WorldWideScience

Sample records for undergraduate science classes

  1. Using Mobile Devices to Facilitate Student Questioning in a Large Undergraduate Science Class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crompton, Helen; Burgin, Stephen R.; De Paor, Declan G.; Gregory, Kristen

    2018-01-01

    Asking scientific questions is the first practice of science and engineering listed in the Next Generation Science Standards. However, getting students to ask unsolicited questions in a large class can be difficult. In this qualitative study, undergraduate students sent SMS text messages to the instructor who received them on his mobile phone and…

  2. Technological and Traditional Drawing Approaches Encourage Active Engagement in Histology Classes for Science Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cogdell, Barbara; Torsney, Ben; Stewart, Katherine; Smith, Robert A.

    2012-01-01

    In order to promote more active engagement of science undergraduates in histology practical classes some technology-based innovations were introduced. First, an interactive pre-lab tutorial was set up using an electronic handset voting system, where guidance on tissue analysis was given. Second, a web-based resource where students could access…

  3. Undergraduate Research in Earth Science Classes: Engaging Students in the First Two Years

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mogk, D. W.; Wysession, M. E.; Beauregard, A.; Reinen, L. A.; Surpless, K.; O'Connell, K.; McDaris, J. R.

    2014-12-01

    The recent PCAST report (2012), Engage to Excel, calls for a major shift in instructional modes in introductory (geo)science courses by "replacing standard laboratory courses with discovery-based research courses". An increased emphasis is recommended to engage students in experiments with the possibility of true discovery and expanded use of scientific research courses in the first two years. To address this challenge, the On the Cutting Edge program convened a workshop of geoscience faculty to explore the many ways that true research experiences can be built into introductory geoscience courses. The workshop goals included: consideration of the opportunities, strategies and methods used to provide research experiences for students in lower division geoscience courses; examination of ways to develop students' "geoscience habits of mind" through participation in authentic research activities; exploration of ways that student research projects can be designed to contribute to public science literacy with applications to a range of issues facing humanity; and development of strategies to obtain funding for these research projects, to make these programs sustainable in departments and institutions, and to scale-up these programs so that all students may participate. Access to Earth data, information technology, lab and field-based instrumentation, and field experiences provide unprecedented opportunities for students to engage in authentic research at early stages in their careers. Early exposure to research experiences has proven to be effective in the recruitment of students to the geoscience disciplines, improved retention and persistence in degree programs, motivation for students to learn and increase self-efficacy, improved attitudes and values about science, and overall increased student success. Workshop outcomes include an online collection of tested research projects currently being used in geoscience classes, resources related to effective design

  4. Powerful Partnerships: The Worth of Embedding Masters Level Library Science Students in Undergraduate Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Becnel, Kim; Moeller, Robin A.; Pope, Jon C.

    2016-01-01

    While experiential learning is recognized as an important pedagogical approach in Library and Information Science education, logistical hurdles can make implementing meaningful experiential projects challenging, especially in online courses. This paper will describe a project in which Library Science instructors were able to overcome common…

  5. Use and Evaluation of 3D GeoWall Visualizations in Undergraduate Space Science Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turner, N. E.; Hamed, K. M.; Lopez, R. E.; Mitchell, E. J.; Gray, C. L.; Corralez, D. S.; Robinson, C. A.; Soderlund, K. M.

    2005-12-01

    One persistent difficulty many astronomy students face is the lack of 3- dimensional mental model of the systems being studied, in particular the Sun-Earth-Moon system. Students without such a mental model can have a very hard time conceptualizing the geometric relationships that cause, for example, the cycle of lunar phases or the pattern of seasons. The GeoWall is a recently developed and affordable projection mechanism for three-dimensional stereo visualization which is becoming a popular tool in classrooms and research labs for use in geology classes, but as yet very little work has been done involving the GeoWall for astronomy classes. We present results from a large study involving over 1000 students of varied backgrounds: some students were tested at the University of Texas at El Paso, a large public university on the US-Mexico border and other students were from the Florida Institute of Technology, a small, private, technical school in Melbourne Florida. We wrote a lecture tutorial-style lab to go along with a GeoWall 3D visual of the Earth-Moon system and tested the students before and after with several diagnostics. Students were given pre and post tests using the Lunar Phase Concept Inventory (LPCI) as well as a separate evaluation written specifically for this project. We found the lab useful for both populations of students, but not equally effective for all. We discuss reactions from the students and their improvement, as well as whether the students are able to correctly assess the usefullness of the project for their own learning.

  6. Researching Undergraduate Social Science Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rand, Jane

    2016-01-01

    The experience(s) of undergraduate research students in the social sciences is under-represented in the literature in comparison to the natural sciences or science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM). The strength of STEM undergraduate research learning environments is understood to be related to an apprenticeship-mode of learning supported…

  7. Measuring Science Literacy in College Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Impey, Chris David; Buxner, S. R.; Antonellis, J.; King, C.; Johnson, E.; CATS

    2010-01-01

    Initial results from a major study of scientific literacy are presented, involving nearly 10,000 undergraduates in science classes at a large Southwestern Land Grant public university over a 20-year period. The science content questions overlap with those in the NSF's Science Indicators series. About 10% of all undergraduates in the US take a General Education astronomy course, and NSF data and the work of Jon Miller show that the number of college science courses taken is the strongest predictor of civic scientific literacy. Our data show that gains in knowledge on any particular item through the time students graduate are only 10-15%. Among students who have taken most or all of their science requirements, one-in-three think that antibiotics kill viruses as well as bacteria, one-in-four think lasers work by focusing sound waves, one-in-five think atoms are smaller than electrons, and the same fraction is unaware that humans evolved from earlier species of animals and that the Earth takes a year to go around the Sun. The fraction of undergraduates saying that astrology is "not at all” scientific increases from 17% to a still-low 34% as they move through the university. Equally worrying, half of all science majors say that astrology is "sort of” or "very” scientific. Education majors - the cohort of future teachers - perform worse than average on most individual questions and in terms of their overall scientific literacy. Assuming the study institution is representative of the nation's higher education institutions, our instruction is not raising students to the level we would expect for educated citizens who must vote on many issues that relate to science and technology. We acknowledge the NSF for funding under Award No. 0715517, a CCLI Phase III Grant for the Collaboration of Astronomy Teaching Scholars (CATS) Program.

  8. Understanding Protein Synthesis: A Role-Play Approach in Large Undergraduate Human Anatomy and Physiology Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sturges, Diana; Maurer, Trent W.; Cole, Oladipo

    2009-01-01

    This study investigated the effectiveness of role play in a large undergraduate science class. The targeted population consisted of 298 students enrolled in 2 sections of an undergraduate Human Anatomy and Physiology course taught by the same instructor. The section engaged in the role-play activity served as the study group, whereas the section…

  9. The Conundrum of Social Class: Disparities in Publishing among STEM Students in Undergraduate Research Programs at a Hispanic Majority Institution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grineski, Sara; Daniels, Heather; Collins, Timothy; Morales, Danielle X.; Frederick, Angela; Garcia, Marilyn

    2018-01-01

    Research on the science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) student development pipeline has largely ignored social class and instead examined inequalities based on gender and race. We investigate the role of social class in undergraduate student research publications. Data come from a sample of 213 undergraduate research participants…

  10. Teaching Basic Probability in Undergraduate Statistics or Management Science Courses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naidu, Jaideep T.; Sanford, John F.

    2017-01-01

    Standard textbooks in core Statistics and Management Science classes present various examples to introduce basic probability concepts to undergraduate business students. These include tossing of a coin, throwing a die, and examples of that nature. While these are good examples to introduce basic probability, we use improvised versions of Russian…

  11. Introducing Science to undergraduate students

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. Avila Jr

    2006-07-01

    Full Text Available The knowledge of scientific method provides stimulus and development of critical thinking and logical analysis of information besides the training of continuous formulation of hypothesis to be applied in formal scientific issues as well as in everyday facts. The scientific education, useful for all people, is indispensable for the experimental science students. Aiming at the possibility to offer a systematic learning of the scientific principles, we developed a undergraduate course designed to approximate the students to the procedures of scientific production and publication. The course was developed in a 40 hours, containing two modules: I. Introducing Scientific Articles (papers and II. Writing Research Project. The first module deals with: (1 the difference between scientific knowledge and common sense; (2 scientific methodology; (3 scientific publishing categories; (4 logical principles; (5 deduction and induction approach and (6 paper analysis. The second module includes (1 selection of problem to be solved by experimental procedures; (2 bibliography revision; (3 support agencies; (4 project writing and presentation and (5 critical analysis of experimental results. The course used a Collaborative Learning strategy with each topic being developed through activities performed by the students. Qualitative and quantitative (through Likert questionnaires evaluation were carried out in each step of the course, the results showing great appreciation by the students. This is also the opinion of the staff responsible for the planning and development of the course, which is now in its second and improved version.

  12. Advancing Research on Undergraduate Science Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singer, Susan Rundell

    2013-01-01

    This special issue of "Journal of Research in Science Teaching" reflects conclusions and recommendations in the "Discipline-Based Education Research" (DBER) report and makes a substantial contribution to advancing the field. Research on undergraduate science learning is currently a loose affiliation of related fields. The…

  13. Changing Beliefs about Teaching in Large Undergraduate Mathematics Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kensington-Miller, Barbara; Sneddon, Jamie; Yoon, Caroline; Stewart, Sepideh

    2013-01-01

    Many lecturers use teacher-centred styles of teaching in large undergraduate mathematics classes, often believing in the effectiveness of such pedagogy. Changing these beliefs about how mathematics should be taught is not a simple process and many academic staff are reluctant to change their ways of lecturing due to tradition and ease. This study…

  14. Do Gender-Science Stereotypes Predict Science Identification and Science Career Aspirations among Undergraduate Science Majors?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cundiff, Jessica L.; Vescio, Theresa K.; Loken, Eric; Lo, Lawrence

    2013-01-01

    The present research examined whether gender-science stereotypes were associated with science identification and, in turn, science career aspirations among women and men undergraduate science majors. More than 1,700 students enrolled in introductory science courses completed measures of gender-science stereotypes (implicit associations and…

  15. Internet Use Among Science Undergraduate Students: A ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The objective of this study was to identify and determine the extent of students\\' access to, and use of the Internet using the Science Undergraduate Students of University of Ibadan and University of Lagos as a case study. The study also aimed at comparing the rate of use among this group of students and determine which ...

  16. Life Science Literacy of an Undergraduate Population

    Science.gov (United States)

    Medina, Stephanie R.; Ortlieb, Evan; Metoyer, Sandra

    2014-01-01

    Science content knowledge is a concern for educators in the United States because performance has stagnated for the past decade. Investigators designed this study to determine the current levels of scientific literacy among undergraduate students in a freshman-level biology course (a core requirement for majors and nonmajors), identify factors…

  17. Science Literacy of Undergraduates in the United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Impey, Chris

    2013-01-01

    Science literacy is a matter of broad concern among scientists, educators, and many policy-makers. National Science Foundation surveys of the general public for biannual Science Indicators series show that respondents on average score less than 2/3 correct on a series of science knowledge questions, and less than half display an understanding of the process of scientific inquiry. Both measures are essentially unchanged over two decades. At the University of Arizona, we have gathered over 11,000 undergraduate student responses to a survey of knowledge and beliefs that is tethered in the NSF survey. This non-science major population demographically represents ten million students nationwide. There is a less than 10% gain in performance in the science knowledge score between the incoming freshmen and seniors who graduate having completed their requirement of three science classes. Belief levels in pseudoscience and supernatural phenomena are disconcertingly high, mostly resistant to college science instruction, and weakly correlated with performance on the science knowledge questions. The Internet is rapidly becoming the primary information source for anyone interested in science so students may not get most of their information from the classroom. Educators and policy makers need to decide what aspects of science knowledge and process are important for adults to know. College science educators have major challenges in better in preparing graduates for participation in a civic society largely driven by science and technology.

  18. Who am I? ~ Undergraduate Computer Science Student

    OpenAIRE

    Ferris, Jane

    2012-01-01

    As part of a school review process a survey of the students was designed to gain insight into who the students of the school were. The survey was a voluntary anonymous online survey. Students were able to skip questions and select more than one option in some questions. This was to reduce frustration with participation in the survey and ensure that the survey was completed. This conference details the average undergraduate Computer Science student of a large third level institute.

  19. Teaching Citizenship in Science Classes at the University of Arizona

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, R. M.; Mangin, K.

    2008-12-01

    Science classes for non-science majors present unique opportunities to create lifelong science aficionados and teach citizenship skills. Because no specific content is needed for future courses, subject matter can be selected to maximize interest and assignments can be focused on life skills such as science literacy instead of discipline-specific content mastery. Dinosaurs! is a very successful non-major science class with a minimum enrollment of 150 that is intended for sophomores. One of the goals of this class is to increase students' awareness of social issues, the political process, and opportunities for keeping up with science later in life. The main theme of this class is evolution. The bird-dinosaur link is the perfect vehicle for illustrating the process of science because the lines of evidence are many, convincing, and based on discoveries made throughout the last half-century and continuing to the present day. The course is also about evolution the social issue. The second writing assignment is an in-class affective writing based on a newspaper article about the Dover, PA court case. The primary purpose of this assignment is to create a comfort zone for those students with strong ideological biases against evolution by allowing them to express their views without being judged, and to instill tolerance and understanding in students at the other end of the spectrum. Another homework uses thomas.loc.gov, the government's public website providing information about all legislation introduced since the 93rd Congress and much more. The assignment highlights the difficulty of passing legislation and the factors that contribute to a given bill's legislative success or failure using the Paleontological Resources Preservation Act, S320. Details of these assignments and others designed to achieve the goals stated above will be presented. A very different undergraduate program, Marine Discovery, offers science majors the opportunity to earn upper division science

  20. Investigating Undergraduate Science Students' Conceptions and Misconceptions of Ocean Acidification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Danielson, Kathryn I.; Tanner, Kimberly D.

    2015-01-01

    Scientific research exploring ocean acidification has grown significantly in past decades. However, little science education research has investigated the extent to which undergraduate science students understand this topic. Of all undergraduate students, one might predict science students to be best able to understand ocean acidification. What…

  1. Life Science Professional Societies Expand Undergraduate Education Efforts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matyas, Marsha Lakes; Ruedi, Elizabeth A.; Engen, Katie; Chang, Amy L.

    2017-01-01

    The "Vision and Change in Undergraduate Biology Education" reports cite the critical role of professional societies in undergraduate life science education and, since 2008, have called for the increased involvement of professional societies in support of undergraduate education. Our study explored the level of support being provided by…

  2. Undergraduate Origins of Recent Science and Engineering Doctorate Recipients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hill, Susan T.; And Others

    Because undergraduate education is the foundation for graduate studies, it is important to know where our Nation's science and engineering (S&E) doctorate recipients are receiving their undergraduate training. Specifically, this report addresses the following broad questions: (1) What are the undergraduate origins of S&E doctorate holders? (2)…

  3. BURECS: An Interdisciplinary Undergraduate Climate Science Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dennis, D. P.; Marchant, D. R.; Christ, A. J.; Ehrenfeucht, S.

    2017-12-01

    The current structure of many undergraduate programs, particularly those at large research universities, requires students to engage with a major or academic emphasis early in their university careers. This oftentimes curbs exploration outside the major and can inhibit interdisciplinary collaboration. The Boston University Research Education and Communication of Science (BURECS) program seeks to bridge this institutional divide by fostering interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary collaboration on climate change-related issues by students from across Boston University (B.U.). Every year, approximately fifteen first-year students from B.U.'s College of Arts and Sciences, College of Communication, and School of Education are selected to join BURECS, which includes a climate science seminar, a hands-on lab course, a supported summer internship with Boston-area researchers, and the opportunity to participate in Antarctic field work during subsequent B.U. Antarctic Research Group expeditions. Currently in its third year, BURECS is funded through the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) Professors Program.

  4. STEM for Non-STEM Majors: Enhancing Science Literacy in Large Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jin, Guang; Bierma, Tom

    2013-01-01

    This study evaluated a strategy using "clickers," POGIL (process oriented guided inquiry learning), and a focused science literacy orientation in an applied science course for non-STEM undergraduates taught in large classes. The effectiveness of these interventions in improving the science literacy of students was evaluated using a…

  5. Development and Evaluation of an Undergraduate Science Communication Module

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yeoman, Kay H.; James, Helen A.; Bowater, Laura

    2011-01-01

    This paper describes the design and evaluation of an undergraduate final year science communication module for the Science Faculty at the University of East Anglia. The module focuses specifically on science communication and aims to bring an understanding of how science is disseminated to the public. Students on the module are made aware of the…

  6. Investigating Undergraduate Science Students’ Conceptions and Misconceptions of Ocean Acidification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Danielson, Kathryn I.; Tanner, Kimberly D.

    2015-01-01

    Scientific research exploring ocean acidification has grown significantly in past decades. However, little science education research has investigated the extent to which undergraduate science students understand this topic. Of all undergraduate students, one might predict science students to be best able to understand ocean acidification. What conceptions and misconceptions of ocean acidification do these students hold? How does their awareness and knowledge compare across disciplines? Undergraduate biology, chemistry/biochemistry, and environmental studies students, and science faculty for comparison, were assessed on their awareness and understanding. Results revealed low awareness and understanding of ocean acidification among students compared with faculty. Compared with biology or chemistry/biochemistry students, more environmental studies students demonstrated awareness of ocean acidification and identified the key role of carbon dioxide. Novel misconceptions were also identified. These findings raise the question of whether undergraduate science students are prepared to navigate socioenvironmental issues such as ocean acidification. PMID:26163563

  7. Incorporating Primary Literature in Undergraduate Crop Science Courses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott, Lori K.; Simmons, Steve R.

    2006-01-01

    Primary literature is an underutilized learning resource for undergraduate courses in crop science. Reading assignments from scientific journals were utilized in an undergraduate University of Minnesota crop physiology course at Southwest Minnesota State University from 2002 to 2004. The subjects of the articles corresponded to the lecture topics.…

  8. Health Sciences undergraduate education at UCT: a story of transformation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hartman, Nadia; Kathard, Harsha; Perez, Gonda; Reid, Steve; Irlam, James; Gunston, Geney; Janse van Rensburg, Vicki; Burch, Vanessa; Duncan, Madeleine; Hellenberg, Derek; Van Rooyen, Ian; Smouse, Mantoa; Sikakane, Cynthia; Badenhorst, Elmi; Ige, Busayo

    2012-03-02

    Undergraduate education and training in the Faculty of Health Sciences at the University of Cape Town has become socially responsive. A story of transformation that is consonant with wider societal developments since the 1994 democratic elections, outlining the changes in undergraduate curricula across the faculty, is presented.

  9. Field Research in the Teaching of Undergraduate Soil Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brevik, Eric C.; Senturklu, Songul; Landblom, Douglas

    2015-04-01

    Several studies have demonstrated that undergraduate students benefit from research experiences. Benefits of undergraduate research include 1) personal and intellectual development, 2) more and closer contact with faculty, 3) the use of active learning techniques, 4) creation of high expectations, 5) development of creative and problem-solving skills, 6) greater independence and intrinsic motivation to learn, and 7) exposure to practical skills. The scientific discipline also benefits, as studies have shown that undergraduates who engage in research experiences are more likely to remain science majors and finish their degree program (Lopatto, 2007). Research experiences come as close as possible to allowing undergraduates to experience what it is like to be an academic or research member of their profession working to advance their discipline. Soils form in the field, therefore, field experiences are very important in developing a complete and holistic understanding of soil science. Combining undergraduate research with field experiences can provide extremely beneficial outcomes to the undergraduate student, including increased understanding of and appreciation for detailed descriptions and data analysis as well as an enhanced ability to see how various parts of their undergraduate education come together to understand a complex problem. The experiences of the authors in working with undergraduate students on field-based research projects will be discussed, along with examples of some of the undergraduate research projects that have been undertaken. In addition, student impressions of their research experiences will be presented. Reference Lopatto, D. 2007. Undergraduate research experiences support science career decisions and active learning. CBE -- Life Sciences Education 6:297-306.

  10. Teaching Chemical Equilibrium and Thermodynamics in Undergraduate General Chemistry Classes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banerjee, Anil C.

    1995-01-01

    Discusses some of the conceptual difficulties encountered by undergraduate students in learning certain aspects of chemical equilibrium and thermodynamics. Discusses teaching strategies for dealing with these difficulties. (JRH)

  11. Group-Effort Applied Research (GEAR): Expanding Opportunities for Undergraduate Research Through Original, Class-Based Research Projects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Sean D.; Teter, Ken

    2014-01-01

    Undergraduate research clearly enriches the educational development of participating students, but these experiences are limited by the inherent inefficiency of the standard one student - one mentor model for undergraduate research. Group-Effort Applied Research (GEAR) was developed as a strategy to provide substantial numbers of undergraduates with meaningful research experiences. The GEAR curriculum delivers concept-driven lecture material and provides hands-on training in the context of an active research project from the instructor's lab. Because GEAR is structured as a class, participating students benefit from intensive, supervised research training that involves a built-in network of peer support and abundant contact with faculty mentors. The class format also ensures a relatively standardized and consistent research experience. Furthermore, meaningful progress toward a research objective can be achieved more readily with GEAR than with the traditional one student - one mentor model of undergraduate research because sporadic mistakes by individuals in the class are overshadowed by the successes of the group as a whole. Three separate GEAR classes involving three distinct research projects have been offered to date. In this paper, we provide an overview of the GEAR format and review some of the recurring themes for GEAR instruction. We propose GEAR can serve as a template to expand student opportunities for life science research without sacrificing the quality of the mentored research experience. PMID:24898007

  12. The Effects of Project Based Learning on Undergraduate Students' Achievement and Self-Efficacy Beliefs towards Science Teaching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bilgin, Ibrahim; Karakuyu, Yunus; Ay, Yusuf

    2015-01-01

    The purpose of this study is to investigate the effects of the Project-Based Learning (PBL) method on undergraduate students' achievement and its association with these students' self-efficacy beliefs about science teaching and pinions about PBL. The sample of the study consisted of two randomly chosen classes from a set of seven classes enrolled…

  13. Undergraduate Students’Evaluation Criteria When Using Web Resources for Class Papers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tsai-Youn Hung

    2004-09-01

    Full Text Available The growth in popularity of the World Wide Web has dramatically changed the way undergraduate students conduct information searches. The purpose of this study is to investigate what core quality criteria undergraduate students use to evaluate Web resources for their class papers and to what extent they evaluate the Web resources. This study reports on five Web page evaluations and a questionnaire survey of thirty five undergraduate students in the Information Technology and Informatics Program at Rutgers University. Results show that undergraduate students have become increasingly sophisticated about using Web resources, but not yet sophisticated about searching them. Undergraduate students only used one or two surface quality criteria to evaluate Web resources. They made immediate judgments about the surface features of Web pages and ignored the content of the documents themselves. This research suggests that undergraduate instructors should take the responsibility for instructing students on basic Web use knowledge or work with librarians to develop undergraduate students information literacy skills.

  14. The Unwritten Rules of Engagement: Social Class Differences in Undergraduates' Academic Strategies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yee, April

    2016-01-01

    Research has shown social class differences in undergraduate engagement, yet we know little about the reasons for these differences. Drawing on interviews and participant observation with undergraduates at an urban, public comprehensive university, this ethnographic study investigates the academic engagement strategies of students from different…

  15. A Safer and Convenient Synthesis of Sulfathiazole for Undergraduate Organic and Medicinal Chemistry Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boyle, Jeff; Otty, Sandra; Sarojini, Vijayalekshmi

    2012-01-01

    A safer method for the synthesis of the sulfonamide drug sulfathiazole, for undergraduate classes, is described. This method improves upon procedures currently followed in several undergraduate teaching laboratories for the synthesis of sulfathiazole. Key features of this procedure include the total exclusion of pyridine, which has potential…

  16. Evaluating the Effectiveness of Lecture Capture: Lessons Learned from an Undergraduate Political Research Class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, James C.

    2015-01-01

    This article presents the results of a 4-year quasi-experimental study of the effectiveness of lecture capture in an undergraduate political research class. Students self-enrolled in either a traditional in-class lecture-discussion section or a fully online section of a required political research course. The class sessions from the in-class…

  17. Gender Digital Divide and Challenges in Undergraduate Computer Science Programs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoilescu, Dorian; McDougall, Douglas

    2011-01-01

    Previous research revealed a reduced number of female students registered in computer science studies. In addition, the female students feel isolated, have reduced confidence, and underperform. This article explores differences between female and male students in undergraduate computer science programs in a mid-size university in Ontario. Based on…

  18. Using Primary Literature for Teaching Undergraduate Planetary Sciences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levine, J.

    2013-05-01

    Articles from the primary scientific literature can be a valuable teaching tool in undergraduate classrooms. At Colgate University, I emphasize selected research articles in an upper-level undergraduate course in planetary sciences. In addition to their value for conveying specific scientific content, I find that they also impart larger lessons which are especially apt in planetary sciences and allied fields. First, because of the interdisciplinary nature of planetary sciences, students discover that contributions to outstanding problems may arrive from unexpected directions, so they need to be aware of the multi-faceted nature of scientific problems. For instance, after millennia of astrometric attempts, the scale of the Solar System was determined with extraordinary precision with emerging radar technology in the 1960's. Second, students learn the importance of careful work, with due attention to detail. After all, the timescales of planetary formation are encoded in systematic isotopic variations of a few parts in 10,000; in students' own experiences with laboratory data they might well overlook such a small effect. Third, students identify the often-tortuous connections between measured and inferred quantities, which corrects a common student misconception that all quantities of interest (e.g., the age of a meteorite) can be measured directly. Fourth, research articles provide opportunities for students to practice the interpretation of graphical data, since figures often represent a large volume of data in succinct form. Fifth, and perhaps of greatest importance, by considering the uncertainties inherent in reported data, students come to recognize the limits of scientific understanding, the extent to which scientific conclusions are justified (or not), and the lengths to which working scientists go to mitigate their uncertainties. These larger lessons are best mediated by students' own encounters with the articles they read, but require instructors to make

  19. Gender Attributions of Science and Academic Attributes: AN Examination of Undergraduate Science, Mathematics, and Technology Majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hughes, W. Jay

    Questionnaire data (n = 297) examined the relationship between gender attributions of science and academic attributes for undergraduate science, mathematics, and technology majors from the perspective of gender schema theory. Female and male respondents perceived that (a) the role of scientist was sex typed as masculine, (b) their majors were more valuable for members of their gender than for those of the opposite gender, (c) their majors were more valuable for themselves than for members of their gender in general. Androgynous attributions of scientists and the value of one's major for women predicted value for oneself, major confidence, and career confidence, and masculine attributions of scientists predicted class participation for female respondents. Feminine attributions of scientists predicted graduate school intent; value for women predicted major confidence and subjective achievement, and value for men predicted value for oneself, course confidence, and career confidence for male respondents.

  20. Teaching science and ethics to undergraduates: a multidisciplinary approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGowan, Alan H

    2013-06-01

    The teaching of the ethical implications of scientific advances in science courses for undergraduates has significant advantages for both science and non-science majors. The article describes three courses taught by the author as examples of the concept, and examines the disadvantages as well as the advantages. A significant advantage of this approach is that many students take the courses primarily because of the ethical component who would not otherwise take science. A disadvantage is less time in the course for the science; arguably, this is outweighed by the greater retention of the science when it is put into context.

  1. The Impact of a Flipped Classroom Model of Learning on a Large Undergraduate Statistics Class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nielson, Perpetua Lynne; Bean, Nathan William Bean; Larsen, Ross Allen Andrew

    2018-01-01

    We examine the impact of a flipped classroom model of learning on student performance and satisfaction in a large undergraduate introductory statistics class. Two professors each taught a lecture-section and a flipped-class section. Using MANCOVA, a linear combination of final exam scores, average quiz scores, and course ratings was compared for…

  2. Purification and Characterization of Enzymes from Yeast: An Extended Undergraduate Laboratory Sequence for Large Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johanson, Kelly E.; Watt, Terry J.; McIntyre, Neil R.; Thompson, Marleesa

    2013-01-01

    Providing a project-based experience in an undergraduate biochemistry laboratory class can be complex with large class sizes and limited resources. We have designed a 6-week curriculum during which students purify and characterize the enzymes invertase and phosphatase from bakers yeast. Purification is performed in two stages via ethanol…

  3. Reforming an Undergraduate Environmental Science Course for Nonscience Majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kazempour, Mahsa; Amirshokoohi, Aidin

    2013-01-01

    This article discusses the key components of a reform-based introductory undergraduate environmental science course for nonscience majors and elementary teacher candidates as well as the impact of such components on the participants. The main goals for the course were to actively engage the students in their learning and, in doing so, to enhance…

  4. Integrating Leadership Development throughout the Undergraduate Science Curriculum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reed, Kelynne E.; Aiello, David P.; Barton, Lance F.; Gould, Stephanie L.; McCain, Karla S.; Richardson, John M.

    2016-01-01

    This article discusses the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) Teaching and Research (STAR) Leadership Program, developed at Austin College, which engages students in activities integrated into undergraduate STEM courses that promote the development of leadership behaviors. Students focus on interpersonal communication,…

  5. Matrices to Revise Crop, Soil, and Environmental Sciences Undergraduate Curricula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Savin, Mary C.; Longer, David; Miller, David M.

    2005-01-01

    Undergraduate curricula for natural resource and agronomic programs have been introduced and revised during the past several decades with a desire to stay current with emerging issues and technologies relevant to constituents. For the past decade, the Department of Crop, Soil, and Environmental Sciences (CSES) faculty at the University of Arkansas…

  6. Undergraduate students as co-producers in the creation of first-year practical class resources

    OpenAIRE

    Hubbard, KE; Brown, R; Deans, S; García, MP; Pruna, M-G; Mason, Matthew James

    2017-01-01

    Undergraduate students are increasingly working with academic staff to evaluate and design teaching materials in Higher Education, thereby moving from being passive consumers of knowledge to genuine partners in their education. Here we describe a student partnership project run at the University of Cambridge, which aimed to improve undergraduate biology practical class teaching. Student interns were recruited to act as researchers, pedagogical consultants and producers of teaching resources. ...

  7. Graduate and undergraduate students’ reaction to the teaching procedures used in semipresential classes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henry Maia Peixoto

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this study was to investigate the reactions of undergraduate and graduate students to the teaching procedures used in semipresential classes. This exploratory study was performed with a quantitative approach at a public university, with undergraduate and graduate students who had completed semipresential classes on health promotion education. Among the 19 evaluated teaching procedures, 15 (78.9% did not show any statistically significant differences between the two academic levels. The means and medians for most variables, for both undergraduate (78.9% and graduate (89.5% students, were above 7 in a scale ranging between 0 (awful and 10 (excellent. Therefore, it is concluded that both groups showed similar reactions to the teaching procedures and gave satisfactory opinions in this regard. Understanding these aspects can support designing class disciplines that use teaching procedures that are adequate to university students. Descriptors: Education, Distance; Education, Higher; Learning; Educational Measurement.

  8. Undergraduate Research in Quantum Information Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lyons, David W.

    2017-01-01

    Quantum Information Science (QIS) is an interdisciplinary field involving mathematics, computer science, and physics. Appealing aspects include an abundance of accessible open problems, active interest and support from government and industry, and an energetic, open, and collaborative international research culture. We describe our student-faculty…

  9. Engaging students in geodesy: A quantitative InSAR module for undergraduate tectonics and geophysics classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, H.; Charlevoix, D. J.; Pritchard, M. E.; Lohman, R. B.

    2013-12-01

    In the last several decades, advances in geodetic technology have allowed us to significantly expand our knowledge of processes acting on and beneath the Earth's surface. Many of these advances have come as a result of EarthScope, a community of scientists conducting multidisciplinary Earth science research utilizing freely accessible data from a variety of instruments. The geodetic component of EarthScope includes the acquisition of synthetic aperture radar (SAR) images, which are archived at the UNAVCO facility. Interferometric SAR complements the spatial and temporal coverage of GPS and allows monitoring of ground deformation in remote areas worldwide. However, because of the complex software required for processing, InSAR data are not readily accessible to most students. Even with these challenges, exposure at the undergraduate level is important for showing how geodesy can be applied in various areas of the geosciences and for promoting geodesy as a future career path. Here we present a module focused on exploring the tectonics of the western United States using InSAR data for use in undergraduate tectonics and geophysics classes. The module has two major objectives: address topics concerning tectonics in the western U.S. including Basin and Range extension, Yellowstone hotspot activity, and creep in southern California, and familiarize students with how imperfect real-world data can be manipulated and interpreted. Module questions promote critical thinking skills and data literacy by prompting students to use the information given to confront and question assumptions (e.g. 'Is there a consistency between seismic rates and permanent earthquake deformation? What other factors might need to be considered besides seismicity?'). The module consists of an introduction to the basics of InSAR and three student exercises, each focused on one of the topics listed above. Students analyze pre-processed InSAR data using MATLAB, or an Excel equivalent, and draw on GPS and

  10. Collaboration and Community Building in Summer Undergraduate Research Programs in the School of Earth Sciences at Stanford University

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nevle, R. J.; Watson Nelson, T.; Harris, J. M.; Klemperer, S. L.

    2012-12-01

    In 2012, the School of Earth Sciences (SES) at Stanford University sponsored two summer undergraduate research programs. Here we describe these programs and efforts to build a cohesive research cohort among the programs' diverse participants. The two programs, the Stanford School of Earth Sciences Undergraduate Research (SESUR) Program and Stanford School of Earth Sciences Summer Undergraduate Research in Geoscience and Engineering (SURGE) Program, serve different undergraduate populations and have somewhat different objectives, but both provide students with opportunities to work on strongly mentored yet individualized research projects. In addition to research, enrichment activities co-sponsored by both programs support the development of community within the combined SES summer undergraduate research cohort. Over the course of 6 to 9 months, the SESUR Program engages Stanford undergraduates, primarily rising sophomores and juniors, with opportunities to deeply explore Earth sciences research while learning about diverse areas of inquiry within SES. Now in its eleventh year, the SESUR experience incorporates the breadth of the scientific endeavor: finding an advisor, proposal writing, obtaining funding, conducting research, and presenting results. Goals of the SESUR program include (1) providing a challenging and rewarding research experience for undergraduates who wish to explore the Earth sciences; (2) fostering interdisciplinary study in the Earth sciences among the undergraduate population; and (3) encouraging students to major or minor in the Earth sciences and/or to complete advanced undergraduate research in one of the departments or programs within SES. The SURGE Program, now in its second year, draws high performing students, primarily rising juniors and seniors, from 14 colleges and universities nationwide, including Stanford. Seventy percent of SURGE students are from racial/ethnic backgrounds underrepresented in STEM fields, and approximately one

  11. Innovations in Undergraduate Science Education: Going Viral

    OpenAIRE

    Hatfull, Graham F.

    2015-01-01

    Bacteriophage discovery and genomics provides a powerful and effective platform for integrating missions in research and education. Implementation of the Science Education Alliance Phage Hunters Advancing Genomics and Evolutionary Science (SEA-PHAGES) program facilitates a broad impact by including a diverse array of schools, faculty, and students. The program generates new insights into the diversity and evolution of the bacteriophage population and presents a model for introducing first-yea...

  12. Development of research paper writing skills of poultry science undergraduate students studying food microbiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howard, Z R; Donalson, L M; Kim, W K; Li, X; Zabala Díaz, I; Landers, K L; Maciorowski, K G; Ricke, S C

    2006-02-01

    Because food and poultry industries are demanding an improvement in written communication skills among graduates, research paper writing should be an integral part of a senior undergraduate class. However, scientific writing assignments are often treated as secondary to developing the technical skills of the students. Scientific research paper writing has been emphasized in an undergraduate course on advanced food microbiology taught in the Poultry Science Department at Texas A& M University (College Station, TX). Students' opinions suggest that research paper writing as part of a senior course in Poultry Science provides students with scientific communication skills and useful training for their career, but more emphasis on reading and understanding scientific literature may be required.

  13. Facilitating awareness of philosophy of science, ethics and communication through manual skills training in undergraduate education.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kordahl, Hilde Lund; Fougner, Marit

    2017-03-01

    Professional health science education includes a common theoretical basis concerning the theory of science, ethics and communication. Former evaluations by first-year students of the bachelor physiotherapy program at Oslo and Akershus University College of Applied Sciences (HiOA) show that they find it hard to understand the relation between these particular topics and future professional practice. This challenge is the starting point for a pedagogical development project that aims to develop learning contexts that highlight the relevance of these theoretical concepts. The aim of the study is to explore and present findings on the value of using Sykegrep manual skills classes as an arena in which students can be encouraged to think about, reflect on and appreciate the role and value of the philosophical perspectives that inform their practice and contributes to practise knowledge. A qualitative study with data collection through focus groups was performed and analyzed using thematic content analysis. Eighteen first-year undergraduate students, who had completed the manual skills course, participated in the study. Analysis of the data yielded three categories of findings that can be associated with aspects of philosophy of science, ethics and communication. These are as follows: 1) preconceived understanding of physiotherapy; 2) body knowledge perspectives; and 3) relational aspects of interactions. Undergraduate students' understanding and experience of philosophy of science, ethics and communication may be facilitated by peer collaboration, reflection on intimacy and touch and the ethical aspects of interaction during manual skills training. Practical classes in Sykegrep provide a basis for students' discussions about the body as well as their experiences with the body in the collaborative learning context. The students' reflections on their expectations of manual skills in physiotherapy and experiences of touch and being touched can facilitate an awareness of

  14. Argument-Driven Inquiry: Using the Laboratory to Improve Undergraduates' Science Writing Skills through Meaningful Science Writing, Peer-Review, and Revision

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, Joi Phelps; Sampson, Victor

    2013-01-01

    This paper presents preliminary evidence supporting the use of peer review in undergraduate science as a means to improve student writing and to alleviate barriers, such as lost class time, by incorporation of the peer-review process into the laboratory component of the course. The study was conducted in a single section of an undergraduate…

  15. Undergraduate Biotechnology Students' Views of Science Communication

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edmondston, Joanne Elisabeth; Dawson, Vaille; Schibeci, Renato

    2010-01-01

    Despite rapid growth of the biotechnology industry worldwide, a number of public concerns about the application of biotechnology and its regulation remain. In response to these concerns, greater emphasis has been placed on promoting biotechnologists' public engagement. As tertiary science degree programmes form the foundation of the biotechnology…

  16. A Study of Chinese Undergraduates' MI Distribution in EFL Class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Ning

    2008-01-01

    This paper initiates an investigation of the college students' MI (multiple intelligences) distribution in English class. The participants are a group of Chinese sophomores from different majors: city planning, tourism, software engineering, financial administration and arts of English. With a view to make the investigation more specified in…

  17. Can Personalized Nudges Improve Learning in Hybrid Classes? Experimental Evidence from an Introductory Undergraduate Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Connell, Stephen D.; Lang, Guido

    2018-01-01

    A field experiment was conducted to investigate whether personalized e-mail reminders can improve study consistency and learning outcomes in an introductory-level undergraduate course. By randomly assigning whether nearly 300 students would receive occasional e-mail messages encouraging out-of-class study, we find that these reminders increased…

  18. An Undergraduate Laboratory Class Using CRISPR/Cas9 Technology to Mutate Drosophila Genes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adame, Vanesa; Chapapas, Holly; Cisneros, Marilyn; Deaton, Carol; Deichmann, Sophia; Gadek, Chauncey; Lovato, TyAnna L.; Chechenova, Maria B.; Guerin, Paul; Cripps, Richard M.

