Matching Items (58)

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Improving the Implementation of Engineering Design Practices in Secondary Science Classrooms

Description

Various reports produced by the National Research Council suggest that K-12 curricula expand Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics to better help students develop their ability to reason and employ scientific

Various reports produced by the National Research Council suggest that K-12 curricula expand Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics to better help students develop their ability to reason and employ scientific habits rather than simply building scientific knowledge. Every spring, the Arizona Department of Education (ADE) in conjunction with Arizona State University holds a professional development workshop titled "Engineering Practices in the Secondary Science Classroom: Engineering Training for Grade 6-12 Math and Science School Teams". This workshop provides math and science teachers with the opportunity to either sustain existing engineering proficiency or be exposed to engineering design practices for the first time. To build teachers' proficiency with employing engineering design practices, they follow a two-day curriculum designed for application in both science and math classrooms as a conjoined effort. As of spring 2015, very little feedback has been received concerning the effectiveness of the ASU-ADE workshops. New feedback methods have been developed for future deployment as past and more informal immediate feedback from teachers and students was used to create preliminary changes in the workshop curriculum. In addition, basic laboratory testing has been performed to further link together engineering problem solving with experiments and computer modelling. In improving feedback and expanding available material, the curriculum was analyzed and improved to more effectively train teachers in engineering practices and implement these practices in their classrooms.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2015-05

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Teaching Biology in a Maximum-Security Prison Unit: Feedback, Notes and Recommendations from a Pilot Class

Description

We, a team of students and faculty in the life sciences at Arizona State University (ASU), currently teach an Introduction to Biology course in a Level 5, or maximum-security unit

We, a team of students and faculty in the life sciences at Arizona State University (ASU), currently teach an Introduction to Biology course in a Level 5, or maximum-security unit with the support of the Arizona Department of Corrections and the Prison Education Program at ASU. This course aims to enhance current programs at the unit by offering inmates an opportunity to practice literacy and math skills, while also providing exposure to a new academic field (science, and specifically biology). Numerous studies, including a 2005 study from the Arizona Department of Corrections (ADC), have found that vocational programs, including prison education programs, reduce recidivism rates (ADC 2005, Esperian 2010, Jancic 1988, Steurer et al. 2001, Ubic 2002) and may provide additional benefits such as engagement with a world outside the justice system (Duguid 1992), the opportunity for inmates to revise personal patterns of rejecting education that they may regret, and the ability of inmate parents to deliberately set a good example for their children (Hall and Killacky 2008). Teaching in a maximum security prison unit poses special challenges, which include a prohibition on most outside materials (except paper), severe restrictions on student-teacher and student-student interactions, and the inability to perform any lab exercises except limited computer simulations. Lack of literature discussing theoretical and practical aspects of teaching science in such environment has prompted us to conduct an ongoing study to generate notes and recommendations from this class through the use of surveys, academic evaluation of students' work and ongoing feedback from both teachers and students to inform teaching practices in future science classes in high-security prison units.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2015-05

Educating Students on Water Resources, the Importance of Drinking Water, and the Use of Biomimicry

Description

Clean and accessible drinking water is a crucial and limited resource. As the world's population grows and demand increases, water resources will become more limited. This project aims to educate

Clean and accessible drinking water is a crucial and limited resource. As the world's population grows and demand increases, water resources will become more limited. This project aims to educate students on water resources, drinking water, and how biomimicry can allow society to improve its water usage. The project consists of a ten day unit plan which addresses several water topics such as: the various uses of water, water distribution, where drinking water comes from, the water treatment process, and more. After establishing background knowledge on water and surrounding issues, the students will be challenged to design a water bottle using biomimicry. Biomimicry is looking at nature to draw and inspire solutions to human problems. This unit has been optimized for use by elementary teachers. The ten day unit consists of a lesson summary, objectives, standards, and recommended activities for each day. Of the ten days, three lesson plans were fully developed using the 5E format. The research supporting this project is compiled in the following report.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2016-12

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Experiments in Science Education: How In-Classroom Demonstrations and Hands-On Activities Affect Student Interest in Science and Engineering

Description

This thesis aims to evaluate how in classroom demonstrations compare to regular education techniques, and how student learning styles affect interest in science and engineering as future fields of study.

