High

Creating Inclusive PreK–12 STEM Learning Environments

Brief CoverBroadening participation in PreK–12 STEM provides ALL students with STEM learning experiences that can prepare them for civic life and the workforce.

Author/Presenter

Malcom Butler

Cory Buxton

Odis Johnson Jr.

Leanne Ketterlin-Geller

Catherine McCulloch

Natalie Nielsen

Arthur Powell

Year
2018
Short Description

This brief offers insights from National Science Foundation-supported research for education leaders and policymakers who are broadening participation in science, technology, engineering, and/or mathematics (STEM). Many of these insights confirm knowledge that has been reported in research literature; however, some offer a different perspective on familiar challenges.

Students Do Not Always Mean What We Think They Mean: A Questioning Strategy to Elicit the Reasoning Behind Unexpected Causal Patterns in Student System Models

An ability to engage in system thinking is necessary to understand complex problems. While many pre-college students use system modeling tools, there is limited evidence of student reasoning about causal relationships that interact in diverging and converging chains, and how these affect system behavior. A chemistry unit on gas phenomena was implemented in two successive years with 73 high school students. Although the phenomena could be explained with simple linear causal reasoning, many student models included surprising and problematic causal chains and non-linear patterns.

Author/Presenter

Steven Roderick

Namsoo Shin

Daniel Damelin

Lead Organization(s)
Year
2022
Short Description

An ability to engage in system thinking is necessary to understand complex problems. While many pre-college students use system modeling tools, there is limited evidence of student reasoning about causal relationships that interact in diverging and converging chains, and how these affect system behavior. A chemistry unit on gas phenomena was implemented in two successive years with 73 high school students. Although the phenomena could be explained with simple linear causal reasoning, many student models included surprising and problematic causal chains and non-linear patterns.

Students Do Not Always Mean What We Think They Mean: A Questioning Strategy to Elicit the Reasoning Behind Unexpected Causal Patterns in Student System Models

An ability to engage in system thinking is necessary to understand complex problems. While many pre-college students use system modeling tools, there is limited evidence of student reasoning about causal relationships that interact in diverging and converging chains, and how these affect system behavior. A chemistry unit on gas phenomena was implemented in two successive years with 73 high school students. Although the phenomena could be explained with simple linear causal reasoning, many student models included surprising and problematic causal chains and non-linear patterns.

Author/Presenter

Steven Roderick

Namsoo Shin

Daniel Damelin

Lead Organization(s)
Year
2022
Short Description

An ability to engage in system thinking is necessary to understand complex problems. While many pre-college students use system modeling tools, there is limited evidence of student reasoning about causal relationships that interact in diverging and converging chains, and how these affect system behavior. A chemistry unit on gas phenomena was implemented in two successive years with 73 high school students. Although the phenomena could be explained with simple linear causal reasoning, many student models included surprising and problematic causal chains and non-linear patterns.

The Role of Inclusion, Discrimination, and Belonging for Adolescent Science, Technology, Engineering and Math Engagement In and Out of School

Women and ethnic minoritized individuals are underrepresented in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) domains in postsecondary education and in the workforce. The aim of the current study was to examine whether adolescents' perceptions of inclusivity, belonging, and discrimination in high school STEM classes are related to their STEM class engagement in and outside of school.

Author/Presenter

Kelly Lynn Mulvey

Channing J. Mathews

Jerica Knox

Angelina Joy

Jacqueline Cerda-Smith

Year
2022
Short Description

Women and ethnic minoritized individuals are underrepresented in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) domains in postsecondary education and in the workforce. The aim of the current study was to examine whether adolescents' perceptions of inclusivity, belonging, and discrimination in high school STEM classes are related to their STEM class engagement in and outside of school.

Methodological Advancements for Analyzing Teachers’ Learning in a Community of Practice

Professional development that privileges teachers’ voice, equity, and the investigation of high-quality instruction is essential to the mathematics education community. However, more research is needed to understand the process, content, and depth of teachers’ learning in this setting. This paper shares our analytic method designed to capture such learning. We integrate three complementary perspectives: Communities of Practice (theoretical framework), Teaching for Robust Understanding (conceptual framework), and Frame Analysis (analytical framework).

Author/Presenter

Helene Leonard

Victoria Bonaccorso

Joseph DiNapoli

Eileen Murray

Lead Organization(s)
Year
2021
Short Description

Professional development that privileges teachers’ voice, equity, and the investigation of high-quality instruction is essential to the mathematics education community. However, more research is needed to understand the process, content, and depth of teachers’ learning in this setting. This paper shares our analytic method designed to capture such learning. We integrate three complementary perspectives: Communities of Practice (theoretical framework), Teaching for Robust Understanding (conceptual framework), and Frame Analysis (analytical framework).

