- Year 2016
- NSF Noyce Award # 934715
- First Name Carolyn
- Last Name Morgan
- Discipline Mathematics
Clair Berube Hampton University firstname.lastname@example.org
Carolyn Morgan Hampton University email@example.com
This program introduces pre-service teachers and high school students in high-need school districts to the area of nanoscience. This is important because nanoscience covers every scientific discipline, it is the unifying component in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). In addition, it will be possible to help build student-based inquiry via nanoscience, generate a high level of student engagement and create a connection between student-generated activities and pre-service teachers using such activities. The lead program participants are Dr. Clair Berube, Associate Professor in Education, Hampton University School of Education & Human Development, and Dr. Shawn Dash, Assistant Professor in Biological Sciences, Hampton University School of Science.
The major goals for this project include the facilitation of undergraduate research within a platform of student-driven research and the application of that research to evaluate and improve nanoscience education for primary school teachers thereby reaching K-12 students. The key activities are focused on the recruitment of talented high school STEM students and then engaging them in nanoscience during a summer STEM institute. The students are partnered with nanoscience mentors with the ultimate goal of writing a manual to be used by middle or high school science teachers. The manual of nanoscience lessons will be used at the Hampton University (HU) level to prepare pre-service STEM teachers going out into schools upon graduation.
In Phase I during the summer of 2015, high school students were taught nanoscience. They also did a literature review and conducted nanoscience experiments with materials in the laboratory. Rough drafts of nanoscience modules (lessons) that would be fun for high school students were created. Drs. Dash and Berube taught and mentored the students and showed the students how to do research. They also revised and refined the teaching modules as the weeks progressed.
In Phase II, during the fall of 2015, Dr. Berube incorporated the nanoscience modules into a manual used in the science methods courses that she taught at Hampton. Dr. Dash served as guest lecturer and provided an overview of nanoscience to Dr. Berube’s science methods classes. Dr. Berube used nanoscience throughout the semester to enrich the students’ knowledge. The students also used the modules in her class for the pre-service teachers and they created problem-based lesson plans.
Dr. Berube will continue to infuse the nanoscience modules in her science methods classes during the 2016-17 academic year. She and Dr. Dash will continue their partnership and work together to bring nanoscience to college students. Dr. Berube will conduct an additional research study to see if infusing nanoscience into science methods courses results in increased pre-service teacher self-efficacy in teaching science. Students will be pre- and post-tested with STEBI B and results will be analyzed using SPSS. More nanoscience problem-based learning modules will be created.
The results of this program will be shared at future Noyce conferences and at other conferences such as American Educational Research Association and Virginia Association of Science Teachers (VAST). Drs. Berube and Dash were awarded the Hampton University Winner of Executive Vice President and Provost’s Innovation Teaching Award, May 2016 for their work. The long-term results are to get the study and models published in a textbook.