This thesis aims to evaluate how in classroom demonstrations compare to regular education techniques, and how student learning styles affect interest in science and engineering as future fields of study. Science education varies between classrooms, but usually is geared towards lecture and preparation for standardized exams without concern for student interest or enjoyment.5 To discover the effectiveness of demonstrations in these concerns, an in classroom demonstration with a water filtration experiment was accompanied by several modules and followed by a short survey. Hypotheses tested included that students would enjoy the demonstration more than a typical class session, and that of these students, those with more visual or tactile learning styles would identify with science or engineering as a possible major in college. The survey results affirmed the first hypothesis, but disproved the second hypothesis; thus illustrating that demonstrations are enjoyable, and beneficial for sparking or maintaining student interest in science across all types of students.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2014-05

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An Analysis of Museum Visitor Feedback via the Ask Dr. Discovery Project

Description

Museum evaluation is an important process that aims to study an exhibit's effectiveness in engaging visitors and in teaching concepts. Imperatives and methods to strengthen museum evaluation have been suggested

Museum evaluation is an important process that aims to study an exhibit's effectiveness in engaging visitors and in teaching concepts. Imperatives and methods to strengthen museum evaluation have been suggested and implemented in the past, but ultimately faced several challenges including the collection of visitor feedback in an efficient, non-intrusive way. The Ask Dr. Discovery project seeks to address the challenge of conducting efficient, affordable, and large-scale science museum evaluation via an interactive app aimed at collecting direct visitor feedback through use of the app and through questionnaires that also collect demographics. This thesis investigates how the demographics of metro Phoenix science museum visitors as a whole compare to the Hispanic/Latino population of visitors, and makes use of visitor feedback from Ask Dr. Discovery to provide useful data for science museum evaluation. An analysis of responses revealed that the majority of the participants in the study (n=785) were White (Non-Hispanic) (65.59%), were 36-45 years old (36.18%) and hold a graduate degree (27.64%). Most Hispanic/Latino participants in the study were 26-35 years old (36.36%) and completed some college (28.67%). Most participants from both participant groups have never visited the museum before (32.99% of all participants; 33.57% of all Hispanics/Latinos). Further analysis suggest that museum visits may be independent of age and visitor group size. Visitor interest in science museum exhibits may be independent of their use of free time science-related activities. Data suggests that there was no real difference in exhibit interest across two different versions of the app ("modes"). Analysis of negative visitor feedback showed different question types, questions asked, and time spent on the app. Data log questions revealed the difference in time spent on the app and complexity of questions asked between adults and children, as well as the location of participants in the museum. There was no major correlation between mode type and number of questions asked, and length of use and number of questions asked.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2016-12

Get Excited!: Using Anime to Rethink Adolescent Science Education

Description

Pedagogical researchers have explored pop culture media in educational settings in the past. However, pop culture media is always evolving. Teachers should be aware that students have already formed their

Pedagogical researchers have explored pop culture media in educational settings in the past. However, pop culture media is always evolving. Teachers should be aware that students have already formed their own cultural activities and work with them, rather than neglect them. Anime has remained largely unexplored in this context despite its popularity. Its animation style and storyline may provide exciting moments that are memorable to young adults. This study examines the potential of anime, a style of Japanese animation, in educating through a visual medium. Recent anime have successfully incorporated science into their storytelling.
The 2019 anime, Dr. Stone, follows a high schooler and his friends as they attempt to use science to restore human society after 3,700 years of global petrification. Through qualitative analysis and coding of select episodes of Dr. Stone, this study examines the ways in which scientific concepts in engineering, chemistry and geology are taught. It also examines the significance of science and representation of scientists within its storyline. Dr. Stone presents an image of science which is interesting, relevant and understandable to adolescent students through its compelling visuals and engaging story. Through its characters, it also presents a relatable and less stereotypical image of scientists. Innovative pop culture media like anime is one way of generating interest in science among adolescents and challenging preconceived notions of science. Educators may find it useful in a classroom setting.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2020-12

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Sustaining Sustainability: Key Environmental Education

Description

The project was designed to increase awareness of sustainability and environmental science in public high school students who would otherwise not be exposed to complex environmental problems. This was done

