High School

The Spectrum Laboratory: Towards Authentic Inquiry for All

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The Spectrum Laboratory is an online data visualization tool and associated set of investigations that supports students in learning about light, color, and the electromagnetic spectrum by working with authentic scientific spectral data. The research study investigates factors that hinder or promote students' reasoning about spectra; and to determine how the curriculum can help students to use spectra to explore interesting questions about the world while gaining fluency with a range of important science practices.

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Strengthening STEM Teaching in Native American Serving Schools through Long-Term, Culturally Responsive Professional Development

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This is a 4-year, level II Exploratory study within the teaching strand of DRK12. The research explores the functioning and impact of a nationally-developed STEM professional development model within the Navajo Nation. Teacher participants represent the entire K-12 grade range and multiple content areas, and they all participate in an innovative STEM-content, culturally responsive, 8-month professional development fellowship. We explore the extent to which culturally responsive principles are evident in their self-authored curriculum units.

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BioGraph 2.0: Online Professional Development for High School Biology Teachers for Teaching and Learning About Complex Systems

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The purpose of this study has been to address the accessibility and efficacy of high quality professional development by modifying a successful in-person PD to be delivered on the edX platform. The PD course introduces BioGraph, a curriculum that uses computer-based simulations to teach biology concepts and complex systems ideas. The study has taken place over the last four years with teachers from across the globe, and in biology classrooms across the US and in India with teachers and students who are working with the BioGraph curriculum.

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Building a Teacher Knowledge Base for the Implementation of High-Quality Instructional Resources through the Collaborative Investigation of Video Cases (Collaborative Research: Murray and Wilson)

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Analyzing Instruction in Mathematics using the TRU framework (AIM-TRU) is a research-practice partnership that is investigating the pressing problem of supporting teachers in increasing their capacity to implement high-quality instructional materials in the classroom with fidelity. Drawing upon the design-based research paradigm, the partnership has worked to co-design, investigate, and iteratively form the AIM-TRU Learning Cycle, which gives teachers the opportunity to understand the materials and how they are used in the classroom through a video-based professional learning cycle.

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Developing Teacher Noticing in Engineering in an Online Professional Development Program

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The Teacher Engineering Education Program is designed to support teacher learning in engineering education in an 18-month online asynchronous program. In this project, we collected data from two cohorts of elementary teachers (N=26) including multiple interviews throughout the program, teachers’ video recordings of their classroom teaching, and their coursework in the four required courses. This poster summarizes our central findings on teacher learning in the program, looking at teachers’ noticing and pedagogical sensemaking in engineering.

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Developing Learning Environments that Support Molecular-Level Sensemaking

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Our team works with high school chemistry teachers to co-develop a suite of curricular materials that engage students in making sense of chemical phenomena in terms of atomic/molecular behavior. This suite of materials undergoes a regular cycle of development and refinement, guided by teachers’ sense of “what works” when implementing the materials and observations of classroom discourse practices. Our work investigates how to best support teachers as they design learning environments to promote student sensemaking.

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CAREER: Proof in Secondary Classrooms: Decomposing a Central Mathematical Practice

The goal of the design and development study, Proof in Secondary Classrooms (PISC), is to develop an innovative intervention to support the teaching and learning of mathematical proof in secondary geometry. PISC made use of features of lesson study and continuous improvement. Findings featured in the poster involve quantitative assessment results from pre-tests and post-tests administered over three years. Overall, the PISC curriculum had a statistically significant, positive impact on students' end-of-year results.

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CAREER: Promoting Equitable and Inclusive STEM Contexts in High School

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In this study, high school students (N = 242) completed measures of classroom inclusivity, perceived teacher discrimination, belonging, STEM classroom engagement and STEM activism orientation. Path analyses revealed direct effects of inclusion and perceived discrimination on STEM activism orientation. Further, findings demonstrated direct effects of inclusion on belonging and on belonging and both STEM classroom engagement and STEM Activism Orientation.
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CAREER: Investigating Changes in Students' Prior Mathematical Reasoning: An Exploration of Backward Transfer Effects in School Algebra

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The main issue our project addresses is how students' reasoning about mathematics concepts that are not new to them (e.g., linear functions) changes when learning about a new concept (e.g., quadratic functions), and we call this phenomenon backward transfer. We specifically focus on mathematics, but believe our backward transfer research is highly relevant within and across STEM content domains more broadly.

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Building Environmental and Educational Technology Competence and Leadership Among Educators: An Exploration in Virtual Reality Professional Development

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This exploratory project supports the professional development of secondary STEM teachers by providing multiyear training around three specific areas: (1) environmental sciences themed content; (2) technology integration in the classroom, and (3) classroom-based action research within action research communities. Using virtual reality to focus on wetlands and their connection to flooding brings locally relevant STEM concepts in a real-world context that is relatable to minoritized teachers and students living in these areas.

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