    2016-01-01

    CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing technology is used in the manipulation of genome sequences and gene expression. Because of the ease and rapidity with which genes can be mutated using CRISPR/Cas9, we sought to determine if a single-semester undergraduate class could be successfully taught, wherein students isolate mutants for specific genes using…

  19. Alu Insertions and Genetic Diversity: A Preliminary Investigation by an Undergraduate Bioinformatics Class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elwess, Nancy L.; Duprey, Stephen L.; Harney, Lindesay A.; Langman, Jessie E.; Marino, Tara C.; Martinez, Carolina; McKeon, Lauren L.; Moss, Chantel I. E.; Myrie, Sasha S.; Taylor, Luke Ryan

    2008-01-01

    "Alu"-insertion polymorphisms were used by an undergraduate Bioinformatics class to study how these insertion sites could be the basis for an investigation in human population genetics. Based on the students' investigation, both allele and genotype "Alu" frequencies were determined for African-American and Japanese populations as well as a…

  20. Effectively using urban landscapes to teach biodiversity and echohydrology for introductory environmental science classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pondell, C.; van Doorn, A.; MacAvoy, S. E.

    2017-12-01

    Urban environments offer students interesting opportunities to explore and examine how human modified landscapes influence biodiversity, nutrient cycling, and water quality. Students demanding applied field experiences from their undergraduate environmental science (ENVS) programs can be well served in urban settings. Here, we present strategies for integrating urban areas into the undergraduate field experience. Urban locations provide an opportunity for a different type of local "field-work" than would otherwise be available. In the intro level undergraduate ENVS class, we use our campus, the surrounding neighborhood and city as well as a nearby National Park for field exercises. Here we share lesson plans for field activities that can be completed with incoming undergraduate students, and show how these activities help students gain quantitative and investigative competency.

  1. Mothers as informal science class teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katz, Phyllis

    education class. Study outcomes include self-reported tendencies toward increased awareness of science teaching techniques and content, as well as pleasure, confidence, and family interactions around science. The survey amplifies these findings among a larger group. Negative cases and difficulties are discussed. This study suggests that the availability of mothers' informal science teaching/learning experience is one way to create a more pervasively supportive environment for science education. There is increased opportunity for women as adult learners, to be positive role models, and to mediate family settings. Recommendations are made for recruiting mothers as teachers and fulfilling their motivations. Informal science education theory is discussed

  2. The relevance of basic sciences in undergraduate medical education.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lynch, C; Grant, T; McLoughlin, P; Last, J

    2016-02-01

    Evolving and changing undergraduate medical curricula raise concerns that there will no longer be a place for basic sciences. National and international trends show that 5-year programmes with a pre-requisite for school chemistry are growing more prevalent. National reports in Ireland show a decline in the availability of school chemistry and physics. This observational cohort study considers if the basic sciences of physics, chemistry and biology should be a prerequisite to entering medical school, be part of the core medical curriculum or if they have a place in the practice of medicine. Comparisons of means, correlation and linear regression analysis assessed the degree of association between predictors (school and university basic sciences) and outcomes (year and degree GPA) for entrants to a 6-year Irish medical programme between 2006 and 2009 (n = 352). We found no statistically significant difference in medical programme performance between students with/without prior basic science knowledge. The Irish school exit exam and its components were mainly weak predictors of performance (-0.043 ≥ r ≤ 0.396). Success in year one of medicine, which includes a basic science curriculum, was indicative of later success (0.194 ≥ r (2) ≤ 0.534). University basic sciences were found to be more predictive than school sciences in undergraduate medical performance in our institution. The increasing emphasis of basic sciences in medical practice and the declining availability of school sciences should mandate medical schools in Ireland to consider how removing basic sciences from the curriculum might impact on future applicants.

  3. The "art" of science communication in undergraduate research training

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fatemi, F. R.; Stockwell, J.; Pinheiro, V.; White, B.

    2016-12-01

    Student creation of well-designed and engaging visuals in science communication can enhance their deep learning while streamlining the transmission of information to their audience. However, undergraduate research training does not frequently emphasize the design aspect of science communication. We devised and implemented a new curricular component to the Lake Champlain NSF Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) program in Vermont. We took a holistic approach to communication training, with a targeted module in "art and science". Components to the module included: 1) an introduction to environmental themes in fine art, 2) a photography assignment in research documentation, 3) an overview of elements of design (e.g., color, typography, hierarchy), 4) a graphic design workshop using tools in Powerpoint, and 5) an introduction to scientific illustration. As part of the REU program, students were asked to document their work through photographs, and develop an infographic or scientific illustration complementary to their research. The "art and science" training culminated with a display and critique of their visual work. We report on student responses to the "art and science" training from exit interviews and survey questions. Based on our program, we identify a set of tools that mentors can use to enhance their student's ability to engage with a broad audience.

  4. Core Skills for Effective Science Communication: A Teaching Resource for Undergraduate Science Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mercer-Mapstone, Lucy; Kuchel, Louise

    2017-01-01

    Science communication is a diverse and transdisciplinary field and is taught most effectively when the skills involved are tailored to specific educational contexts. Few academic resources exist to guide the teaching of communication with non-scientific audiences for an undergraduate science context. This mixed methods study aimed to explore what…

  5. Science and ecological literacy in undergraduate field studies education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mapp, Kim J.

    There is an ever-increasing number of issues that face our world today; from climate change, water and food scarcity, to pollution and resource extraction. Science and ecology play fundamental roles in these problems, and yet the understanding of these fields is limited in our society (Miller, 2002; McBride, Brewer, Berkowitz, and Borrie, 2013). Across the nation students are finishing their undergraduate degrees and are expected to enter the workforce and society with the skills needed to succeed. The deficit of science and ecological literacy in these students has been recognized and a call for reform begun (D'Avanzo, 2003 and NRC, 2009). This mixed-methods study looked at how a field studies course could fill the gap of science and ecological literacy in undergraduates. Using grounded theory, five key themes were data-derived; definitions, systems thinking, human's role in the environment, impetus for change and transference. These themes where then triangulated for validity and reliability through qualitative and quantitative assessments. A sixth theme was also identified, the learning environment. Due to limited data to support this themes' development and reliability it is discussed in Chapter 5 to provide recommendations for further research. Key findings show that this field studies program influenced students' science and ecological literacy through educational theory and practice.

  6. The Effect of Stereotype Threat on Undergraduates in AN Introductory Astronomy Class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hufnagel, Beth; Deming, Grace L.; Landato, Janet M.; Hodari, Apriel K.

    This quantitative study tests the hypothesis that undergraduates taking an introductory astronomy class for nonscience majors are susceptible to stereotype threat (ST). The Astronomy Diagnostic Test (ADT), a conceptual survey designed for introductory astronomy classes, was administered pre- and postcourse to two pairs (control and threatened) of the same class taught by the same professors, one pair at a public, suburban community college and the other pair at a large, state research university. One class of each pair was threatened postcourse by telling the students that their gender mattered on the ADT. The results showed no ST effect on the women in the university class. The college women underperformed and the men overperformed at a low statistical significance. The authors infer that Steele's requirement for domain identification as a condition is also required to strongly invoke ST for this sample of nonscience students.

  7. Undergraduates' Perceived Gains and Ideas about Teaching and Learning Science from Participating in Science Education Outreach Programs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carpenter, Stacey L.

    2015-01-01

    This study examined what undergraduate students gain and the ideas about science teaching and learning they develop from participating in K-12 science education outreach programs. Eleven undergraduates from seven outreach programs were interviewed individually about their experiences with outreach and what they learned about science teaching and…

  8. The Polaris Project: Undergraduate Research Catalyzing Advances in Arctic Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schade, J. D.; Holmes, R. M.; Natali, S.; Mann, P. J.; Bunn, A. G.; Frey, K. E.

    2017-12-01

    With guidance and sufficient resources, undergraduates can drive the exploration of new research directions, lead high impact scientific products, and effectively communicate the value of science to the public. As mentors, we must recognize the strong contribution undergraduates make to the advancement of scientific understanding and their unique ability and desire to be transdisciplinary and to translate ideas into action. Our job is to be sure students have the resources and tools to successfully explore questions that they care about, not to provide or lead them towards answers we already have. The central goal of the Polaris Project is to advance understanding of climate change in the Arctic through an integrated research, training, and outreach program that has at its heart a research expedition for undergraduates to a remote field station in the Arctic. Our integrative approach to training provides undergraduates with strong intellectual development and they bring fresh perspectives, creativity, and a unique willingness to take risks on new ideas that have an energizing effect on research and outreach. Since the projects inception in summer 2008, we have had >90 undergraduates participate in high-impact field expeditions and outreach activities. Over the years, we have also been fortunate enough to attract an ethnically, racially, and culturally diverse group of students, including students from Puerto Rico, Hispanic-, African- and Native-Americans, members of the LGBT community, and first-generation college students. Most of these students have since pursued graduate degrees in ecology, and many have received NSF fellowships and Fulbright scholarships. One of our major goals is to increase the diversity of the scientific community, and we have been successful in our short-term goal of recruiting and retaining a diverse group of students. The goal of this presentation is to provide a description of the mentoring model at the heart of the Polaris Project

  9. An Examination of Undergraduates' Metacognitive Strategies in Pre-Class Asynchronous Activity in a Flipped Classroom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yilmaz, Rabia M.; Baydas, Ozlem

    2017-01-01

    The aim of the study is to examine undergraduate students' awareness of metacognition, the metacognitive strategies they use in their learning and their learning performance in pre-class asynchronous activity in a flipped classroom. The sample consisted of 47 undergraduate students. Eleven students were not included in this study since they did…

  10. The Impact of Providing Web-Based PowerPoint Slides as Study Guides in Undergraduate Business Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frank, Jonathan; Shaw, Lewis; Wilson, Elizabeth

    2009-01-01

    This study examines undergraduate business students' use of PowerPoint slides provided as a supplement to class attendance, textbook reading, and other traditional course resources. We survey students in 4 diverse (accounting, marketing, management, and information systems) lower-level undergraduate courses in which the instructor provided…

  11. [The undergraduate program in forensic science: a national challenge].

    Science.gov (United States)

    García Castillo, Zoraida; Graue Wiechers, Enrique; Durante Montiel, Irene; Herrera Saint Leu, Patricia

    2014-01-01

    The challenge in achieving an ideal state of justice is that each "proof" has the highest degree of reliability. This is the main responsibility of the forensic scientist. Up to now, criminal investigations in Mexico have been supported by forensic work from a wide variety of disciplinary backgrounds that give testimony in a particular area, even though they may have become forensic witnesses in a complementary and experiential manner. In January 2013, the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM) approved the "Forensic Science" undergraduate program that, in collaboration with various academic entities and government institutions, will develop forensic scientists trained in science, law, and criminology. This is focused on contributing to the national demand that the justice system has more elements to procure and administer justice in dealing with crime.

  12. Authentic Science Research Opportunities: How Do Undergraduate Students Begin Integration into a Science Community of Practice?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gardner, Grant E.; Forrester, Jennifer H.; Jeffrey, Penny Shumaker; Ferzli, Miriam; Shea, Damian

    2015-01-01

    The goal of the study described was to understand the process and degree to which an undergraduate science research program for rising college freshmen achieved its stated objectives to integrate participants into a community of practice and to develop students' research identities.

  13. Engaging Undergraduates in Social Science Research: The Taking the Pulse of Saskatchewan Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berdahl, Loleen

    2014-01-01

    Although student involvement in research and inquiry can advance undergraduate learning, there are limited opportunities for undergraduate students to be directly involved in social science research. Social science faculty members typically work outside of laboratory settings, with the limited research assistance work being completed by graduate…

  14. Developing Oral and Written Communication Skills in Undergraduate Computer Science and Information Systems Curriculum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kortsarts, Yana; Fischbach, Adam; Rufinus, Jeff; Utell, Janine M.; Yoon, Suk-Chung

    2010-01-01

    Developing and applying oral and written communication skills in the undergraduate computer science and computer information systems curriculum--one of the ABET accreditation requirements - is a very challenging and, at the same time, a rewarding task that provides various opportunities to enrich the undergraduate computer science and computer…

  15. Student and Faculty Outcomes of Undergraduate Science Research Projects by Geographically Dispersed Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shaw, Lawton; Kennepohl, Dietmar

    2013-01-01

    Senior undergraduate research projects are important components of most undergraduate science degrees. The delivery of such projects in a distance education format is challenging. Athabasca University (AU) science project courses allow distance education students to complete research project courses by working with research supervisors in their…

  16. Undergraduate-driven interventions to increase representation in science classrooms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Freilich, M.; Aluthge, D.; Bryant, R. M.; Knox, B.; McAdams, J.; Plummer, A.; Schlottman, N.; Stanley, Z.; Suglia, E.; Watson-Daniels, J.

    2014-12-01

    Recognizing that racial, ethnic, and gender underrepresentation in science classrooms persists despite intervention programs and institutional commitments to diversity, a group of undergraduates from a variety of backgrounds and academic disciplines came together for a group independent study to (a) study the theoretical foundations of the current practice of science and of programs meant to increase diversity, (b) utilize the experiences of course participants and our peers to better understand the drivers of underrepresentation, and (c) design and implement interventions at Brown University. We will present on individual and small group projects designed by course members in collaboration with faculty. The projects emerged from an exploration of literature in history, philosophy, and sociology of science, as well as an examination of anthropological and psychological studies. We also evaluated the effectiveness of top-down and bottom-up approaches that have already been attempted in developing our projects. They focus on the specific problems faced by underrepresented minorities, women, LGBTQ+ people, and well-represented minorities. We will share experiences of faculty-student collaboration and engaged scholarship focused on representation in science and discuss student-designed interventions.

  17. Scientists and Mathematicians Collaborating to Build Quantitative Skills in Undergraduate Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rylands, Leanne; Simbag, Vilma; Matthews, Kelly E.; Coady, Carmel; Belward, Shaun

    2013-01-01

    There is general agreement in Australia and beyond that quantitative skills (QS) in science, the ability to use mathematics and statistics in context, are important for science. QS in the life sciences are becoming ever more important as these sciences become more quantitative. Consequently, undergraduates studying the life sciences require better…

  18. Effect of a Problem Based Simulation on the Conceptual Understanding of Undergraduate Science Education Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, David Devraj; Sherwood, Robert D.

    2007-01-01

    A study of the effect of science teaching with a multimedia simulation on water quality, the "River of Life," on the science conceptual understanding of students (N = 83) in an undergraduate science education (K-9) course is reported. Teaching reality-based meaningful science is strongly recommended by the National Science Education Standards…

  19. Ethics Is Not Rocket Science: How to Have Ethical Discussions in Your Science Class

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kelly C. Smith

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available The Rutland Institute for Ethics at Clemson University seeks to encourage discussion on campus, in businesses, and in the community about how ethical decision-making can be the basis of both personal and professional success.  In the last 15 years, our fellows have, among other things, served as Co-PI’s on a wide range of grants, produced Responsible Conduct of Research training for science and engineering graduate students and faculty, managed the ethics curriculum at a medical school, and produced video lectures on ethical thinking for undergraduate Biology majors.  The crown jewel of our efforts to-date is our Ethics Across the Curriculum program, affectionately known as “ethics boot camp.”Each year, we bring faculty from all corners of the disciplinary spectrum together to show them how to have rich ethical discussions in their own classes with the students from their majors.  The program has been extremely successful and over the past 15 years has touched the lives of hundreds of faculty and thousands of students.  The purpose of this paper is to provide a very abbreviated version of the Rutland Ethics Across the Curriculum material to a wider audience of science educators.  It is our hope that this will motivate more faculty to introduce ethics into their classes as well as provide them the basic tools they will need to make this experience fruitful for all concerned.

  20. Source of stressors and emotional disturbances among undergraduate science students in Malaysia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ali Sabri Radeef, Ghasak Ghazi Faisal, Syed Masroor Ali, MaungKoHajee Mohamed Ismail

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Higher education is considered as a stressful period in students’ life which they have to cope with since they are facing a variety of demands such as living away from their families, a heavily loaded curriculum, and inefficiency in both mentor- mentee and health education programs. This will make them more vulnerable to emotional disturbances such as stress, anxiety and depression. Methodology: A total of 194 undergraduate students from Kulliyyah (Faculty of Science, International Islamic University Malaysia participated in questionnaire-based study using the Depression Anxiety, Stress Scale (DASS-21 to assess the severity of emotional disturbances Results: The overall prevalence of depression, anxiety and stress was 64.4%, 84.5% and 56.7% respectively. Regarding the severity of the symptoms, it was found that 13.9%, 51.5 % and 12.9% of the students have clinically significant depression, anxiety and stress respectively. Young students aged 21 years and below had a statistically significant association with depression, anxiety and stress. While first year students had significant association with depression. Regarding the source of stressors, the top ten stressors decided by the students were mainly academic and personal factors. Conclusion: Emotional disturbances in the form of depression, anxiety and stress are existing in high rate among undergraduate science students that require early intervention. Factors including feeling of incompetence, lack of motivation to learn and difficulty of class work can be considered as source of stressors that may precipitate for depression anxiety and stress.

  1. Enrollment in Distance Education Classes Is Associated with Fewer Enrollment Gaps among Nontraditional Undergraduate Students in the US

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pontes, Manuel C. F.; Pontes, Nancy M. H.

    2012-01-01

    The purpose of this research is to determine whether nontraditional undergraduate students in the US who enroll in distance education classes are less likely to have an enrollment gap (enrollment gap=part year enrollment). Previous research has shown that preference for distance education classes is significantly greater among nontraditional than…

  2. Hybrid teaching method for undergraduate student in Marine Geology class in Indonesia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yusuf Awaluddin, M.; Yuliadi, Lintang

    2016-04-01

    Bridging Geosciences to the future generations in interesting and interactive ways are challenging for lecturers and teachers. In the past, one-way 'classic' face-to-face teaching method has been used as the only alternative for undergraduate's Marine Geology class in Padjadjaran University, Indonesia. Currently, internet users in Indonesia have been increased significantly, among of them are young generations and students. The advantage of the internet as a teaching method in Geosciences topic in Indonesia is still limited. Here we have combined between the classic and the online method for undergraduate teaching. The case study was in Marine Geology class, Padjadjaran University, with 70 students as participants and 2 instructors. We used Edmodo platform as a primary tool in our teaching and Dropbox as cloud storage. All online teaching activities such as assignment, quiz, discussion and examination were done in concert with the classic one with proportion 60% and 40% respectively. We found that the students had the different experience in this hybrid teaching method as shown in their feedback through this platform. This hybrid method offers interactive ways not only between the lecturers and the students but also among students. Classroom meeting is still needed to expose their work and for general discussion.Nevertheless, the only problem was the lack of internet access in the campus when all our students accessing the platform at the same time.

  3. Integrating Hands-On Undergraduate Research in an Applied Spatial Science Senior Level Capstone Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kulhavy, David L.; Unger, Daniel R.; Hung, I-Kuai; Douglass, David

    2015-01-01

    A senior within a spatial science Ecological Planning capstone course designed an undergraduate research project to increase his spatial science expertise and to assess the hands-on instruction methodology employed within the Bachelor of Science in Spatial Science program at Stephen F Austin State University. The height of 30 building features…

  4. Research and Teaching: Encouraging Science Communication in an Undergraduate Curriculum Improves Students' Perceptions and Confidence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Train, Tonya Laakko; Miyamoto, Yuko J.

    2017-01-01

    The ability to effectively communicate science is a skill sought after by graduate and professional schools as well as by employers in science-related fields. Are content-heavy undergraduate science curricula able to incorporate opportunities to develop science communication skills, and is promoting these skills worth the time and effort? The…

  5. Research Experience for Undergraduates Program in Multidisciplinary Environmental Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, M. S.

    2012-12-01

    During summers 2011 and 12 Montclair State University hosted a Research Experience for Undergraduates Program (REU) in transdisciplinary, hands-on, field-oriented research in environmental sciences. Participants were housed at the Montclair State University's field station situated in the middle of 30,000 acres of mature forest, mountain ridges and freshwater streams and lakes within the Kittatinny Mountains of Northwest New Jersey, Program emphases were placed on development of project planning skills, analytical skills, creativity, critical thinking and scientific report preparation. Ten students were recruited in spring with special focus on recruiting students from underrepresented groups and community colleges. Students were matched with their individual research interests including hydrology, erosion and sedimentation, environmental chemistry, and ecology. In addition to research activities, lectures, educational and recreational field trips, and discussion on environmental ethics and social justice played an important part of the program. The ultimate goal of the program is to facilitate participants' professional growth and to stimulate the participants' interests in pursuing Earth Science as the future career of the participants.

  6. Public Science Education and Outreach as a Modality for Teaching Science Communication Skills to Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arion, Douglas; OConnell, Christine; Lowenthal, James; Hickox, Ryan C.; Lyons, Daniel

    2018-01-01

    The Alan Alda Center for Communicating Science at Stony Brook University is working with Carthage College, Dartmouth College, and Smith College, in partnership with the Appalachian Mountain Club, to develop and disseminate curriculum to incorporate science communication education into undergraduate science programs. The public science education and outreach program operating since 2012 as a partnership between Carthage and the Appalachian Mountain Club is being used as the testbed for evaluating the training methods. This talk will review the processes that have been developed and the results from the first cohort of students trained in these methods and tested during the summer 2017 education and outreach efforts, which reached some 12,000 members of the public. A variety of evaluation and assessment tools were utilized, including surveys of public participants and video recording of the interactions of the students with the public. This work was supported by the National Science Foundation under grant number 1625316.

  7. Student science publishing: an exploratory study of undergraduate science research journals and popular science magazines in the US and Europe

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mico Tatalovic

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available Science magazines have an important role in disseminating scientific knowledge into the public sphere and in discussing the broader scope affected by scientific research such as technology, ethics and politics. Student-run science magazines afford opportunities for future scientists, communicators, politicians and others to practice communicating science. The ability to translate ‘scientese’ into a jargon-free discussion is rarely easy: it requires practice, and student magazines may provide good practice ground for undergraduate and graduate science students wishing to improve their communication skills.

  8. A Workbook for Scaffolding Mentored Undergraduate Research Experiences in the Social and Behavioral Sciences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colbert-White, Erin; Simpson, Elizabeth

    2017-01-01

    Research mentors strive to ensure that undergraduates gain research skills and develop professionally during mentored research experiences in the sciences. We created the SURE (Specialized Undergraduate Research Experience) Workbook, a freely-available, interactive guide to scaffold student learning during this process. The Workbook: (1)…

  9. A Flexible e-Learning Resource Promoting the Critical Reading of Scientific Papers for Science Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Letchford, Julie; Corradi, Hazel; Day, Trevor

    2017-01-01

    An important aim of undergraduate science education is to develop student skills in reading and evaluating research papers. We have designed, developed, and implemented an on-line interactive resource entitled "Evaluating Scientific Research literature" (ESRL) aimed at students from the first 2 years of the undergraduate program. In this…

  10. The Influence of Materials Science and Engineering Undergraduate Research Experiences on Public Communication Skills

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ing, Marsha; Fung, Wenson W.; Kisailus, David

    2013-01-01

    Communicating research findings with others is a skill essential to the success of future STEM professionals. However, little is known about how this skill can be nurtured through participating in undergraduate research. The purpose of this study is to quantify undergraduate participation in research in a materials science and engineering…

  11. Introducing an Undergraduate Degree of Cosmetic Science and Formulation Design within a College of Pharmacy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gabriella Baki

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available As a unique and versatile undergraduate degree program, a Bachelor of Science in Pharmaceutical Sciences (BSPS is offered by a number of colleges/schools of pharmacy. These provide a bachelor's degree concentrated in pharmaceutical sciences, and can be a non-Doctor of Pharmacy option, possibly before progressing to graduate degree studies. Recently implemented at the University of Toledo College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences (UTCPPS, one such BSPS major is Cosmetic Science and Formulation Design. This new undergraduate major was created to serve the needs of the cosmetic and personal care industry, with a great need identified for well-trained new professionals with basic knowledge in the sciences and business. This Cosmetic Science and Formulation Design major was added to four other BSPS majors at UTCPPS. Introduced in 2013, this major is the only functioning undergraduate degree in Cosmetic Science and Formulation Design in the United States. Preliminary job placement data provides promising evidence that this undergraduate major has helped graduates launch a career in the cosmetic and personal care, or pharmaceutical industries. Based on our experience from the past three years, we believe that this cosmetic science major has been worth its resource investment. We hope others designing new undergraduate pharmaceutical sciences programs might integrate advice from this experience into their impending programs.   Type: Idea Paper

  12. Enhancing interdisciplinary, mathematics, and physical science in an undergraduate life science program through physical chemistry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pursell, David P

    2009-01-01

    BIO2010 advocates enhancing the interdisciplinary, mathematics, and physical science components of the undergraduate biology curriculum. The Department of Chemistry and Life Science at West Point responded by developing a required physical chemistry course tailored to the interests of life science majors. To overcome student resistance to physical chemistry, students were enabled as long-term stakeholders who would shape the syllabus by selecting life science topics of interest to them. The initial 2 yr of assessment indicates that students have a positive view of the course, feel they have succeeded in achieving course outcome goals, and that the course is relevant to their professional future. Instructor assessment of student outcome goal achievement via performance on exams and labs is comparable to that of students in traditional physical chemistry courses. Perhaps more noteworthy, both student and instructor assessment indicate positive trends from year 1 to year 2, presumably due to the student stakeholder effect.

  13. Chemical Analysis of Soils: An Environmental Chemistry Laboratory for Undergraduate Science Majors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Willey, Joan D.; Avery, G. Brooks, Jr.; Manock, John J.; Skrabal, Stephen A.; Stehman, Charles F.

    1999-01-01

    Describes a laboratory exercise for undergraduate science students in which they evaluate soil samples for various parameters related to suitability for crop production and capability for retention of contaminants. (Contains 18 references.) (WRM)

  14. Of Responsible Research--Exploring the Science-Society Dialogue in Undergraduate Training within the Life Sciences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almeida, Maria Strecht; Quintanilha, Alexandre

    2017-01-01

    We explore the integration of societal issues in undergraduate training within the life sciences. Skills in thinking about science, scientific knowledge production and the place of science in society are crucial in the context of the idea of responsible research and innovation. This idea became institutionalized and it is currently well-present in…

  15. How Do People Think about the Science They Encounter in Fiction? Undergraduates Investigate Responses to Science in "The Simpsons"

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orthia, Lindy A.; Dobos, Amy R.; Guy, Tristan; Kan, Shanan Z.; Keys, Siân E.; Nekvapil, Stefan; Ngu, Dalton H. Y.

    2012-01-01

    In this study, students and staff involved in an undergraduate science communication course investigated people's responses to a science-rich episode of the animated sitcom "The Simpsons". Using focus groups, we sought to find out if and how the episode influenced our 34 participants' perceptions of science, but our results problematised…

  16. Internet use by library and information science undergraduates in ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The study recommended that undergraduates should be trained to be ICT literate as well as be given increased access to internet facilities to enable them maximize the benefits of internet use. The study concluded that although there is a rise in the use of internet by undergraduates, they primarily use the internet for social ...

  17. Undergraduate Research-Methods Training in Political Science: A Comparative Perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parker, Jonathan

    2010-01-01

    Unlike other disciplines in the social sciences, there has been relatively little attention paid to the structure of the undergraduate political science curriculum. This article reports the results of a representative survey of 200 political science programs in the United States, examining requirements for quantitative methods, research methods,…

  18. Characteristics of Abductive Inquiry in Earth Science: An Undergraduate Case Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oh, Phil Seok

    2011-01-01

    The goal of this case study was to describe characteristic features of abductive inquiry learning activities in the domain of earth science. Participants were undergraduate junior and senior students who were enrolled in an earth science education course offered for preservice secondary science teachers at a university in Korea. The undergraduate…

  19. Introducing Taiwanese Undergraduate Students to the Nature of Science through Nobel Prize Stories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eshach, Haim; Hwang, Fu-Kwun; Wu, Hsin-Kai; Hsu, Ying-Shao

    2013-01-01

    Although there is a broad agreement among scientists and science educators that students should not only learn science, but also acquire some sense of its nature, it has been reported that undergraduate students possess an inadequate grasp of the nature of science (NOS). The study presented here examined the potential and effectiveness of Nobel…

  20. Teacher interpersonal behaviour and student attitudes in Brunei primary science classes classes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Scott, R.; Brok, den P.J.; Fisher, D.; Staver, J.; Zandvliet, D.; Tillotson, J.; Anderson, C. W.; Crawley, F.

    2004-01-01

    This study investigated relationships between students’ perceptions of their teachers’ interpersonal behaviour and their subject-related attitude in primary science classes in Brunei. Teacher-student interpersonal behaviour was mapped with the Questionnaire on Teacher Interaction (QTI) and reported

  1. Instructional quality of lower grades natural science classes: the ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    ... classes: the case of primary schools linked to Kemise College of Teacher Education. ... the quality of natural science education classroom instruction in lower grade ... on pedagogical and subject matter issue, closer support and supervision.

  2. Value Added: History of Physics in a ``Science, Technology, and Society'' General Education Undergraduate Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neuenschwander, Dwight

    2016-03-01

    In thirty years of teaching a capstone ``Science, Technology, and Society'' course to undergraduate students of all majors, I have found that, upon entering STS, to most of them the Manhattan Project seems about as remote as the Civil War; few can describe the difference between nuclear and large non-nuclear weapons. With similar lack of awareness, many students seem to think the Big Bang was dreamed up by science sorcerers. One might suppose that a basic mental picture of weapons that held entire populations hostage should be part of informed citizenship. One might also suppose that questions about origins, as they are put to nature through evidence-based reasoning, should be integral to a culture's identity. Over the years I have found the history of physics to be an effective tool for bringing such subjects to life for STS students. Upon hearing some of the history behind (for example) nuclear weapons and big bang cosmology, these students can better imagine themselves called upon to help in a Manhattan Project, or see themselves sleuthing about in a forensic science like cosmology. In this talk I share sample student responses to our class discussions on nuclear weapons, and on cosmology. The history of physics is too engaging to be appreciated only by physicists.

  3. Class Size and Academic Achievement in Introductory Political Science Courses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Towner, Terri L.

    2016-01-01

    Research on the influence of class size on student academic achievement is important for university instructors, administrators, and students. The article examines the influence of class size--a small section versus a large section--in introductory political science courses on student grades in two comparable semesters. It is expected that…

  4. Gamification: using elements of video games to improve engagement in an undergraduate physics class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rose, J. A.; O'Meara, J. M.; Gerhardt, T. C.; Williams, M.

    2016-09-01

    Gamification has been extensively implemented and studied in corporate settings and has proven to be more effective than traditional employee-training programs, however, few classroom studies of gamification have been reported in the literature. Our study explored the potential of gamified on-line undergraduate physics content as a mechanism to enhance student learning and motivation. Specifically, the main objective of this work was to determine whether extrinsic motivation indicators commonly used in video games could increase student engagement with course content outside of the classroom. Life Science students taking an introductory physics course were provided access to gamified multiple choice quizzes as part of their course assessment. The quizzes incorporated common gaming elements such as points, streaks, leaderboards and achievements, as well as some gamified graphical enhancements and feedback. Student attitudes and performance among those using the gamified quizzes were examined and compared to non-gamified control groups within the same course. Student engagement was quantified through examining student participation above and beyond the minimum course requirements. The results showed that gaming techniques are significantly correlated with increased engagement with course material outside of the classroom. These results may assist instructors in engaging and motivating students outside the classroom through carefully designed online and distance-delivered undergraduate physics content. Furthermore, the gaming elements incorporated in this study were not specifically tied to the physics content and can be easily translated to any educational setting.

  5. The academic majors of students taking American soil science classes: 2004-2005 to 2013-2014 academic years

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brevik, Eric C.; Vaughan, Karen L.; Parikh, Sanjai J.; Dolliver, Holly; Lindbo, David; Steffan, Joshua J.; Weindorf, David; McDaniel, Paul; Mbila, Monday; Edinger-Marshall, Susan

    2017-04-01

    Many papers have been written in recent years discussing the interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary aspects of soil science. Therefore, it would make sense that soil science courses would be taken by students in a wide array of academic majors. To investigate this, we collected data from eight different American universities on the declared academic majors of students enrolled in soil science courses over a 10 year time period (2004-2005 to 2013-2014 academic years). Data was collected for seven different classes taught at the undergraduate level: introduction to soil science, soil fertility, soil management, pedology, soil biology/microbiology, soil chemistry, and soil physics. Overall trends and trends for each class were evaluated. Generally, environmental science and crop science/horticulture/agronomy students were enrolled in soil science courses in the greatest numbers. Environmental science and engineering students showed rapid increases in enrollment over the 10 years of the study, while the number of crop science/ horticulture/ agronomy students declined. In the introduction to soil science classes, environmental science and crop science/ horticulture/ agronomy students were enrolled in the greatest numbers, while declared soil science majors only made up 6.6% of the average enrollment. The highest enrollments in soil fertility were crop science/ horticulture/ agronomy students and other agricultural students (all agricultural majors except crop science, horticulture, agronomy, or soil science). In both the soil management and pedology classes, environmental science and other agricultural students were the largest groups enrolled. Other agricultural students and students from other majors (all majors not otherwise expressly investigated) were the largest enrolled groups in soil biology/microbiology courses, and environmental science and soil science students were the largest enrolled groups in soil chemistry classes. Soil physics was the only class

  6. Teaching Business Statistics with Real Data to Undergraduates and the Use of Technology in the Class Room

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singamsetti, Rao

    2007-01-01

    In this paper an attempt is made to highlight some issues of interpretation of statistical concepts and interpretation of results as taught in undergraduate Business statistics courses. The use of modern technology in the class room is shown to have increased the efficiency and the ease of learning and teaching in statistics. The importance of…

  7. Absenteeism among medical and health science undergraduate students at Hawassa University, Ethiopia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Desalegn, Anteneh Assefa; Berhan, Asres; Berhan, Yifru

    2014-04-14

    Student absenteeism is a major concern for university education worldwide. This study was conducted to determine the prevalence and causes of absenteeism among undergraduate medical and health sciences students at Hawassa University. We conducted a cross-sectional study using a pretested self-administered structured questionnaire from May-June 2013. The primary outcome indicator was self-reported absenteeism from lectures in the semester preceding the study period. The study included all regular undergraduate students who were enrolled in the University for at least one semester. The data was entered and analyzed using SPSS version 20. The association between class absenteeism and socio-demographic and behavioral correlates of absenteeism was determined by bivariate and multivariate analyses. Results were reported as crude odds ratios (COR), adjusted odds ratios (AOR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI). 1200 students consented and filled the questionnaire. Of these students, 43.7% had missed three or more lectures and 14.1% (95% CI = 12.2-16.2) missed more than 8 lectures in the preceding semester. There was a significant association between missing more than 8 lectures and age of students, chosen discipline (medicine), and social drug use. The main reasons reported for missing lectures were preparing for another examination, lack of interest, lecturer's teaching style, and availability of lecture material. At Hawassa University College of Medicine and Health Science student habits and teacher performance play a role in absenteeism from lectures. A university culture that promotes discipline and integrity especially among medical and older students discourages social drug use will likely improve motivation and attendance. Training in teaching methodologies to improve the quality and delivery of lectures should also help increase attendance.

  8. Supporting Struggling Readers in Secondary School Science Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, Kelly D.; Takahashi, Kiriko; Park, Hye-Jin; Stodden, Robert A.

    2012-01-01

    Many secondary school students struggle to read complex expository text such as science textbooks. This article provides step-by-step guidance on how to foster expository reading for struggling readers in secondary school science classes. Two strategies are introduced: Text-to-Speech (TTS) Software as a reading compensatory strategy and the…

  9. Change over a service learning experience in science undergraduates' beliefs expressed about elementary school students' ability to learn science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goebel, Camille A.

    This longitudinal investigation explores the change in four (3 female, 1 male) science undergraduates' beliefs expressed about low-income elementary school students' ability to learn science. The study sought to identify how the undergraduates in year-long public school science-teaching partnerships perceived the social, cultural, and economic factors affecting student learning. Previous service-learning research infrequently focused on science undergraduates relative to science and society or detailed expressions of their beliefs and field practices over the experience. Qualitative methodology was used to guide the implementation and analysis of this study. A sample of an additional 20 science undergraduates likewise involved in intensive reflection in the service learning in science teaching (SLST) course called Elementary Science Education Partners (ESEP) was used to examine the typicality of the case participants. The findings show two major changes in science undergraduates' belief expressions: (1) a reduction in statements of beliefs from a deficit thinking perspective about the elementary school students' ability to learn science, and (2) a shift in the attribution of students, underlying problems in science learning from individual-oriented to systemic-oriented influences. Additional findings reveal that the science undergraduates perceived they had personally and profoundly changed as a result of the SLST experience. Changes include: (1) the gain of a new understanding of others' situations different from their own; (2) the realization of and appreciation for their relative positions of privilege due to their educational background and family support; (3) the gain in ability to communicate, teach, and work with others; (4) the idea that they were more socially and culturally connected to their community outside the university and their college classrooms; and (5) a broadening of the way they understood or thought about science. Women participants stated

  10. Incorporating digital technologies into science classes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hilton, Annette; Hilton, Geoff

    2013-01-01

    in science. The first case study involved primary school students (12 years old) using digital video production to record and represent their learning in science. This study extended writing-to-learn approaches to include video production to learn. The second case study involved Year 11 chemistry students...... learning. There is a need for research that examines the ways in which digital technologies impact on teaching practices and learning outcomes. This paper describes case studies from two larger studies that examined ways in which digital technologies could be used to promote students’ understanding...... for students, including increased conceptual understanding, enhanced motivation and engagement, and increased representational competence. This paper reports on the classroom strategies and teaching resources used in each case, and describes the learning outcomes for the students involved and some...

