2014 GSA Annual Meeting in Vancouver, British Columbia (19–22 October 2014)

Paper No. 94-11
Presentation Time: 11:00 AM


CURRIER, Ellen Cady, National Association of Geoscience Teachers, c/o Carleton College W-SERC, One North College Street, Northfield, MN 55057

The National Association of Geoscience Teachers is a non-profit organization that advocates for the advancement of the geosciences and supports the work of geoscience educators and geoscience education researchers. Members include K-12, undergraduate, and graduate educators as well as geoscience students and professionals. An important part of this member-driven organization is collaboration with and feedback from its membership. In the spring of 2014, NAGT conducted a membership opinion survey of current and lapsed members to obtain feedback on NAGT’s services and publications in order to assess its efficacy at improving geoscience education. This survey helps gauge NAGT’s level of success in serving the needs of the geoscience education community through training, resources, and funding for geoscience educators and students.

The results of the survey showed that current members consistently rated NAGT’s services higher than lapsed members rated them. On survey questions containing a rating scale of 1 to 5, current members rated NAGT’s services an average of 0.78 points higher than lapsed members rated them. The highest-scoring aspect of NAGT in both the current and lapsed member surveys was its advocacy efforts. The other highest-scoring sections from the current member survey were workshops, the online collection of teaching resources, and the collection of On the Cutting Edge resources. The other highest-scoring sections in the lapsed member survey were sponsorship of networking and social events, the Journal of Geoscience Education, and the online collection of teaching resources. Overall, 100% of NAGT’s services were rated 3.0 (“important”) or above by current members. 46% were rated 3.0 or above by lapsed members. The results suggest that current members value NAGT’s priorities; therefore, the organization should continue to put its greatest focus on advocacy, teaching resources, and workshop funding. The information and written suggestions provided by the survey indicate that lapsed members found less value in certain services. These results will inform NAGT’s plan for the organization’s future needs, as well as provide a compass for retaining members and resolving lapsed members’ issues with the organization’s services.