- Year 2019
- NSF Noyce Award # 1758419
- First Name Paul
- Last Name Heideman
- Discipline Biology, Chemistry, Geosciences, Math, Physics
Meredith Kier, College of William & Mary, email@example.com; Heather Macdonald, College of William & Mary, firstname.lastname@example.org; Marguerite Mason, College of William & Mary, email@example.com; Melody Porter, College of William & Mary, firstname.lastname@example.org
Paul Heideman, College of William & Mary, email@example.com; Meredith Kier, College of William & Mary, firstname.lastname@example.org; Monica Grillo, College of William & Mary, email@example.com; Heather Macdonald, College of William & Mary, firstname.lastname@example.org; Marguerite Mason, College of William & Mary, email@example.com; Megan McDonnell, College of William & Mary, firstname.lastname@example.org; Melody Porter, College of William & Mary, email@example.com
There is a need not only for new STEM teachers skilled in teaching, but also STEM teachers prepared and motivated to teach in high need schools. Preservice teachers and new teachers need preparation and practice for inclusive teaching using effective methods to develop students in in content knowledge and metacognitive skills. Our project aims to develop a model for STEM teacher preparation to build and sustain an enduring commitment to STEM teaching with the ability to connect effectively with diverse communities.
Q1. What are the outcomes of exposure of preservice teachers to experiences that frame STEM teaching partially as an issue of social justice. Do these experiences help motivate new STEM teachers to stay in teaching and to choose to teach in high need schools? Q2. What are the outcomes from a Noyce add-on course in which students are exposed to (A) research on learning and teaching from the perspectives of STEM education, cognitive psychology, and neuroscience, and (B) involved in developing ideas for research questions and experiments in STEM education? Do these experiences increase motivation of teachers to engage with new research and ideas that may improve their teaching?
We engage mathematics and science students as early as freshmen year in teaching activities and reflection through programs of the institution’s Office of Community Engagement. Prospective teachers grow an understanding of STEM teaching as a social justice issue for fair access for all students to skills in mathematics and science. Noyce scholars supplement cultural competency preparation in the curriculum with workshops and other activities focused on equity-mindedness and working with diverse communities. The program offers two Noyce add-on courses. One, a Practicum in High Need Schools, uses early visits to a diverse range of high-need schools to help students understand effective STEM teaching in high need settings. The other, How Students Learn, develops an understanding of how to teach learning skills and self-management of learning to students.
Q1. Our initial data (Kier and Chen, in press), suggests that for a subset of students, a social justice perspective is a highly motivating factor for teaching in high need schools. Q2. Survey data indicate that our Noyce alumni value and apply in their teaching the research on teaching and learning to which they were introduced, continuing to do so years after completing our program.
Preliminary results suggest value in this approach. This grant, with Q1 as a major focus, is just completing Year 1, and data collection and analysis are ongoing. From earlier Noyce grants, the program has produced over 80 STEM teachers teaching in high need districts and serving tens of thousands of students.