  11. Using News Media Databases (LexisNexis) To Identify Relevant Topics For Introductory Earth Science Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cervato, C.; Jach, J. Y.; Ridky, R.

    2003-12-01

    Introductory Earth science courses are undergoing pedagogical changes in universities across the country and are focusing more than ever on the non-science majors. Increasing enrollment of non-science majors in these introductory Earth science courses demands a new look at what is being taught and how the content can be objectively chosen. Assessing the content and effectiveness of these courses requires a quantitative investigation of introductory Earth science topics and their relevance to current issues and concerns. Relevance of Earth science topics can be linked to improved students' attitude toward science and a deeper understanding of concepts. We have used the Internet based national news search-engine LexisNexis Academic Universe (http://www.lexisnexis.org/) to select the occurrence of Earth science terms over the last 12 months, five and ten years both regionally and nationally. This database of term occurrences is being used to examine how Earth sciences have evolved in the news through the last 10 years and is also compared with textbook contents and course syllabi from randomly selected introductory earth science courses across the nation. These data constitute the quantitative foundation for this study and are being used to evaluate the relevance of introductory earth science course content. The relevance of introductory course content and current real-world issues to student attitudes is a crucial factor when considering changes in course curricula and pedagogy. We have examined students' conception of the nature of science and attitudes towards science and learning science using a Likert-scale assessment instrument in the fall 2002 Geology 100 classes at Iowa State University. A pre-test and post-test were administered to see if the students' attitudes changed during the semester using as reference a control group comprised of geoscience undergraduate and graduate students, and faculty. The results of the attitude survey have been analyzed in terms

  12. Effectively using urban landscapes to teach biodiversity and ecohydrology to introductory environmental science classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacAvoy, S. E.; van Doorn, A.; Pondell, C.

    2016-12-01

    Urban environments offer students interesting opportunities to explore and examine how human modified landscapes influence biodiversity, nutrient cycling, and water quality. Students demanding applied field experiences from their undergraduate environmental science (ENVS) programs can be well served in urban settings. Here, we present strategies for integrating urban areas into the undergraduate field experience. Urban locations provide an opportunity for a different type of local "field-work" than would otherwise be available. In the intro level undergraduate ENVS class, we use our campus, the surrounding neighborhood and city as well as a nearby National Park for field exercises. Activities include: assessing water quality from multiple sites, observing species composition and ecological succession using fallen logs, assessing biodiversity using biocubes and camera traps, investigating conservation strategies through the local zoo, and walking one mile transects through local urban ecosystems to observe and collect data on the animals, buildings, roads, litter and/or light sources in the surrounding area. These labs provide inspiration and hands on skills that students apply to their own self-selected projects at the end of the semester. In the second level majors class, we make use of our urban location to contrast water quality in parks and highly channelized urban streams, monitor populations of urban wildlife, and investigate the application of urban greening methods to reduce environmental impacts. Students spend labs immersed in streams and wetlands heavily impacted by the urban runoff their city generates to better understand the extent of human impact in an urban environment. Here we share lesson plans for field activities that can be completed with incoming undergraduate students, and show how these activities help students gain quantitative and investigative competency.

  13. Advancing Space Sciences through Undergraduate Research Experiences at UC Berkeley's Space Sciences Laboratory - a novel approach to undergraduate internships for first generation community college students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raftery, C. L.; Davis, H. B.; Peticolas, L. M.; Paglierani, R.

    2015-12-01

    The Space Sciences Laboratory at UC Berkeley launched an NSF-funded Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program in the summer of 2015. The "Advancing Space Sciences through Undergraduate Research Experiences" (ASSURE) program recruited heavily from local community colleges and universities, and provided a multi-tiered mentorship program for students in the fields of space science and engineering. The program was focussed on providing a supportive environment for 2nd and 3rd year undergraduates, many of whom were first generation and underrepresented students. This model provides three levels of mentorship support for the participating interns: 1) the primary research advisor provides academic and professional support. 2) The program coordinator, who meets with the interns multiple times per week, provides personal support and helps the interns to assimilate into the highly competitive environment of the research laboratory. 3) Returning undergraduate interns provided peer support and guidance to the new cohort of students. The impacts of this program on the first generation students and the research mentors, as well as the lessons learned will be discussed.

  14. Biomedical Science Undergraduate Major: A New Pathway to Advance Research and the Health Professions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gunn, John S; Ledford, Cynthia H; Mousetes, Steven J; Grever, Michael R

    2018-01-01

    Many students entering professional degree programs, particularly M.D., Ph.D., and M.D./Ph.D., are not well prepared regarding the breadth of scientific knowledge required, communication skills, research experience, reading and understanding the scientific literature, and significant shadowing (for M.D.-related professions). In addition, physician scientists are a needed and necessary part of the academic research environment but are dwindling in numbers. In response to predictions of critical shortages of clinician investigators and the lack of proper preparation as undergraduates for these professions, the Biomedical Science (BMS) undergraduate major was created at The Ohio State University to attract incoming college freshmen with interests in scientific research and the healthcare professions. The intent of this major was to graduate an elite cohort of highly talented individuals who would pursue careers in the healthcare professions, biomedical research, or both. Students were admitted to the BMS major through an application and interview process. Admitted cohorts were small, comprising 22 to 26 students, and received a high degree of individualized professional academic advising and mentoring. The curriculum included a minimum of 4 semesters (or 2 years) of supervised research experience designed to enable students to gain skills in clinical and basic science investigation. In addition to covering the prerequisites for medicine and advanced degrees in health professions, the integrated BMS coursework emphasized research literacy as well as skills related to work as a healthcare professional, with additional emphasis on independent learning, teamwork to solve complex problems, and both oral and written communication skills. Supported by Ohio State's Department of Internal Medicine, a unique clinical internship provided selected students with insights into potential careers as physician scientists. In this educational case report, we describe the BMS

  15. Middle School Students' Attitudes toward Science, Scientists, Science Teachers and Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kapici, Hasan Özgür; Akçay, Hakan

    2016-01-01

    It is an indispensable fact that having a positive attitude towards science is one of the important factors that promotes students for studying in science. The study is a kind of national study that aims to investigate middle school students', from different regions of Turkey, attitudes toward science, scientists and science classes. The study was…

  16. Informal Learning in Science, Math, and Engineering Majors for African American Female Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    McPherson, Ezella

    2014-01-01

    This research investigates how eight undergraduate African American women in science, math, and engineering (SME) majors accessed cultural capital and informal science learning opportunities from preschool to college. It uses the multiple case study methodological approach and cultural capital as frameworks to better understand the participants'…

  17. Successful Programs for Undergraduate Women in Science and Engineering: "Adapting" versus "Adopting" the Institutional Environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fox, Mary Frank; Sonnert, Gerhard; Nikiforova, Irina

    2009-01-01

    This article focuses upon programs for undergraduate women in science and engineering, which are a strategic research site in the study of gender, science, and higher education. The design involves both quantitative and qualitative approaches, linking theory, method, questions, and analyses in ways not undertaken previously. Using a comprehensive,…

  18. A Portable Bioinformatics Course for Upper-Division Undergraduate Curriculum in Sciences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Floraino, Wely B.

    2008-01-01

    This article discusses the challenges that bioinformatics education is facing and describes a bioinformatics course that is successfully taught at the California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, to the fourth year undergraduate students in biological sciences, chemistry, and computer science. Information on lecture and computer practice…

  19. Computer Literacy for Life Sciences: Helping the Digital-Era Biology Undergraduates Face Today's Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smolinski, Tomasz G.

    2010-01-01

    Computer literacy plays a critical role in today's life sciences research. Without the ability to use computers to efficiently manipulate and analyze large amounts of data resulting from biological experiments and simulations, many of the pressing questions in the life sciences could not be answered. Today's undergraduates, despite the ubiquity of…

  20. Truth in Packaging: Teaching Controversial Topics to Undergraduates in the Human Sciences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fredericks, Marcel; Miller, Steven I.

    1993-01-01

    Argues that the behavioral or "human" sciences are fundamentally different in scope and intent from the natural sciences. Describes the use of controversial topics in undergraduate courses and provides a four-step process. Recommends using Karl Popper's falsification theory to help students think critically about issues. (CFR)

  1. Teaching Scientists to Communicate: Evidence-Based Assessment for Undergraduate Science Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mercer-Mapstone, Lucy; Kuchel, Louise

    2015-01-01

    Communication skills are one of five nationally recognised learning outcomes for an Australian Bachelor of Science (BSc) degree. Previous evidence indicates that communication skills taught in Australian undergraduate science degrees are not developed sufficiently to meet the requirements of the modern-day workplace--a problem faced in the UK and…

  2. Student Perceptions of Communication Skills in Undergraduate Science at an Australian Research-Intensive University

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mercer-Mapstone, Lucy D.; Matthews, Kelly E.

    2017-01-01

    Higher education institutions globally are acknowledging the need to teach communication skills. This study used the Science Student Skills Inventory to gain insight into how science students perceive the development of communication skills across the degree programme. Responses were obtained from 635 undergraduate students enrolled in a Bachelor…

  3. Anthropogenic Climate Change in Undergraduate Marine and Environmental Science Programs in the United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vlietstra, Lucy S.; Mrakovcich, Karina L.; Futch, Victoria C.; Stutzman, Brooke S.

    2016-01-01

    To develop a context for program-level design decisions pertaining to anthropogenic climate change, the authors studied the prevalence of courses focused on human-induced climate change in undergraduate marine science and environmental science degree programs in the United States. Of the 86 institutions and 125 programs the authors examined, 37%…

  4. Incorporating Earth Science into Other High School Science Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manning, C. L. B.; Holzer, M.; Colson, M.; Courtier, A. M. B.; Jacobs, B. E.

    2016-12-01

    As states begin to review their standards, some adopt or adapt the NGSS and others write their own, many basing these on the Framework for K-12 Science Education. Both the NGSS and the Frameworks have an increased emphasis on Earth Science but many high school teachers are being asked to teach these standards in traditional Biology, Chemistry and Physics courses. At the Earth Educators Rendezvous, teachers, scientists, and science education researchers worked together to find the interconnections between the sciences using the NGSS and identified ways to reference the role of Earth Sciences in the other sciences during lectures, activities and laboratory assignments. Weaving Earth and Space sciences into the other curricular areas, the teams developed relevant problems for students to solve by focusing on using current issues, media stories, and community issues. These and other lessons and units of study will be presented along with other resources used by teachers to ensure students are gaining exposure and a deeper understanding of Earth and Space Science concepts.

  5. Science Café Course: An Innovative Means of Improving Communication Skills of Undergraduate Biology Majors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna Goldina

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available To help bridge the increasing gap between scientists and the public, we developed an innovative two-semester course, called Science Café. In this course undergraduate biology majors learn to develop communication skills to be better able to explain science concepts and current developments in science to non-scientists. Students develop and host outreach events on various topics relevant to the community, thereby increasing interactions between budding scientists and the public. Such a Science Cafe course emphasizes development of science communication skills early, at the undergraduate level and empowers students to use their science knowledge in every day interactions with the public to increase science literacy, get involved in the local community and engage the public in a dialogue on various pressing science issues. We believe that undergraduate science majors can be great ambassadors for science and are often overlooked since many aspire to go on to medical/veterinary/pharmacy schools. However, science communication skills are especially important for these types of students because when they become healthcare professionals, they will interact with the public as part of their everyday jobs and can thus be great representatives for the field.

  6. Science education in a bilingual class: problematising a translational practice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ünsal, Zeynep; Jakobson, Britt; Molander, Bengt-Olov; Wickman, Per-Olof

    2016-10-01

    In this article we examine how bilingual students construe relations between everyday language and the language of science. Studies concerning bilingual students language use in science class have mainly been conducted in settings where both the teacher and the students speak the same minority language. In this study data was collected in a class consisting of students aged 13-14. All students had Turkish as their minority language, whereas the teacher's minority language was Bosnian. The class was observed when they were working with acids and bases. In addition, the students were interviewed in groups. They were asked about how they use their languages during science lessons and then asked to describe and explain scientific phenomena and processes that had been a part of the observed lessons. For the analysis, practical epistemology analysis and the theory of translanguaging were used. The results show how the students' everyday language repertoire may limit their possibilities to make meaning of science. In particular, the teacher's practice of facilitating and supporting students' understanding of science content by relating it to concrete examples took another direction since the everyday words he used were not a part of the students' language repertoire. The study also shows how the students used their minority language as a resource to translate words from Swedish to Turkish in order to proceed with the science activities. However, translating scientific concepts was problematic and led to the students' descriptions of the concepts not being in line with how they are viewed in science. Finally, the study also demonstrates how monolingual exams may limit bilingual students' achievements in science. The study contributes by presenting and discussing circumstances that need to be taken into consideration when planning and conducting science lessons in classes where the teacher and the student do not share the same minority language.

  7. A Computer Security Course in the Undergraduate Computer Science Curriculum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spillman, Richard

    1992-01-01

    Discusses the importance of computer security and considers criminal, national security, and personal privacy threats posed by security breakdown. Several examples are given, including incidents involving computer viruses. Objectives, content, instructional strategies, resources, and a sample examination for an experimental undergraduate computer…

  8. A Social Capital Perspective on the Mentoring of Undergraduate Life Science Researchers: An Empirical Study of Undergraduate-Postgraduate-Faculty Triads.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aikens, Melissa L; Sadselia, Sona; Watkins, Keiana; Evans, Mara; Eby, Lillian T; Dolan, Erin L

    2016-01-01

    Undergraduate researchers at research universities are often mentored by graduate students or postdoctoral researchers (referred to collectively as "postgraduates") and faculty, creating a mentoring triad structure. Triads differ based on whether the undergraduate, postgraduate, and faculty member interact with one another about the undergraduate's research. Using a social capital theory framework, we hypothesized that different triad structures provide undergraduates with varying resources (e.g., information, advice, psychosocial support) from the postgraduates and/or faculty, which would affect the undergraduates' research outcomes. To test this, we collected data from a national sample of undergraduate life science researchers about their mentoring triad structure and a range of outcomes associated with research experiences, such as perceived gains in their abilities to think and work like scientists, science identity, and intentions to enroll in a PhD program. Undergraduates mentored by postgraduates alone reported positive outcomes, indicating that postgraduates can be effective mentors. However, undergraduates who interacted directly with faculty realized greater outcomes, suggesting that faculty interaction is important for undergraduates to realize the full benefits of research. The "closed triad," in which undergraduates, postgraduates, and faculty all interact directly, appeared to be uniquely beneficial; these undergraduates reported the highest gains in thinking and working like a scientist. © 2016 M. L. Aikens et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2016 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  9. Graduate teaching assistants' perceptions of teaching competencies required for work in undergraduate science labs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deacon, Christopher; Hajek, Allyson; Schulz, Henry

    2017-11-01

    Many post-secondary institutions provide training and resources to help GTAs fulfil their teaching roles. However, few programmes focus specifically on the teaching competencies required by GTAs who work with undergraduate students in laboratory settings where learning tends to be more active and inquiry based than in classroom settings. From a review of 8 GTA manuals, we identified 20 competencies and then surveyed faculty and lab coordinators (FIS) and GTAs from a Faculty of Science at a comprehensive Canadian university to identify which of those competencies are required of GTAs who work in undergraduate science labs. GTAs and FIS did not significantly differ in the competencies they view as required for GTAs to work effectively in undergraduate labs. But, when comparing the responses of GTAs and FIS to TA manuals, 'Clearly and effectively communicates ideas and information with students' was the only competency for which there was agreement on the level of requirement. We also examined GTAs' self-efficacy for each of the identified competencies and found no overall relationship between self-efficacy and demographic characteristics, including experience and training. Our results can be used to inform the design of training programmes specifically for GTAs who work in undergraduate science labs, for example, programmes should provide strategies for GTAs to obtain feedback which they can use to enhance their teaching skills. The goal of this study is to improve undergraduate lab instruction in faculties of science and to enhance the teaching experience of GTAs by better preparing them for their role.

  10. The Colorado Learning Attitudes about Science Survey (CLASS) for Use in Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Semsar, Katharine; Knight, Jennifer K.; Birol, Gülnur; Smith, Michelle K.

    2011-01-01

    This paper describes a newly adapted instrument for measuring novice-to-expert-like perceptions about biology: the Colorado Learning Attitudes about Science Survey for Biology (CLASS-Bio). Consisting of 31 Likert-scale statements, CLASS-Bio probes a range of perceptions that vary between experts and novices, including enjoyment of the discipline, propensity to make connections to the real world, recognition of conceptual connections underlying knowledge, and problem-solving strategies. CLASS-Bio has been tested for response validity with both undergraduate students and experts (biology PhDs), allowing student responses to be directly compared with a consensus expert response. Use of CLASS-Bio to date suggests that introductory biology courses have the same challenges as introductory physics and chemistry courses: namely, students shift toward more novice-like perceptions following instruction. However, students in upper-division biology courses do not show the same novice-like shifts. CLASS-Bio can also be paired with other assessments to: 1) examine how student perceptions impact learning and conceptual understanding of biology, and 2) assess and evaluate how pedagogical techniques help students develop both expertise in problem solving and an expert-like appreciation of the nature of biology. PMID:21885823

  11. The Colorado Learning Attitudes about Science Survey (CLASS) for use in Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Semsar, Katharine; Knight, Jennifer K; Birol, Gülnur; Smith, Michelle K

    2011-01-01

    This paper describes a newly adapted instrument for measuring novice-to-expert-like perceptions about biology: the Colorado Learning Attitudes about Science Survey for Biology (CLASS-Bio). Consisting of 31 Likert-scale statements, CLASS-Bio probes a range of perceptions that vary between experts and novices, including enjoyment of the discipline, propensity to make connections to the real world, recognition of conceptual connections underlying knowledge, and problem-solving strategies. CLASS-Bio has been tested for response validity with both undergraduate students and experts (biology PhDs), allowing student responses to be directly compared with a consensus expert response. Use of CLASS-Bio to date suggests that introductory biology courses have the same challenges as introductory physics and chemistry courses: namely, students shift toward more novice-like perceptions following instruction. However, students in upper-division biology courses do not show the same novice-like shifts. CLASS-Bio can also be paired with other assessments to: 1) examine how student perceptions impact learning and conceptual understanding of biology, and 2) assess and evaluate how pedagogical techniques help students develop both expertise in problem solving and an expert-like appreciation of the nature of biology.

  12. A behavioral science/behavioral medicine core curriculum proposal for Japanese undergraduate medical education

    OpenAIRE

    Tsutsumi, Akizumi

    2015-01-01

    Behavioral science and behavioral medicine have not been systematically taught to Japanese undergraduate medical students. A working group under the auspices of Japanese Society of Behavioral Medicine developed an outcome-oriented curriculum of behavioral science/behavioral medicine through three processes: identifying the curriculum contents, holding a joint symposium with related societies, and defining outcomes and proposing a learning module. The behavioral science/behavioral medicine cor...

  13. Effects of a research-infused botanical curriculum on undergraduates' content knowledge, STEM competencies, and attitudes toward plant sciences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ward, Jennifer Rhode; Clarke, H David; Horton, Jonathan L

    2014-01-01

    In response to the American Association for the Advancement of Science's Vision and Change in Undergraduate Biology Education initiative, we infused authentic, plant-based research into majors' courses at a public liberal arts university. Faculty members designed a financially sustainable pedagogical approach, utilizing vertically integrated curricular modules based on undergraduate researchers' field and laboratory projects. Our goals were to 1) teach botanical concepts, from cells to ecosystems; 2) strengthen competencies in statistical analysis and scientific writing; 3) pique plant science interest; and 4) allow all undergraduates to contribute to genuine research. Our series of inquiry-centered exercises mitigated potential faculty barriers to adopting research-rich curricula, facilitating teaching/research balance by gathering publishable scholarly data during laboratory class periods. Student competencies were assessed with pre- and postcourse quizzes and rubric-graded papers, and attitudes were evaluated with pre- and postcourse surveys. Our revised curriculum increased students' knowledge and awareness of plant science topics, improved scientific writing, enhanced statistical knowledge, and boosted interest in conducting research. More than 300 classroom students have participated in our program, and data generated from these modules' assessment allowed faculty and students to present 28 contributed talks or posters and publish three papers in 4 yr. Future steps include analyzing the effects of repeated module exposure on student learning and creating a regional consortium to increase our project's pedagogical impact. © 2014 J. R. Ward et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2014 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http

  14. Oceanography in Second Life: Use of a Virtual Reality to Enhance Undergraduate Education in Marine Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Villareal, T. A.; Jarmon, L.; Triggs, R.

    2009-12-01

    Shipboard research is a fundamental part of oceanography, but has numerous legal and practical constraints virtually eliminate it as a regular part of large-enrollment programs in marine science. The cost of a properly equipped research vessel alone can prevent student access. While much can be learned by active exploration of archived data by students, the limitations placed on real oceanographic programs by distance, vessel speed, and time are difficult to reproduce in exercises. Pre-cruise planning and collaboration between investigators are likewise a challenge to incorporate. We have used design students in the College of Liberal Arts to construct a oceanographic expedition in Second Life for use in a marine science course (Fall 2009). Second Life is a highly collaborative environment with a variety of tools that allow users to create their own environment and interact with it. Second LIfe is free, highly portable, and inherently amenable to distance or remote teaching. In our application, the research vessel exists as an moving platform with sampling abilities. Software code queries an external MySQL database that contains information from the World Ocean Atlas for the entire ocean, and returns strings of data from standard depths. Students must plan the cruise track to test hypothesis about the ocean, collaborate with other teams to develop the big picture and use standard oceanographic software (Ocean Data Viewer; ODV) to analyze the data. Access to the entire database in ODV then allows comparison to the actual properties and distributions. The effectiveness of this approach is being evaluated by a pre- and post-class surveys and post semester focus group interviews. Similar surveys of the design students that created the environment noted that use of Second Life created a learning experience that was both more immersive and process oriented than traditional college courses. Initial impressions in the marine science class indicate that the strong social

  15. 3D movies for teaching seafloor bathymetry, plate tectonics, and ocean circulation in large undergraduate classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peterson, C. D.; Lisiecki, L. E.; Gebbie, G.; Hamann, B.; Kellogg, L. H.; Kreylos, O.; Kronenberger, M.; Spero, H. J.; Streletz, G. J.; Weber, C.

    2015-12-01

    Geologic problems and datasets are often 3D or 4D in nature, yet projected onto a 2D surface such as a piece of paper or a projection screen. Reducing the dimensionality of data forces the reader to "fill in" that collapsed dimension in their minds, creating a cognitive challenge for the reader, especially new learners. Scientists and students can visualize and manipulate 3D datasets using the virtual reality software developed for the immersive, real-time interactive 3D environment at the KeckCAVES at UC Davis. The 3DVisualizer software (Billen et al., 2008) can also operate on a desktop machine to produce interactive 3D maps of earthquake epicenter locations and 3D bathymetric maps of the seafloor. With 3D projections of seafloor bathymetry and ocean circulation proxy datasets in a virtual reality environment, we can create visualizations of carbon isotope (δ13C) records for academic research and to aid in demonstrating thermohaline circulation in the classroom. Additionally, 3D visualization of seafloor bathymetry allows students to see features of seafloor most people cannot observe first-hand. To enhance lessons on mid-ocean ridges and ocean basin genesis, we have created movies of seafloor bathymetry for a large-enrollment undergraduate-level class, Introduction to Oceanography. In the past four quarters, students have enjoyed watching 3D movies, and in the fall quarter (2015), we will assess how well 3D movies enhance learning. The class will be split into two groups, one who learns about the Mid-Atlantic Ridge from diagrams and lecture, and the other who learns with a supplemental 3D visualization. Both groups will be asked "what does the seafloor look like?" before and after the Mid-Atlantic Ridge lesson. Then the whole class will watch the 3D movie and respond to an additional question, "did the 3D visualization enhance your understanding of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge?" with the opportunity to further elaborate on the effectiveness of the visualization.

  16. Air, Ocean and Climate Monitoring Enhancing Undergraduate Training in the Physical, Environmental and Computer Sciences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hope, W. W.; Johnson, L. P.; Obl, W.; Stewart, A.; Harris, W. C.; Craig, R. D.

    2000-01-01

    Faculty in the Department of Physical, Environmental and Computer Sciences strongly believe in the concept that undergraduate research and research-related activities must be integrated into the fabric of our undergraduate Science and Technology curricula. High level skills, such as problem solving, reasoning, collaboration and the ability to engage in research, are learned for advanced study in graduate school or for competing for well paying positions in the scientific community. One goal of our academic programs is to have a pipeline of research activities from high school to four year college, to graduate school, based on the GISS Institute on Climate and Planets model.

  17. When Science Studies Religion: Six Philosophy Lessons for Science Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pigliucci, Massimo

    2013-01-01

    It is an unfortunate fact of academic life that there is a sharp divide between science and philosophy, with scientists often being openly dismissive of philosophy, and philosophers being equally contemptuous of the naivete of scientists when it comes to the philosophical underpinnings of their own discipline. In this paper I explore the…

  18. Teaching Writing and Critical Thinking in Large Political Science Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franklin, Daniel; Weinberg, Joseph; Reifler, Jason

    2014-01-01

    In the interest of developing a combination of teaching techniques designed to maximize efficiency "and" quality of instruction, we have experimentally tested three separate and relatively common teaching techniques in three large introductory political science classes at a large urban public university. Our results indicate that the…

  19. Kimchi: Spicy Science for the Undergraduate Microbiology Laboratory ?

    OpenAIRE

    Young, Virginia A.; Kiefer, Adam M.

    2014-01-01

    Undergraduate microbiology courses offer a perfect opportunity to introduce students to historical food preservation processes that are still in use today. The fermentation of vegetables, as occurs in the preparation of sauerkraut and kimchi, uses an enrichment step to select for the growth of naturally occurring lactic acid bacteria (LAB).  This is an active learning exercise in which students learn a food preparation skill and basic microbiological terms such as selection and enrichment.  W...

  20. Teaching the content and context of science: The effect of using historical narratives to teach the nature of science and science content in an undergraduate introductory geology course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vanderlinden, David Winston

    This study reports the use of historically accurate narratives (short stories) to simultaneously teach geology content and the nature of science in an introductory, undergraduate geology course. The stories describe key events involved in the development of geologists' ideas about continental drift/plate tectonics and deep time/the age of the Earth. The design of the stories provides a highly contextualized setting which is designed to promote NOS and geology understanding by explicitly attending students to fundamental concepts and requiring students to reflect on the short story content. Evidence is reported to support the conclusion that students using these short stories constructed a better understanding of (1) the variety of processes involved in the construction of scientific knowledge, (2) the subjective nature of data that allows it to be interpreted differently by different scientists, and (3) the roles that culture and society play in determining the way in which scientific work is conducted and scientific ideas are constructed, while maintaining equal levels of understanding of geology content when compared to students who did not use the short stories. In some cases, students' preconceptions about objectivity in science, the degree to which scientific ideas can be considered as "proven" or "true," and the role of discovery in science appear to have adversely affected their ability to interpret the short story content in the ways intended. In addition, students' misconceptions about differences in how oceanic and continental plates were formed and geologists' use of relative and absolute dating techniques, especially the appropriate uses of radio-isotopic dating, are described. This study has implications for science instructors as they make efforts to efficiently use class time and curriculum resources to teach about the both the content and context of science and for geology instructors as they consider students' misconceptions about plate tectonics

  1. Utilization of Electronic Information Resources by Undergraduate Students of University of Ibadan: A Case Study of Social Sciences and Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Owolabi, Sola; Idowu, Oluwafemi A.; Okocha, Foluke; Ogundare, Atinuke Omotayo

    2016-01-01

    The study evaluated utilization of electronic information resources by undergraduates in the Faculties of Education and the Social Sciences in University of Ibadan. The study adopted a descriptive survey design with a study population of 1872 undergraduates in the Faculties of Education and the Social Sciences in University of Ibadan, from which a…

  2. Can a Tablet Device Alter Undergraduate Science Students' Study Behavior and Use of Technology?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morris, Neil P.; Ramsay, Luke; Chauhan, Vikesh

    2012-01-01

    This article reports findings from a study investigating undergraduate biological sciences students' use of technology and computer devices for learning and the effect of providing students with a tablet device. A controlled study was conducted to collect quantitative and qualitative data on the impact of a tablet device on students' use of…

  3. Lessons Learned from Undergraduate Students in Designing a Science-Based Course in Bioethics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loike, John D.; Rush, Brittany S.; Schweber, Adam; Fischbach, Ruth L.

    2013-01-01

    Columbia University offers two innovative undergraduate science-based bioethics courses for student majoring in biosciences and pre-health studies. The goals of these courses are to introduce future scientists and healthcare professionals to the ethical questions they will confront in their professional lives, thus enabling them to strategically…

  4. Connecting Self-Efficacy and Views about the Nature of Science in Undergraduate Research Experiences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quan, Gina M.; Elby, Andrew

    2016-01-01

    Undergraduate research can support students' more central participation in physics. We analyze markers of two coupled shifts in participation: changes in students' views about the nature of science coupled to shifts in self-efficacy toward physics research. Students in the study worked with faculty and graduate student mentors on research projects…

  5. Management Science in U.S. AACSB International-Accredited Core Undergraduate Business School Curricula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palocsay, Susan W.; Markham, Ina S.

    2014-01-01

    In 2003, accreditation standards were revised to require coverage of management science (MS) after previously removing it in 1991. Meanwhile, increasing awareness of the value of business analytics stimulated a renewed interest in MS. To examine its present status in undergraduate core business curricula, the authors conducted two studies to…

  6. Design and Evaluation of a One-Semester General Chemistry Course for Undergraduate Life Science Majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schnoebelen, Carly; Towns, Marcy H.; Chmielewski, Jean; Hrycyna, Christine A.

    2018-01-01

    The chemistry curriculum for undergraduate life science majors at Purdue University has been transformed to better meet the needs of this student population and prepare them for future success. The curriculum, called the 1-2-1 curriculum, includes four consecutive and integrated semesters of instruction in general chemistry, organic chemistry, and…

  7. Citation Behavior of Undergraduate Students: A Study of History, Political Science, and Sociology Papers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hendley, Michelle

    2012-01-01

    The goal of this analysis was to obtain local citation behavior data on undergraduates researching history, political science, and sociology papers. The study found that students cited books and journals even with the availability of web sources; however, usage varied by subject. References to specific websites' domains also varied across subject…

  8. Bridging the Gap: A Research-Based Approach for Teaching Interdisciplinary Science to Undergraduate Freshman Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sales, Jessica; Comeau, Dawn; Liddle, Kathleen; Khanna, Nikki; Perrone, Lisa; Palmer, Katrina; Lynn, David

    2006-01-01

    A new program, On Recent Discoveries by Emory Researchers (ORDER), has been developed as a bridge across the ever-widening gap between graduate and undergraduate education in the sciences. This bridge is created by merging the needs of graduate/postdoctoral students to educate more interdisciplinary scholars about their research discoveries with…

  9. Green Chemistry and Sustainability: An Undergraduate Course for Science and Nonscience Majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gross, Erin M.

    2013-01-01

    An undergraduate lecture course in Green Chemistry and Sustainability has been developed and taught to a "multidisciplinary" group of science and nonscience majors. The course introduced students to the topics of green chemistry and sustainability and also immersed them in usage of the scientific literature. Through literature…

  10. Factors Influencing Achievement in Undergraduate Social Science Research Methods Courses: A Mixed Methods Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Markle, Gail

    2017-01-01

    Undergraduate social science research methods courses tend to have higher than average rates of failure and withdrawal. Lack of success in these courses impedes students' progression through their degree programs and negatively impacts institutional retention and graduation rates. Grounded in adult learning theory, this mixed methods study…

  11. Broadening the voice of science: Promoting scientific communication in the undergraduate classroom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cirino, Lauren A; Emberts, Zachary; Joseph, Paul N; Allen, Pablo E; Lopatto, David; Miller, Christine W

    2017-12-01

    Effective and accurate communication of scientific findings is essential. Unfortunately, scientists are not always well trained in how to best communicate their results with other scientists nor do all appreciate the importance of speaking with the public. Here, we provide an example of how the development of oral communication skills can be integrated with research experiences at the undergraduate level. We describe our experiences developing, running, and evaluating a course for undergraduates that complemented their existing undergraduate research experiences with instruction on the nature of science and intensive training on the development of science communication skills. Students delivered science talks, research monologues, and poster presentations about the ecological and evolutionary research in which they were involved. We evaluated the effectiveness of our approach using the CURE survey and a focus group. As expected, undergraduates reported strong benefits to communication skills and confidence. We provide guidance for college researchers, instructors, and administrators interested in motivating and equipping the next generation of scientists to be excellent science communicators.

  12. Experiencing Wireless Sensor Network Concepts in an Undergraduate Computer Science Curriculum

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zwartjes, G.J.; van de Voort, M.; Dil, B.J.; Havinga, Paul J.M.

    2009-01-01

    Incorporating Embedded Systems courses in a general and broad Computer Science undergraduate curriculum can be a challenging task. The lack of experience with relevant tools and programming languages tends to limit the amount material that can be included in courses on this area. This, combined with

  13. Are UK undergraduate Forensic Science degrees fit for purpose?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Welsh, Charles; Hannis, Marc

    2011-09-01

    In October 2009 Skills for Justice published the social research paper 'Fit for purpose?: Research into the provision of Forensic Science degree programmes in UK Higher Education Institutions.' The research engaged employers representing 95% of UK Forensic Science providers and 79% of UK universities offering Forensic Science or Crime Scene degree programmes. In addition to this, the research collected the views of 430 students studying these degrees. In 2008 there were approximately 9000 people working in the Forensic Science sector in the UK. The research found that the numbers of students studying Forensic Science or Crime Scene degrees in the UK have more than doubled since 2002-03, from 2191 in to 5664 in 2007-08. Over the same period there were twice as many females as males studying for these degrees. The research concluded that Forensic Science degree programmes offered by UK universities were of a good quality and they provided the student with a positive learning experience but the content was not relevant for Forensic Science employers. This echoed similar research by the former Government Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills on graduates from wider science, technology, engineering and mathematics degree programmes. The research also found that 75% of students studying Forensic Science or Crime Scene degrees expected to have a career in the Forensic Science sector, meaning that ensuring these courses are relevant for employers is a key challenge for universities. This paper reflects on the original research and discusses the implications in light of recent government policy. Copyright © 2011 Forensic Science Society. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. A Guide to Undergraduate Science Course and Laboratory Improvements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Straumanis, Joan, Ed.; Watson, Robert F., Ed.

    Reported are activities carried out at colleges and universities during 1976-1980 with support from the National Science Foundation's Local Course Improvement (LOCI) and Instructional Scientific Equipment Program (ISEP). It is intended as a reference for persons interested in current course and laboratory developments in the sciences at the…

  15. Earth and Space Science Ph.D. Class of 2003 Report released

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keelor, Brad

    AGU and the American Geological Institute (AGI) released on 26 July an employment study of 180 Earth and space science Ph.D. recipients who received degrees from U.S. universities in 2003. The AGU/AGI survey asked graduates about their education and employment, efforts to find their first job after graduation, and experiences in graduate school. Key results from the study include: The vast majority (87%) of 2003 graduates found work in the Earth and space sciences, earning salaries commensurate with or slightly higher than 2001 and 2002 salary averages. Most (64%) graduates were employed within academia (including postdoctoral appointments), with the remainder in government (19%), industry (10%), and other (7%) sectors. Most graduates were positive about their employment situation and found that their work was challenging, relevant, and appropriate for someone with a Ph.D. The percentage of Ph.D. recipients accepting postdoctoral positions (58%) increased slightly from 2002. In contrast, the fields of physics and chemistry showed significant increases in postdoctoral appointments for Ph.D.s during the same time period. As in previous years, recipients of Ph.D.s in the Earth, atmospheric, and ocean sciences (median age of 32.7 years) are slightly older than Ph.D. recipients in most other natural sciences (except computer sciences), which is attributed to time taken off between undergraduate and graduate studies. Women in the Earth, atmospheric,and ocean sciences earned 33% of Ph.D.s in the class of 2003, surpassing the percentage of Ph.D.s earned by women in chemistry (32%) and well ahead of the percentage in computer sciences (20%), physics (19%), and engineering (17%). Participation of other underrepresented groups in the Earth, atmospheric, and ocean sciences remained extremely low.

  16. Kimchi: Spicy Science for the Undergraduate Microbiology Laboratory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Virginia A. Young

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Undergraduate microbiology courses offer a perfect opportunity to introduce students to historical food preservation processes that are still in use today. The fermentation of vegetables, as occurs in the preparation of sauerkraut and kimchi, uses an enrichment step to select for the growth of naturally occurring lactic acid bacteria (LAB.  This is an active learning exercise in which students learn a food preparation skill and basic microbiological terms such as selection and enrichment.  When performed in conjunction with cultured fermentations, such as yogurt making, students can see the difference between fermentations by naturally occurring microorganisms versus inoculated microorganisms. Additionally, this exercise introduces students to concepts of food safety, intrinsic factors influencing microbial growth such as pH, and cultural uses of fermentation to preserve locally available foods.

  17. Undergraduate female science-related career choices: A phenomenological study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curry, Kathy S.

    This qualitative phenomenological study used a modified Groenewald's five steps method with semi-structured, recorded, and transcribed interviews to focus on the underrepresentation of females in science-related careers. The study explored the lived experiences of a purposive sample of 25 senior female college students attending a college in Macon, Georgia. Ten major themes emerged from the research study that included (a) journey to a science-related career; (b) realization of career interest; (c) family support (d) society's role; (e) professors' treatment of students; (f) lack of mentors and models; (g) gender and career success; (h) females and other disadvantages in science-related careers; (i) rewards of the journey; and (j) advice for the journey. The three minor themes identified were (a) decision-making; (b) career awareness; and (c) guidance. The key findings revealed that females pursuing a science degree or subsequent science-related career, shared their experience with other females interested in science as a career choice, dealt with barriers standing in the way of their personal goals, lack role models, and received little or no support from family and friends. The study findings may offer information to female college students interested in pursuing science-related careers and further foundational research on gender disparities in career choice.

