Paper No. 17
Presentation Time: 1:00 PM-4:45 PM
TRANSFORMING EARTH SYSTEMS SCIENCE EDUCATION THROUGH TEACHER AND HIGHER EDUCATION INSTITUTION PARTNERSHIPS
A project led by the University of New Hampshire with its partners, Dillard University, Elizabeth City State University, and Pennsylvania State University is investigating ways to improve middle and high school education in Earth Systems Science. This NSF funded effort (GEO-0631377) is designed to 1) enhance the geoscience content knowledge of current and future teachers; 2) provide future teachers with authentic research experiences in the geosciences; 3) establish a partnership, where university graduate and undergraduate students in geosciences work with teachers in the classroom; and 4) provide teachers with best-practice teaching methods and strategies (e.g., hands-on, inquiry-based) for the classroom environment. The program's main components include a two-week intensive summer institute for current and future teachers; an eight-week research immersion experience that pairs future teachers with faculty mentors; and a scientist-in-residence program that utilizes graduate students and future teachers working in partnership in the classroom with current teachers. During the course of the project we will investigate the growth of participating teachers' content and pedagogical content knowledge, comfort level teaching specific earth system science topics, and ability to teach specific skills in the earth system sciences. In addition, the project provides the opportunity to investigate the potential of this program to serve as a national model for producing Highly Qualified Teachers in earth sciences.