- Year 2022
- NSF Noyce Award # 2050397
- First Name Keith
- Last Name Hubbard
- Discipline Other:Education
Chrissy Cross, Amber Wagnon, Dennis Gravatt
Chrissy Cross & Keith Hubbard, Stephen F. Austin State University
East Texas rural high school students are often taught by teachers who are not well trained in STEM fields. Many high school STEM teachers do not have a degree in STEM, and often teach multiple STEM courses in which they may or may not have ANY expertise. In many rural districts in Deep East Texas, it is common to have ONE science teacher to teach biology, chemistry, anatomy and physiology, physics, integrated physics and chemistry AND any other science courses the district provides. In the same schools, it is common for the math teacher to teach Algebra 1, Algebra 2, Geometry, Pre-calculus, Math Models, and any other math courses the district offers. Many rural districts in east Texax are also very limited in their capacity to offer any AP or advanced courses in STEM, or provide access to dual credit courses. In fact, the number of graduates in rural schools who graduate college ready, or obtain jobs in the STEM industry or pursue a bachelors degree in a STEM field is minimal. Access to quality STEM courses impacts Texas students ability and motivation to enroll in postsecondary education, with the percentage of historically marginalized students who enroll in STEM education lowest of all demographic groups in the area. Martinez (2015) and Conley (2011) state that highly qualified STEM teachers who provide quality STEM instruction within high school, increase high school students desire to pursue post-secondary STEM education and a career in a STEM field. When high sch
What are some of the quantifiable aspects of the impact of the Noyce Scholarship program on schools and students in rural East Texas? We know our T4 teachers impact rural schools in Deep East Texas. Our Noyce graduates have earned awards as teachers of the year, they have become leaders in their districts, some are coaches who have had great success with their sports team, they are a group of high achieving teachers with specialized skills to perform their best within their schools. This research question seeks to examine what quantifiable aspects of success we can document for our Noyce graduates and determine broader impact of the Noyce program at SFASU within rural deep East Texas.
The Noyce scholarship program seeks to “address the critical need for recruiting, preparing, and retaining highly effective elementary and secondary mathematics and science teachers and teacher leaders in high-need school districts”. Within our Noyce scholarship program we created metrics to address our efficacy in recruiting and preparing STEM teachers, and also the retention of our STEM teachers in the deep east Texas rural area. Those metrics included, # of participants in our annual recruiting activity called the Master Teacher Job Shadow, # of Noyce Scholars who persisted to certification and graduation, # of Noyce graduates in the field and their impact on their high need schools, and the # of years each of those teachers stay in a high need school as a highly qualified STEM teacher. We compared these metrics with state norms in those areas to examine some of the ways our Noyce program is impacting STEM education in the state of Texas. We also sought to determine which districts classified as rural according to the NCES employed our graduates.
RecruitmentThe Noyce Scholarship program at SFASU has been incredibly successful to date. We have successfully served 63 participants in our early field experience recruiting event called the Master Teacher Job Shadow (MTJS). Those participants shadow a STEM teacher in a high need public school for a week. Of those 63 participants in the MTJS, 70% indicated their interest in pursuing STEM teacher certification increased because of the experience and 46% ended up pursuing a STEM teacher certification (Cross, Hubbard, Gravatt, Beverly, 2021). PersistenceDarling Hammond (2012) states that nationwide approximately 70% of pre-service teachers persist to graduation. Within the Noyce Scholarship program at SFASU we have a 100 % rate of persistence to graduation AND certification. This can be compared with 17% of math majors (Hubbard, Beverly, Cross & Mitchell, 2018) and 36% of science majors (Hubbard, Cross, Gravatt, Beverly, and Wagnon, 2021) at the same university and who were not involved in the Noyce program who were able to persist to STEM certification and graduation. The Noyce Program at SFASU has provided scholarships for 44 STEM pre-service teachers who have ALL successfully graduated and certified in Texas to teach STEM.RetentionIn Texas, it is estimated that STEM teachers are retained within the field for 5 years at a rate of 40%. Within in the Noyce program at SFA, out of 44 STEM teachers, 38 are currently still teaching. That is a retention rate of 86
The Noyce program at SFASU has had significant impact on the East Texas area. Not only have we provided school districts with high quality STEM teachers, we have influenced the lives of 11,400 students in the area. It is our hope that with high quality STEM instruction taught by highly qualified teachers, we have positively impacted the STEM industries in rural East Texas, we have inspired some of these students to pursue a STEM field as a career, and we have positively impacted the rural East Texas schools in which our Noyce graduates teach. When rural districts have highly trained teachers who offer students high quality STEM education experience it increases the likelihood that those student will pursue a career in a STEM industry or postsecondary STEM education. This directly impacts the STEM industry and economy within East Texas. STEM teacher education programs can use this information to provide rationale for administrators and donors to increase financial support for STEM teacher education programs, especially those that focus on rural schools. When rural schools have one or two STEM teachers that provide all of the STEM learning experiences for the high school, it is critical that the teachers be highly trained and able to provide high quality and hands on STEM experiences for high schools students. The Noyce Scholarship program at SFASU has been critical to east Texas schools since 2011, and we anticipate it’s impact to grow as we continue to provide the Noyc