  18. Self Reflections of Undergraduate Students on Using Web-Supported Counterintuitive Science Demonstrations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, David Devraj; Dunn, Jessica

    2018-03-01

    Analysis of self-reflections of undergraduate education students in a project involving web-supported counterintuitive science demonstrations is reported in this paper. Participating students (N = 19) taught science with counterintuitive demonstrations in local elementary school classrooms and used web-based resources accessed via wireless USB adapters. Student reflections to seven questions were analyzed qualitatively using four components of reflection (meeting objectives/perception of learning, dynamics of pedagogy, special needs accommodations, improving teaching) deriving 27 initial data categories and 12 emergent themes. Overall the undergraduates reported meeting objectives, engaging students in pedagogically relevant learning tasks including, providing accommodations to students with special needs, and gaining practice and insight to improve their own teaching. Additional research is needed to arrive at generalizable findings concerning teaching with web-supported counterintuitive science demonstrations in elementary classrooms.

  19. How Is Science Being Taught? Measuring Evidence-Based Teaching Practices across Undergraduate Science Departments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drinkwater, Michael J.; Matthews, Kelly E.; Seiler, Jacob

    2017-01-01

    While there is a wealth of research evidencing the benefits of active-learning approaches, the extent to which these teaching practices are adopted in the sciences is not well known. The aim of this study is to establish an evidential baseline of teaching practices across a bachelor of science degree program at a large research-intensive Australian university. Our purpose is to contribute to knowledge on the adoption levels of evidence-based teaching practices by faculty within a science degree program and inform our science curriculum review in practical terms. We used the Teaching Practices Inventory (TPI) to measure the use of evidence-based teaching approaches in 129 courses (units of study) across 13 departments. We compared the results with those from a Canadian institution to identify areas in need of improvement at our institution. We applied a regression analysis to the data and found that the adoption of evidence-based teaching practices differs by discipline and is higher in first-year classes at our institution. The study demonstrates that the TPI can be used in different institutional contexts and provides data that can inform practice and policy. PMID:28232589

  20. Undergraduate Research or Research-Based Courses: Which Is Most Beneficial for Science Students?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olivares-Donoso, Ruby; González, Carlos

    2017-06-01

    Over the last 25 years, both research literature and practice-oriented reports have claimed the need for improving the quality of undergraduate science education through linking research and teaching. Two manners of doing this are reported: undergraduate research and research-based courses. Although there are studies reporting benefits of participating in these experiences, few synthesize their findings. In this article, we present a literature review aimed at synthesizing and comparing results of the impact of participating in these research experiences to establish which approach is most beneficial for students to develop as scientists. Twenty studies on student participation in undergraduate research and research-based courses were reviewed. Results show that both types of experiences have positive effects on students. These results have implications for both practice and research. Regarding practice, we propose ideas for designing and implementing experiences that combine both types of experiences. Concerning research, we identify some methodological limitations that should be addressed in further studies.

  1. A motivational account of the undergraduate experience in science: brief measures of students' self-system appraisals, engagement in coursework, and identity as a scientist

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skinner, Ellen; Saxton, Emily; Currie, Cailin; Shusterman, Gwen

    2017-11-01

    As part of long-standing efforts to promote undergraduates' success in science, researchers have investigated the instructional strategies and motivational factors that promote student learning and persistence in science coursework and majors. This study aimed to create a set of brief measures that educators and researchers can use as tools to examine the undergraduate motivational experience in science classes. To identify key motivational processes, we drew on self-determination theory (SDT), which holds that students have fundamental needs - to feel competent, related, and autonomous - that fuel their intrinsic motivation. When educational experiences meet these needs, students engage more energetically and learn more, cumulatively contributing to a positive identity as a scientist. Based on information provided by 1013 students from 8 classes in biology, chemistry, and physics, we constructed conceptually focused and psychometrically sound survey measures of three sets of motivational factors: (1) students' appraisals of their own competence, autonomy, and relatedness; (2) the quality of students' behavioural and emotional engagement in academic work; and (3) students' emerging identities as scientists, including their science identity, purpose in science, and science career plans. Using an iterative confirmatory process, we tested short item sets for unidimensionality and internal consistency, and then cross-validated them. Tests of measurement invariance showed that scales were generally comparable across disciplines. Most importantly, scales and final course grades showed correlations consistent with predictions from SDT. These measures may provide a window on the student motivational experience for educators, researchers, and interventionists who aim to improve the quality of undergraduate science teaching and learning.

  2. How Is Science Being Taught? Measuring Evidence-Based Teaching Practices across Undergraduate Science Departments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drinkwater, Michael J; Matthews, Kelly E; Seiler, Jacob

    2017-01-01

    While there is a wealth of research evidencing the benefits of active-learning approaches, the extent to which these teaching practices are adopted in the sciences is not well known. The aim of this study is to establish an evidential baseline of teaching practices across a bachelor of science degree program at a large research-intensive Australian university. Our purpose is to contribute to knowledge on the adoption levels of evidence-based teaching practices by faculty within a science degree program and inform our science curriculum review in practical terms. We used the Teaching Practices Inventory (TPI) to measure the use of evidence-based teaching approaches in 129 courses (units of study) across 13 departments. We compared the results with those from a Canadian institution to identify areas in need of improvement at our institution. We applied a regression analysis to the data and found that the adoption of evidence-based teaching practices differs by discipline and is higher in first-year classes at our institution. The study demonstrates that the TPI can be used in different institutional contexts and provides data that can inform practice and policy. © 2017 M. J. Drinkwater et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2017 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  3. Impact of Undergraduate Research Mentorship Affects on Student Desire, Confidence and Motivation to Continue Work in Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salm, Ann E.

    2015-01-01

    The quantitative Undergraduate Research Questionnaire (URQ) is used to assess the impact of undergraduate research mentorship affects, such as informal conversations, supportive faculty and/or peer interactions, on student confidence and motivation to continue working, learning or researching in the sciences (Taraban & Logue, 2012). Research…

  4. Cross-disciplinary thermoregulation and sweat analysis laboratory experiences for undergraduate Chemistry and Exercise Science students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mulligan, Gregory; Taylor, Nichole; Glen, Mary; Tomlin, Dona; Gaul, Catherine A

    2011-06-01

    Cross-disciplinary (CD) learning experiences benefit student understanding of concepts and curriculum by offering opportunities to explore topics from the perspectives of alternate fields of study. This report involves a qualitative evaluation of CD health sciences undergraduate laboratory experiences in which concepts and students from two distinct disciplines [chemistry (CHEM) and exercise physiology (EPHE)] combined to study exercise thermoregulation and sweat analysis. Twenty-eight senior BSc Kinesiology (EPHE) students and 42 senior BSc CHEM students participated as part of their mutually exclusive, respective courses. The effectiveness of this laboratory environment was evaluated qualitatively using written comments collected from all students as well as from formal focus groups conducted after the CD laboratory with a representative cohort from each class (n = 16 CHEM students and 9 EPHE students). An open coding strategy was used to analyze the data from written feedback and focus group transcripts. Coding topics were generated and used to develop five themes found to be consistent for both groups of students. These themes reflected the common student perceptions that the CD experience was valuable and that students enjoyed being able to apply academic concepts to practical situations as well as the opportunity to interact with students from another discipline of study. However, students also reported some challenges throughout this experience that stemmed from the combination of laboratory groups from different disciplines with limited modification to the design of the original, pre-CD, learning environments. The results indicate that this laboratory created an effective learning opportunity that fostered student interest and enthusiasm for learning. The findings also provide information that could inform subsequent design and implementation of similar CD experiences to enhance engagement of all students and improve instructor efficacy.

  5. Science as a general education: Conceptual science should constitute the compulsory core of multi-disciplinary undergraduate degrees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Charlton, Bruce G

    2006-01-01

    It is plausible to assume that in the future science will form the compulsory core element both of school curricula and multi-disciplinary undergraduate degrees. But for this to happen entails a shift in the emphasis and methods of science teaching, away from the traditional concern with educating specialists and professionals. Traditional science teaching was essentially vocational, designed to provide precise and comprehensive scientific knowledge for practical application. By contrast, future science teaching will be a general education, hence primarily conceptual. Its aim should be to provide an education in flexible rationality. Vocational science teaching was focused on a single-discipline undergraduate degree, but a general education in abstract systematic thinking is best inculcated by studying several scientific disciplines. In this sense, 'science' is understood as mathematics and the natural sciences, but also the abstract and systematic aspects of disciplines such as economics, linguistics, music theory, history, sociology, political science and management science. Such a wide variety of science options in a multi-disciplinary degree will increase the possibility of student motivation and aptitude. Specialist vocational science education will progressively be shifted to post-graduate level, in Masters and Doctoral programs. A multi-disciplinary and conceptually-based science core curriculum should provide an appropriate preparation for dealing with the demands of modern societies; their complex and rapidly changing social systems; and the need for individual social and professional mobility. Training in rational conceptual thinking also has potential benefits to human health and happiness, since it allows people to over-ride inappropriate instincts, integrate conflicting desires and pursue long-term goals.

  6. Do Biology Students Really Hate Math? Empirical Insights into Undergraduate Life Science Majors' Emotions about Mathematics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wachsmuth, Lucas P; Runyon, Christopher R; Drake, John M; Dolan, Erin L

    2017-01-01

    Undergraduate life science majors are reputed to have negative emotions toward mathematics, yet little empirical evidence supports this. We sought to compare emotions of majors in the life sciences versus other natural sciences and math. We adapted the Attitudes toward the Subject of Chemistry Inventory to create an Attitudes toward the Subject of Mathematics Inventory (ASMI). We collected data from 359 science and math majors at two research universities and conducted a series of statistical tests that indicated that four AMSI items comprised a reasonable measure of students' emotional satisfaction with math. We then compared life science and non-life science majors and found that major had a small to moderate relationship with students' responses. Gender also had a small relationship with students' responses, while students' race, ethnicity, and year in school had no observable relationship. Using latent profile analysis, we identified three groups-students who were emotionally satisfied with math, emotionally dissatisfied with math, and neutral. These results and the emotional satisfaction with math scale should be useful for identifying differences in other undergraduate populations, determining the malleability of undergraduates' emotional satisfaction with math, and testing effects of interventions aimed at improving life science majors' attitudes toward math. © 2017 L.P. Wachsmuth et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2017 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  7. Persistence of deaf students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics undergraduate programs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marchut, Amber E.

    Diversifying the student population and workforce under science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) is a necessity if innovations and creativity are to expand. There has not been a lot of literature regarding Deaf students in STEM especially regarding understanding how they persist in STEM undergraduate programs to successfully become STEM Bachelor of Science degree recipients. This study addresses the literature gap by investigating six students' experiences as they navigate their STEM undergraduate programs. The investigation uses narrative inquiry methodology and grounded theory method through the lens of Critical Race Theory and Critical Deaf Theory. Using videotaped interviews and observations, their experiences are highlighted using narratives portraying them as individuals surviving in a society that tends to perceive being deaf as a deficit that needs to be treated or cured. The data analysis also resulted in a conceptual model providing a description of how they persist. The crucial aspect of the conceptual model is the participants learned how to manage being deaf in a hearing-dominated society so they can reach their aspirations. The essential blocks for the persistence and managing their identities as deaf undergraduate STEMs include working harder, relying on familial support, and affirming themselves. Through the narratives and conceptual model of the six Deaf STEM undergraduates, the goal is to contribute to literature to promote a better understanding of the persistence of Deaf students, members of a marginalized group, as they pursue their dreams.

  8. A Blueprint for Expanding the Mentoring Networks of Undergraduate Women in the Earth and Environmental Sciences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fischer, E. V.; Adams, A. S.; Barnes, R.; Bloodhart, B.; Burt, M. A.; Clinton, S. M.; Godfrey, E. S.; Pollack, I. B.; Hernandez, P. R.

    2017-12-01

    Women are substantially underrepresented in the earth and environmental sciences, and that underrepresentation begins at the undergraduate level. In fall 2015, an interdisciplinary team including expertise in the broader geosciences as well as gender and quantitative educational psychology began a project focused on understanding whether mentoring can increase the interest, persistence, and achievement of undergraduate women in the geosciences. The program focuses on mentoring 1st and 2nd year female undergraduate students from five universities in Colorado and Wyoming and four universities in North and South Carolina. The mentoring program includes a weekend workshop, access to professional women across geoscience fields, and both in-person and virtual peer networks. We have found that undergraduate women with large mentoring networks, that include faculty mentors, are more likely to identify as scientists and are more committed to pursuing the geosciences. Our presentation will provide an overview of the major components of our effective and scalable program. We will include a discussion of our first published results in the context of larger social science research on how to foster effective mentoring relationships. We will offer a list of successes and challenges, and we will provide the audience with online links to the materials needed to adopt our model (https://geosciencewomen.org/materials/).

  9. Lecturing undergraduate science in Danish and in English

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thøgersen, Jacob; Airey, John

    2011-01-01

    formal and condensed style as compared to the rhetorical style in L1. Finally, the potential consequences of these quantitative and qualitative differences for student learning are discussed. Research highlights ¿ We analyse five science lectures: three in Danish (L1) and two in English (L2). ¿ The same...

  10. Social Networking among Library and Information Science Undergraduate Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alakpodia, Onome Norah

    2015-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine social networking use among Library and Information Science students of the Delta State University, Abraka. In this study, students completed a questionnaire which assessed their familiarity with social networking sites, the purpose for which they use social networking site and their most preferred sites to…

  11. Transferable skills of undergraduates of sciences and arts at Taibah ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    DELL

    compared Arts and Science students in these skills, there were significant ... central to occupational competence in all sectors and all levels, including project management, leadership, communication, working in teams and problem solving. ..... France has initiated various reforms, one of which established 'doctoral schools' ...

  12. The Genomics Education Partnership: Successful Integration of Research into Laboratory Classes at a Diverse Group of Undergraduate Institutions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shaffer, Christopher D.; Alvarez, Consuelo; Bailey, Cheryl; Barnard, Daron; Bhalla, Satish; Chandrasekaran, Chitra; Chandrasekaran, Vidya; Chung, Hui-Min; Dorer, Douglas R.; Du, Chunguang; Eckdahl, Todd T.; Poet, Jeff L.; Frohlich, Donald; Goodman, Anya L.; Gosser, Yuying; Hauser, Charles; Hoopes, Laura L.M.; Johnson, Diana; Jones, Christopher J.; Kaehler, Marian; Kokan, Nighat; Kopp, Olga R.; Kuleck, Gary A.; McNeil, Gerard; Moss, Robert; Myka, Jennifer L.; Nagengast, Alexis; Morris, Robert; Overvoorde, Paul J.; Shoop, Elizabeth; Parrish, Susan; Reed, Kelynne; Regisford, E. Gloria; Revie, Dennis; Rosenwald, Anne G.; Saville, Ken; Schroeder, Stephanie; Shaw, Mary; Skuse, Gary; Smith, Christopher; Smith, Mary; Spana, Eric P.; Spratt, Mary; Stamm, Joyce; Thompson, Jeff S.; Wawersik, Matthew; Wilson, Barbara A.; Youngblom, Jim; Leung, Wilson; Buhler, Jeremy; Mardis, Elaine R.; Lopatto, David

    2010-01-01

    Genomics is not only essential for students to understand biology but also provides unprecedented opportunities for undergraduate research. The goal of the Genomics Education Partnership (GEP), a collaboration between a growing number of colleges and universities around the country and the Department of Biology and Genome Center of Washington University in St. Louis, is to provide such research opportunities. Using a versatile curriculum that has been adapted to many different class settings, GEP undergraduates undertake projects to bring draft-quality genomic sequence up to high quality and/or participate in the annotation of these sequences. GEP undergraduates have improved more than 2 million bases of draft genomic sequence from several species of Drosophila and have produced hundreds of gene models using evidence-based manual annotation. Students appreciate their ability to make a contribution to ongoing research, and report increased independence and a more active learning approach after participation in GEP projects. They show knowledge gains on pre- and postcourse quizzes about genes and genomes and in bioinformatic analysis. Participating faculty also report professional gains, increased access to genomics-related technology, and an overall positive experience. We have found that using a genomics research project as the core of a laboratory course is rewarding for both faculty and students. PMID:20194808

  13. Undergraduate Students as Co-Producers in the Creation of First-Year Practical Class Resources

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hubbard, Katharine E.; Brown, Rachel; Deans, Sam; García, María Paz; Pruna, Mihai-Grigore; Mason, Matthew J.

    2017-01-01

    Undergraduate students are increasingly working with academic staff to evaluate and design teaching materials in Higher Education, thereby moving from being passive consumers of knowledge to genuine partners in their education. Here we describe a student partnership project run at the University of Cambridge, which aimed to improve undergraduate…

  14. Class and Home Problems: Modeling of an Industrial Anaerobic Digester: A Case Study for Undergraduate Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durruty, Ignacio; Ayude, María A.

    2014-01-01

    The case study discussed in this work is used at the chemical reaction engineering course, offered in fifth-year of the chemical engineering undergraduate program at National University of Mar del Plata (UNMdP). A serial-parallel reaction system based on the anaerobic degradation of particulate-containing potato processing wastewater is presented.…

  15. Creating Significant Learning Experiences in a Large Undergraduate Psychology Class: A Pilot Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fallahi, Carolyn R.; LaMonaca, Frank H., Jr.

    2009-01-01

    The authors redesigned a Lifespan Development course using Fink's (2003) taxonomy of significant learning and measured changes across his six domains: Knowledge, Application, Integration, Human Dimension, Caring, and Learning How to Learn. Using case studies and group work, 151 undergraduates completed identical pre- and post-tests that measured…

  16. Do Biology Students Really Hate Math? Empirical Insights into Undergraduate Life Science Majors’ Emotions about Mathematics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wachsmuth, Lucas P.; Runyon, Christopher R.; Drake, John M.; Dolan, Erin L.

    2017-01-01

    Undergraduate life science majors are reputed to have negative emotions toward mathematics, yet little empirical evidence supports this. We sought to compare emotions of majors in the life sciences versus other natural sciences and math. We adapted the Attitudes toward the Subject of Chemistry Inventory to create an Attitudes toward the Subject of Mathematics Inventory (ASMI). We collected data from 359 science and math majors at two research universities and conducted a series of statistical tests that indicated that four AMSI items comprised a reasonable measure of students’ emotional satisfaction with math. We then compared life science and non–life science majors and found that major had a small to moderate relationship with students’ responses. Gender also had a small relationship with students’ responses, while students’ race, ethnicity, and year in school had no observable relationship. Using latent profile analysis, we identified three groups—students who were emotionally satisfied with math, emotionally dissatisfied with math, and neutral. These results and the emotional satisfaction with math scale should be useful for identifying differences in other undergraduate populations, determining the malleability of undergraduates’ emotional satisfaction with math, and testing effects of interventions aimed at improving life science majors’ attitudes toward math. PMID:28798211

  17. [Undergraduate and postgraduate studies in the biological sciences in Chile (1985)].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niemeyer, H

    1986-01-01

    A study group of scientists was convened by the Sociedad de Biología de Chile (Biological Society of Chile) and the Regional Program for Graduate Training in Biological Sciences, PNUD-Unesco, RLA 78/024, to assess undergraduate and graduate studies in life sciences in Chile. The group presented this report at the 28th Annual Meeting of the Society. Discussion centered on the features that should characterize the studies leading to the academic degrees of Licenciado (Licenciate), Magíster (Master) and Doctor (Ph. D) in Sciences, and also on the qualifications that the universities should satisfy in order to grant them. After analyzing the present situation of undergraduate and graduate studies in Biological Sciences in Chilean universities, the group made the following main suggestions: 1. It is recommended that Chilean universities agree on a 4-year plan for the Licenciado degree, without the requirement of a thesis. The importance of providing the students with good laboratory exercises and field experience and with the opportunity to perform short research projects is stressed. In addition, a sound theoretical training on mathematics, physics and chemistry in the education of a modern Biologist is important. Licenciate studies ought to be the basis for professional careers and the universities should offer to the Licenciados free access to their professional schools. 2. It is considered appropriate for Chile and its universities to develop graduate programs in those disciplines that have reached a level of excellence. To accomplish this aim, adequate finance of the universities is necessary to permit them to provide the essential facilities for doing research, and to create a wide system of fellowships for graduate students. Direct government support for research and graduate student fellowships is requested. 3. Research experience of the kind needed for the preparation of a doctoral thesis is recommended as the academic level appropriate for those engaged in

  18. Critical Science Education in a Suburban High School Chemistry Class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ashby, Patrick

    To improve students' scientific literacy and their general perceptions of chemistry, I enacted critical chemistry education (CCE) in two "regular level" chemistry classes with a group of 25 students in a suburban, private high school as part of this study. CCE combined the efforts of critical science educators (Fusco & Calabrese Barton, 2001; Gilbert 2013) with the performance expectations of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) (NGSS Lead States, 2013a) to critically transform the traditional chemistry curriculum at this setting. Essentially, CCE engages students in the critical exploration of socially situated chemistry content knowledge and requires them to demonstrate this knowledge through the practices of science. The purpose of this study was to gauge these students development of chemistry content knowledge, chemistry interest, and critical scientific literacy (CSL) as they engaged in CCE. CSL was a construct developed for this study that necessarily combined the National Research Center's (2012) definition of scientific literacy with a critical component. As such, CSL entailed demonstrating content knowledge through the practices of science as well as the ability to critically analyze the intersections between science content and socially relevant issues. A mixed methods, critical ethnographic approach framed the collection of data from open-ended questionnaires, focus group interviews, Likert surveys, pre- and post unit tests, and student artifacts. These data revealed three main findings: (1) students began to develop CSL in specific, significant ways working through the activities of CCE, (2) student participants of CCE developed a comparable level of chemistry content understanding to students who participated in a traditional chemistry curriculum, and (3) CCE developed a group of students' perceptions of interest in chemistry. In addition to being able to teach students discipline specific content knowledge, the implications of this study are

  19. Longitudinal effects of college type and selectivity on degrees conferred upon undergraduate females in physical science, life science, math and computer science, and social science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stevens, Stacy Mckimm

    There has been much research to suggest that a single-sex college experience for female undergraduate students can increase self-confidence and leadership ability during the college years and beyond. The results of previous studies also suggest that these students achieve in the workforce and enter graduate school at higher rates than their female peers graduating from coeducational institutions. However, some researchers have questioned these findings, suggesting that it is the selectivity level of the colleges rather than the comprised gender of the students that causes these differences. The purpose of this study was to justify the continuation of single-sex educational opportunities for females at the post-secondary level by examining the effects that college selectivity, college type, and time have on the rate of undergraduate females pursuing majors in non-traditional fields. The study examined the percentage of physical science, life science, math and computer science, and social science degrees conferred upon females graduating from women's colleges from 1985-2001, as compared to those at comparable coeducational colleges. Sampling for this study consisted of 42 liberal arts women's (n = 21) and coeducational (n = 21) colleges. Variables included the type of college, the selectivity level of the college, and the effect of time on the percentage of female graduates. Doubly multivariate repeated measures analysis of variance testing revealed significant main effects for college selectivity on social science graduates, and time on both life science and math and computer science graduates. Significant interaction was also found between the college type and time on social science graduates, as well as the college type, selectivity level, and time on math and computer science graduates. Implications of the results and suggestions for further research are discussed.

  20. Of responsible research-Exploring the science-society dialogue in undergraduate training within the life sciences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almeida, Maria Strecht; Quintanilha, Alexandre

    2017-01-02

    We explore the integration of societal issues in undergraduate training within the life sciences. Skills in thinking about science, scientific knowledge production and the place of science in society are crucial in the context of the idea of responsible research and innovation. This idea became institutionalized and it is currently well-present in the scientific agenda. Developing abilities in this regard seems particularly relevant to training in the life sciences, as new developments in this area somehow evoke the involvement of all of us citizens, our engagement to debate and take part in processes of change. The present analysis draws from the implementation of a curricular unit focused on science-society dialogue, an optional course included in the Biochemistry Degree study plan offered at the University of Porto. This curricular unit was designed to be mostly an exploratory activity for the students, enabling them to undertake in-depth study in areas/topics of their specific interest. Mapping topics from students' final papers provided a means of analysis and became a useful tool in the exploratory collaborative construction of the course. We discuss both the relevance and the opportunity of thinking and questioning the science-society dialogue. As part of undergraduate training, this pedagogical practice was deemed successful. © 2016 by The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 45(1):46-52, 2017. © 2016 The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

  1. Radiochemistry course in the undergraduate nuclear science program at Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sarmani, S.B.; Yahaya, R.B.; Yasir, M.S.; Majid, A.Ab.; Khoo, K.S.; Rahman, I.A.; Mohamed, F.

    2015-01-01

    Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia offered an undergraduate degree program in Nuclear Science since 1980 and the programme has undergone several modifications due to changes in national policy and priority. The programme covers nuclear sub-disciplines such as nuclear physics, radiobiology, radiochemistry, radiation chemistry and radiation safety. The radiochemistry component consists of radiochemistry, chemistry in nuclear industry, radiochemical analysis laboratory, radiopharmaceutical chemistry subjects and mini research project in radiochemistry. (author)

  2. INTRODUCING SCIENCE BY DISTANCE EDUCATION TO UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. Avila Jr.

    2007-05-01

    Full Text Available Exponential growing of scientific and technological knowledge of nowadayssociety demands new abilities and competences of theirs citizens. In the otherhand, the development of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTsand the low cost of equipments provide a new teaching strategy, namely distanceeducation, through intranet or internet. The familiarity with of scientific methodstimulates autonomy in obtaining information, critical thinking and logical analysisof data. These are useful abilities for science students as well as for commoncitizens. Aiming the development of such abilities a distance course wasdeveloped in 45 hours, using mainly forum and chat in the Claroline platform withtechnical support of the Centro Nacional de Supercomputação da UFRGS. All thestudents attending the course were from Fundação Faculdade Federal deCiências Médicas de Porto Alegre. In this course the following topics wereexplored: (1 scientific knowledge x common sense, (2 different conceptions ofscience, (3 scientific method, (4 different categories of science publications, (5principles of Logic, (6 deduction x induction (7 paper analysis simulation.Scientific project writing was taught/learned through the following items: (1 choiceof a problem, (2 bibliography revision, (3 agencies for funding, (4 projectpresentation by videoconference and (5 analysis of results.The course was evaluated by Likert-type questionnaire and the results fromstudents and teachers indicate a very successful outcome.

  3. Using Quality Circles to Enhance Student Involvement and Course Quality in a Large Undergraduate Food Science and Human Nutrition Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmidt, S. J.; Parmer, M. S.; Bohn, D. M.

    2005-01-01

    Large undergraduate classes are a challenge to manage, to engage, and to assess, yet such formidable classes can flourish when student participation is facilitated. One method of generating authentic student involvement is implementation of quality circles by means of a Student Feedback Committee (SFC), which is a volunteer problem-solving and…

  4. Do Biology Students Really Hate Math? Empirical Insights into Undergraduate Life Science Majors' Emotions about Mathematics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wachsmuth, Lucas P.; Runyon, Christopher R.; Drake, John M.; Dolan, Erin L.

    2017-01-01

    Undergraduate life science majors are reputed to have negative emotions toward mathematics, yet little empirical evidence supports this. We sought to compare emotions of majors in the life sciences versus other natural sciences and math. We adapted the Attitudes toward the Subject of Chemistry Inventory to create an Attitudes toward the Subject of…

  5. Exploration of the lived experiences of undergraduate science, technology, engineering, and mathematics minority students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Snead-McDaniel, Kimberly

    An expanding ethnicity gap exists in the number of students pursuing science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) careers in the United States. The National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering revealed that the number of minorities pursuing STEM degrees and careers has declined over the past few years. The specific origins of this trend are not quite evident; one variable to consider is that undergraduate minority students are failing in STEM disciplines at various levels of education from elementary to postsecondary. The failure of female and minority students to enter STEM disciplines in higher education have led various initiatives to establish programs to promote STEM disciplines among these groups. Additional funding for minority STEM programs have led to a increase in undergraduate minority students entering STEM disciplines, but the minority students' graduation rate in STEM disciplines is approximately 7% lower than the graduation of nonminority students in STEM disciplines. This phenomenological qualitative research study explores the lived experiences of underrepresented minority undergraduate college students participating in an undergraduate minority-mentoring program. The following nine themes emerged from the study: (a) competitiveness, (b) public perception, (c) dedication, (d) self-perception, (e) program activities, (f) time management, (g) exposure to career and graduate opportunities, (h) rigor in the curriculum, and (i) peer mentoring. The themes provided answers and outcomes to better support a stronger minority representation in STEM disciplines.

  6. Students' Perceptions of an Applied Research Experience in an Undergraduate Exercise Science Course.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pearson, Regis C; Crandall, K Jason; Dispennette, Kathryn; Maples, Jill M

    2017-01-01

    Applied research experiences can provide numerous benefits to undergraduate students, however few studies have assessed the perceptions of Exercise Science (EXS) students to an applied research experience. The purpose of this study was two-fold: 1) to describe the rationale and implementation of an applied research experience into an EXS curriculum and 2) to evaluate EXS undergraduate students' perceptions of an applied research experience. An EXS measurement course was chosen for implementation of an applied research experience. The applied research experience required groups of students to design, implement, and evaluate a student-led research project. Fourteen questions were constructed, tailored to EXS undergraduate students, to assess students' perceptions of the experience. Qualitative analysis was used for all applicable data, with repeated trends noted; quantitative data were collapsed to determine frequencies. There was an overall positive student perception of the experience and 85.7% of students agreed an applied research experience should be continued. 84.7% of students perceived the experience as educationally enriching, while 92.8% reported the experience was academically challenging. This experience allowed students to develop comprehensive solutions to problems that arose throughout the semester; while facilitating communication, collaboration, and problem solving. Students believed research experiences were beneficial, but could be time consuming when paired with other responsibilities. Results suggest an applied research experience has the potential to help further the development of EXS undergraduate students. Understanding student perceptions of an applied research experience may prove useful to faculty interested in engaging students in the research process.

  7. Undergraduates' Attitudes Toward Science and Their Epistemological Beliefs: Positive Effects of Certainty and Authority Beliefs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fulmer, Gavin W.

    2014-02-01

    Attitudes toward science are an important aspect of students' persistence in school science and interest in pursuing future science careers, but students' attitudes typically decline over the course of formal schooling. This study examines relationships of students' attitudes toward science with their perceptions of science as inclusive or non-religious, and their epistemological beliefs about epistemic authority and certainty. Data were collected using an online survey system among undergraduates at a large, public US university (n = 582). Data were prepared using a Rasch rating scale model and then analyzed using multiple-regression analysis. Gender and number of science and mathematics courses were included as control variables, followed by perceptions of science, then epistemological beliefs. Findings show that respondents have more positive attitudes when they perceive science to be inclusive of women and minorities, and when they perceive science to be incompatible with religion. Respondents also have more positive attitudes toward science when they believe scientific knowledge is uncertain, and when they believe knowledge derives from authority. Interpretations of these findings and implications for future research are discussed.

  8. Introducing Taiwanese undergraduate students to the nature of science through Nobel Prize stories

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Haim Eshach

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Although there is a broad agreement among scientists and science educators that students should not only learn science, but also acquire some sense of its nature, it has been reported that undergraduate students possess an inadequate grasp of the nature of science (NOS. The study presented here examined the potential and effectiveness of Nobel Prize stories as a vehicle for teaching NOS. For this purpose, a 36-hour course, “Albert Einstein’s Nobel Prize and the Nature of Science,” was developed and conducted in Taiwan Normal University. Ten undergraduate physics students participated in the course. Analysis of the Views of Nature of Science questionnaires completed by the students before and after the course, as well as the students’ own presentations of Nobel Prize stories (with an emphasis on how NOS characteristics are reflected in the story, showed that the students who participated in the course enriched their views concerning all aspects of NOS. The paper concludes with some suggestions for applying the novel idea of using Nobel Prize stories in physics classrooms.

  9. Science of health care delivery milestones for undergraduate medical education.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Havyer, Rachel D; Norby, Suzanne M; Leep Hunderfund, Andrea N; Starr, Stephanie R; Lang, Tara R; Wolanskyj, Alexandra P; Reed, Darcy A

    2017-08-25

    The changing healthcare landscape requires physicians to develop new knowledge and skills such as high-value care, systems improvement, population health, and team-based care, which together may be referred to as the Science of Health Care Delivery (SHCD). To engender public trust and confidence, educators must be able to meaningfully assess physicians' abilities in SHCD. We aimed to develop a novel set of SHCD milestones based on published Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) milestones that can be used by medical schools to assess medical students' competence in SHCD. We reviewed all ACGME milestones for 25 specialties available in September 2013. We used an iterative, qualitative process to group the ACGME milestones into SHCD content domains, from which SHCD milestones were derived. The SHCD milestones were categorized within the current ACGME core competencies and were also mapped to Association of American Medical Colleges' Entrustable Professional Activities (AAMC EPAs). Fifteen SHCD sub-competencies and corresponding milestones are provided, grouped within ACGME core competencies and mapped to multiple AAMC EPAs. This novel set of milestones, grounded within the existing ACGME competencies, defines fundamental expectations within SHCD that can be used and adapted by medical schools in the assessment of medical students in this emerging curricular area. These milestones provide a blueprint for SHCD content and assessment as ongoing revisions to milestones and curricula occur.

  10. Geography, Resources, and Environment of Latin America: An Undergraduate Science Course focused on Attracting Hispanic students to Science and on Educating Non-Hispanics about Latin America.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pujana, I.; Stern, R. J.; Ledbetter, C. E.

    2004-12-01

    . The course was taught in 2003 to 8 students and is being taught this Fall to 10. Lecture materials are distributed to the class as a series of PowerPoint presentations. Assessment of the course has been favorable, but the lack of a suitable text is a problem. Development of a GRELA textbook, perhaps in Spanish as well as in English, is essential for broad dissemination of a course like this, which is designed to introduce modern scientific observations to an undergraduate audience that is often not comfortable with science. We believe that the general approach and topics covered have great potential to stimulate the scientific interest of Hispanic undergraduates and that developing a GRELA text is essential for widespread adoption of this course.

  11. Identifying Pre-High School Students' Science Class Motivation Profiles to Increase Their Science Identification and Persistence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chittum, Jessica R.; Jones, Brett D.

    2017-01-01

    One purpose of this study was to determine whether patterns existed in pre-high school students' motivation-related perceptions of their science classes. Another purpose was to examine the extent to which these patterns were related to their science identification, gender, grade level, class effort, and intentions to persist in science. We…

  12. Nature of Science Lessons, Argumentation and Scientific Discussions among Students in Science Class: A Case Study in a Successful School

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ozturk, Elif; Ucus, Sukran

    2015-01-01

    Argumentation is highlighted as one of the most important activities of science education by many researchers. The main aim of this research is to examine primary school students' nature of science classes and argumentation skills in terms of their academic success in primary science classes. Thus, the main interest of the study is centered on the…

  13. Nature of Science Lessons, Argumentation and Scientific Discussions among Students in Science Classes: A Case Study in a Successful School

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ozturk, Elif; Ucus, Sukran

    2015-01-01

    Argumentation is highlighted as one of the most important activities of science education by many researchers. The main aim of this research is to examine primary school students' nature of science classes and argumentation skills in terms of their academic success in primary science classes. Thus, the main interest of the study is centered on the…

  14. Adherence and perceptions regarding simulation training in undergraduate health Sciences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fernando Perpétuo Elias

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Simulation techniques are spreading rapidly in medicine. Suc h resources are increasingly concentrated in Simulation Laboratories. The MSRP-USP is structuring such a laboratory and is interested in the prevalence of individual initiatives that could be centralized there. The MSRP-USP currently has five full-curriculum courses in the health sciences: Medicine, Speech Therapy, Physical Therapy, Nutrition, and Occupational Therapy, all consisting of core disciplines. GOAL: To determine the prevalence of simulation techniques in the regular courses at MSRP-USP. METHODS: Coordinators of disciplines in the various courses were interviewed using a specifically designed semi-structured questionnaire, and all the collected data were stored in a dedicated database. The disciplines were grouped according to whether they used (GI or did not use (GII simulation resources. RESULTS AND DISCUSSION: 256 disciplines were analyzed, of which only 18.3% used simulation techniques, varying according to course: Medicine (24.7.3%, Occupational Therapy (23.0%, Nutrition (15.9%, Physical Therapy (9.8%, and Speech Therapy (9.1%. Computer simulation programs predominated (42.5% in all five courses. The resources were provided mainly by MSRP-USP (56.3%, with additional funding coming from other sources based on individual initiatives. The same pattern was observed for maintenance. There was great interest in centralizing the resources in the new Simulation Laboratory in order to facilitate maintenance, but there was concern about training and access to the material. CONCLUSIONS: 1 The MSRP-USP simulation resources show low complexity and are mainly limited to computer programs; 2 Use of simulation varies according to course, and is most prevalent in Medicine; 3 Resources are scattered across several locations, and their acquisition and maintenance depend on individual initiatives rather than central coordination or curricular guidelines

  15. Clinical medical sciences for undergraduate dental students in the United Kingdom and Ireland - a curriculum.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Mighell, A J

    2011-08-01

    The technical aspects of dentistry need to be practised with insight into the spectrum of human diseases and illnesses and how these impact upon individuals and society. Application of this insight is critical to decision-making related to the planning and delivery of safe and appropriate patient-centred healthcare tailored to the needs of the individual. Provision for the necessary training is included in undergraduate programmes, but in the United Kingdom and Ireland there is considerable variation between centres without common outcomes. In 2009 representatives from 17 undergraduate dental schools in the United Kingdom and Ireland agreed to move towards a common, shared approach to meet their own immediate needs and that might also be of value to others in keeping with the Bologna Process. To provide a clear identity the term \\'Clinical Medical Sciences in Dentistry\\' was agreed in preference to other names such as \\'Human Disease\\' or \\'Medicine and Surgery\\'. The group was challenged to define consensus outcomes. Contemporary dental education documents informed, but did not drive the process. The consensus curriculum for undergraduate Clinical Medical Sciences in Dentistry teaching agreed by the participating centres is reported. Many of the issues are generic and it includes elements that are likely to be applicable to others. This document will act as a focus for a more unified approach to the outcomes required by graduates of the participating centres and act as a catalyst for future developments that ultimately aim to enhance the quality of patient care.