A Design-Based Process in Characterizing Experienced Teachers’ Formative Assessment Enactment in Science Classrooms

Formative assessment can facilitate teachers’ abilities to elicit and notice the disciplinary substance of students’ thinking and to respond based on this. Following a design-based process, we developed principled practical knowledge to create resources that might guide experienced teachers in examining their formative assessment practice and provide researchers with tools to study formative assessment enactment.

Author/Presenter

Hannah Sevian

Vesal Dini

Year
2019
Short Description

Formative assessment can facilitate teachers’ abilities to elicit and notice the disciplinary substance of students’ thinking and to respond based on this. Following a design-based process, we developed principled practical knowledge to create resources that might guide experienced teachers in examining their formative assessment practice and provide researchers with tools to study formative assessment enactment.

Conceptual Profile of Substance: Representing Heterogeneity of Thinking in Chemistry Classrooms

Teachers face challenges when building the concept of substance with students because tensions of meanings emerge from students’ daily life and canonical ideas developed in classrooms. A powerful tool to address learning, pedagogical, and research challenges is the conceptual profile theory. According to this theory, people employ various ways of conceptualizing the world to signify experiences. Conceptual profiles are models of the heterogeneity of modes of thinking and speaking about a given scientific concept which are used in a variety of contexts.

Author/Presenter

Hannah Sevian

Eduardo F. Mortimer 

Year
2020
Short Description

Teachers face challenges when building the concept of substance with students because tensions of meanings emerge from students’ daily life and canonical ideas developed in classrooms. A powerful tool to address learning, pedagogical, and research challenges is the conceptual profile theory. According to this theory, people employ various ways of conceptualizing the world to signify experiences. Conceptual profiles are models of the heterogeneity of modes of thinking and speaking about a given scientific concept which are used in a variety of contexts. To better understand the heterogeneity of thinking/speaking about substance, the present study aimed to answer: (1) What are the zones that constitute the conceptual profile of substance?; and (2) What ways of thinking and speaking about substance do teachers and students exhibit when engaged in a classroom formative assessment activity?

Exploring Variation in Ways of Thinking About and Acting to Control a Chemical Reaction

Chemical scientists and engineers are interested in controlling chemical processes to attain specific goals, from synthesizing a desired substance to hindering a particular transformation. Nevertheless, students typically have few opportunities to develop the understandings and practices that are required to effectively engage in chemical control. In this study, we investigated similarities and differences among individuals with different levels of expertise in chemistry in the ways they think about how to control and act to control a chemical reaction.

Author/Presenter

Klaudja Caushi

Hannah Sevian

Vicente Talanquer

Year
2021
Short Description

Chemical scientists and engineers are interested in controlling chemical processes to attain specific goals, from synthesizing a desired substance to hindering a particular transformation. Nevertheless, students typically have few opportunities to develop the understandings and practices that are required to effectively engage in chemical control. In this study, we investigated similarities and differences among individuals with different levels of expertise in chemistry in the ways they think about how to control and act to control a chemical reaction.

Investigating How Teachers' Formative Assessment Practices Change Across a Year

Teaching chemistry as a practice rather than as a mere collection of facts demands that teachers modify their practices, particularly their approach to formative assessment (FA). In this study, we investigated how teachers’ FA practices changed as a result of their participation in a professional development program designed with a Chemical Thinking perspective. Four FA portfolio chapters were collected from 19 secondary school teachers over the course of a year.

Author/Presenter

Timothy N. Abell

Hannah Sevian

Year
2021
Short Description

Teaching chemistry as a practice rather than as a mere collection of facts demands that teachers modify their practices, particularly their approach to formative assessment (FA). In this study, we investigated how teachers’ FA practices changed as a result of their participation in a professional development program designed with a Chemical Thinking perspective.

Analyzing Chemistry Teachers’ Formative Assessment Practices Using Formative Assessment Portfolio Chapters

Author/Presenter

Timothy N. Abell

Hannah Sevian

Year
2020
Short Description

The effective use of formative assessment (FA) has been demonstrated to confer positive impacts on student learning. To understand why and how FA works, it is necessary to characterize teachers’ FA practices, but because both teaching practice and learning depend on the nature of the discipline, there are disciplinary aspects to examining this. This study aimed to develop an analysis of chemistry teachers’ FA practices through the lens of the chemical thinking framework.