- Year 2017
- NSF Noyce Award # 1136419, 1136431
- First Name Deidre
- Last Name Sessoms
- Discipline Other: math/science
Kelly McDonald, California State University, Sacramento, firstname.lastname@example.org
Gary Shannon, California State University, Sacramento, email@example.com
Deidre Sessoms, California State University, Sacramento, firstname.lastname@example.org
Jenna Porter, California State University, Sacramento, email@example.com
A primary goal of the NSF Noyce Scholarship Program is to increase the numbers of well-prepared effective STEM teachers, especially those who will teach in low-income, diverse schools. One method to improve the effectiveness and commitment of STEM teachers is to provide support for developing a “STEM Teacher” identity early in teacher preparation (Day et al 2005). To support this, the SacMAST project (Sacramento Math and Science Teachers) has embedded multiple activities for Noyce Scholars in our program that assist in developing the STEM Teacher identity.
Noyce Scholars in SacMAST: the Sacramento Math and Science Teacher Program participate in multiple professional development activities that contribute to developing a professional STEM teacher identity. Key activities include:
1. Teacher professional conferences, including national (e.g. National Science Teacher Association and National Council of Teachers of Mathematics), statewide (e.g. California Science Teacher Association, California Math Council, California STEM Symposium), regional and local (Sacramento Area Math Educators and Science in the River City annual one-day conferences).
2. Teacher professional development workshops that are available to any area teachers, such as monthly Math Saturday workshops, monthly Science in the River City workshops, and summer professional development institutes, all offered through Sacramento State’s Math and Science Education Center.
3. Teacher professional development opportunities specific to Noyce Scholars, such as training from the Parent/Teacher Home Visit Project, twice yearly collaborative activities with Noyce Scholars from a sister campus nearby (CSU Chico), and serving as co-facilitators in summer high school academies covering such topics as forensics, biotechnology, and robotics.
4. Participation in the STAR: STEM Teacher and Researcher program
All Noyce Scholars in our program are required to choose from a master list of professional development activities. While some activities are required, others are optional. Because cultural competence is key to success in California’s diverse schools, attendance at the annual Parent/Teacher Home Visit Project training is required, as are our collaborative meetings with colleagues from the CSU Chico Noyce project. Attendance at professional conferences is encouraged, as is participation in local PD workshops. Our poster will illustrate the goals of various PD opportunities that have been provided to Scholars, as well as information about activities and approaches.
Noyce Scholars from Sacramento State are now teaching in low income schools throughout California. Our Scholars are department chairs; they lead professional development in new math and science standards at their school sites; they continue to participate in multiple professional development opportunities as they move into “veteran teacher” status.
Noyce Scholars report that participation in professional development opportunities is at least as important to them in their journey to becoming an effective high school math or science teacher as the monetary support provided by the scholarship.
Noyce Scholars from Sacramento State are now teaching in low income schools throughout California. Our Scholars are department chairs; they lead professional development in new math and science standards at their school sites; they continue to participate in multiple professional development opportunities as they move into “veteran teacher” status. We have disseminated information and findings at local, state, and national professional conferences. We are currently completing an evaluation that compares Noyce Scholars with non-Noyce Scholars over the life of all three Noyce Scholarship Programs (2008-2017). Comparisons are focused on achievement on the culminating performance assessment that is required for certification in California. Preliminary results have been presented at the Western Regional Noyce Conference; final results will be presented and submitted for peer-reviewed publication.