  16. Can a tablet device alter undergraduate science students' study behavior and use of technology?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morris, Neil P; Ramsay, Luke; Chauhan, Vikesh

    2012-06-01

    This article reports findings from a study investigating undergraduate biological sciences students' use of technology and computer devices for learning and the effect of providing students with a tablet device. A controlled study was conducted to collect quantitative and qualitative data on the impact of a tablet device on students' use of devices and technology for learning. Overall, we found that students made extensive use of the tablet device for learning, using it in preference to laptop computers to retrieve information, record lectures, and access learning resources. In line with other studies, we found that undergraduate students only use familiar Web 2.0 technologies and that the tablet device did not alter this behavior for the majority of tools. We conclude that undergraduate science students can make extensive use of a tablet device to enhance their learning opportunities without institutions changing their teaching methods or computer systems, but that institutional intervention may be needed to drive changes in student behavior toward the use of novel Web 2.0 technologies.

  17. Microwave-assisted phenytoine synthesis: proposed practical class for undergraduate students

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Konrath, Eduardo L.; Piedade, Maristela; Eifler-Lima, Vera Lucia

    2012-01-01

    Microwave synthesis is considered a breakthrough in the field of chemistry due to its benefits over conventional heating methods. We describe, for the first time, the total synthesis of phenytoine adapted for a microwave reactor, proposed as an experiment for undergraduate courses. When carried out with microwaves, the synthetic route provided phenytoine in 6 min and 30 s, while for conventional heating the total time was 170 min. The experiment also involves rapid identification of compounds by TLC, 1 H NMR, FT-IR and melting points determination. (author)

  18. Improving Undergraduate STEM Education: Pathways into Geoscience (IUSE: GEOPATHS) - A National Science Foundation Initiative

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, B.; Patino, L. C.

    2016-12-01

    Preparation of the future professional geoscience workforce includes increasing numbers as well as providing adequate education, exposure and training for undergraduates once they enter geoscience pathways. It is important to consider potential career trajectories for geoscience students, as these inform the types of education and skill-learning required. Recent reports have highlighted that critical thinking and problem-solving skills, spatial and temporal abilities, strong quantitative skills, and the ability to work in teams are among the priorities for many geoscience work environments. The increasing focus of geoscience work on societal issues (e.g., climate change impacts) opens the door to engaging a diverse population of students. In light of this, one challenge is to find effective strategies for "opening the world of possibilities" in the geosciences for these students and supporting them at the critical junctures where they might choose an alternative pathway to geosciences or otherwise leave altogether. To address these and related matters, The National Science Foundation's (NSF) Directorate for Geosciences (GEO) has supported two rounds of the IUSE: GEOPATHS Program, to create and support innovative and inclusive projects to build the future geoscience workforce. This program is one component in NSF's Improving Undergraduate STEM Education (IUSE) initiative, which is a comprehensive, Foundation-wide effort to accelerate the quality and effectiveness of the education of undergraduates in all of the STEM fields. The two tracks of IUSE: GEOPATHS (EXTRA and IMPACT) seek to broaden and strengthen connections and activities that will engage and retain undergraduate students in geoscience education and career pathways, and help prepare them for a variety of careers. The long-term goal of this program is to dramatically increase the number and diversity of students earning undergraduate degrees or enrolling in graduate programs in geoscience fields, as well as

  19. The Effects of Case-Based Instruction on Undergraduate Biology Students' Understanding of the Nature of Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burniston, Amy Lucinda

    Undergraduate science education is currently seeing a dramatic pedagogical push towards teaching the philosophies underpinning science as well as an increase in strategies that employ active learning. Many active learning strategies stem from constructivist ideals and have been shown to affect a student's understanding of how science operates and its impact on society- commonly referred to as the nature of science (NOS). One particular constructivist teaching strategy, case-based instruction (CBI), has been recommended by researchers and science education reformists as an effective instructional strategy for teaching NOS. Furthermore, when coupled with explicit-reflective instruction, CBI has been found to significantly increasing understanding of NOS in elementary and secondary students. However, few studies aimed their research on CBI and NOS towards higher education. Thus, this study uses a quasi-experimental, nonequivalent group design to study the effects of CBI on undergraduate science students understandings of NOS. Undergraduate biology student's understanding of NOS were assessed using the Views of Science Education (VOSE) instrument pre and post CBI intervention in Cellular and Molecular Biology and Human Anatomy and Physiology II. Data analysis indicated statistically significant differences between students NOS scores in experimental versus control sections for both courses, with experimental groups obtaining higher posttest scores. The results of this study indicate that undergraduate male and female students have similarly poor understandings of NOS and the use of historical case based instruction can be used as a means to increase undergraduate understanding of NOS.

  20. Psychological Distress and Sources of Stressors amongst Medical and Science Undergraduate Students in Malaysia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ali S Radeef

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Background: This study aims to compare the prevalence of psychological distress between medical and science undergraduate students and to assess the sources of stressors that are attributing to it. Methods: A sample of 697 undergraduate students participated in this study, in which 501 were medical students and the remaining 196 were Science students. Psychological distress was assessed using the 12-item General Health Questionnaire. The students were given a list of possible sources of stress which were chosen depending on previous studies. Results: The overall prevalence of psychological distress was 32.6%. Science students showed a significantly higher rate and mean score of psychological distress than medical students, and the mean score was significantly higher during the clinical phase rather than the pre-clinical phase in medical students. Overall, female students had a significantly higher mean score than males, however although the mean score was higher in females it was only significant in the pre-clinical phase. In addition to academic and psychological stressors, factors such as reduced holidays, lack of time for relaxation, and limitation of leisure/entertainment time were among the top ten stressors reported by the students. Conclusions: Psychological distress is common among university students, and it is higher among science students than medical students. Academic and psychological factors can be considered as sources of stressors which may precipitate psychological distress among college students.

  1. Teaching Spatial Thinking in Undergraduate Geology Courses Using Tools and Strategies from Cognitive Science Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ormand, C. J.; Shipley, T. F.; Dutrow, B. L.; Goodwin, L. B.; Hickson, T. A.; Tikoff, B.; Atit, K.; Gagnier, K. M.; Resnick, I.

    2015-12-01

    Spatial visualization is an essential skill in the STEM disciplines, including the geological sciences. Undergraduate students, including geoscience majors in upper-level courses, bring a wide range of spatial skill levels to the classroom. Students with weak spatial skills may struggle to understand fundamental concepts and to solve geological problems with a spatial component. However, spatial thinking skills are malleable. Using strategies that have emerged from cognitive science research, we developed a set of curricular materials that improve undergraduate geology majors' abilities to reason about 3D concepts and to solve spatially complex geological problems. Cognitive science research on spatial thinking demonstrates that predictive sketching, making visual comparisons, gesturing, and the use of analogy can be used to develop students' spatial thinking skills. We conducted a three-year study of the efficacy of these strategies in strengthening the spatial skills of students in core geology courses at three universities. Our methodology is a quasi-experimental quantitative design, utilizing pre- and post-tests of spatial thinking skills, assessments of spatial problem-solving skills, and a control group comprised of students not exposed to our new curricular materials. Students taught using the new curricular materials show improvement in spatial thinking skills. Further analysis of our data, to be completed prior to AGU, will answer additional questions about the relationship between spatial skills and academic performance, spatial skills and gender, spatial skills and confidence, and the impact of our curricular materials on students who are struggling academically. Teaching spatial thinking in the context of discipline-based exercises has the potential to transform undergraduate education in the geological sciences by removing one significant barrier to success.

  2. Tools for Implementing Science Practice in a Large Introductory Class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prothero, W. A.

    2008-12-01

    Scientists must have in-depth background knowledge of their subject area and know where current knowledge can be advanced. They perform experiments that gather data to test new or existing theories, present their findings at meetings, publish their results, critically review the results of others, and respond to the reviews of their own work. In the context of a course, these activities correspond to learning the background material by listening to lectures or reading a text, formulating a problem, exploring data using student friendly data access and plotting software, giving brief talks to classmates in a small class or lab setting, writing a science paper or lab report, reviewing the writing of their peers, and receiving feedback (and grades) from their instructors and/or peers. These activities can be supported using course management software and online resources. The "LearningWithData" software system allows solid Earth (focused on plate tectonics) data exploration and plotting. Ocean data access, display, and plotting are also supported. Background material is delivered using animations and slide show type displays. Students are accountable for their learning through included homework assignments. Lab and small group activities provide support for data exploration and interpretation. Writing is most efficiently implemented using the "Calibrated Peer Review" method. This methodology is available at http://cpr.molsci.ucla.edu/. These methods have been successfully implemented in a large oceanography class at UCSB.

  3. Science teachers and docents as mentors to science and mathematics undergraduates in formal and information settings. Final report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Koran, J.J. Jr. [Florida Museum of Natural History, Gainesville, FL (United States)

    1993-10-15

    Twenty-four undergraduate science and mathematics majors who were juniors and seniors in the colleges of Liberal Arts and Sciences and Engineering were recruited, and paid, to participate in an orientation seminar and act as teacher aides in regional schools and the Florida Museum of Natural History. Aides worked with teachers in the schools one semester and as docents in the natural history museum a second semester. Mentoring took place by the principal investigator and participating teachers and docents throughout the program. Success of the program was measured by a specially prepared attitude instrument which was administered to participants before the mentoring started and when it ended each semester. Written logs (field notes) were also prepared and submitted by participants at the end of each semester. Further, a tally was kept of the number of participants who decided to go into science or mathematics teaching as a result of the experience.

  4. A behavioral science/behavioral medicine core curriculum proposal for Japanese undergraduate medical education.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsutsumi, Akizumi

    2015-01-01

    Behavioral science and behavioral medicine have not been systematically taught to Japanese undergraduate medical students. A working group under the auspices of Japanese Society of Behavioral Medicine developed an outcome-oriented curriculum of behavioral science/behavioral medicine through three processes: identifying the curriculum contents, holding a joint symposium with related societies, and defining outcomes and proposing a learning module. The behavioral science/behavioral medicine core curriculum consists of 11 units of lectures and four units of practical study. The working group plans to improve the current core curriculum by devising formative assessment methods so that students can learn and acquire attitude as well as the skills and knowledge necessary for student-centered clinical practice.

  5. Developing New Pedagogy to Teach Planet Formation to Undergraduate Non-Science Majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simon, Molly; Impey, Chris David; Buxner, Sanlyn

    2016-06-01

    A first order understanding of planet formation and the scientific concepts therein is critical in order for undergraduate students to understand our place in the Universe. Furthermore, planet formation integrates the topics of gravity, angular momentum, migration, and condensation in a “story-book” fashion where students can apply these concepts to a specific event. We collected syllabi and course topics from over 30 undergraduate general-education astrobiology courses from around the globe in order to determine the extent to which professors address planet formation. Additionally, we were looking to see if faculty had developed specific or original pedagogy to teach this topic. We find on average, instructors spend ½ of a lecture discussing planet formation or they leave it out all together. In the classes where planet formation is taught more extensively, instructors use PowerPoint slides or occasional videos to teach the topic. We aim to develop new pedagogy that will allow us to better determine learning gains and student understanding of this critical topic. If students in an astrobiology class are unable to understand how our own Solar System forms, it is significantly more challenging to make parallels (or find differences) between our home in the Universe and extrasolar planetary systems.

  6. Uncovering the lived experiences of junior and senior undergraduate female science majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adornato, Philip

    The following dissertation focuses on a case study that uses critical theory, social learning theory, identity theory, liberal feminine theory, and motivation theory to conduct a narrative describing the lived experience of females and their performance in two highly selective private university, where students can cross-register between school, while majoring in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). Through the use of narratives, the research attempts to shed additional light on the informal and formal science learning experiences that motivates young females to major in STEM in order to help increase the number of women entering STEM careers and retaining women in STEM majors. In the addition to the narratives, surveys were performed to encompass a larger audience while looking for themes and phenomena which explore what captivates and motivates young females' interests in science and continues to nurture and facilitate their growth throughout high school and college, and propel them into a major in STEM in college. The purpose of this study was to uncover the lived experiences of junior and senior undergraduate female science majors during their formal and informal education, their science motivation to learn science, their science identities, and any experiences in gender inequity they may have encountered. The findings have implications for young women deciding on future careers and majors through early exposure and guidance, understanding and recognizing what gender discrimination, and the positive effects of mentorships.

  7. Targeting Future Customers: An Introductory Biobanking Course for Undergraduate Students of Life Sciences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdelhafiz, Ahmed Samir; Fouda, Merhan Ahmed; El-Jaafary, Shaimaa Ibrahim; Farghly, Maysa Ibrahim; Salem, Mazen; Tammam, Ahmed; Gabr, Hala

    2017-08-01

    Biobanking is a relatively new concept in the Arab region. Targeting different stakeholders to introduce the concept of biobanking and develop an acceptance of it among them is important for the growth of biobanking in the region. Undergraduate students of life sciences represent an important segment of stakeholders, since they constitute potential future biobank customers. Limited funding, lack of awareness of the existence of the term "biobanking" itself among these students, and questions regarding best marketing strategies presented challenges to planning for the most effective message delivery to this target group. A specific course was designed for undergraduate students of life sciences, which was conducted at the Faculty of Medicine, Cairo University, Egypt. The course was conducted twice in 2016 and included lectures covering biobanking, quality, ethics, information technology, and translational research. Facebook and word-of-mouth were used for marketing and advertising. A total number of 125 participants attended both courses cumulatively. Facebook appeared to have been an effective marketing outlet, especially when paid advertisements were used. Evaluation of knowledge, measured using a pretest and posttest, demonstrated some improvement in knowledge of participants. Evaluation forms filled after the course showed positive attitude toward content and message delivery by a majority of participants. Facebook was also used as an evaluation method through analysis of engagement with posts created after course completion. Biobanking education can be carried out effectively with limited resources. Understanding the needs of the target group and using appropriate methods of communication are essential prerequisites to a well-tailored curriculum and effective message delivery. Using Facebook appears to be an effective and affordable method of communication and advertising. Targeting undergraduate students of life sciences interested in research is a good

  8. Conceptions of the Nature of Science Held by Undergraduate Pre-Service Biology Teachers in South-West Nigeria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adedoyin, A. O.; Bello, G.

    2017-01-01

    This study investigated the conceptions of the nature of science held by pre-service undergraduate biology teachers in South-West, Nigeria. Specifically, the study examined the influence of their gender on their conceptions of the nature of science. The study was a descriptive research of the survey method. The population for the study comprised…

  9. Using a Scientific Paper Format to Foster Problem-Based, Cohort-Learning in Undergraduate Environmental Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wagner, T.; Langley-Turnbaugh, S. J.; Sanford, R.

    2006-01-01

    The Department of Environmental Science at the University of Southern Maine implemented a problem-based, cohort-learning curriculum for undergraduate environmental science majors. The curriculum was based on a five-course sequence patterned after the outline of a scientific paper. Under faculty guidance, students select local environmental…

  10. Women, Men, and Academic Performance in Science and Engineering: The Gender Difference in Undergraduate Grade Point Averages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sonnert, Gerhard; Fox, Mary Frank

    2012-01-01

    Using longitudinal and multi-institutional data, this article takes an innovative approach in its analyses of gender differences in grade point averages (GPA) among undergraduate students in biology, the physical sciences, and engineering over a 16-year period. Assessed are hypotheses about (a) the gender ecology of science/engineering and (b) the…

  11. An Undergraduate Mechatronics Project Class at Philadelphia University, Jordan: Methodology and Experience

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tutunji, T. A.; Saleem, A.; Rabbo, S. A.

    2009-01-01

    Mechatronics is a branch of engineering whose final product should involve mechanical movements controlled by smart electronics. The design and implementation of functional prototypes are an essential learning experience for the students in this field. In this paper, the guidelines for a successful mechatronics project class are presented,…

  12. A flexible e-learning resource promoting the critical reading of scientific papers for science undergraduates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Letchford, Julie; Corradi, Hazel; Day, Trevor

    2017-11-01

    An important aim of undergraduate science education is to develop student skills in reading and evaluating research papers. We have designed, developed, and implemented an on-line interactive resource entitled "Evaluating Scientific Research literature" (ESRL) aimed at students from the first 2 years of the undergraduate program. In this article, we describe the resource, then use student data collected from questionnaire surveys to evaluate the resource within 2 years of its launch. Our results add to those reported previously and indicate that ESRL can enable students to start evaluating research articles when used during their undergraduate program. We conclude maximal learning is likely to occur when the resource can be embedded in the curriculum such that students have a clearly articulated context for the resource's activities, can see their relevance in relation to assessed assignments and can be encouraged to think deeply about the activities in conversation with one another and/or with staff. © 2017 by The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 45(6):483-490, 2017. © 2017 The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

  13. Insights for undergraduates seeking an advanced degree in wildlife and fisheries sciences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaemingk, Mark A.; Dembkowski, Daniel J.; Meyer, Hilary A.; Gigliotti, Larry M.

    2013-01-01

    In today's job market, having a successful career in the fisheries and wildlife sciences is becoming more dependent on obtaining an advanced degree. As a result, competition for getting accepted into a graduate program is fierce. Our objective for this study was to provide prospective graduate students some insights as to what qualifications or attributes would best prepare them for obtaining a graduate position (M.S.) and to excel once they are enrolled in a graduate program. A survey was sent to 50 universities within the National Association of University Fisheries and Wildlife Programs (NAUFWP) where both faculty and undergraduate students were asked questions relating to graduate school. Faculty rated the importance of various criteria and attributes of graduate school, and students answered the questions according to how they believed faculty members would respond. Overall, undergraduate students shared many of the same graduate school viewpoints as those held by faculty members. However, viewpoints differed on some topics related to admittance and the most important accomplishment of a graduate student while enrolled in a graduate program. These results indicate that undergraduate students may be better prepared for graduate school—and they may understand how to be successful once they are enrolled in a program—than was initially thought.

  14. Undergraduate Research Involving Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Students in Interdisciplinary Science Projects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Todd Pagano

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Scientific undergraduate research in higher education often yields positive outcomes for student and faculty member participants alike, with underrepresented students often showing even more substantial gains (academic, professional, and personal as a result of the experience. Significant success can be realized when involving deaf and hard-of-hearing (d/hh undergraduate students, who are also vastly underrepresented in the sciences, in interdisciplinary research projects. Even d/hh Associate degree level students and those in the first two years of their postsecondary careers can contribute to, and benefit from, the research process when faculty mentors properly plan/design projects. We discuss strategies, including the dissemination/communication of research results, for involving these students in research groups with different communication dynamics and share both findings of our research program and examples of successful chemical and biological research projects that have involved d/hh undergraduate students. We hope to stimulate a renewed interest in encouraging diversity and involving students with disabilities into higher education research experiences globally and across multiple scientific disciplines, thus strengthening the education and career pipeline of these students.

  15. Analytical Thinking, Analytical Action: Using Prelab Video Demonstrations and e-Quizzes to Improve Undergraduate Preparedness for Analytical Chemistry Practical Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jolley, Dianne F.; Wilson, Stephen R.; Kelso, Celine; O'Brien, Glennys; Mason, Claire E.

    2016-01-01

    This project utilizes visual and critical thinking approaches to develop a higher-education synergistic prelab training program for a large second-year undergraduate analytical chemistry class, directing more of the cognitive learning to the prelab phase. This enabled students to engage in more analytical thinking prior to engaging in the…

  16. Teaching Scientists to Communicate: Evidence-based assessment for undergraduate science education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mercer-Mapstone, Lucy; Kuchel, Louise

    2015-07-01

    Communication skills are one of five nationally recognised learning outcomes for an Australian Bachelor of Science (BSc) degree. Previous evidence indicates that communication skills taught in Australian undergraduate science degrees are not developed sufficiently to meet the requirements of the modern-day workplace-a problem faced in the UK and USA also. Curriculum development in this area, however, hinges on first evaluating how communication skills are taught currently as a base from which to make effective changes. This study aimed to quantify the current standard of communication education within BSc degrees at Australian research-intensive universities. A detailed evidential baseline for not only what but also how communication skills are being taught was established. We quantified which communication skills were taught and assessed explicitly, implicitly, or were absent in a range of undergraduate science assessment tasks (n = 35) from four research-intensive Australian universities. Results indicate that 10 of the 12 core science communication skills used for evaluation were absent from more than 50% of assessment tasks and 77.14% of all assessment tasks taught less than 5 core communication skills explicitly. The design of assessment tasks significantly affected whether communication skills were taught explicitly. Prominent trends were that communication skills in tasks aimed at non-scientific audiences were taught more explicitly than in tasks aimed at scientific audiences, and the majority of group and multimedia tasks taught communication elements more explicitly than individual, or written and oral tasks. Implications for science communication in the BSc and further research are discussed.

  17. Construction and Validation of an Instrument to Measure Taiwanese Elementary Students' Attitudes toward Their Science Class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Tzu-Ling; Berlin, Donna

    2010-12-01

    The main purpose of this study is to develop a valid and reliable instrument for measuring the attitudes toward science class of fourth- and fifth-grade students in an Asian school culture. Specifically, the development focused on three science attitude constructs-science enjoyment, science confidence, and importance of science as related to science class experiences. A total of 265 elementary school students in Taiwan responded to the instrument developed. Data analysis indicated that the instrument exhibited satisfactory validity and reliability with the Taiwan population used. The Cronbach's alpha coefficient was 0.93 for the entire instrument indicating a satisfactory level of internal consistency. However, both principal component analysis and parallel analysis showed that the three attitude scales were not unique and should be combined and used as a general "attitudes toward science class" scale. The analysis also showed that there were no gender or grade-level differences in students' overall attitudes toward science class.

  18. Deconstructing Attitudes towards Plagiarism of Japanese Undergraduates in EFL Academic Writing Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teeter, Jennifer

    2015-01-01

    In this study, a qualitative analysis of 276 first-year Japanese university science major responses to plagiarism to deconstruct prevailing generalizations regarding the incidence of plagiarism by Japanese university students. These students were enrolled in a compulsory yearlong English academic writing course. While utilizing a contextualized…

  19. Comparing the Impact of an Astronomy Course and a Science and Society Seminar on Undergraduate Students' Attitudes toward Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flohic, Hélène M. L. G.

    2017-01-01

    A common challenge among university professors is how to best design undergraduate courses to successfully enhance students' attitudes. To compare which curriculum was more efficient at fostering a positive attitude towards science in general, I studied the impact of two different general education science courses on the attitudes of college…

  20. Group-effort Applied Research: Expanding Opportunities for Undergraduate Research through Original, Class-Based Research Projects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Sean D.; Teter, Ken

    2014-01-01

    Undergraduate research clearly enriches the educational development of participating students, but these experiences are limited by the inherent inefficiency of the standard one student-one mentor model for undergraduate research. Group-effort applied research (GEAR) was developed as a strategy to provide substantial numbers of undergraduates with…

  1. Interpreting the relationships between single gender science classes and girls' academic motivation and interest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Sonya L.

    The purpose of this study was to determine how and to what extent single gender science classes affect motivation to learn scientific concepts, interest in science, and college major intent among high school and middle school girls. This study was designed to determine whether students' motivation to learn science changes when they are placed in a single gender science class. The study also measured whether the students' level of interest in science and desire to major in science changes based on their enrollment in a single gender class. Finally, the study investigated the career and college major intentions of the sample population used in the study. Girls in single gender groupings engage in more academic risk taking and participate more than girls in coeducational classes. This benefit alone responds to reform efforts and supports the abolition of gender-based obstacles. Single gender grouping could help encourage more girls to take interest in majoring in science, a field that is considered to be masculine. By increasing students' interest in science while enrolled in single gender classes, students may become more motivated to learn science. This study was conducted using seven, eighth, ninth and tenth grade girls from single sex and coeducational science classes. The students participated in 2 surveys, the Science Motivational Survey and the Test of Science Related Attitudes, at the beginning of the semester and at the end of the semester. In respect to girls in high school single gender science classes, results were contrary to recent studies that state that girls who received science education in a single gender setting have an increase in motivation and attitude towards science. The results did show that middle school girls in single gender science classes did show an increase in motivation.

  2. Perceptions on the importance of gerontological education by teachers and students of undergraduate health sciences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Correa-Muñoz Elsa

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The main challenge of higher education institutions throughout the world is to develop professionals capable of understanding and responding to the current social priorities of our countries. Given the utmost importance of addressing the complex needs of an increasingly elderly population in Mexico, the National Autonomous University of Mexico has systematically incorporated modules dealing with primary gerontological health care into several of its undergraduate programs in health sciences. The objective of this study was to analyze teacher's and student's perceptions about the current educational practices on gerontology. Methods A cross-sectional study was carried out with a sample of 26 teachers and 122 undergraduate students. Subjects were administered interviews and responded survey instrument. Results A vast proportion of the teachers (42% reported students' attitudes towards their academic training as the most important factor affecting learning in the field of gerontology, whereas students reported that the main problems of education in gerontology were theoretical (32% and methodological (28%. In addition, 41% of students considered education on ageing matters as an essential element for their professional development, as compared to 19% of teachers (p Conclusion Our findings suggest that the teachers' perceptions about the low importance of education on ageing matters for the professional practice of health sciences could be a negative factor for gerontology teaching.

  3. The use of appetite suppressants among health sciences undergraduate students in Southern Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zubaran, Carlos; Lazzaretti, Rubia

    2013-01-01

    To investigate the prevalence of appetite suppressant use among health sciences students in Southern Brazil. Undergraduate students (n=300) from seven health science undergraduate courses of the Universidade de Caxias do Sul completed a questionnaire about the use of substances to suppress appetite. A significant percentage (15%; n=45) of research participants used appetite suppressants at least once in their lives. The most commonly used substances were sympathomimetic stimulant drugs (5%), including amfepramone (3.3%) and fenproporex (1.7%). The lifetime use of appetite suppressants was more prevalent among Nursing (26.7%) and Nutrition (24.4%%) students. There was no reported use of appetite suppressants among medical students. The use of appetite suppressants was significantly more prevalent among women. The majority of those who used these substances did so under medical recommendation. Most of users took appetite suppressants for more than 3 months. Lifetime use of appetite suppressants was substantial, being sympathomimetic stimulant drugs the most commonly used agents. Students enrolled in Nursing and Nutrition courses presented a significantly higher prevalence of lifetime use of appetite suppressants.

  4. Student and Faculty Outcomes of Undergraduate Science Research Projects by Geographically Dispersed Students

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lawton Shaw

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Senior undergraduate research projects are important components of most undergraduate science degrees. The delivery of such projects in a distance education format is challenging. Athabasca University (AU science project courses allow distance education students to complete research project courses by working with research supervisors in their local area, coordinated at a distance by AU faculty. This paper presents demographics and course performance for 155 students over five years. Pass rates were similar to other distance education courses. Research students were surveyed by questionnaire, and external supervisors and AU faculty were interviewed, to examine the outcomes of these project courses for each group. Students reported high levels of satisfaction with the course, local supervisors, and faculty coordinators. Students also reported that the experience increased their interest in research, and the probability that they would pursue graduate or additional certification. Local supervisors and faculty affirmed that the purposes of project courses are to introduce the student to research, provide opportunity for students to use their cumulative knowledge, develop cognitive abilities, and independent thinking. The advantages and challenges associated with this course model are discussed.

  5. A new course and textbook on Physical Models of Living Systems, for science and engineering undergraduates

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    Nelson, Philip

    2015-03-01

    I'll describe an intermediate-level course on ``Physical Models of Living Systems.'' The only prerequisite is first-year university physics and calculus. The course is a response to rapidly growing interest among undergraduates in a broad range of science and engineering majors. Students acquire several research skills that are often not addressed in traditional courses: Basic modeling skills Probabilistic modeling skills Data analysis methods Computer programming using a general-purpose platform like MATLAB or Python Dynamical systems, particularly feedback control. These basic skills, which are relevant to nearly any field of science or engineering, are presented in the context of case studies from living systems, including: Virus dynamics Bacterial genetics and evolution of drug resistance Statistical inference Superresolution microscopy Synthetic biology Naturally evolved cellular circuits. Work supported by NSF Grants EF-0928048 and DMR-0832802.

  6. Green Fluorescent Protein Purification as a Didactic Tool During Practical Classes For Undergraduates Students of UFAM

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J.A.Q.A Faria

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available INTRODUCTION: The Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP, originated from the jellyfish Aequorea victoria has broadly applicability for cellular and molecular biology research. Its spectral characteristics make it practical  to be detect by UV-A (black light lamp during the purification procedure. Moreover, this approach implementation during a practical class allows the exploring of fluorescence features. OBJETIVES: the purpose of this investigation was to teach the concepts and principles of protein purification during a practical class using recombinant GFP protein. MATERIAL E METHODS: Transformed E. coli JM110 expressing GFP were resuspended in buffer solution (Tris-HCl 20 mM pH 8.0, 150 mM NaCl, 5 mM EDTA, 20% (NH42SO4 following the sonication step. The lysate was submitted to the purification through hydrophobic interaction chromatography column (HIC. After analysis of chromatogram, some collected fractions were quantified by Bradford assay and evaluated by SDS-PAGE. Besides that, the GFP presences were measured at an excitation wavelength of 488 nm on a spectrofluorimeter. RESULTS AND DISCUSSION: Before the experiments, the students were encouraged to explore the biochemistry characteristics of GFP, assessing protein data banks and published articles. These guided questions conducted to discussion of the purification strategy choosen. The GFP purification enabled the visual observation of chromatography principles necessary for the theory assimilation. During the chromatography running, we used a UV-A lamp which allowed a greatly exploration of concepts beyond this technique such as the sample injection, the GFP column retention, and the elution step. The chromatogram obtaneid were analysed and correlated to the collected fractions. Our next step was the efficiency analysis generated by the GFP measurement, total protein quantification and the analytical method SDS-PAGE. CONCLUSION: Collectively, we observed in this class the clear development

  7. Using the Geoscience Literacy Frameworks and Educational Technologies to Promote Science Literacy in Non-science Major Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carley, S.; Tuddenham, P.; Bishop, K. O.

    2008-12-01

    In recent years several geoscience communities have been developing ocean, climate, atmosphere and earth science literacy frameworks as enhancements to the National Science Education Standards content standards. Like the older content standards these new geoscience literacy frameworks have focused on K-12 education although they are also intended for informal education and general public audiences. These geoscience literacy frameworks potentially provide a more integrated and less abstract approach to science literacy that may be more suitable for non-science major students that are not pursuing careers in science research or education. They provide a natural link to contemporary environmental issues - e.g., climate change, resource depletion, species and habitat loss, natural hazards, pollution, development of renewable energy, material recycling. The College of Exploration is an education research non-profit that has provided process and technical support for the development of most of these geoscience literacy frameworks. It has a unique perspective on their development. In the last ten years it has also gained considerable national and international expertise in facilitating web-based workshops that support in-depth conversations among educators and working scientists/researchers on important science topics. These workshops have been of enormous value to educators working in K-12, 4-year institutions and community colleges. How can these geoscience literacy frameworks promote more collaborative inquiry-based learning that enhances the appreciation of scientific thinking by non-majors? How can web- and mobile-based education technologies transform the undergraduate non-major survey course into a place where learners begin their passion for science literacy rather than end it? How do we assess science literacy in students and citizens?

  8. Mailing lists are preferred to newsgroups as teaching tools for undergraduate biology classes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Machart, J M; Silverthorn, D U

    2000-06-01

    Effective communication between instructors and students is a challenge regardless of the instructor-to-student ratio. Instructors of large classes, in particular, have resorted to various forms of Internet communication, such as mailing lists and newsgroups, to supplement class time and office hours. Mailing lists are closed discussions among subscribers who receive and send messages via an electronic mail program (e.g., Eudora). Newsgroups are public discussions to which anyone can gain access and respond via a newsreader program (e.g., Nuntius). Newsgroup messages are posted to a bulletin board that the subscriber must visit to read. Mailing lists and newsgroups share many advantages (convenience, greater anonymity, and speed of communication) and disadvantages (computer access required, impersonal nature, junk mail, and lack of graphics in older programs). However, surveys of both faculty and students in biology indicate that mailing lists are generally favored over newsgroups. Reasons given for mailing list popularity included greater familiarity with the E-mail format and ease of access.

  9. Sciencey Girls: Discourses Supporting Working-Class Girls to Identify with Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Godec, Spela

    2018-01-01

    Women from working class and some ethnic minority backgrounds continue to be underrepresented in science, particularly in areas such as physical sciences and engineering. Many find it difficult to see science as something that is "for them", which then has implications for their learning and participation in science. In this paper, I…

  10. Evidence of The Importance of Philosophy of Science Course On Undergraduate Level

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suyono

    2018-01-01

    This study aimed to describe academic impact of Philosophy of Science course in change of students’ conceptions on the Nature of science (NOS) before and after attending the course. This study followed one group pretest-posttest design. Treatment in this study was Philosophy of Science course for one semester. Misconception diagnostic tests of the NOS had been developed by Suyono et al. (2015) equipped with Certainty of Response Index (CRI). It consists of 15 concept questions about the NOS. The number of students who were tested on Chemistry Education Program (CEP) and Chemistry Program (CP) respectively 42 and 45 students. This study shows that after the learning of Philosophy of Science course happened: (1) the decrease of the number of misconception students on the NOS from 47.47 to 19.20% in CEP and from 47.47 to 18.18% in CP and (2) the decrease in the number of concepts that understood as misconception by the large number of students from 11 to 2 concepts on the CEP and from 10 to 2 concepts on CP. Therefore, the existence of Philosophy of Science course has a positive academic impact on students from both programs on undergraduate level.

  11. Undergraduate Science Research: A Comparison of Influences and Experiences between Premed and Non–Premed Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pacifici, Lara Brongo; Thomson, Norman

    2011-01-01

    Most students participating in science undergraduate research (UR) plan to attend either medical school or graduate school. This study examines possible differences between premed and non–premed students in their influences to do research and expectations of research. Questionnaire responses from 55 premed students and 80 non–premed students were analyzed. No differences existed in the expectations of research between the two groups, but attitudes toward science and intrinsic motivation to learn more about science were significantly higher for non–premed students. Follow-up interviews with 11 of the students, including a case study with one premed student, provided explanation for the observed differences. Premed students, while not motivated to learn more about science, were motivated to help people, which is why most of them are pursuing medicine. They viewed research as a way to help them become doctors and to rule out the possibility of research as a career. Non–premed students participated in research to learn more about a specific science topic and gain experience that may be helpful in graduate school research. The difference in the reasons students want to do UR may be used to tailor UR experiences for students planning to go to graduate school or medical school. PMID:21633068

  12. Undergraduate science research: a comparison of influences and experiences between premed and non-premed students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pacifici, Lara Brongo; Thomson, Norman

    2011-01-01

    Most students participating in science undergraduate research (UR) plan to attend either medical school or graduate school. This study examines possible differences between premed and non-premed students in their influences to do research and expectations of research. Questionnaire responses from 55 premed students and 80 non-premed students were analyzed. No differences existed in the expectations of research between the two groups, but attitudes toward science and intrinsic motivation to learn more about science were significantly higher for non-premed students. Follow-up interviews with 11 of the students, including a case study with one premed student, provided explanation for the observed differences. Premed students, while not motivated to learn more about science, were motivated to help people, which is why most of them are pursuing medicine. They viewed research as a way to help them become doctors and to rule out the possibility of research as a career. Non-premed students participated in research to learn more about a specific science topic and gain experience that may be helpful in graduate school research. The difference in the reasons students want to do UR may be used to tailor UR experiences for students planning to go to graduate school or medical school.

  13. A unique degree program for pre-pharmacy education: An undergraduate degree in pharmaceutical sciences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jafari, Mahtab

    2018-02-01

    Within the coming decade, the demand for well-trained pharmacists is expected to only increase, especially with the aging of the United States (US) population. To help fill this growing demand, the University of California, Irvine (UCI) aims to offer a unique pre-pharmacy degree program and has developed a Bachelor of Science (BS) degree in Pharmaceutical Sciences to help achieve this goal. In this commentary, we share our experience with our curriculum and highlight its features in an effort to encourage other institutions to enhance the learning experience of their pre-pharmacy students. The efforts of the UCI Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences has resulted in UCI being consistently ranked as one of the top feeder institutions by the Pharmacy College Application Service (PharmCAS) in recent years. The UCI Pharmaceutical Sciences Bachelor of Science offers a unique pre-pharmacy educational experience in an effort to better prepare undergraduates for the rigors of the doctorate of pharmacy curriculum. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  14. Undergraduate honors students' images of science: Nature of scientific work and scientific knowledge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wallace, Michael L.

