in the controlgroup was also performed. This paper will present the analyses and interview outcomesof the project. Knowledge gained from this project will be used to refine the model andprovide a foundation for further STEM and K-12 collaboration. Project results andsupport materials will be available on the Internet. This project was conducted through acollaboration of a federal agency, university staff, county education staff and the privatesector, under the auspices of a nonprofit organization of local businesses dedicated toenhancing science education in a large city in the southwestern USA.
Bendall, S. F., & Deckard, C., & Bercovich Guelman, C. E., & Taylor, N. A., & Marriott, A. (2011, June), STEM Professionals with Class Paper presented at 2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Vancouver, BC. 10.18260/1-2--18783
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