- Year 2022
- NSF Noyce Award # 2150905
- First Name Shannon
- Last Name Campe
- Discipline Computer Science
Jasmine Ma, New York University; Matin Pirouz, California State University Fresno; Dustin Hebert, Louisiana Tech University
Jasmine Ma, New York University
There is increasing demand for STEM teachers particularly in high-need schools and the call for K-12 computer science (CS) teachers, notably those who are prepared to engage students from underrepresented groups, has grown exponentially in the last ten years. Yet retention is particularly low among CS teachers. This study will look at how teacher preparation programs can increase CS teacher retention in high-need schools and prepare teachers to deliver effective, equitable CS instruction. This study will look at how teacher preparation programs can increase CS teacher retention by persisting in completing the preparation program and 2-year teaching requirement for Noyce Scholars. The goal is to generate information that can be used to increase the longer-term retention of CS teachers in high-need schools as well as identify the features of programs that prepare teachers to deliver effective, equitable CS instruction. A design-based research approach will be used to iteratively apply the results to three Noyce Scholars programs to increase CS teacher retention and effectiveness.
The research questions guiding this study are: 1. How can teacher preparation programs increase the retention of CS teachers in high-need schools? 1A.What individual-level factors play a role (e.g., beliefs, knowledge, confidence)? 1B.What interpersonal factors play a role (e.g., coaching, mentoring, community of teachers)? 1C.What institutional factors at the school and within the preparation program play a role (administrator support, financial resources/supplies, course content)? 2.How can teacher preparation programs prepare teachers to deliver effective and equitable computer science education in middle and high school? 2A.What are the different ways that Noyce Scholar programs train teachers on CS and social justice content knowledge and pedagogical content knowledge? 2B.To what extent does the training help teachers deliver effective and equitable CS education?
The research will be guided by socio-ecological and social justice pedagogical content knowledge theoretical frameworks. The study will involve 86 teachers who are being trained to teach CS in middle and high schools. Mixed methods will be used to collect survey, interview, observation and institutional data over time. The data will be analyzed to describe teachers’ development of CS knowledge and social justice pedagogy, their experience as a student teacher and a novice lead teacher, their community of support, their identity as a CS teacher, as well as features of the preparation program and school sites. An initial conjecture map documents research-based hypotheses about how to prepare teachers to persist and engage in effective CS instruction. Using a design-research approach, the team will use the data to refine the conjecture map and make changes at the program level.
This 5-year Robert Noyce Track 4 Research grant has just begun (June 1, 2002) so there are currently no findings and outcomes to report. The project will begin with ETR working with partnering universities and their graduate students to recruit Noyce Scholar CS pre-service teacher participants from their existing cohorts. Data will then be collected from the participants at various timepoints of their preparation, induction and post-induction phases. Survey data will also be collected from middle and high school CS students in Noyce Scholars’ classrooms. Additionally, more data on the preparation phase of Scholars’ training will be collected and analyzed from university course information and faculty interviews. The data will be analyzed and the findings iteratively applied to the revision of our initial conjecture map and to support programmatic changes to the university programs. The overall project findings will also inform other CS teacher preparation programs to support and increase the teaching of equitable and inclusive CS and the retention of CS teachers in high-need schools.
Access to CS education is disproportionately distributed across public schools. High-need schools have greater numbers of students from groups that are underrepresented in computing fields; they are also more likely to have teacher turnover and less likely to have experienced teachers and CS opportunities. But little is known about the different ways that equity and inclusion are conceptualized and operationalized in teacher preparation programs, including those for Noyce Scholars from different STEM disciplines. This study involves a multidisciplinary team of investigators who are positioned to identify strategies that prepare teachers to create equitable and inclusive CS classes for students in these schools. It will also identify strategies for training and support in teacher preparation programs that can increase teacher retention. The geographic dispersion of Noyce projects will increase the likelihood that the results will be relevant to a range of populations and settings.