    This exploratory study assessed the influence of an implicit, inquiry-oriented nature of science (NOS) instructional approach undertaken in an interdisciplinary college science course on undergraduate honor students' (UHS) understanding of the aspects of NOS for scientific work and scientific knowledge. In this study, the nature of scientific work concentrated upon the delineation of science from pseudoscience and the value scientists place on reproducibility. The nature of scientific knowledge concentrated upon how UHS view scientific theories and how they believe scientists utilize scientific theories in their research. The 39 UHS who participated in the study were non-science majors enrolled in a Honors College sponsored interdisciplinary science course where the instructors took an implicit NOS instructional approach. An open-ended assessment instrument, the UFO Scenario, was designed for the course and used to assess UHS' images of science at the beginning and end of the semester. The mixed-design study employed both qualitative and quantitative techniques to analyze the open-ended responses. The qualitative techniques of open and axial coding were utilized to find recurring themes within UHS' responses. McNemar's chi-square test for two dependent samples was used to identify whether any statistically significant changes occurred within responses from the beginning to the end of the semester. At the start of the study, the majority of UHS held mixed NOS views, but were able to accurately define what a scientific theory is and explicate how scientists utilize theories within scientific research. Postinstruction assessment indicated that UHS did not make significant gains in their understanding of the nature of scientific work or scientific knowledge and their overall images of science remained static. The results of the present study found implicit NOS instruction even with an extensive inquiry-oriented component was an ineffective approach for modifying UHS

  15. Class Participation in an Aboriginal Theatre Project: An Exemplar of Undergraduate Student Engagement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ginny R. Ratsoy

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available In the 21st Century, Canadian universities are increasingly emphasizing the importance of student engagement. This research paper, by analyzing the reflections of undergraduate students on their experiences in a co-curricular service learning assignment – integrated into a course that included more traditional assignments -in the context of situated learning theory, advocates for a community-focused assignment as a component in a “traditional” lecture-and-discussion based course as a tool for enhanced engagement through active, collaborative learning. While the case study explored is a drama course, the anticipated audience is pan-disciplinary, as the article casts more broadly by providing brief, general guidelines on implementing an experiential learning assignment and encouraging all professors to reflect on their classroom theory and praxis to the end of augmenting student engagement.Au 21e siècle, les universités canadiennes accordent une place de plus en plus importante à l’engagement des étudiants. Les auteurs de ce rapport de recherche analysent les réflexions des étudiants de premier cycle à propos d’un travail pratique (TP qu’ils ont effectué dans le cadre de l’apprentissage par le service communautaire– intégré à un cours qui comprenait des TP plus traditionnels – dans le contexte de la théorie de l’apprentissage situé. Les auteurs préconisent des TP axés sur la collectivité en tant que composants d’un cours « traditionnel » comportant des exposés magistraux et des discussions. Ce type de TP est un outil permettant d’améliorer l’engagement grâce à l’apprentissage actif et collaboratif. L’étude de cas porte sur un cours d’art dramatique, mais le public visé par le présent article est multidisciplinaire. En effet, les auteurs de l’article considèrent les choses plus largement en fournissant de brèves directives générales sur la mise en œuvre d’un devoir dans le cadre de

  16. An Evaluation of Research Ethics in Undergraduate Health Science Research Methodology Programs at a South African University.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coetzee, Tanya; Hoffmann, Willem A; de Roubaix, Malcolm

    2015-10-01

    The amended research ethics policy at a South African University required the ethics review of undergraduate research projects, prompting the need to explore the content and teaching approach of research ethics education in health science undergraduate programs. Two qualitative data collection strategies were used: document analysis (syllabi and study guides) and semi-structured interviews with research methodology coordinators. Five main themes emerged: (a) timing of research ethics courses, (b) research ethics course content, (c) sub-optimal use of creative classroom activities to facilitate research ethics lectures, (d) understanding the need for undergraduate project research ethics review, and (e) research ethics capacity training for research methodology lecturers and undergraduate project supervisors. © The Author(s) 2015.

  17. The influences and experiences of African American undergraduate science majors at predominately White universities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blockus, Linda Helen

    The purpose of this study is to describe and explore some of the social and academic experiences of successful African American undergraduate science majors at predominately White universities with the expectation of conceptualizing emerging patterns for future study. The study surveyed 80 upperclass African Americans at 11 public research universities about their perceptions of the influences that affect their educational experiences and career interests in science. The mailed survey included the Persistence/ voluntary Dropout Decision Scale, the Cultural Congruity Scale and the University Environment Scale. A variety of potential influences were considered including family background, career goals, psychosocial development, academic and social connections with the university, faculty relationships, environmental fit, retention factors, validation, participation in mentored research projects and other experiences. The students' sources of influences, opportunities for connection, and cultural values were considered in the context of a research university environment and investigated for emerging themes and direction for future research. Results indicate that performance in coursework appears to be the most salient factor in African American students' experience as science majors. The mean college gpa was 3.01 for students in this study. Challenging content, time demands, study habits and concern with poor grades all serve to discourage students; however, for most of the students in this study, it has not dissuaded them from their educational and career plans. Positive course performance provided encouragement. Science faculty provide less influence than family members, and more students find faculty members discouraging than supportive. Measures of faculty relations were not associated with academic success. No evidence was provided to confirm the disadvantages of being female in a scientific discipline. Students were concerned with lack of minority role models

  18. Girls' and Boys' Academic Self-Concept in Science in Single-Sex and Coeducational Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simpson, Amber; Che, S. Megan; Bridges, William C., Jr.

    2016-01-01

    Recently, single-sex classes within public coeducational schools have proliferated across the USA; yet, we still know little about whether and how single-sex science classes influence adolescents' attitude and affect toward science. This exploratory study expands upon our current understanding by investigating the extent in which female and male…

  19. Increasing persistence in undergraduate science majors: a model for institutional support of underrepresented students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toven-Lindsey, Brit; Levis-Fitzgerald, Marc; Barber, Paul H; Hasson, Tama

    2015-01-01

    The 6-yr degree-completion rate of undergraduate science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) majors at U.S. colleges and universities is less than 40%. Persistence among women and underrepresented minorities (URMs), including African-American, Latino/a, Native American, and Pacific Islander students, is even more troubling, as these students leave STEM majors at significantly higher rates than their non-URM peers. This study utilizes a matched comparison group design to examine the academic achievement and persistence of students enrolled in the Program for Excellence in Education and Research in the Sciences (PEERS), an academic support program at the University of California, Los Angeles, for first- and second-year science majors from underrepresented backgrounds. Results indicate that PEERS students, on average, earned higher grades in most "gatekeeper" chemistry and math courses, had a higher cumulative grade point average, completed more science courses, and persisted in a science major at significantly higher rates than the comparison group. With its holistic approach focused on academics, counseling, creating a supportive community, and exposure to research, the PEERS program serves as an excellent model for universities interested in and committed to improving persistence of underrepresented science majors and closing the achievement gap. © 2015 B. Toven-Lindsey et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2015 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  20. Strategic Note-Taking for Middle-School Students with Learning Disabilities in Science Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boyle, Joseph R.

    2010-01-01

    While today's teachers use a variety of teaching methods in middle-school science classes, lectures and note-taking still comprise a major portion of students' class time. To be successful in these classes, middle-school students need effective listening and note-taking skills. Students with learning disabilities (LD) are poor note-takers, which…

  1. Brownfield Action Online - An Interactive Undergraduate Science Course in Environmental Forensics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liddicoat, Joseph; Bower, Peter

    2014-05-01

    Brownfield Action (BA) is a web-based, interactive, three dimensional digital space and learning simulation in which students form geotechnical consulting companies and work collectively to explore problems in environmental forensics. Created at Barnard College (BC) in conjunction with the Center for New Media Teaching and Learning at Columbia University, BA has a 12-year history at BC of use in one semester of a two-semester Introduction to Environmental Science course that is taken by more than 100 female undergraduate non-science majors to satisfy their science requirement. The pedagogical methods and design of the BA model are grounded in a substantial research literature focused on the design, use, and effectiveness of games and simulation in education. The successful use of the BA simulation at BC and 14 other institutions in the U.S. is described in Bower et al. (2011 and 2014). Soon to be taught online to non-traditional undergraduate students, BA has 15 modules that include a reconnaissance survey; scale; topographic, bedrock, and water table maps; oral and written reports from residents and the municipal government; porosity and permeability measurements of the regolith (sand) in the area of interest; hydrocarbon chemistry; direction and velocity of groundwater flow; and methods of geophysical exploration (soil gas, ground penetrating radar, magnetic metal detection, excavation, and drilling). Student performance is assessed by weekly exercises and a semester ending Environmental Site Assessment Phase I Report that summarizes the individual and collective discoveries about a contaminated subsurface plume that emanates from a leaking underground storage tank at a gasoline station upgrade from the water well that serves the surrounding community. Texts for the course are Jonathan Harr's A Civil Action and Rachel Carson's Silent Spring, which are accompanied by questions that direct the reading.

  2. Understanding the Views of the Nature of Science of Undergraduate Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hypolite, Karen L.

    2012-01-01

    Much of the nature of science research has been focused on high school students. High school students are primarily the target of such research to aid and to guide them in making informed decisions about possible career choices in the sciences (Bell, Blair, Crawford, & Lederman, 2002). Moreover, during review of the literature, little to no…

  3. Sociocultural Influences On Undergraduate Women's Entry into a Computer Science Major

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lyon, Louise Ann

    Computer science not only displays the pattern of underrepresentation of many other science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) fields, but has actually experienced a decline in the number of women choosing the field over the past two decades. Broken out by gender and race, the picture becomes more nuanced, with the ratio of females to males receiving bachelor's degrees in computer science higher for non-White ethnic groups than for Whites. This dissertation explores the experiences of university women differing along the axis of race, class, and culture who are considering majoring in computer science in order to highlight how well-prepared women are persuaded that they belong (or not) in the field and how the confluence of social categories plays out in their decision. This study focuses on a university seminar entitled "Women in Computer Science and Engineering" open to women concurrently enrolled in introductory programming and uses an ethnographic approach including classroom participant observation, interviews with seminar students and instructors, observations of students in other classes, and interviews with parents of students. Three stand-alone but related articles explore various aspects of the experiences of women who participated in the study using Rom Harre's positioning theory as a theoretical framework. The first article uses data from twenty-two interviews to uncover how interactions with others and patterns in society position women in relation to a computer science major, and how these women have arrived at the point of considering the major despite messages that they do not belong. The second article more deeply explores the cases of three women who vary greatly along the axes of race, class, and culture in order to uncover pattern and interaction differences for women based on their ethnic background. The final article focuses on the attitudes and expectations of the mothers of three students of contrasting ethnicities and how reported

  4. Hands across the divide: Finding spaces for student-centered pedagogy in the undergraduate science classroom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spier-Dance, Lesley

    This study explored college science students' and instructors' experiences with student-generated and performed analogies. The objectives of the study were to determine whether the use of student-generated analogies could provide students with opportunities to develop robust understanding of difficult science concepts, and to examine students' and instructors' perspectives on the utilization of these analogies. To address my objectives, I carried out a case study at a university-college in British Columbia. I examined the use of analogies in undergraduate biology and chemistry courses. Working with three instructors, I explored the use of student-generated analogies in five courses. I carried out in-depth analyses for one biology case and one chemistry case. Data were collected using semi-structured interviews, classroom observations, researcher journal logs and students' responses to assessment questions. My findings suggest that involvement in the analogy exercise was associated with gains in students' conceptual understanding. Lower-achieving students who participated in the analogy activity exhibited significant gains in understanding of the science concept, but were unable to transfer their knowledge to novel situations. Higher-achieving students who participated in the activity were better able to transfer their knowledge of the analogy-related science topic to novel situations. This research revealed that students exhibited improved understanding when their analogies clearly represented important features of the target science concept. Students actively involved in the analogy activity exhibited gains in conceptual understanding. They perceived that embodied performative aspects of the activity promoted engagement, which motivated their learning. Participation in the analogy activity led to enhanced social interaction and a heightened sense of community within the classroom. The combination of social and performative elements provided motivational learning

  5. Pilot study of a budget-tailored culinary nutrition education program for undergraduate food science students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kerrison, Dorothy Adair

    The primary objective of this pilot study is to provide evidence that a budget-tailored culinary nutrition program is both appropriate and applicable to undergraduate food science students both in everyday life as well as their future health careers. Two validated programs were combined into one program in order to evaluate their combined effects: Cooking With a Chef and Cooking Matters at the Store. The secondary objective of this pilot study is to evaluate the components and reliability of a questionnaire created specifically for this pilot study. A review of past literature was written, which included culinary nutrition as a source of primary prevention, the importance of incorporating cost with culinary nutrition, and the importance of incorporating cost with culinary nutrition. Based on the literature review, it was determined that a budget-tailored culinary nutrition program was appropriate and applicable to undergraduate food science students interested in pursuing health-related careers. The pilot study design was a semi-crossover study: all four groups received the program, however, two groups were first treated as the control groups. All fifty-four participants received 5 sessions of culinary nutrition information from Cooking With a Chef, collaboratively delivered by a nutrition educator and a chef, and one session of information about shopping healthy on a budget from Cooking Matters at the Store in the form of a grocery store tour led by the nutrition educator. Three questionnaires were administered to the participants that evaluated culinary nutrition and price knowledge, cooking attitudes, and opinions of the programs' relevance to participants' everyday lives and careers. Two of the questionnaires, including a questionnaire developed specifically for the pilot study, were delivered as a pre- and post-test while the third questionnaire was delivered as a post-test. Eight random participants also partook in a focus group session led by the nutrition

  6. Practice education learning environments: the mismatch between perceived and preferred expectations of undergraduate health science students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Ted; Williams, Brett; McKenna, Lisa; Palermo, Claire; McCall, Louise; Roller, Louis; Hewitt, Lesley; Molloy, Liz; Baird, Marilyn; Aldabah, Ligal

    2011-11-01

    Practical hands-on learning opportunities are viewed as a vital component of the education of health science students, but there is a critical shortage of fieldwork placement experiences. It is therefore important that these clinical learning environments are well suited to students' perceptions and expectations. To investigate how undergraduate students enrolled in health-related education programs view their clinical learning environments and specifically to compare students' perception of their 'actual' clinical learning environment to that of their 'preferred/ideal' clinical learning environment. The Clinical Learning Environment Inventory (CLEI) was used to collect data from 548 undergraduate students (55% response rate) enrolled in all year levels of paramedics, midwifery, radiography and medical imaging, occupational therapy, pharmacy, nutrition and dietetics, physiotherapy and social work at Monash University via convenience sampling. Students were asked to rate their perception of the clinical learning environment at the completion of their placements using the CLEI. Satisfaction of the students enrolled in the health-related disciplines was closely linked with the five constructs measured by the CLEI: Personalization, Student Involvement, Task Orientation, Innovation, and Individualization. Significant differences were found between the student's perception of their 'actual' clinical learning environment and their 'ideal' clinical learning environment. The study highlights the importance of a supportive clinical learning environment that places emphasis on effective two-way communication. A thorough understanding of students' perceptions of their clinical learning environments is essential. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Improving academic performance of sport and exercise science undergraduate students in gross anatomy using a near-peer teaching program.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Viana, Ricardo Borges; Campos, Mário Hebling; Santos, Douglas de Assis Teles; Xavier, Isabela Cristina Maioni; Vancini, Rodrigo Luiz; Andrade, Marília Santos; de Lira, Claudio Andre Barbosa

    2018-04-16

    Peer and near-peer teaching programs are common in medical undergraduate courses. However, there are no studies that have investigated the effectiveness of a near-peer teaching program on the academic performance of undergraduate students pursuing sport and exercise science coursework. This study was conducted to analyze the effectiveness of such a program for students who participated in a course on the functional anatomy of the locomotor apparatus. A total of 39 student participants were divided into two groups: students in one group voluntarily attended at least one session of a near-peer teaching program, and students in the other group attended no sessions. The final grade (range 0-100%) was recorded and used as an indicator of academic performance. The final grade of students who attended the near-peer teaching program (69.5 ± 16.0%) was 38.7% higher (P = 0.002, d = 1.06) than those who did not (50.1 ± 20.4%). When the academic performance of the same students was evaluated in another course (exercise physiology) that did not offer a near-peer teaching program, there were no significant differences between the groups (students who attended or did not attend the near-peer teaching program). A significant positive association was found between near-peer teaching program frequency and the number of students approved and not approved in the course (P = 0.041). A significant difference (P = 0.001) was found in the attendance at regular classes between the group who participated in the near-peer teaching program (median: 62 hours; IQR [interquartile ranges]: 4.0 hours) and those who did not (median: 58 hours; IQR: 4.0 hours). Gender was not a moderating factor on academic performance or near-peer teaching program attendance. These results highlight the effectiveness of a near-peer teaching program on the academic performance of students from a sport and exercise science degree program while enrolled in an anatomy course. Anat Sci Educ.

  8. Effects of a Research-Infused Botanical Curriculum on Undergraduates' Content Knowledge, STEM Competencies, and Attitudes toward Plant Sciences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ward, Jennifer Rhode; Clarke, H. David; Horton, Jonathan L.

    2014-01-01

    In response to the American Association for the Advancement of Science's Vision and Change in Undergraduate Biology Education initiative, we infused authentic, plant-based research into majors' courses at a public liberal arts university. Faculty members designed a financially sustainable pedagogical approach, utilizing vertically integrated…

  9. Analysis of controversial items in the theoretical design of the undergraduate's thesis at the Cuban University of Informatics Sciences (UIS.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rolando Quintana Aput

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available The present paper encloses the analysis of some troubles related to the development of theoretical design concerning the undergraduate thesis at the Cuban University of Informatics Sciences (UIS. This analysis proves to be decisive due to the existing demand for improving professionals training in the fields of investigation related to computing world.

  10. The Experimental Teaching Reform in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology for Undergraduate Students in Peking University Health Science Center

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Xiaohan; Sun, Luyang; Zhao, Ying; Yi, Xia; Zhu, Bin; Wang, Pu; Lin, Hong; Ni, Juhua

    2015-01-01

    Since 2010, second-year undergraduate students of an eight-year training program leading to a Doctor of Medicine degree or Doctor of Philosophy degree in Peking University Health Science Center (PKUHSC) have been required to enter the "Innovative talent training project." During that time, the students joined a research lab and…

  11. So much more than just a list: exploring the nature of critical questioning in undergraduate sciences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pedrosa-de-Jesus, Helena; Moreira, Aurora; Lopes, Betina; Watts, Mike

    2014-05-01

    Background: Critical thinking is one of the very highest orders of cognitive abilities and a key competency in higher education. Asking questions is an important component of rich learning experiences, structurally embedded in the operations of critical thinking. Our clear sense is that critical thinking and, within that, critical questioning, is heavily context dependent, in the sense that is applied, used by critical learners in a contextualised way. Purpose: Our research deals with enhancing science undergraduates' critical questioning. We are interested in understanding and describing the nature and development of students' critical questioning. The purpose is to conceptualise critical questioning as a competency, into three domains - knowledge, skills and attitudes/dispositions. We have no interest in a taxonomic category of context-free question-types called 'critical questions'. In contrast, our view is that 'being a critical questioner' trades heavily on context. Sources of evidence: Four cases are considered as illuminative of the dimensions of science undergraduates' critical questioning. Data were collected in natural learning environments through non-participant observation, audio-taping teacher-students interactions and semi-structured interviews. Students' written material resulting from diverse learning tasks was also collected. Main argument: Our supposition is that one vehicle for achieving university students as critical thinkers is to enable them not just to ask critical questions, but to be critical questioners. We relate critical questioning to three domains: (1) context, (2) competency and (3) delivery, and propose a model based on illuminating examples of the in-classroom action. Conclusions: The dimensions of the competency-context-delivery model provide a framework for describing successful student critical questioning, showing that students' capacity to be critical can be developed. It is possible, in our view, to generate critical

  12. Downscaling Climate Science to the Classroom: Diverse Opportunities for Teaching Climate Science in Diverse Ways to Diverse Undergraduate Populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, R. M.; Gill, T. E.; Quesada, D.; Hedquist, B. C.

    2015-12-01

    Climate literacy and climate education are important topics in current socio-political debate. Despite numerous scientific findings supporting global climate changes and accelerated greenhouse warming, there is a social inertia resisting and slowing the rate at which many of our students understand and absorb these facts. A variety of reasons, including: socio-economic interests, political and ideological biases, misinformation from mass media, inappropriate preparation of science teachers, and lack of numancy have created serious challenges for public awareness of such an important issue. Different agencies and organizations (NASA, NOAA, EPA, AGU, APS, AMS and others) have created training programs for educators, not involved directly in climatology research, in order to learn climate science in a consistent way and then communicate it to the public and students. Different approaches on how to deliver such information to undergraduate students in diverse environments is discussed based on the author's experiences working in different minority-serving institutions across the nation and who have attended AMS Weather and Climate Studies training workshops, MSI-REACH, and the School of Ice. Different parameters are included in the analysis: demographics of students, size of the institutions, geographical locations, target audience, programs students are enrolled in, conceptual units covered, and availability of climate-related courses in the curricula. Additionally, the feasibility of incorporating a laboratory and quantitative analysis is analyzed. As a result of these comparisons it seems that downscaling of climate education experiences do not always work as expected in every institution regardless of the student body demographics. Different geographical areas, student body characteristics and type of institution determine the approach to be adopted as well as the feasibility to introduce different components for weather and climate studies. Some ideas are shared

  13. Coordinating the undergraduate medical (MBBS basic sciences programme in a Nepalese medical school

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shankar PR

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available KIST Medical College follows the curriculum of the Institute ofMedicine, Tribhuvan University. The programme aims toproduce socially responsible and competent physicians whoare willing and able to meet the existing and emergingchallenges of the national and international healthcaresystem. The first cohort of undergraduate medical students(MBBS students was admitted in November 2008 and threecohorts including the one admitted in 2008 have beenadmitted at the time of writing. The basic science subjects aretaught in an integrated, organ-system-based manner withcommunity medicine during the first two years. I wasappointed as the MBBS Phase I programme coordinator inSeptember 2008 and in this article I share my experiences ofrunning the basic sciences programme and also offersuggestions for running an efficient academic programme. Themanuscript will be of special interest to readers runningundergraduate medical programmes. The reader canunderstand our experiences in running the programme inadverse circumstances, learning to achieve greater integrationamong basic science, community medicine and clinicaldepartments, obtain information about a communitydiagnosis programme and know about running specialmodules on the medical humanities and pharmaceuticalpromotion.

  14. Cross-Cultural Comparisons of Undergraduate Student Views of the Nature of Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arino de la Rubia, Leigh S.; Lin, Tzung-Jin; Tsai, Chin-Chung

    2014-07-01

    Past studies investigating university level students' views of nature of science (NOS) were relatively few and most of them were conducted in Western countries. This paper focuses upon comparing the quantitative patterns in Western (US Caucasian and African-American) and non-Western (Taiwanese) students' views of NOS (VNOS) by adopting a survey instrument. This analysis combined with qualitative data begin to uncover details of potential cultural differences in patterns specifically in the US educational context by comparing Caucasian and African-American student responses to a question from a commonly used assessment of VNOS. Results show different patterns of views along the four dimensions of NOS (social negotiation, invented/creative NOS, cultural impacts, and changing/tentative feature of science) according to student major, student gender, and student ethnicity. These differences and similarities have the potential to impact undergraduate education and underrepresentation of cultural minorities in science careers and call for further research into NOS views in the context of diverse student groups.

  15. Connecting self-efficacy and views about the nature of science in undergraduate research experiences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quan, Gina M.; Elby, Andrew

    2016-12-01

    Undergraduate research can support students' more central participation in physics. We analyze markers of two coupled shifts in participation: changes in students' views about the nature of science coupled to shifts in self-efficacy toward physics research. Students in the study worked with faculty and graduate student mentors on research projects while also participating in a seminar where they learned about research and reflected on their experiences. In classroom discussions and in clinical interviews, students described gaining more nuanced views about the nature of science, specifically related to who can participate in research and what participation in research looks like. This shift was coupled to gains in self-efficacy toward their ability to contribute to research; they felt like their contributions as novices mattered. We present two case studies of students who experienced coupled shifts in self-efficacy and views about nature-of-science shifts, and a case study of a student for whom we did not see either shift, to illustrate both the existence of the coupling and the different ways it can play out. After making the case that this coupling occurs, we discuss some potential underlying mechanisms. Finally, we use these results to argue for more nuanced interpretations of self-efficacy measurements.

  16. A Data-enhanced On-line Learning Environment for Undergraduate Earth System Science Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    di, L.; Deng, M.

    2004-12-01

    Earth system science (ESS) research often requires integrating, analyzing, and modeling with large amount of multi-disciplinary, multi-source geospatial data. Satellite remote sensing is one of the major sources of such data. Currently, NASA EOSDIS has archived more than three petabytes of Earth remote sensing data. Those data are essential for conducting ESS research. Therefore, training students on how to effectively use large amount of remote sensing data in ESS research is the essential part of their ESS education. However, currently most of undergraduate students have never been trained to handle the huge volume of available data because of lack of resources and suitable teaching technology at ESS colleges. In order to reduce this problem, we are developing a web-based geospatial information system, called GeoBrain, for providing a data-enhanced on-line learning and research environment for ESS education and research. The system makes petabytes of NASA EOS data and information easily accessible to higher-education users. The system allows users to dynamically and collaboratively develop interoperable, web-executable geospatial process and analysis modules and models, and run them on-line against any part of the peta-byte archives for getting back the customized information products rather than raw data. The system makes a data-enhanced ESS learning and research environment, backed by petabytes of NASA EOS data and unavailable to students and professors before, available to them at their desktops. In order to integrate this new learning environment into the undergraduate ESS teaching and research, a NASA EOS Higher Education Alliance (NEHEA), consisting of the GeoBrain development team led by GMU and a group of Earth science educators selected from an open RFP process, has been formed. NEHEA members are incorporating the data enhanced learning environment into their teaching and on-going research and will develop new courses for taking advantages of the

  17. Understanding the Complex Relationship between Critical Thinking and Science Reasoning among Undergraduate Thesis Writers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dowd, Jason E; Thompson, Robert J; Schiff, Leslie A; Reynolds, Julie A

    2018-01-01

    Developing critical-thinking and scientific reasoning skills are core learning objectives of science education, but little empirical evidence exists regarding the interrelationships between these constructs. Writing effectively fosters students' development of these constructs, and it offers a unique window into studying how they relate. In this study of undergraduate thesis writing in biology at two universities, we examine how scientific reasoning exhibited in writing (assessed using the Biology Thesis Assessment Protocol) relates to general and specific critical-thinking skills (assessed using the California Critical Thinking Skills Test), and we consider implications for instruction. We find that scientific reasoning in writing is strongly related to inference , while other aspects of science reasoning that emerge in writing (epistemological considerations, writing conventions, etc.) are not significantly related to critical-thinking skills. Science reasoning in writing is not merely a proxy for critical thinking. In linking features of students' writing to their critical-thinking skills, this study 1) provides a bridge to prior work suggesting that engagement in science writing enhances critical thinking and 2) serves as a foundational step for subsequently determining whether instruction focused explicitly on developing critical-thinking skills (particularly inference ) can actually improve students' scientific reasoning in their writing. © 2018 J. E. Dowd et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2018 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  18. Assessing predictors of science grades and career goals in university undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patanella, Daniel Francis

    The utility of traditional predictors of both science grades and career goals (SAT and GPA) was compared to psychological predictors such as Piagetian stage (as measured by the Group Assessment of Logical Thinking), sex-role schema (as measured by the Bem Sex-Role Inventory, and self-schema in students enrolled in either psychology classes (n = 123) or biology classes (n = 56). While the overall predictive ability of the model was high (R = .73), the strongest predictors of grade in science class were traditional variables and not psychological ones as predicted. Prediction of career goal, while more modest (R = .19), was best served by the psychological variable of self-schema. Subsequent analyses indicated that Piagetian stage was best conceptualized as a mediating variable and that sex-role schema as measured played almost no role in either grade or career goal, as well as verifying the internal validity of the self-schema measure used. Biology students were more likely to possess a science self-schema than psychology students (chi2 (1,179) = 7.34, p < .01) and outperformed psychology students on the Piagetian questions (t(177) = 3.01, p < .01). Response latency was recorded for all participants' answer to the Piagetian questions; contrary to prediction however, the inclusion of response latency did not add to the predictive ability of the Piagetian measure used.

  19. Key Concepts for and Assessment of an Undergraduate Class that Engages Engineering Students in Climate Change Grand Challenge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Powers, S. E.; DeWaters, J.; Dhaniyala, S.

    2015-12-01

    Engineers must take a leading role in addressing the challenges of mitigating climate change and adapting to the inevitable changes that our world is facing. Yet climate change classes targeting engineering students are scarce. Technical education must focus on the problem formulation and solutions that consider multiple, complex interactions between engineered systems and the Earth's climate system and recognize that transformation raises societal challenges, including trade-offs among benefits, costs, and risks. Moreover, improving engineering students' climate science literacy will require strategies that also inspire students' motivation to work toward their solution. A climate science course for engineers has been taught 5 semesters as part of a NASA Innovations in Climate Education program grant (NNXlOAB57A). The basic premise of this project was that effective instruction must incorporate scientifically-based knowledge and observations and foster critical thinking, problem solving, and decision-making skills. Lecture, in-class cooperative and computer-based learning and a semester project provide the basis for engaging students in evaluating effective mitigation and adaptation solutions. Policy and social issues are integrated throughout many of the units. The objective of this presentation is to highlight the content and pedagogical approach used in this class that helped to contribute to significant gains in engineering students' climate literacy and critical thinking competencies. A total of 89 students fully participated in a pre/post climate literacy questionnaire. As a whole, students demonstrated significant gains in climate-related content knowledge (pproblem statements and solutions in a manner that incorporated a multidimensional systems perspective. These skills are sometimes foreign to technically focused, number crunching engineering students, but are critical for using their engineering skills and profession to address climate change mitigation

  20. Learning physical biology via modeling and simulation: A new course and textbook for science and engineering undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, Philip

    To a large extent, undergraduate physical-science curricula remain firmly rooted in pencil-and-paper calculation, despite the fact that most research is done with computers. To a large extent, undergraduate life-science curricula remain firmly rooted in descriptive approaches, despite the fact that much current research involves quantitative modeling. Not only does our pedagogy not reflect current reality; it also creates a spurious barrier between the fields, reinforcing the narrow silos that prevent students from connecting them. I'll describe an intermediate-level course on ``Physical Models of Living Systems.'' The prerequisite is first-year university physics and calculus. The course is a response to rapidly growing interest among undergraduates in a broad range of science and engineering majors. Students acquire several research skills that are often not addressed in traditional undergraduate courses: •Basic modeling skills; •Probabilistic modeling skills; •Data analysis methods; •Computer programming using a general-purpose platform like MATLAB or Python; •Pulling datasets from the Web for analysis; •Data visualization; •Dynamical systems, particularly feedback control. Partially supported by the NSF under Grants EF-0928048 and DMR-0832802.

  1. Barriers to undergraduate peer-physical examination of the lower limb in the health sciences and strategies to improve inclusion: a review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hendry, Gordon James

    2013-10-01

    Peer-physical examination is a widely adopted and an integral component of the undergraduate curriculum for many health science programs. Unwillingness or perceived inability to participate in peer-physical examination classes may have a negative impact upon students' abilities to competently conduct physical examinations of patients in future as registered health professionals. A literature review on the perceptions and attitudes of peer-physical examination of the lower limb amongst medical and health science students was conducted to identify potential barriers to participation, and to review strategies to improve participation in classes designed to develop clinical examination skills. A pragmatic search strategy of the literature from PubMed and Google Scholar published prior to June 2012 yielded 23 relevant articles. All articles were concerned with the views of medical students' education and there were no articles explicitly addressing the role of peer-physical examination in health science disciplines. Several ethical issues were identified including feelings of coercion, embarrassment, and perceptions of a lack of consideration for cultural and religious beliefs. The available evidence suggests that barriers to participation may be overcome by implementing standard protocols concerned with obtaining informed written consent, adequate choice of peer-examiner, changing facilities and garment advice, and possible alternative learning methods.

  2. An Interdisciplinary Undergraduate Space Physics Course: Understanding the Process of Science Through One Field's Colorful History

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lopez, Ramon E.

    1996-01-01

    Science education in this country is in its greatest period of ferment since the post-Sputnik frenzy a generation ago. In that earlier time, however, educators' emphasis was on producing more scientists and engineers. Today we recognize that all Americans need a good science background. The ability to observe, measure, think quantitatively, and reach logical conclusions based on available evidence is a set of skills that everyone entering the workforce needs to acquire if our country is to be competitive in a global economy. Moreover, as public policy increasingly crystallizes around scientific issues, it is critical that citizens be educated in science so that they may provide informed debate and on these issues. In order to develop this idea more fully, I proposed to teach a historically based course about space physics as an honors course at the University of Maryland-College Park (UMCP). The honors program at UMCP was established to foster broad-based undergraduate courses that utilize innovative teaching techniques to provide exemplary education to a select group of students. I designed an introductory course that would have four basic goals: to acquaint students with geomagnetic and auroral phenomena and their relationship to the space environment; to examine issues related to the history of science using the evolution of the field as an example; to develop familiarity with basic skills such as describing and interpreting observations, analyzing scientific papers, and communicating the results of their own research; and to provide some understanding of basic physics, especially those aspect that play a role in the near-earth space environment.

  3. Using a multicultural approach to teach chemistry and the nature of science to undergraduate non-majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goff, Peter; Boesdorfer, Sarah B.; Hunter, William

    2012-09-01

    This research documents the creation, implementation, and evaluation of a novel chemistry curriculum. The curriculum allowed students to create theories situated in a variety of cultures while they investigated chemical phenomena central to all civilizations; it was a way of synthesizing chemistry, the history and nature of science, inquiry, and multicultural education. Achieving both chemistry content and nature of science objectives were the main goals of the curriculum. A small sample of undergraduate students participated in the curriculum instead of attending a large lecture course. The novel curriculum covered the same chemistry topics as the large lecture course. Program efficacy was evaluated using a combination of grades, survey data, and interviews with the participating undergraduates. The results suggest that this curriculum was a successful start at engaging students and teaching them chemistry as well as nature of science concepts.

  4. The ASSURE Summer REU Program: Introducing research to first-generation and underserved undergraduates through space sciences and engineering projects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barron, Darcy; Peticolas, Laura; Multiverse Team at UC Berkeley's Space Sciences Lab

    2018-01-01

    The Advancing Space Science through Undergraduate Research Experience (ASSURE) summer REU program is an NSF-funded REU site at the Space Sciences Lab at UC Berkeley that first started in summer 2014. The program recruits students from all STEM majors, targeting underserved students including community college students and first-generation college students. The students have little or no research experience and a wide variety of academic backgrounds, but have a shared passion for space sciences and astronomy. We will describe our program's structure and the components we have found successful in preparing and supporting both the students and their research advisors for their summer research projects. This includes an intensive first week of introductory lectures and tutorials at the start of the program, preparing students for working in an academic research environment. The program also employs a multi-tiered mentoring system, with layers of support for the undergraduate student cohort, as well as graduate student and postdoctoral research advisors.

  5. Brownfield Action: An education through an environmental science simulation experience for undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelsey, Ryan Daniel

    Brownfield Action is a computer simulation experience used by undergraduates in an Introduction to Environmental Science course for non-science majors at Barnard College. Students play the role of environmental consultants given the semester-long task of investigating a potentially contaminated landsite in a simulated town. The simulation serves as the integration mechanism for the entire course. The project is a collaboration between Professor Bower and the Columbia University Center for New Media Teaching and Learning (CCNMTL). This study chronicles the discovery, design, development, implementation, and evaluation of this project over its four-year history from prototype to full-fledged semester-long integrated lecture and lab experience. The complete project history serves as a model for the development of best practices in contributing to the field of educational technology in higher education through the study of fully designed and implemented projects in real classrooms. Recommendations from the project focus on linking the laboratory and lecture portions of a course, the use of simulations (especially for novice students), instructor adaptation to the use of technology, general educational technology project development, and design research, among others. Findings from the study also emphasize the uniqueness of individual student's growth through the experience, and the depth of understanding that can be gained from embracing the complexity of studying sophisticated learning environments in real classrooms.

  6. Teaching microbiology to undergraduate students in the humanities and the social sciences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oren, Aharon

    2015-10-01

    This paper summarizes my experiences teaching a 28-hour course on the bacterial world for undergraduate students in the humanities and the social sciences at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. This course was offered in the framework of a program in which students must obtain credit points for courses offered by other faculties to broaden their education. Most students had little biology in high school and had never been exposed to the basics of chemistry. Using a historical approach, highlighting the work of pioneers such as van Leeuwenhoek, Koch, Fleming, Pasteur, Winogradsky and Woese, I covered a broad area of general, medical, environmental and evolutionary microbiology. The lectures included basic concepts of organic and inorganic chemistry necessary to understand the principles of fermentations and chemoautotrophy, and basic molecular biology to explain biotechnology using transgenic microorganisms and molecular phylogeny. Teaching the basics of microbiology to intelligent students lacking any background in the natural sciences was a rewarding experience. Some students complained that, in spite of my efforts, basic concepts of chemistry remained beyond their understanding. But overall the students' evaluation showed that the course had achieved its goal. © FEMS 2015. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  7. Developing Leaders: Implementation of a Peer Advising Program for a Public Health Sciences Undergraduate Program

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Megan eGriffin

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Peer advising is an integral part of our undergraduate advising system in the Public Health Sciences major at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. The program was developed in 2009 to address the advising needs of a rapidly growing major that went from 25 to over 530 majors between 2007 and 2014. Each year, 9-12 top performing upper-level students are chosen through an intensive application process. A major goal of the program is to provide curriculum and career guidance to students in the major and empower students in their academic and professional pursuits. The year-long program involves several components, including: staffing the drop-in advising center, attending training seminars, developing and presenting workshops for students, meeting prospective students and families, evaluating ways to improve the program, and collaborating on self-directed projects. The peer advisors also provide program staff insight into the needs and perspectives of students in the major. In turn, peer advisors gain valuable leadership and communication skills, and learn strategies for improving student success. The Peer Advising Program builds community and fosters personal and professional development for the peer advisors. In this paper, we will discuss the undergraduate peer advising model, the benefits and challenges of the program, and lessons learned. Several methods were used to understand the perceived benefits and challenges of the program and experiences of students who utilized the Peer Advising Center. The data for this evaluation were drawn from three sources: 1 archival records from the Peer Advising Center; 2 feedback from peer advisors who completed the year-long internship; and 3 a survey of students who utilized the Peer Advising Center. Results of this preliminary evaluation indicate that peer advisors gain valuable skills that they can carry into their professional world. The program is also a way to engage students in building community

  8. Sciencey Girls: Discourses Supporting Working-Class Girls’ to Identify with Science

    OpenAIRE

    Spela Godec

    2018-01-01

    Women from working class and some ethnic minority backgrounds continue to be underrepresented in science, particularly in areas such as physical sciences and engineering. Many find it difficult to see science as something that is “for them”, which then has implications for their learning and participation in science. In this paper, I discuss findings from a U.K.-based qualitative study with 15 working-class girls, aged 11 to 13, from diverse ethnic backgrounds. Data were collected over the co...

  9. The importance of teacher interpersonal behaviour for student attitudes in Brunei primary science classes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Brok, den P.J.; Fisher, D.; Scott, R.

    2005-01-01

    This study investigated relationships between students' perceptions of their teachers' interpersonal behaviour and their subject-related attitude in primary science classes in Brunei. Teacher-student interpersonal behaviour was mapped with the Questionnaire on Teacher Interaction (QTI) and reported

  10. A multilevel analysis of teacher interpersonal behaviour and student attitudes in Brunei primary science classes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Scott, R.; Brok, den P.J.; Fisher, D.; Putnam, R.; Borko, H.

