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Student/Teacher Team Biotechnology/Genetics Workshop

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2007 Annual Conference & Exposition


Honolulu, Hawaii

Publication Date

June 24, 2007

Start Date

June 24, 2007

End Date

June 27, 2007



Conference Session

Emerging Trends in Engineering Education Poster Session

Page Count


Page Numbers

12.1322.1 - 12.1322.8

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Paper Authors


Virgil Cox Gaston College

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Virgil G. Cox, OE , Dean of Engineering and Industrial Technologies at Gaston College for almost twenty years Dean Cox has taught courses in a broad range of engineering disciplines, has evaluated many programs and courses and published over 10 articles dealing with technology and education in refereed journals. Dean Cox was also an Associate Professor of Ocean Engineering at Maine Maritime Academy. Dean Cox is a retiree of the US Navy and a Veteran. Dean Cox received his B.S., MSEE, and Ocean Engineers degrees from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

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Mary Beth Ross Gaston College

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Mary Beth Ross earned a Ph.D. in English from Syracuse University and undertook post-doctoral work in linguistics at University College London. She has over twenty years experience in higher education as a classroom teacher and curriculum developer (Syracuse University, S.U.N.Y Utica/Rome, The Women’s Writer’s Center, and Philander Smith College). Currently serving as the director of grants and special projects at Gaston College, she previously spent nearly a decade with The National Faculty, planning and implementing K-12 teacher summer workshops like this one from Alaska and Hawaii to Louisiana and Arkansas. This was the first time she was involved with one that included students. She is working with various faculty members and administrators at Gaston College to seek additional grant funding to repeat this project and extend this model to other subject areas.

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Phyllis EssexFraser Gaston College

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Student/Teacher Team Biotechnology/Genetics Workshop Abstract

Cognitive and metacognitive theories regarding learning and teaching emphasize experience and feedback. Combining these techniques in STEM education and teacher professional development is not easy to accomplish. A unique format for delivering science content, teaching lab technique, and providing science teachers with a teaching professional development experience was piloted as part of an NSF diversity in engineering technology grant. A one-week workshop on biotechnology and genetics was created. This paper presents a summary of techniques, participant evaluations, and an overview of planned activities. Sample lab and lecture materials can be obtained from the author. The attendees were high school biology teachers along with one student selected by each teacher to create a learning team. The science and lab technique was new to both the teachers and the students. The team’s goal was to maximize learning. The pair helped each other understand the lecture material and conduct the lab exercises. In-class activities included lecture, lab exercises, media presentations, inter-team discussions, general discussions, study sessions, projects, social events, and team final presentations. These activities created an environment in which the teacher could: learn new science content and lab techniques, directly observe a student learning the same material. This workshop provided opportunities for the teachers to engage in collaborative learning and engage in inquiry-based learning. At the end of each day the science teachers met separately for a debriefing session with the high school science administrators (county level science coordinators). Data were collected by the workshop administrators for evaluation. The teacher’s overall satisfaction rating (OSR) of the workshop was 3.94 out of a possible 4.0. The student OSR was 3.91 out of a possible 4.0. The technique has shown value in simultaneously expanding science teacher’s knowledge and teaching skills and interesting students in STEM careers. The high school administrators and teachers were so impressed with the results of this technique that twice as many science workshops are already scheduled for next summer. The technique is also being expanded to engineering fields.


The National Science Foundation funded a grant entitled “Diversity in Engineering Technology Education”. The grant’s principle investigator was Dr. Stephen Kuyeth in the Engineering Technology (ET) Department of the University of North Carolina at Charlotte (UNCC). The grant created a venue in which the ET department coordinated with regional community colleges and high schools to create a tiered team to conduct activities designed to increase high school student’s interest in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) and engineering technology. Some of the activities included inter and intra school competitions with robots, trebuchets, and school team performance on the annual Junior Engineering and Technology (JETs) exam. The community colleges worked with the high schools in their service areas to provide mentoring and guidance for both the students and the teachers (few of whom knew much about the JETs exam or building robots, etc.). The author and the author’s school participated in these activities.

Cox, V., & Ross, M. B., & EssexFraser, P. (2007, June), Student/Teacher Team Biotechnology/Genetics Workshop Paper presented at 2007 Annual Conference & Exposition, Honolulu, Hawaii.

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2007 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015