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Abstract Detail

Broader Impact: Tying Basic Research with Education

Gerber, D. Timothy [1], Thomsen, Meredith [2].

Research Experience for Pre-service Teachers: A model for training future science teachers.

To improve US K-12 students’ understanding of science, efforts to “recruit, train, and retain highly effective science teachers” are required (Lederman & Malcom, Science 323: 1265 (2009). While many in-service teacher retraining programs exist and are advertised within and outside of academia (e.g., NSF’s Research Experiences for Teachers (RET) program), few science research opportunities for pre-service teachers, students training to be K-12 classroom teachers, are available. At the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse (UW-L), we are developing a model for pre-service science teacher training as part of the “broader impacts” within our current research on ecological responses to climate change in CA grasslands (PI: M. Thomsen; NSF#0816834). The integration of undergraduate student research with the preparation of secondary science curricular materials has been a productive and exciting undertaking. Many UW-L pre-service teachers tend to be good biology students and are motivated to learn both content and pedagogy. Furthermore, our work has fostered new connections both within our Biology Department and between Biology and the School of Education. It has also connected UW-L faculty and students with University of California-Berkeley (GK-12 Fellows) graduate students and Bay Area teachers. This pre- and in-service teacher connection to science research opportunities seems most apropos in view of a recent report on in-service teacher involvement in research programs which suggests teacher research experience improves student science achievement in the classroom (Silverstein et al., Science 326: 440 (2009). Our collaborative research model has add several new dimensions to an already strong program of undergraduate research at UW-L and could serve as a model for the development of an NSF Research Experience for Pre-service Teachers (REP-T) program. Our presentation describes the development and implementation of our collaborative research model and its application to the training of “highly effective” future science teachers.

Broader Impacts:

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Related Links:
Pre-service teacher-scientist developed lesson plan
Science, Technology, Engineering, Math & Social Studies (STEMSS) website

1 - University of Wisconsin - La Crosse, La Crosse, Wisconsin, 54601, USA
2 - University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, Biology, 1725 State St, La Crosse, WI, 54601, USA

Pre-service teacher
Teacher-scientist partnership
Broader impacts
GK-12 fellows.

Presentation Type: Symposium or Colloquium Presentation
Session: SY6
Location: 556B/Convention Center
Date: Wednesday, August 4th, 2010
Time: 11:15 AM
Number: SY6007
Abstract ID:22

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