    2004-01-01

    This study investigated relationships between students’ perceptions of their teachers’ interpersonal behaviour and their subject-related attitude in primary science classes in Brunei. Teacher-student interpersonal behaviour was mapped with the Questionnaire on Teacher Interaction (QTI) and reported

  11. Teaching programming and modelling skills to first-year earth & environmental science undergraduates: outcomes and lessons learned from a pilot project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fisher, J. A.; Brewer, C.; O'Brien, G.

    2017-12-01

    Computing and programming are rapidly becoming necessary skills for earth and environmental scientists. Scientists in both academia and industry must be able to manipulate increasingly large datasets, create plots and 3-D visualisations of observations, and interpret outputs from complex numerical models, among other tasks. However, these skills are rarely taught as a compulsory part of undergraduate earth science curricula. In 2016, the School of Earth & Environmental Sciences at the University of Wollongong began a pilot program to integrate introductory programming and modelling skills into the required first-year core curriculum for all undergraduates majoring in earth and environmental science fields. Using Python, a popular teaching language also widely used by professionals, a set of guided exercises were developed. These exercises use interactive Jupyter Notebooks to introduce students to programming fundamentals and simple modelling problems relevant to the earth system, such as carbon cycling and population growth. The exercises are paired with peer review activities to expose students to the multitude of "correct" ways to solve computing problems. In the last weeks of the semester, students work in groups to creatively adapt their new-found skills to selected problems in earth system science. In this presentation, I will report on outcomes from delivering the new curriculum to the first two cohorts of 120-150 students, including details of the implementation and the impacts on both student aptitude and attitudes towards computing. While the first cohort clearly developed competency, survey results suggested a drop in student confidence over the course of the semester. To address this confidence gap for the second cohort, the in-class activities are now being supplemented with low-stakes open-book review quizzes that provide further practice with no time pressure. Research into the effectiveness of these review quizzes is ongoing and preliminary findings

  12. How to engage undergraduate students in Soil Science: some strategies to enhance their motivation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zornoza, Raúl; Lozano-García, Beatriz; Acosta, Jose A.; Martínez-Martínez, Silvia; Parras-Alcántara, Luis; Faz, Angel

    2017-04-01

    Teaching soil science can be a challenge in those degrees where students are not familiar with the soil system and do not understand the importance of soil science for their future career. This is the case of students of Biology, Agronomy or Environmental Science, who normally consider soil as a mere substrate for vegetation development, with no interest about how soil determines productivity and quality of terrestrial ecosystems. Thus, students lack of initial motivation to study Soil Science, and just attend lectures and practical lessons as mandatory procedure to get the degree. To engage undergraduate students from Biology, Agronomy and Environmental Sciences in Soil Science, we developed a strategy to enhance their motivation by means of making them participants of the selection of the soils and analyses used for their training. By means of dichotomous keys, students, grouped in pairs, first select the main purpose of their study from different options (land productivity, soil biodiversity, soil fertility, effectiveness of restoration, effect of land use, effect of management, etc). Once objective is decided, we give them some information about sampling strategies, so that they select how soil sampling is going to be performed, and the number of samples to be taken. In terms of the initial objective, they also decide from a given list the properties they should measure. In a practical basis, from the list of selected properties to be measured, professors decide the ones they can really develop in terms of timing, resources and space demand. After that, they are aware about the fact that they have an experimental design developed by them to achieve the goal they meant. Under this perspective, their motivation is enhanced since students are the ones deciding what to study in terms of their personal and professional interests, so that learning is more effective. The negative aspect of this strategy is that it involves many hours of tutorials for the professor

  13. PBL Group Autonomy in a High School Environmental Science Class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weiss, D. Mark; Belland, Brian R.

    2018-01-01

    With increasing class sizes, teachers and facilitators alike hope for learning groups where students work together in self-contained and autonomous ways requiring reduced teacher support. Yet many instructors find the idea of developing independent learning in small groups to be elusive particularly in K-12 settings (Ertmer and Simons in…

  14. Multimodal Representation Contributes to the Complex Development of Science Literacy in a College Biology Class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bennett, William Drew

    2011-01-01

    This study is an investigation into the science literacy of college genetics students who were given a modified curriculum to address specific teaching and learning problems from a previous class. This study arose out of an interest by the professor and researcher to determine how well students in the class Human Genetics in the 21st Century…

  15. Engaging Earth- and Environmental-Science Undergraduates Through Weather Discussions and an eLearning Weather Forecasting Contest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schultz, David M.; Anderson, Stuart; Seo-Zindy, Ryo

    2013-06-01

    For students who major in meteorology, engaging in weather forecasting can motivate learning, develop critical-thinking skills, improve their written communication, and yield better forecasts. Whether such advances apply to students who are not meteorology majors has been less demonstrated. To test this idea, a weather discussion and an eLearning weather forecasting contest were devised for a meteorology course taken by third-year undergraduate earth- and environmental-science students. The discussion consisted of using the recent, present, and future weather to amplify the topics of the week's lectures. Then, students forecasted the next day's high temperature and the probability of precipitation for Woodford, the closest official observing site to Manchester, UK. The contest ran for 10 weeks, and the students received credit for participation. The top students at the end of the contest received bonus points on their final grade. A Web-based forecast contest application was developed to register the students, receive their forecasts, and calculate weekly standings. Students who were successful in the forecast contest were not necessarily those who achieved the highest scores on the tests, demonstrating that the contest was possibly testing different skills than traditional learning. Student evaluations indicate that the weather discussion and contest were reasonably successful in engaging students to learn about the weather outside of the classroom, synthesize their knowledge from the lectures, and improve their practical understanding of the weather. Therefore, students taking a meteorology class, but not majoring in meteorology, can derive academic benefits from weather discussions and forecast contests. Nevertheless, student evaluations also indicate that better integration of the lectures, weather discussions, and the forecasting contests is necessary.

  16. Geoscience Through the Lens of Art: a collaborative course of science and art for undergraduates of various disciplines

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellins, K. K.; Eriksson, S. C.; Samsel, F.; Lavier, L.

    2017-12-01

    A new undergraduate, upper level geoscience course was developed and taught by faculty and staff of the UT Austin Jackson School of Geosciences, the Center for Agile Technology, and the Texas Advanced Computational Center. The course examined the role of the visual arts in placing the scientific process and knowledge in a broader context and introduced students to innovations in the visual arts that promote scientific investigation through collaboration between geoscientists and artists. The course addressed (1) the role of the visual arts in teaching geoscience concepts and promoting geoscience learning; (2) the application of innovative visualization and artistic techniques to large volumes of geoscience data to enhance scientific understanding and to move scientific investigation forward; and (3) the illustrative power of art to communicate geoscience to the public. In-class activities and discussions, computer lab instruction on the application of Paraview software, reading assignments, lectures, and group projects with presentations comprised the two-credit, semester-long "special topics" course, which was taken by geoscience, computer science, and engineering students. Assessment of student learning was carried out by the instructors and course evaluation was done by an external evaluator using rubrics, likert-scale surveys and focus goups. The course achieved its goals of students' learning the concepts and techniques of the visual arts. The final projects demonstrated this, along with the communication of geologic concepts using what they had learned in the course. The basic skill of sketching for learning and using best practices in visual communication were used extensively and, in most cases, very effectively. The use of an advanced visualization tool, Paraview, was received with mixed reviews because of the lack of time to really learn the tool and the fact that it is not a tool used routinely in geoscience. Those senior students with advanced computer

  17. Sciencey Girls: Discourses Supporting Working-Class Girls’ to Identify with Science

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Spela Godec

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Women from working class and some ethnic minority backgrounds continue to be underrepresented in science, particularly in areas such as physical sciences and engineering. Many find it difficult to see science as something that is “for them”, which then has implications for their learning and participation in science. In this paper, I discuss findings from a U.K.-based qualitative study with 15 working-class girls, aged 11 to 13, from diverse ethnic backgrounds. Data were collected over the course of one academic year, through interviews and discussion groups with the girls and interviews with their science teachers, and analysed through a post-structural gender lens. The paper foregrounds five science-identifying girls, who negotiated their identification and engagement with science through the following discursive strategies: (i rendering gender invisible, (ii drawing attention to the presence of women in science, (iii reframing “science people” as caring and nurturing, and (iv cultural discourses of desirability of science. The findings contribute to the understanding of how working class girls—who are often “othered” and constructed as “unintelligible” within the dominant discursive regime of prototypical science—find identification with science possible. The paper discusses the affordances and challenges of each discursive strategy.

  18. Science anxiety and social cognitive factors predicting STEM career aspirations of high school freshmen in general science class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skells, Kristin Marie

    Extant data was used to consider the association between science anxiety, social cognitive factors and STEM career aspirations of high school freshmen in general science classes. An adapted model based on social cognitive career theory (SCCT) was used to consider these relationships, with science anxiety functioning as a barrier in the model. The study assessed the following research questions: (1) Do social cognitive variables relate in the expected way to STEM career aspirations based on SCCT for ninth graders taking general science classes? (2) Is there an association between science anxiety and outcomes and processes identified in the SCCT model for ninth graders taking general science classes? (3) Does gender moderate these relationships? Results indicated that support was found for many of the central tenants of the SCCT model. Science anxiety was associated with prior achievement, self-efficacy, and science interest, although it did not relate directly to STEM career goals. Gender was found to moderate only the relationship between prior achievement and science self-efficacy.

  19. Classroom Activities: Simple Strategies to Incorporate Student-Centered Activities within Undergraduate Science Lectures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lom, Barbara

    2012-01-01

    The traditional science lecture, where an instructor delivers a carefully crafted monolog to a large audience of students who passively receive the information, has been a popular mode of instruction for centuries. Recent evidence on the science of teaching and learning indicates that learner-centered, active teaching strategies can be more effective learning tools than traditional lectures. Yet most colleges and universities retain lectures as their central instructional method. This article highlights several simple collaborative teaching techniques that can be readily deployed within traditional lecture frameworks to promote active learning. Specifically, this article briefly introduces the techniques of: reader's theatre, think-pair-share, roundtable, jigsaw, in-class quizzes, and minute papers. Each technique is broadly applicable well beyond neuroscience courses and easily modifiable to serve an instructor's specific pedagogical goals. The benefits of each technique are described along with specific examples of how each technique might be deployed within a traditional lecture to create more active learning experiences.

  20. An investigation of communication patterns and strategies between international teaching assistants and undergraduate students in university-level science labs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gourlay, Barbara Elas

    This research project investigates communication between international teaching assistants and their undergraduate students in university-level chemistry labs. During the fall semester, introductory-level chemistry lab sections of three experienced non-native speaking teaching assistants and their undergraduate students were observed. Digital audio and video recordings documented fifteen hours of lab communication, focusing on the activities and interactions in the first hour of the chemistry laboratory sessions. In follow-up one-on-one semi-structured interviews, the participants (undergraduates, teaching assistants, and faculty member) reviewed interactions and responded to a 10-item, 7-point Likert-scaled interview. Interactions were classified into success categories based on participants' opinions. Quantitative and qualitative data from the observations and interviews guided the analysis of the laboratory interactions, which examined patterns of conversational listening. Analysis of laboratory communication reveals that undergraduates initiated nearly two-thirds of laboratory communication, with three-fourths of interactions less than 30 seconds in duration. Issues of gender and topics of interaction activity were also explored. Interview data identified that successful undergraduate-teaching assistant communication in interactive science labs depends on teaching assistant listening comprehension skills to interpret and respond successfully to undergraduate questions. Successful communication in the chemistry lab depended on the coordination of visual and verbal sources of information. Teaching assistant responses that included explanations and elaborations were also seen as positive features in the communicative exchanges. Interaction analysis focusing on the listening comprehension demands placed on international teaching assistants revealed that undergraduate-initiated questions often employ deixis (exophoric reference), requiring teaching assistants to

  1. Hands-on science methods class for pre-service elementary teachers

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Manner, B.M. [Univ. of Pittsburgh, PA (United States)

    1994-12-31

    If elementary teachers are to be comfortable teaching science, they must have positive pre-service experiences. A science methods class that is activity-based and student-centered, rather than lecture-based and teacher-centered, peaks their interest in science and alleviates their fears. Activities conducted by the students illustrate science concepts or integrate science with children`s literature books such as The Grouchy Ladybug. These activities are conducted by each student with the rest of the class and the professor acting as an elementary class. Each activity is then evaluated as to the science concept, what was done well, and how it could be improved. The students also relate how the activity would be integrated with other subjects such as social studies, art, math, and language arts. Student feedback indicates this method is enjoyable, educational, and valuable in preparing them to teach science. The {open_quotes}oohs{close_quotes} and {open_quotes}I didn`t know that!{close_quotes} during activities are positives, but students have also learned some science, lost most of their science anxiety, and will teach science with the confidence and enthusiasm that was lacking at the beginning of the course.

  2. Understanding Korean Transnational Girls in High School Science Classes: Beyond the Model Minority Stereotype

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ryu, Minjung

    2015-01-01

    This study examines six Korean transnational girls enrolled in two advanced placement (AP) biology classes to understand their experiences in science classrooms at the intersection of race, language, and gender. Confronting the model minority stereotype for Asian students, which is particularly salient in science, technology, engineering, and…

  3. From Peripheral to Central, the Story of Melanie's Metamorphosis in an Urban Middle School Science Class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan, Edna; Barton, Angela Calabrese

    2008-01-01

    Identity formation is a critical dimension of how and why students engage in science to varying degrees. In this paper, we use the lens of identity formation, and in particular identities in practice, to make sense of how and why Melanie, over the course of sixth grade, transformed from a marginalized member of the science class with a failing…

  4. A Social Capital Perspective on the Mentoring of Undergraduate Life Science Researchers: An Empirical Study of Undergraduate–Postgraduate–Faculty Triads

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aikens, Melissa L.; Sadselia, Sona; Watkins, Keiana; Evans, Mara; Eby, Lillian T.; Dolan, Erin L.

    2016-01-01

    Undergraduate researchers at research universities are often mentored by graduate students or postdoctoral researchers (referred to collectively as “postgraduates”) and faculty, creating a mentoring triad structure. Triads differ based on whether the undergraduate, postgraduate, and faculty member interact with one another about the undergraduate’s research. Using a social capital theory framework, we hypothesized that different triad structures provide undergraduates with varying resources (e.g., information, advice, psychosocial support) from the postgraduates and/or faculty, which would affect the undergraduates’ research outcomes. To test this, we collected data from a national sample of undergraduate life science researchers about their mentoring triad structure and a range of outcomes associated with research experiences, such as perceived gains in their abilities to think and work like scientists, science identity, and intentions to enroll in a PhD program. Undergraduates mentored by postgraduates alone reported positive outcomes, indicating that postgraduates can be effective mentors. However, undergraduates who interacted directly with faculty realized greater outcomes, suggesting that faculty interaction is important for undergraduates to realize the full benefits of research. The “closed triad,” in which undergraduates, postgraduates, and faculty all interact directly, appeared to be uniquely beneficial; these undergraduates reported the highest gains in thinking and working like a scientist. PMID:27174583

  5. An analysis of the information technology discipline in archival sciences undergraduate courses of universities from the south of Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nelma Camêlo Araujo

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available The present article is part of a research conducted at universities of the south of Brazil that offers disciplines of Information Technology in Archival Sciences undergraduate courses. The research objective to identify through the educational project of these courses the subjects which have emphasis in the Information Technology, as well as to identify the teachers’ perception about the condition of these subjects in enabling the student for the challenges of the work market

  6. Using assessments to investigate and compare the nature of learning in undergraduate science courses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Momsen, Jennifer; Offerdahl, Erika; Kryjevskaia, Mila; Montplaisir, Lisa; Anderson, Elizabeth; Grosz, Nate

    2013-06-01

    Assessments and student expectations can drive learning: students selectively study and learn the content and skills they believe critical to passing an exam in a given subject. Evaluating the nature of assessments in undergraduate science education can, therefore, provide substantial insight into student learning. We characterized and compared the cognitive skills routinely assessed by introductory biology and calculus-based physics sequences, using the cognitive domain of Bloom's taxonomy of educational objectives. Our results indicate that both introductory sequences overwhelmingly assess lower-order cognitive skills (e.g., knowledge recall, algorithmic problem solving), but the distribution of items across cognitive skill levels differs between introductory biology and physics, which reflects and may even reinforce student perceptions typical of those courses: biology is memorization, and physics is solving problems. We also probed the relationship between level of difficulty of exam questions, as measured by student performance and cognitive skill level as measured by Bloom's taxonomy. Our analyses of both disciplines do not indicate the presence of a strong relationship. Thus, regardless of discipline, more cognitively demanding tasks do not necessarily equate to increased difficulty. We recognize the limitations associated with this approach; however, we believe this research underscores the utility of evaluating the nature of our assessments.

  7. Teaching Map Concepts in Social Science Education; an Evaluation with Undergraduate Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bugdayci, Ilkay; Zahit Selvi, H.

    2017-12-01

    One of the most important aim of the geography and social science courses is to gain the ability of reading, analysing and understanding maps. There are a lot of themes related with maps and map concepts in social studies education. Geographical location is one of the most important theme. Geographical location is specified by geographical coordinates called latitude and longitude. The geographical coordinate system is the primary spatial reference system of the earth. It is always used in cartography, in geography, in basic location calculations such as navigation and surveying. It’s important to support teacher candidates, to teach maps and related concepts. Cartographers also have important missions and responsibilities in this context. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the knowledge of undergraduate students, about the geographical location. For this purpose, a research has been carried out on questions and activities related to geographical location and related concepts. The details and results of the research conducted by the students in the study are explained.

  8. [Use of psychoactive drugs by health sciences undergraduate students at the Federal University in Amazonas, Brazil].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lucas, Ana Cyra dos Santos; Parente, Rosana Cristina Pereira; Picanço, Neila Soares; Conceição, Denis Alvaci; Costa, Karen Regina Carim da; Magalhães, Igor Rafael dos Santos; Siqueira, João Cladirson Alves

    2006-03-01

    A survey was conducted with 521 undergraduate health sciences students from the Federal University in Amazonas, Manaus, Brazil. Lifetime alcohol consumption was reported by 87.7% students, as compared to 30.7% for tobacco, with the latter reported more frequently by males (39.7%). The most common illicit drugs were solvents (11.9%), marijuana (9.4%), amphetamines and anxiolytics (9.2% each), cocaine (2.1%), and hallucinogens (1.2%). The main reason for illicit drug use was curiosity. Lifetime use of anabolic steroids was reported by 2.1% of the students. Alcohol abuse in the previous 30 days was reported by 12.4% of the students. Events following drinking included: fights (4.7%), accidents (2.4%), classroom absenteeism (33.7%), and job absenteeism (11.8%). Another important finding was that 47.3% of students drove after drinking. Opinions on drug abuse and patterns agree with those from similar studies in other regions of Brazil.

  9. Human sciences in the first semester of the dental undergraduate course at the Karolinska Institute, Stockholm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Röding, K

    1999-08-01

    The first 9 weeks of the dental undergraduate education at the Karolinska Institutet comprises a transition course, designed to introduce students to university studies leading to professional qualifications in patient-related health sciences. 1 week has been set aside for the theme Man and Society, highlighting the importance of the human sciences for the development of behavioural skills necessary for achieving professionalism and a holistic patient concept. Some essential ethical questions are addressed: intercultural communication, empathy, professional demeanour and the development of professional competence, and group dynamics. In this context, more specific subjects are considered, such as the emergence of the multicultural society and its implications for health services, interpersonal skills and patient communication in the health and medical fields. There are several reasons for including this theme, which forms the basis for the ethical and communicative strands throughout the entire curriculum. As 30-40% of freshmen dental students are of non-Swedish origin, it is essential to include cultural awareness seminars. Another reason is that within the EU, cultural and communicative skills are recognised proficiencies for health professionals; it is also acknowledged that effective delivery of health care may be impeded by misunderstandings in communication and conflict in ethical beliefs. Group discussions are scheduled during the week in order to allow the students to discuss their own experiences related to the theme. The students are also given a written assignment in relation to one of the seminars; the report is assessed as a part of the examination. The week is concluded by a plenum discussion summarising the group discussions. To date, 4 course evaluations, with a response rate of 92.5%, show that 97.3% of the students were positive to the theme as a whole or to specific seminars held during the week, especially intercultural communication, ethics and

  10. Knowledge of healthy foods does not translate to healthy snack consumption among exercise science undergraduates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McArthur, Laura H; Valentino, Antonette; Holbert, Donald

    2017-06-01

    This cross-sectional survey study compared the on- and off-campus snack choices and related correlates of convenience samples of exercise science (ES) ( n = 165, M = 45%, F = 55%) and non-exercise science (NES) ( n =160, M = 43%, F = 57%) undergraduates. The hypothesis posed was that knowledge of healthy foods will not translate to healthier snack consumption by the ES students, and that the snack choices and related correlates of ES and NES students will be similar. Data were collected using self-administered questionnaires completed in classrooms (ES sample) and at high-traffic locations on-campus (NES sample). Chi-square and t-test analyses compared ES and NES students on snack correlates. Snacks consumed most often by the ES and NES students on-campus were health bars/squares ( n = 56 vs. n = 48) and savory snacks ( n = 55 vs. n = 71), and off-campus were savory snacks ( n = 60 vs. n = 71) and fruits ( n = 41 vs. n = 34). Over half of both samples believed their snack choices were a mix of unhealthy and healthy. Fruits were considered healthier snacks and chips less healthy by both samples, and fruits were the most often recommended snack. About 20% believed these choices would impact their health unfavorably, and about two thirds self-classified in the action stages for healthy snacking. Since knowledge about healthy food choices did not translate to healthy snack selection, these students would benefit from interventions that teach selection and preparation of healthy snacks on a restricted budget.

  11. Social Class Dialogues and the Fostering of Class Consciousness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madden, Meredith

    2015-01-01

    How do critical pedagogies promote undergraduate students' awareness of social class, social class identity, and social class inequalities in education? How do undergraduate students experience class consciousness-raising in the intergroup dialogue classroom? This qualitative study explores undergraduate students' class consciousness-raising in an…

  12. Undergraduate Science Coursework: Teachers' Goal Statements and How Students Experience Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van der Rijst, Roeland M.; Visser-Wijnveen, Gerda J.; Verloop, Nico; Van Driel, Jan H.

    2013-01-01

    Understanding the relation between teachers' goal statements and students' experiences about the position of research in undergraduate coursework can give use insight into ways to integrate research and teaching and foster undergraduate research. In this study, we examined to what extent teachers' goal statements agreed with students' experiences…

  13. Referencing Science: Teaching Undergraduates to Identify, Validate, and Utilize Peer-Reviewed Online Literature

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berzonsky, William A.; Richardson, Katherine D.

    2008-01-01

    Accessibility of online scientific literature continues to expand due to the advent of scholarly databases and search engines. Studies have shown that undergraduates favor using online scientific literature to address research questions, but they often do not have the skills to assess the validity of research articles. Undergraduates generally are…

  14. Ideas and Approaches for Teaching Undergraduate Research Methods in the Health Sciences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peachey, Andrew A.; Baller, Stephanie L.

    2015-01-01

    Training in research methodology is becoming more commonly expected within undergraduate curricula designed to prepare students for entry into graduate allied health programs. Little information is currently available about pedagogical strategies to promote undergraduate students' learning of research methods, and less yet is available discussing…

  15. Assessing Attitudes Towards Science During an Adaptive Online Astrobiology Course: Comparing Online and On-Campus Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perera, Viranga; Mead, Chris; Buxner, Sanlyn; Horodyskyj, Lev; Semken, Steven; Lopatto, David; Anbar, Ariel

    2016-10-01

    General-education Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) courses are accepted as essential to a college education. An often cited reason is to train a scientifically literate populace who can think critically and make informed decisions about complex issues such as climate change, health care, and atomic energy. Goals of these STEM courses, therefore, go beyond content knowledge to include generating positive attitudes towards science, developing competence in evaluating scientific information in everyday life and understanding the nature of science. To gauge if such non-content learning outcomes are being met in our course, an online astrobiology course called Habitable Worlds, we administered the Classroom Undergraduate Research Experience (CURE) survey to students. The survey was administered before and after completion of the course for three semesters starting with the Fall 2014 semester and ending with the Fall 2015 semester (N = 774). A factor analysis indicated three factors on attitudes: toward science education, toward the interconnectedness of science with non-science fields, and toward the nature of science. Here we present some differences between students enrolled in online degree programs (o-course) and those enrolled in traditional undergraduate programs (i-course). While mean course grades were similar, changes in attitudes toward science differ significantly between o-course and i-course students. The o-course students began the course with more positive attitudes across all three factors than the i-course students. Their attitudes toward science education improved during the course, while the i-course students showed no change. Attitudes toward the other two factors declined in both populations during the course, but declines were smaller among o-course students. These differences may indicate lesser intrinsic motivation among the i-course students. The CURE survey has not been used before in an online course; therefore, we will

  16. Using local research sites to engage undergraduates in environmental science research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Varner, R. K.

    2016-12-01

    For the first time in their undergraduate experience, students in the University of New Hampshire's Techniques in Environmental Science course are immersed in learning approaches to scientific investigation that they can implement as part of their senior capstone research experience or other REU type programs. The course begins with an understanding of the value of note taking in the field and working collaboratively in groups. The students then embark upon a series of field experiences that include using both simple and complex tools for mapping elevation, species composition and above ground biomass estimates in a forest and wetland, carbon cycling through measurement of greenhouse gas exchange at both a wetland and at an organic dairy farm, assessing hydrology and water quality through both ground and surface water measurements at locations on campus, and finally analysis of atmospheric chemistry data collected locally. Over the course of a semester the students learn how to describe their methodology and the importance of their work concisely. Eventually the students are given instrumentation and a field site and learn to ask their own research question and develop their approach to answering it. This course model provides a foundation for students to pursue their capstone research experiences but also for understanding complex environmental questions such as the impact of land use change on water and air quality and carbon cycling and its role in our climate system. Students are provided a unique opportunity to address questions at field sites that are local and are part of larger research programs which allows for a larger context to place their work. This course has also been a framework for the NSF funded REU program- Northern Ecosystems Research for Undergraduates (EAR#1063037). Sallie's Fen, a wetland research site, is used as an initial field setting for students to learn techniques, build their ability to ask research questions and to plan research

  17. Socio-economic predictors of performance in the Undergraduate Medicine and Health Sciences Admission Test (UMAT).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Puddey, Ian B; Mercer, Annette

    2013-11-29

    Entry from secondary school to Australian and New Zealand undergraduate medical schools has since the late 1990's increasingly relied on the Undergraduate Medicine and Health Sciences Admission Test (UMAT) as one of the selection factors. The UMAT consists of 3 sections - logical reasoning and problem solving (UMAT-1), understanding people (UMAT-2) and non-verbal reasoning (UMAT-3). One of the goals of using this test has been to enhance equity in the selection of students with the anticipation of an increase in the socioeconomic diversity in student cohorts. However there has been limited assessment as to whether UMAT performance itself might be influenced by socioeconomic background. Between 2000 and 2012, 158,909 UMAT assessments were completed. From these, 118,085 cases have been identified where an Australian candidate was sitting for the first time during that period. Predictors of the total UMAT score, UMAT-1, UMAT-2 and UMAT-3 scores were entered into regression models and included gender, age, school type, language used at home, deciles for the Index of Relative Socioeconomic Advantage and Disadvantage score, the Accessibility/Remoteness Index of Australia (ARIA), self-identification as being of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander origin (ATSI) and current Australian state or territory of abode. A lower UMAT score was predicted by living in an area of relatively higher social disadvantage and lower social advantage. Other socioeconomic indicators were consistent with this observation with lower scores in those who self-identified as being of ATSI origin and higher scores evident in those from fee-paying independent school backgrounds compared to government schools. Lower scores were seen with increasing age, female gender and speaking any language other than English at home. Divergent effects of rurality were observed, with increased scores for UMAT-1 and UMAT-2, but decreasing UMAT-3 scores with increasing ARIA score. Significant state-based differences

  18. If These Walls Could Talk: Reflective Practice in Addiction Studies among Undergraduates in New Zealand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shepherd, Robin

    2010-01-01

    This exploratory study examined reflective practice among a class of students studying a "communities and addictions" course as part of the undergraduate health science degree. Most reflective practice publications are focused on medical or teachers' training rather than undergraduates in general. This is surprising given that reflective…

  19. Interdisciplinary Collaborative Learning: Using Decision Analysts to Enhance Undergraduate International Management Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palocsay, Susan W.; White, Marion M.; Zimmerman, D. Kent

    2004-01-01

    This article describes an experiential learning activity designed to promote the development of decision-making skills in international management students at the undergraduate level. Students from an undergraduate management science course in decision analysis served as consultants on a case assigned to teams in an international management class.…

  20. Multidisciplinary leadership training for undergraduate health science students may improve Ugandan healthcare

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J Najjuma

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Background. Community-based education research and service (COBERS is a platform for embedding progressive transformative leadership andresearch-related medical education in Uganda. The leadership development programme (LDP developed at Mbarara University of Science and Technology (MUST, Uganda is a key component of COBERS. Health science students at MUST are equipped by means of the LDP with leadership knowledge and skills, and a positive attitude towards leadership and rural communities. The programme involves employing interactive learner-centred education techniques, with the opportunity to implement these skills in a community setting immediately after the training.Objective. To assess the students’ self-reported perception and effectiveness of the precommunity placement LDP at MUST and its impact during the community clinical placement, and to measure the self-reported improvement of students’ knowledge and their application of leadership skills in the community. The results of the evaluation will improve and build on this educational programme. The study also evaluated the effectiveness of the preplacement leadership training course for undergraduates at MUST, as reported by students.Methods. The programme evaluation of the LDP used quantitative pretest and post-test measures and qualitative data from focus group discussionsto enrich the evaluation. Data were collected from students before and after the 1-week leadership training course using the same self-administeredquestionnaire. Variables were then compared to evaluate the impact of the LDP.Results. Prior to the intervention, only 14% of the participants had ever attended a leadership training session. There was significant self-reportedchange in the task accomplishment skills, interpersonal relationship skills and quality of leadership.Conclusion. The results suggest that the LDP may increase leadership skills among health science students to improve

  1. Using an ePortfolio System as an Electronic Laboratory Notebook in Undergraduate Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Practical Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnston, Jill; Kant, Sashi; Gysbers, Vanessa; Hancock, Dale; Denyer, Gareth

    2014-01-01

    Despite many apparent advantages, including security, back-up, remote access, workflow, and data management, the use of electronic laboratory notebooks (ELNs) in the modern research laboratory is still developing. This presents a challenge to instructors who want to give undergraduate students an introduction to the kinds of data curation and…

  2. Flipped-learning course design and evaluation through student self-assessment in a predental science class.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ihm, Jungjoon; Choi, Hyoseon; Roh, Sangho

    2017-06-01

    This study explores how to design a flipped classroom for a predental science course and evaluate its course through student self-assessment in order to provide practical implications for flipped learning in an undergraduate level. Second- and third-year predental students in the Seoul National University School of Dentistry enrolled in Biodiversity and Global Environment, a 15-week, three-credit course based on a flipped learning model. At the end of the course, the students were asked to rate their self-directed learning, attitude toward social media, discussion skills, learning readiness, and class satisfaction. Out of the 82 predental students, 61 (74.3%) answered the survey. Pearson correlation and multivariate regression analyses were employed to examine the relationship between the self-rated measurements and the performance scores. The majority of the students felt somewhat more prepared than the medium level before the class (mean score of 3.17 out of 5.00), whereas they expressed relatively low preference concerning social media use and attitude (mean score of 2.49). Thus, it was found that learning readiness was significantly associated with both discussion skills and class satisfaction. In particular, multivariate regression analysis confirmed that learning readiness had a significant influence on learning outcomes. This study offered insights into how to design a flipped learning course in terms of predental students' preference and their learning readiness. Although learning success in a flipped classroom depends on the students' self-perceived level of preparedness, much still remains to be achieved in order to apply social media benefits in a flipped learning context.

  3. Flipped-learning course design and evaluation through student self-assessment in a predental science class

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jungjoon Ihm

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Purpose This study explores how to design a flipped classroom for a predental science course and evaluate its course through student self-assessment in order to provide practical implications for flipped learning in an undergraduate level. Methods Second- and third-year predental students in the Seoul National University School of Dentistry enrolled in Biodiversity and Global Environment, a 15-week, three-credit course based on a flipped learning model. At the end of the course, the students were asked to rate their self-directed learning, attitude toward social media, discussion skills, learning readiness, and class satisfaction. Out of the 82 predental students, 61 (74.3% answered the survey. Pearson correlation and multivariate regression analyses were employed to examine the relationship between the self-rated measurements and the performance scores. Results The majority of the students felt somewhat more prepared than the medium level before the class (mean score of 3.17 out of 5.00, whereas they expressed relatively low preference concerning social media use and attitude (mean score of 2.49. Thus, it was found that learning readiness was significantly associated with both discussion skills and class satisfaction. In particular, multivariate regression analysis confirmed that learning readiness had a significant influence on learning outcomes. Conclusion This study offered insights into how to design a flipped learning course in terms of predental students’ preference and their learning readiness. Although learning success in a flipped classroom depends on the students’ self-perceived level of preparedness, much still remains to be achieved in order to apply social media benefits in a flipped learning context.

  4. Benefits and Limitations of Online Instruction in Natural Science Undergraduate Liberal Arts Courses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liddicoat, Joseph; Roberts, Godfrey; Liddicoat, Kendra; Porzecanski, Ana Luz; Mendez, Martin; McMullen, David

    2013-04-01

    Online courses in the Natural Sciences are taught three ways at New York University to undergraduate students majoring in the liberal arts and professional programs - synchronous courses in which students communicate online with the instructor and classmates in real time, asynchronous courses when faculty present course material for students to access and learn at their leisure, and hybrid or blended courses when part is taught asynchronously and part is taught face-to-face in a classroom with all students present. We have done online courses each way - Global Ecology (synchronous); Stars, Planets, and Life (synchronous and asynchronous); Darwin to DNA: An Overview of Evolution (asynchronous); Biodiversity Conservation (asynchronous); and Biology of Hunger and Population (blended). We will present the advantages and challenges we experienced teaching courses online in this fashion. Besides the advantages listed in the description for this session, another can be programmed learning that allows a set of sequential steps or a more complex branching of steps that allows students to repeat lessons multiple times to master the material. And from an academic standpoint, course content and assessment can be standardized, making it possible for each student to learn the same material. Challenges include resistance to online learning by a host of stakeholders who might be educators, students, parents, and the community. Equally challenging might be the readiness of instructors and students to teach and learn online. Student integrity issues such as plagiarism and cheating are a concern in a course taught online (Thormann and Zimmerman, 2012), so we will discuss our strategies to mitigate them.

  5. Onboard Decision Making For a New Class of AUV Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rajan, K.; McGann, C.; Py, F.; Thomas, H.; Henthorn, R.; McEwen, R.

    2007-12-01

    Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUVs) are an increasingly important tool for oceanographic research. They routinely and cost effectively sample the water column at depths far beyond what humans are capable of visiting. However, control of these platforms has relied on fixed sequences for execution of pre-planned actions limiting their effectiveness for measuring dynamic and episodic ocean phenomenon. At the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI), we are developing an advanced Artificial Intelligence (AI) based control system to enable our AUV's to dynamically adapt to the environment by deliberating in-situ about mission plans while tracking onboard resource consumption, dealing with plan failures by allowing dynamic re-planning and being cognizant of vehicle health and safety in the course of executing science plans. Existing behavior-based approaches require an operator to script plans a priori while anticipating where and how the vehicle will transect the water column. While adequate for current needs to do routine pre-defined transects, it has limited flexibility in dealing with opportunistic science needs, is unable to deal with uncertainty in the oceanic environment and puts undue burden on the mission operators to manage complex interactions between behaviors. Our approach, informed by a decades worth of experience in intelligent control of NASA spacecraft, uses a constraint-based representation to manage mission goals, react to exogenous or endogenous failure conditions, respond to sensory feedback by using AI-based search techniques to sort thru a space of likely responses and picking one which is satisfies the completion of mission goals. The system encapsulates the long-standing notion of a sense-deliberate-act cycle at the heart of a control loop and reflects the goal-oriented nature of control allowing operators to specify abstract mission goals rather than detailed command sequences. To date we have tested T- REX (the Teleo

  6. Continuous Flow Science in an Undergraduate Teaching Laboratory: Photocatalytic Thiol-Ene Reaction Using Visible Light

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santandrea, Jeffrey; Kairouz, Vanessa; Collins, Shawn K.

    2018-01-01

    An undergraduate teaching laboratory experiment involving a continuous flow, photocatalytic thiol-ene reaction using visible-light irradiation is described that allows students to explore concepts of green chemistry, photochemistry, photocatalysis, and continuous flow chemistry.

  7. Undergraduate Convexity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lauritzen, Niels

    Based on undergraduate teaching to students in computer science, economics and mathematics at Aarhus University, this is an elementary introduction to convex sets and convex functions with emphasis on concrete computations and examples. Starting from linear inequalities and Fourier-Motzkin elimin...

  8. Going from lectures to expeditions: Creating a virtual voyage in undergraduate ocean science education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reed, D.; Garfield, N.; Locke, J.; Anglin, J.; Karl, H.; Edwards, B.