The project was designed to increase awareness of sustainability and environmental science in public high school students who would otherwise not be exposed to complex environmental problems. This was done by testing the effectiveness of a simple yet comprehensive curriculum that could satisfy and expand the scope of the Arizona Education Science Standard, Essential HS.E1U3.14, while simultaneously being accessible to (and teachable by) any school instructor. Another goal of the project is to stimulate the minds of students who would otherwise not be introduced to the topics of sustainability and environmental science. Utilizing proven visualization and engagement techniques, the curriculum focuses on five key subjects: waste, water, energy, ecosystems, and environmental challenges. Each of these subjects had an educational presentation, interactive activities, question and answer sessions, and bonus activities. To test the overall effectiveness of the curriculum, students were given a pretest to gauge initial comprehension, and then after the five subjects (or modules) were taught, the same test was distributed again to the students. The aforementioned was done with two groups of students. Posttest results support the project effectiveness. The data indicate that the lessons had a positive impact on the test results, with one class averaging 33.6% better on the posttest than the pretest, indicating that the concepts taught did resonate with the students in a measurable way.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2020-05

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Exploring Outdoor Makerspaces to Develop STEM Skills

Description

As an urgency has emerged to prepare students to be future-ready, makerspaces have been developed as a technique for teachers to use in classrooms to build science, technology, engineering and

As an urgency has emerged to prepare students to be future-ready, makerspaces have been developed as a technique for teachers to use in classrooms to build science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) skills. Makerspaces expose students to innovation and are powerful tools in training students to use science and engineering practices as they invent, discover and tinker. While indoor makerspaces have been studied in multiple settings, little research has been performed to understand the relevance of makerspaces in outdoor settings.

The goal of this study was to aid 20 elementary teachers in developing their understanding of the usefulness and benefits of outdoor makerspaces. A constructivist approach was used in order for participants to overcome pre-conceived barriers about taking students outside for learning. In this qualitative study, participants took part in a hands-on professional development session to learn how to integrate nature into instruction, then used outdoor spaces to engage their own students in three or more outdoor sessions. Teachers reflected before, during and after the intervention to see if the likelihood of engaging students in outdoor learning changed.

The findings of the study showed that spending time outside with students led to a multitude of benefits for both students and teachers. Benefits included increased student engagement, expanded learning for students and teachers, and STEM skill development. These findings, suggest that outdoor makerspaces introduce a new platform for training students and teachers about science and engineering practices while providing authentic science connections, high engagement, and benefits to social and emotional balance.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2020

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Moving beyond concepts: getting urban high school students engaged in science through cognitive processes

Description

In order to maintain its global position, the United States needs to increase the number of students opting for science careers. Science teachers face a formidable challenge. Students are not

In order to maintain its global position, the United States needs to increase the number of students opting for science careers. Science teachers face a formidable challenge. Students are not choosing science because they do not think coursework is interesting or applies to their lives. These problems often compound for adolescents in urban areas. This action research investigated an innovation aimed at engaging a group of adolescents in the science learning process through cognitive processes and conceptual understanding. It was hoped that this combination would increase students' engagement in the classroom and proficiency in science. The study was conducted with 28 juniors and sophomores in an Environmental Science class in an urban high school with a student body of 97% minority students and 86% students receiving free and reduced lunch. The study used a mixed-methods design. Instruments included a pre- and post-test, Thinking Maps, transcripts of student discourse, and a two-part Engagement Observation Instrument. Data analysis included basic descriptives and a grounded theory approach. Findings show students became engaged in activities when cognitive processes were taught prior to content. Furthermore it was discovered that Thinking Maps were perceived to be an easy tool to use to organize students' thinking and processing. Finally there was a significant increase in student achievement. From these findings implications for future practice and research are offered.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2014

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Using social media and professional learning communities as tools for novice teacher collegiality and improved self-efficacy

Description

Teacher attrition and the migration between schools and districts can have a negative impact on quality of education and teacher performance. Novice teachers leave the profession because they are overwhelmed

Teacher attrition and the migration between schools and districts can have a negative impact on quality of education and teacher performance. Novice teachers leave the profession because they are overwhelmed by the workload and responsibilities of the job. In a previous action research cycle, I found that novice teachers' perceptions of isolation and lack of opportunities to share experiences had a negative effect on teacher perceptions of efficacy. This action research project examines the effect of leveraging social media and professional learning communities to provide opportunities for a group of novice teachers to share experiences and seek advice. By addressing the challenges that novice teachers face and providing solutions for common problems, it is the hope of this researcher that highly effective teachers will remain in the classroom. The results of the study indicate that the combined use of Twitter and YouTube in collaboration with professional learning communities will improve teacher perceptions of efficacy. Teachers who participated in the social media based professional learning communities are also more likely to remain in the classroom.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2013