    2003-04-01

    The WWW provides for new collaborations in distributed learning in higher education. The lead author has developed a highly successful online course at the undergraduate level with an enrollment of more than 300 non-science majors each year, We are currently initiating a new focus for the course by emphasizing sea-going research, primarily in the northeastern Pacific Ocean, through the development of a virtual oceanographic voyage over the WWW. The "virtual voyage" courseware combines elements of experiential learning with anytime, anywhere access of the WWW to stimulate inquiry-based learning in the ocean sciences. The first leg of the voyage is currently being synthesized from contemporary ocean research sponsored by a collaboration of U.S. government agencies, including NSF, NOAA, and the USGS. The initial portion of this effort involves transforming portions of USGS Circular 1198, Beyond the Golden Gate -- Oceanography, Geology, Biology, and Environmental Issues in the Gulf of the Farallones, into an interactive expedition by which students participate as scientists aboard a research vessel departing from San Francisco. Virtual experiments on the voyage are patterned after research cruises over the past decade in two national marine sanctuaries and include the technologies of data acquisition and data analysis, as well as providing insight into the methodologies of working marine scientists. Real-time data for monitoring the marine environment are embedded into several modules; for example, students will analyze data from offshore buoys and satellite imagery to assess ocean conditions prior to departing from port. Multibeam sonar is used to create seafloor maps near the Golden Gate Bridge and sediment cores provide evidence of sea-level change in the region. Environmental studies in the region include locating canisters of low-level radioactive waste and assessing potential sites for the disposal for dredged materials from the San Francisco Bay. Upon completion

  9. Classroom Activities: Simple Strategies to Incorporate Student-Centered Activities within Undergraduate Science Lectures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lom, Barbara

    2012-01-01

    The traditional science lecture, where an instructor delivers a carefully crafted monolog to a large audience of students who passively receive the information, has been a popular mode of instruction for centuries. Recent evidence on the science of teaching and learning indicates that learner-centered, active teaching strategies can be more effective learning tools than traditional lectures. Yet most colleges and universities retain lectures as their central instructional method. This article highlights several simple collaborative teaching techniques that can be readily deployed within traditional lecture frameworks to promote active learning. Specifically, this article briefly introduces the techniques of: reader’s theatre, think-pair-share, roundtable, jigsaw, in-class quizzes, and minute papers. Each technique is broadly applicable well beyond neuroscience courses and easily modifiable to serve an instructor’s specific pedagogical goals. The benefits of each technique are described along with specific examples of how each technique might be deployed within a traditional lecture to create more active learning experiences. PMID:23494568

  10. Beating the numbers through strategic intervention materials (SIMs): Innovative science teaching for large classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alboruto, Venus M.

    2017-05-01

    The study aimed to find out the effectiveness of using Strategic Intervention Materials (SIMs) as an innovative teaching practice in managing large Grade Eight Science classes to raise the performance of the students in terms of science process skills development and mastery of science concepts. Utilizing experimental research design with two groups of participants, which were purposefully chosen, it was obtained that there existed a significant difference in the performance of the experimental and control groups based on actual class observation and written tests on science process skills with a p-value of 0.0360 in favor of the experimental class. Further, results of written pre-test and post-test on science concepts showed that the experimental group with the mean of 24.325 (SD =3.82) performed better than the control group with the mean of 20.58 (SD =4.94), with a registered p-value of 0.00039. Therefore, the use of SIMs significantly contributed to the mastery of science concepts and the development of science process skills. Based on the findings, the following recommendations are offered: 1. that grade eight science teachers should use or adopt the SIMs used in this study to improve their students' performance; 2. training-workshop on developing SIMs must be conducted to help teachers develop SIMs to be used in their classes; 3. school administrators must allocate funds for the development and reproduction of SIMs to be used by the students in their school; and 4. every division should have a repository of SIMs for easy access of the teachers in the entire division.

  11. Argumentation in Science Class: Its Planning, Practice, and Effect on Student Motivation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taneja, Anju

    Studies have shown an association between argumentative discourse in science class, better understanding of science concepts, and improved academic performance. However, there is lack of research on how argumentation can increase student motivation. This mixed methods concurrent nested study uses Bandura's construct of motivation and concepts of argumentation and formative feedback to understand how teachers orchestrate argumentation in science class and how it affects motivation. Qualitative data was collected through interviews of 4 grade-9 science teachers and through observing teacher-directed classroom discourse. Classroom observations allowed the researcher to record the rhythm of discourse by characterizing teacher and student speech as teacher presentation (TP), teacher guided authoritative discussion (AD), teacher guided dialogic discussion (DD), and student initiation (SI). The Student Motivation Towards Science Learning survey was administered to 67 students before and after a class in which argumentation was used. Analysis of interviews showed teachers collaborated to plan argumentation. Analysis of discourse identified the characteristics of argumentation and provided evidence of students' engagement in argumentation in a range of contexts. Student motivation scores were tested using Wilcoxon signed rank tests and Mann-Whitney U-tests, which showed no significant change. However, one construct of motivation---active learning strategy---significantly increased. Quantitative findings also indicate that teachers' use of multiple methods in teaching science can affect various constructs of students' motivation. This study promotes social change by providing teachers with insight about how to engage all students in argumentation.

  12. Undergraduate African American females in the sciences: A qualitative study of student experiences affecting academic success and persistence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Essien-Wood, Idara R.

    Given the lack of literature on Undergraduate African American females in the sciences (UAAFS), this study sought to explicate their experiences at one large, predominantly White, Research I institution in the southwestern United States. In particular, the purpose of this study was to identify factors that affect the academic success and persistence of Black females in the natural and physical sciences. Data was collected via in-depth, semi-structured interviews with 15 Black female science majors. Findings from this study identified several supportive mechanisms for academic success: family, religion, teaching assistants and friends. Also identified were seven barriers to academic success: employment, lack of diversity, cultural dissonance, unwelcoming Research I environment, faculty, advisors, classmates, and lab groups. Further, an analysis of students' responses revealed numerous instances of racial and gender micro-aggressions. Recommendations are provided to address factors identified as affecting student academic success and persistence as well as a culture of micro-aggressive behavior.

  13. The CLEAN Workshop Series: Promoting Effective Pedagogy for Teaching Undergraduate Climate Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirk, K. B.; Bruckner, M. Z.; Manduca, C. A.; Buhr, S. M.

    2012-12-01

    To prepare students to understand a changing climate, it is imperative that we equip educators with the best possible tools and methods for reaching their audience. As part of the Climate Literacy and Energy Awareness Network (CLEAN) professional development efforts, two workshops for undergraduate faculty were held in 2012. These workshops used a variety of activities to help faculty learn about recent climate research, take part in demonstrations of successful activities for teaching climate topics, and collaborate to create new teaching materials. The workshops also facilitated professional networking among participants. Both workshops were held online, eliminating the need for travel, encouraging participants without travel funds to attend, and allowing international collaborations and presentations. To create an authentic experience, the workshop used several technologies such as the Blackboard Collaborate web conferencing platform, SERC's web-based collaboration tools and online discussion threads, and conference calls. The workshop Communicating Climate Science in the Classroom, held in April 2012, explored practices for communicating climate science and policy in the classroom and provided strategies to improve student understanding of this complex and sensitive topic. Workshop presentations featured public opinion research on Americans' perceptions of climate change, tactics for identifying and resolving student misconceptions, and methods to address various "backfire effects" that can result from attempts to correct misinformation. Demonstrations of teaching approaches included a role-playing simulation of emissions negotiations, Princeton's climate stabilization wedges game, and an activity that allows students to use scientific principles to tackle misinformation. The workshop Teaching Climate Complexity was held in May 2012. Teaching the complexities of climate science requires an understanding of many facets of the Earth system and a robust pedagogic

  14. Gender and Belonging in Undergraduate Computer Science: A Comparative Case Study of Student Experiences in Gateway Courses. WCER Working Paper No. 2016-2

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benbow, Ross J.; Vivyan, Erika

    2016-01-01

    Building from findings showing that undergraduate computer science continues to have the highest attrition rates proportionally for women within postsecondary science, technology, engineering, and mathematics disciplines--a phenomenon that defies basic social equity goals in a high status field--this paper seeks to better understand how student…

  15. Founders' Weekend. North Country Workshop on Science, Technology and the Undergraduate Curriculum. Proceedings (Potsdam, New York, November 9-10, 1984).

    Science.gov (United States)

    State Univ. of New York, Potsdam. Coll. at Potsdam.

    Proceedings of the North Country Workshop on Science, Technology, and the Undergraduate Curriculum are presented. The Sloan Foundation's call for reform of the liberal arts and coverage of mathematics, science, and technology is noted in welcoming remarks by State University of New York, Potsdam, President Humphrey Tonkin. Stephen H. Cutcliffe…

  16. Developing Food Science Core Competencies in Vietnam: The Role of Experience and Problem Solving in an Industry-Based Undergraduate Research Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    LeGrand, Karen; Yamashita, Lina; Trexler, Cary J.; Vu, Thi Lam An; Young, Glenn M.

    2017-01-01

    Although many educators now recognize the value of problem-based learning and experiential learning, undergraduate-level food science courses that reflect these pedagogical approaches are still relatively novel, especially in East and Southeast Asia. Leveraging existing partnerships with farmers in Vietnam, a food science course for students at…

  17. Agency Amidst Formidable Structures: How Girls Perform Gender in Science Class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlone, Heidi B.; Johnson, Angela; Scott, Catherine M.

    2015-01-01

    Larger social structures such as race, class, gender, and sexuality and classroom structures like narrowly defined participation practices constrain individuals' agency to engage in untroubled and sustained science identity work. This article explores the central dilemma of attending to structure and agency in settings where inequities are…

  18. Investigating Optimal Learning Moments in U.S. and Finnish Science Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider, Barbara; Krajcik, Joseph; Lavonen, Jari; Salmela-Aro, Katariina; Broda, Michael; Spicer, Justina; Bruner, Justin; Moeller, Julia; Linnansaari, Janna; Juuti, Kalle; Viljaranta, Jaana

    2016-01-01

    This study explores how often students are engaged in their science classes and their affective states during these times, using an innovative methodology that records these experiences "in situ". Sampling a subset of high schools in the U.S. and Finland, we collected over 7,000 momentary responses from 344 students over the course of a…

  19. Teaching Language and Content: Instructor Strategies in a Bilingual Science Class at a Chinese University

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liang, Xiaoping; Smith, Sara W.

    2012-01-01

    The present research analyzes instructional strategies used to integrate the learning of content and English as a foreign language in a bilingual physics class at a university in Shanghai, China. It examines how the instructor handles meaning and form of new English science vocabulary in concept-focused physics lectures and the strategies he used…

  20. Effects of Brain-Based Learning Approach on Students' Motivation and Attitudes Levels in Science Class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akyurek, Erkan; Afacan, Ozlem

    2013-01-01

    The purpose of the study was to examine the effect of brain-based learning approach on attitudes and motivation levels in 8th grade students' science classes. The main reason for examining attitudes and motivation levels, the effect of the short-term motivation, attitude shows the long-term effect. The pre/post-test control group research model…

  1. Case Studies of Interactive Whole-Class Teaching in Primary Science: Communicative Approach and Pedagogic Purposes

    Science.gov (United States)

    McMahon, Kendra

    2012-01-01

    By developing two case studies of expert teaching in action, this study aimed to develop knowledge of talk in whole-class teaching in UK primary science lessons and understand this in relation to both the teachers' interpretations and sociocultural theoretical frameworks. Lessons were observed and video-recorded and the teachers engaged in…

  2. Multiple-Choice Exams: An Obstacle for Higher-Level Thinking in Introductory Science Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stanger-Hall, Kathrin F.

    2012-01-01

    Learning science requires higher-level (critical) thinking skills that need to be practiced in science classes. This study tested the effect of exam format on critical-thinking skills. Multiple-choice (MC) testing is common in introductory science courses, and students in these classes tend to associate memorization with MC questions and may not see the need to modify their study strategies for critical thinking, because the MC exam format has not changed. To test the effect of exam format, I used two sections of an introductory biology class. One section was assessed with exams in the traditional MC format, the other section was assessed with both MC and constructed-response (CR) questions. The mixed exam format was correlated with significantly more cognitively active study behaviors and a significantly better performance on the cumulative final exam (after accounting for grade point average and gender). There was also less gender-bias in the CR answers. This suggests that the MC-only exam format indeed hinders critical thinking in introductory science classes. Introducing CR questions encouraged students to learn more and to be better critical thinkers and reduced gender bias. However, student resistance increased as students adjusted their perceptions of their own critical-thinking abilities. PMID:22949426

  3. Reading and Note Taking in Monological and Dialogical Classes in the Social Sciences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cartolari, Manuela; Carlino, Paula; Colombo, Laura M.

    2013-01-01

    This qualitative study explores the uses of reading and note-taking in two pre-service teacher training Social Sciences courses. Data analysis of in-depth interviews with professors and students, class observations and course materials suggested two polar teaching styles according to how bibliography was included in the course and the presence or…

  4. An intensive primary-literature-based teaching program directly benefits undergraduate science majors and facilitates their transition to doctoral programs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kozeracki, Carol A; Carey, Michael F; Colicelli, John; Levis-Fitzgerald, Marc; Grossel, Martha

    2006-01-01

    UCLA's Howard Hughes Undergraduate Research Program (HHURP), a collaboration between the College of Letters and Science and the School of Medicine, trains a group of highly motivated undergraduates through mentored research enhanced by a rigorous seminar course. The course is centered on the presentation and critical analysis of scientific journal articles as well as the students' own research. This article describes the components and objectives of the HHURP and discusses the results of three program assessments: annual student evaluations, interviews with UCLA professors who served as research advisors for HHURP scholars, and a survey of program alumni. Students indicate that the program increased their ability to read and present primary scientific research and to present their own research and enhanced their research experience at UCLA. After graduating, they find their involvement in the HHURP helped them in securing admission to the graduate program of their choice and provided them with an advantage over their peers in the interactive seminars that are the foundation of graduate education. On the basis of the assessment of the program from 1998-1999 to 2004-2005, we conclude that an intensive literature-based training program increases student confidence and scientific literacy during their undergraduate years and facilitates their transition to postgraduate study.

  5. Kilowatt-Class Fission Power Systems for Science and Human Precursor Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mason, Lee S.; Gibson, Marc Andrew; Poston, Dave

    2013-01-01

    Nuclear power provides an enabling capability for NASA missions that might otherwise be constrained by power availability, mission duration, or operational robustness. NASA and the Department of Energy (DOE) are developing fission power technology to serve a wide range of future space uses. Advantages include lower mass, longer life, and greater mission flexibility than competing power system options. Kilowatt-class fission systems, designated "Kilopower," were conceived to address the need for systems to fill the gap above the current 100-W-class radioisotope power systems being developed for science missions and below the typical 100-k We-class reactor power systems being developed for human exploration missions. This paper reviews the current fission technology project and examines some Kilopower concepts that could be used to support future science missions or human precursors.

  6. Life in the Universe - Astronomy and Planetary Science Research Experience for Undergraduates at the SETI Institute

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiar, J.; Phillips, C. B.; Rudolph, A.; Bonaccorsi, R.; Tarter, J.; Harp, G.; Caldwell, D. A.; DeVore, E. K.

    2016-12-01

    The SETI Institute hosts an Astrobiology Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program. Beginning in 2013, we partnered with the Physics and Astronomy Dept. at Cal Poly Pomona, a Hispanic-serving university, to recruit underserved students. Over 11 years, we have served 155 students. We focus on Astrobiology since the Institute's mission is to explore, understand and explain the origin, nature and prevalence of life in the universe. Our REU students work with mentors at the Institute - a non-profit organization located in California's Silicon Valley-and at the nearby NASA Ames Research Center. Projects span research on survival of microbes under extreme conditions, planetary geology, astronomy, the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI), extrasolar planets and more. The REU program begins with an introductory lectures by Institute scientists covering the diverse astrobiology subfields. A week-long field trip to the SETI Institute's Allen Telescope Array (Hat Creek Radio Astronomy Observatory in Northern California) and field experiences at hydrothermal systems at nearby Lassen Volcanic National Park immerses students in radio astronomy and SETI, and extremophile environments that are research sites for astrobiologists. Field trips expose students to diverse environments and allow them to investigate planetary analogs as our scientists do. Students also participate in local trips to the California Academy of Sciences and other nearby locations of scientific interest, and attend the weekly scientific colloquium hosted by the SETI Institute at Microsoft, other seminars and lectures at SETI Institute and NASA Ames. The students meet and present at a weekly journal club where they hone their presentation skills, as well as share their research progress. At the end of the summer, the REU interns present their research projects at a session of the Institute's colloquium. As a final project, students prepare a 2-page formal abstract and 15-minute

  7. Factors affecting the matriculation of African American undergraduate students in science, mathematics, engineering, and technology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hall, Alfred L., II

    Previous research studies indicated that African Americans remain severely underrepresented in the field of science, mathematics, engineering, and technology (SMET), making up only 3% of that workforce, while representing 11.1% of all professional and related workers and 12.6% of the general population. As this country moves towards a more culturally diverse population, then representation of African Americans in SMET-related fields must be addressed in order to ensure our nation's competitiveness in a global market. This research study analyzed characteristics of African American undergraduate SMET majors participating in the Alliance for Minority Participation (AMP) program in six different states located in the Southeast region of the United States. These states consisted of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, North Carolina, and South Carolina. AMP program participants completed a survey questionnaire, which collected information about potential factors that could affect their matriculation in SMET programs of studies at their respective institutions. Follow-up interviews and focus group sessions were also conducted with AMP participants to provide supplemental information to the survey data. The results of student responses were analyzed according to the type of institution the students attended (Historically Black College or University and Majority White Institution) as well as by the statewide Alliance program in which the students were involved. The students responded to survey questions that asked for their reasons for majoring in their field of study, their level of satisfaction with their institution, their impressions of student support programs and persons, their impressions of faculty and advisors, their reasons for thinking of switching majors, and their level of high school preparation. Statistical analyses of the student responses found that African American AMP students attending Historically Black Colleges and Universities differed from those

  8. Assessing Student Attitudes Towards Science in an Adaptive Online Astrobiology Course: Comparing Online and On-Campus Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buxner, S.; Perera, V.; Mead, C.; Horodyskyj, L.; Semken, S. C.; Lopatto, D.; Anbar, A. D.

    2016-12-01

    General-education Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) courses are considered essential to a college education, in part, to train students to think critically and to make informed decisions about complex scientific issues such as climate change and public health. Therefore, the goals of these STEM courses go beyond content knowledge to include generating positive attitudes towards science, developing competence in evaluating scientific information in everyday life, and understanding the nature of science. The Classroom Undergraduate Research Experience (CURE) survey is frequently used to measure these attitudes, but it has not previously been used in an online, general education course. In this work, we administered the CURE survey for three semesters (N = 774) before and after completion of an online astrobiology course called Habitable Worlds. We compare students taking this course as part of fully-online degree programs (o-course) with those taking it as part of traditional undergraduate programs (i-course). More females and older students were among the o-course group, while overall the course had more white students than the Arizona State University average. Mean course grades were similar between the two groups but attitudes toward science differred significantly. O-course students began the course with more positive attitudes than i-course students, and o-course students also showed more positive changes at the end of the course. These differences suggest lesser intrinsic motivation among the i-course students. Additionally, pre-course attitudes correlated with final course grade for o-course students, but not for i-course students, which implies that success among o-course students is influenced by different factors than i-course students. Thus, effective student support strategies may differ for online-only students. Future work will include student interviews to better calibrate the CURE survey to online science courses.

  9. Contemporary Issues in Group Learning in Undergraduate Science Classrooms: A Perspective from Student Engagement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hodges, Linda C

    2018-06-01

    As the use of collaborative-learning methods such as group work in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics classes has grown, so has the research into factors impacting effectiveness, the kinds of learning engendered, and demographic differences in student response. Generalizing across the range of this research is complicated by the diversity of group-learning approaches used. In this overview, I discuss theories of how group-work formats support or hinder learning based on the ICAP (interactive, constructive, active, passive) framework of student engagement. I then use this model to analyze current issues in group learning, such as the nature of student discourse during group work, the role of group learning in making our classrooms inclusive, and how classroom spaces factor into group learning. I identify key gaps for further research and propose implications from this research for teaching practice. This analysis helps identify essential, effective, and efficient features of group learning, thus providing faculty with constructive guidelines to support their work and affirm their efforts.

  10. On the Echoes of Henry James’s The Reverberator: Reflections on Teaching Argumentative Research Papers in Undergraduate Classes on Literature

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nevena Stojanovic

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available In this essay, I reflect on the teaching experiment that I did several years ago in my class on transatlantic short stories and novels of the nineteenth century. As instructors of literature in a university setting, we often face the question of how to teach undergraduate students what a researched argument is and how to help them come up with effective thesis statements. The number of students, their different educational backgrounds, skills, and motivations can all be a challenge for instructors who need to make sure that everyone enrolled in the class understands the complex processes of research and argumentative writing before starting the draft. Our major concern, however, is how to keep students fully engaged in the processes of exploration, research, and drafting. Here I share my experience of teaching these processes in two 75-minute sessions. I include the methods of teaching and the homework and in-class prompts assigned to the class. I used the model similar to the one that Ashley M. Walter proposed in her thesis, which consists of discussion, providing students with a frame/stance, and transmediation. To this model, I added a mini-session on the in-class exploration of our library’s databases and brainstorming thesis statements. I chose Henry James’s brief and witty novel The Reverberator (1888 for the purposes of this process, mainly because this text has been neglected in the criticism on James’s late work, and I wanted to see what kinds of arguments my students would come up with to recover it.

  11. Design validation of an eye-safe scanning aerosol lidar with the Center for Lidar and Atmospheric Sciences Students (CLASS) at Hampton University

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richter, Dale A.; Higdon, N. S.; Ponsardin, Patrick L.; Sanchez, David; Chyba, Thomas H.; Temple, Doyle A.; Gong, Wei; Battle, Russell; Edmondson, Mika; Futrell, Anne; Harper, David; Haughton, Lincoln; Johnson, Demetra; Lewis, Kyle; Payne-Baggott, Renee S.

    2002-01-01

    ITTs Advanced Engineering and Sciences Division and the Hampton University Center for Lidar and Atmospheric Sciences Students (CLASS) team have worked closely to design, fabricate and test an eye-safe, scanning aerosol-lidar system that can be safely deployed and used by students form a variety of disciplines. CLASS is a 5-year undergraduate- research training program funded by NASA to provide hands-on atmospheric-science and lidar-technology education. The system is based on a 1.5 micron, 125 mJ, 20 Hz eye-safe optical parametric oscillator (OPO) and will be used by the HU researchers and students to evaluate the biological impact of aerosols, clouds, and pollution a variety of systems issues. The system design tasks we addressed include the development of software to calculate eye-safety levels and to model lidar performance, implementation of eye-safety features in the lidar transmitter, optimization of the receiver using optical ray tracing software, evaluation of detectors and amplifiers in the near RI, test of OPO and receiver technology, development of hardware and software for laser and scanner control and video display of the scan region.

  12. Student Perceptions of the Cell Biology Laboratory Learning Environment in Four Undergraduate Science Courses in Spain

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Juan, Joaquin; Pérez-Cañaveras, Rosa M.; Segovia, Yolanda; Girela, Jose Luis; Martínez-Ruiz, Noemi; Romero-Rameta, Alejandro; Gómez-Torres, Maria José; Vizcaya-Moreno, M. Flores

    2016-01-01

    Cell biology is an academic discipline that organises and coordinates the learning of the structure, function and molecular composition of cells in some undergraduate biomedical programs. Besides course content and teaching methodologies, the laboratory environment is considered a key element in the teaching of and learning of cell biology. The…

  13. How (and Whether) to Teach Undergraduates about the Replication Crisis in Psychological Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chopik, William J.; Bremner, Ryan H.; Defever, Andrew M.; Keller, Victor N.

    2018-01-01

    Over the past 10 years, crises surrounding replication, fraud, and best practices in research methods have dominated discussions in the field of psychology. However, no research exists examining how to communicate these issues to undergraduates and what effect this has on their attitudes toward the field. We developed and validated a 1-hr lecture…

  14. Research and Teaching: Blooming, SOLO Taxonomy, and Phenomenography as Assessment Strategies in Undergraduate Science Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newton, Genevieve; Martin, Elizabeth

    2013-01-01

    Three alternative approaches to assessment of exam responses were applied in an undergraduate biochemistry course. First, phenomenography was used to categorize written exam responses into an inclusive hierarchy. Second, responses to the same question were similarly categorized according to the Structure of Observed Learning Outcome (SOLO)…

  15. Implementation and Assessment of Undergraduate Experiences in SOAP: An Atmospheric Science Research and Education Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hopper, Larry J., Jr.; Schumacher, Courtney; Stachnik, Justin P.

    2013-01-01

    The Student Operational Aggie Doppler Radar Project (SOAP) involved 95 undergraduates in a research and education program to better understand the climatology of storms in southeast Texas from 2006-2010. This paper describes the structure, components, and implementation of the 1-credit-hour research course, comparing first-year participants'…

  16. Advising Undergraduates in a Department of Soil Science and/or Agronomy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Gerhard B.

    1987-01-01

    Offers suggestions to advisers of undergraduate students in agriculture. Recommends that advisers be competent, concerned, compassionate, and provide an open-door attitude toward their advisees. Suggests that students be guided toward good study habits and participation in intern programs. (TW)

  17. A Social Capital Perspective on the Mentoring of Undergraduate Life Science Researchers: An Empirical Study of Undergraduate-Postgraduate-Faculty Triads

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aikens, Melissa L.; Sadselia, Sona; Watkins, Keiana; Evans, Mara; Eby, Lillian T.; Dolan, Erin L.

    2016-01-01

    Undergraduate researchers at research universities are often mentored by graduate students or postdoctoral researchers (referred to collectively as "postgraduates") and faculty, creating a mentoring triad structure. Triads differ based on whether the undergraduate, postgraduate, and faculty member interact with one another about the…

  18. A Model for Undergraduate and High School Student Research in Earth and Space Sciences: The New York City Research Initiative

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scalzo, F.; Johnson, L.; Marchese, P.

    2006-05-01

    The New York City Research Initiative (NYCRI) is a research and academic program that involves high school students, undergraduate and graduate students, and high school teachers in research teams that are led by college/university principal investigators of NASA funded projects and/or NASA scientists. The principal investigators are at 12 colleges/universities within a 50-mile radius of New York City (NYC and surrounding counties, Southern Connecticut and Northern New Jersey), as well as the NASA Goddard Institute of Space Studies (GISS). This program has a summer research institute component in Earth Science and Space Science, and an academic year component that includes the formulation and implementation NASA research based learning units in existing STEM courses by high school and college faculty. NYCRI is a revision and expansion of the Institute on Climate and Planets at GISS and is funded by NASA MURED and the Goddard Space Flight Center's Education Office.

  19. Do Thinking Styles Matter for Science Achievement and Attitudes toward Science Class in Male and Female Elementary School Students in Taiwan?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Tzu-Ling; Tseng, Yi-Kuan

    2015-01-01

    The purposes of this study were to explore the effects of thinking styles on science achievement and attitudes toward science class among Taiwanese elementary school students and to explore the differences between male and female students in their modes of thinking. Participants included 756 sixth-grade students from 28 classes in four elementary…

  20. Confirmatory factors analysis of science teacher leadership in the Thailand world-class standard schools

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thawinkarn, Dawruwan

    2018-01-01

    This research aims to analyze factors of science teacher leadership in the Thailand World-Class Standard Schools. The research instrument was a five scale rating questionnaire with reliability 0.986. The sample group included 500 science teachers from World-Class Standard Schools who had been selected by using the stratified random sampling technique. Factor analysis of science teacher leadership in the Thailand World-Class Standard Schools was conducted by using M plus for Windows. The results are as follows: The results of confirmatory factor analysis on science teacher leadership in the Thailand World-Class Standard Schools revealed that the model significantly correlated with the empirical data. The consistency index value was x2 = 105.655, df = 88, P-Value = 0.086, TLI = 0.997, CFI = 0.999, RMSEA = 0.022, and SRMR = 0.019. The value of factor loading of science teacher leadership was positive, with statistical significance at the level of 0.01. The value of six factors was between 0.880-0.996. The highest factor loading was the professional learning community, followed by child-centered instruction, participation in development, the role model in teaching, transformational leaders, and self-development with factor loading at 0.996, 0.928, 0.911, 0.907, 0.901, and 0.871, respectively. The reliability of each factor was 99.1%, 86.0%, 83.0%, 82.2%, 81.0%, and 75.8%, respectively.

  1. Scientist Spotlight Homework Assignments Shift Students’ Stereotypes of Scientists and Enhance Science Identity in a Diverse Introductory Science Class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schinske, Jeffrey N.; Perkins, Heather; Snyder, Amanda; Wyer, Mary

    2016-01-01

    Research into science identity, stereotype threat, and possible selves suggests a lack of diverse representations of scientists could impede traditionally underserved students from persisting and succeeding in science. We evaluated a series of metacognitive homework assignments (“Scientist Spotlights”) that featured counterstereotypical examples of scientists in an introductory biology class at a diverse community college. Scientist Spotlights additionally served as tools for content coverage, as scientists were selected to match topics covered each week. We analyzed beginning- and end-of-course essays completed by students during each of five courses with Scientist Spotlights and two courses with equivalent homework assignments that lacked connections to the stories of diverse scientists. Students completing Scientist Spotlights shifted toward counterstereotypical descriptions of scientists and conveyed an enhanced ability to personally relate to scientists following the intervention. Longitudinal data suggested these shifts were maintained 6 months after the completion of the course. Analyses further uncovered correlations between these shifts, interest in science, and course grades. As Scientist Spotlights require very little class time and complement existing curricula, they represent a promising tool for enhancing science identity, shifting stereotypes, and connecting content to issues of equity and diversity in a broad range of STEM classrooms. PMID:27587856

  2. Bridging the Gap: Embedding Communication Courses in the Science Undergraduate Curriculum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jandciu, Eric; Stewart, Jaclyn J.; Stoodley, Robin; Birol, Gülnur; Han, Andrea; Fox, Joanne A.

    2015-01-01

    The authors describe a model for embedding science communication into the science curriculum without displacing science content. They describe the rationale, development, design, and implementation of two courses taught by science faculty addressing these criteria. They also outline the evaluation plan for these courses, which emphasize broad…

  3. Undergraduate Convexity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lauritzen, Niels

    Based on undergraduate teaching to students in computer science, economics and mathematics at Aarhus University, this is an elementary introduction to convex sets and convex functions with emphasis on concrete computations and examples. Starting from linear inequalities and Fourier-Motzkin elimin......Based on undergraduate teaching to students in computer science, economics and mathematics at Aarhus University, this is an elementary introduction to convex sets and convex functions with emphasis on concrete computations and examples. Starting from linear inequalities and Fourier......-Motzkin elimination, the theory is developed by introducing polyhedra, the double description method and the simplex algorithm, closed convex subsets, convex functions of one and several variables ending with a chapter on convex optimization with the Karush-Kuhn-Tucker conditions, duality and an interior point...... algorithm....

  4. Effects of Single-Gender Middle School Classes on Science Achievement and Attitude

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brooks, Tanisha

    Many girls continue to achieve below their male counterparts and portray negative attitudes towards science classes. Some school districts are using single-gender education as a way to shrink the gender gap in school achievement and science related attitude. The purpose of this study was to compare achievement and science-related attitudes of 7th grade girls in single-gender education to 7th grade girls in mixed-gender education. The theoretical base for this study included knowledge from brain-based learning and assimilation, accommodation and age factors of Piaget's theory of cognitive development. The 12-week study included 48 7th grade girls, 21 in the single-gender classroom and 14 in each mixed-gender classroom. This quantitative randomized posttest only control group design utilized the TerraNova Science Assessment and the Test of Science Related Attitudes. Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) was used to determine if significant differences existed in the achievement and attitudes of girls in single and mixed-gender science classes. ANOVA analyses revealed that the girls in the single-gender classroom showed a significantly higher achievement level when compared to girls in the mixed-gender classrooms. Results showed no significant difference in attitude between the two groups. The results of this study contribute to social change by raising awareness about gender issues in science achievement and attitude, addressing a deficiency in the single-gender science education literature, and assisting educational systems in decision making to address achievement gaps while moving toward adequate yearly progress and meeting the requirements of the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001.

  5. Integration of a Faculty's Ongoing Research into an Undergraduate Laboratory Teaching Class in Developmental Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nam, Sang-Chul

    2018-01-01

    Traditional developmental biology laboratory classes have utilized a number of different model organisms to allow students to be exposed to diverse biological phenomena in developing organisms. This traditional approach has mainly focused on the diverse morphological and anatomical descriptions of the developing organisms. However, modern…

  6. The Impact of Class Absenteeism on Undergraduates' Academic Performance: Evidence from an Elite Economics School in Portugal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teixeira, Aurora A. C.

    2016-01-01

    The empirical literature focusing mainly on the USA suggests that class absenteeism undermines students' academic performance and that an enforced mandatory attendance policy may be beneficial. Based on a different cultural and economic context, and using data on 146 second-year management students enrolled in a macroeconomics course at an elite…

  7. Resources to Transform Undergraduate Geoscience Education: Activities in Support of Earth, Oceans and Atmospheric Sciences Faculty, and Future Plans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ryan, J. G.; Singer, J.

    2013-12-01

    The NSF offers funding programs that support geoscience education spanning atmospheric, oceans, and Earth sciences, as well as environmental science, climate change and sustainability, and research on learning. The 'Resources to Transform Undergraduate Geoscience Education' (RTUGeoEd) is an NSF Transforming Undergraduate Education in STEM (TUES) Type 2 special project aimed at supporting college-level geoscience faculty at all types of institutions. The project's goals are to carry out activities and create digital resources that encourage the geoscience community to submit proposals that impact their courses and classroom infrastructure through innovative changes in instructional practice, and contribute to making transformative changes that impact student learning outcomes and lead to other educational benefits. In the past year information sessions were held during several national and regional professional meetings, including the GSA Southeastern and South-Central Section meetings. A three-day proposal-writing workshop for faculty planning to apply to the TUES program was held at the University of South Florida - Tampa. During the workshop, faculty learned about the program and key elements of a proposal, including: the need to demonstrate awareness of prior efforts within and outside the geosciences and how the proposed project builds upon this knowledge base; need to fully justify budget and role of members of the project team; project evaluation and what matters in selecting a project evaluator; and effective dissemination practices. Participants also spent time developing their proposal benefitting from advice and feedback from workshop facilitators. Survey data gathered from workshop participants point to a consistent set of challenges in seeking grant support for a desired educational innovation, including poor understanding of the educational literature, of available funding programs, and of learning assessment and project evaluation. Many also noted

  8. The use of statistics in real and simulated investigations performed by undergraduate health sciences' students

    OpenAIRE

    Pimenta, Rui; Nascimento, Ana; Vieira, Margarida; Costa, Elísio

    2010-01-01

    In previous works, we evaluated the statistical reasoning ability acquired by health sciences’ students carrying out their final undergraduate project. We found that these students achieved a good level of statistical literacy and reasoning in descriptive statistics. However, concerning inferential statistics the students did not reach a similar level. Statistics educators therefore claim for more effective ways to learn statistics such as project based investigations. These can be simulat...

  9. Emotional climate of a pre-service science teacher education class in Bhutan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rinchen, Sonam; Ritchie, Stephen M.; Bellocchi, Alberto

    2016-09-01

    This study explored pre-service secondary science teachers' perceptions of classroom emotional climate in the context of the Bhutanese macro-social policy of Gross National Happiness. Drawing upon sociological perspectives of human emotions and using Interaction Ritual Theory this study investigated how pre-service science teachers may be supported in their professional development. It was a multi-method study involving video and audio recordings of teaching episodes supported by interviews and the researcher's diary. Students also registered their perceptions of the emotional climate of their classroom at 3-minute intervals using audience response technology. In this way, emotional events were identified for video analysis. The findings of this study highlighted that the activities pre-service teachers engaged in matter to them. Positive emotional climate was identified in activities involving students' presentations using video clips and models, coteaching, and interactive whole class discussions. Decreases in emotional climate were identified during formal lectures and when unprepared presenters led presentations. Emotions such as frustration and disappointment characterized classes with negative emotional climate. The enabling conditions to sustain a positive emotional climate are identified. Implications for sustaining macro-social policy about Gross National Happiness are considered in light of the climate that develops in science teacher education classes.

  10. Electrifying Engagement in Middle School Science Class: Improving Student Interest Through E-textiles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tofel-Grehl, Colby; Fields, Deborah; Searle, Kristin; Maahs-Fladung, Cathy; Feldon, David; Gu, Grace; Sun, Chongning

    2017-08-01

    Most interventions with "maker" technologies take place outside of school or out of core area classrooms. However, intervening in schools holds potential for reaching much larger numbers of students and the opportunity to shift instructional dynamics in classrooms. This paper shares one such intervention where electronic textiles (sewable circuits) were introduced into eighth grade science classes with the intent of exploring possible gains in student learning and motivation, particularly for underrepresented minorities. Using a quasi-experimental design, four classes engaged in a traditional circuitry unit while the other four classes undertook a new e-textile unit. Overall, students in both groups demonstrated significant learning gains on standard test items without significant differences between conditions. Significant differences appeared between groups' attitudes toward science after the units in ways that show increasing interest in science by students in the e-textile unit. In particular, they reported positive identity shifts pertaining to their perceptions of the beliefs of their friends, family, and teacher. Findings and prior research suggest that student-created e-textile designs provide opportunities for connections outside of the classroom with friends and family and may shift students' perceptions of their teacher's beliefs about them more positively.

  11. Enjoy writing your science thesis or dissertation! a step-by-step guide to planning and writing a thesis or dissertation for undergraduate and graduate science students

    CERN Document Server

    Fisher, Elizabeth

    2014-01-01

    This book is a step by step illustrated guide to planning and writing dissertations and theses for undergraduate and graduate science students. Topics covered include advice on writing each section of a thesis as well as general discussions on collecting and organizing references, keeping records, presenting data, interacting with a supervisor and avoiding academic misconduct. Recommendations about how to use word processors and other software packages effectively are included, as well as advice on the use of other resources. A concise summary of important points of English grammar is given, along with appendices listing frequently confused words and wordy phrases to avoid. Further appendices are provided, including one on Si units. The aim is to provide an easy-to-read guide that gives students practical advice about all aspects of writing a science thesis or dissertation, starting from writing a thesis plan and finishing with the viva and corrections to the thesis.

  12. Integrated Concentration in Science (iCons): Undergraduate Education Through Interdisciplinary, Team-Based, Real-World Problem Solving

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tuominen, Mark

    2013-03-01

    Attitude, Skills, Knowledge (ASK) - In this order, these are fundamental characteristics of scientific innovators. Through first-hand practice in using science to unpack and solve complex real-world problems, students can become self-motivated scientific leaders. This presentation describes the pedagogy of a recently developed interdisciplinary undergraduate science education program at the University of Massachusetts Amherst focused on addressing global challenges with scientific solutions. Integrated Concentration in Science (iCons) is an overarching concentration program that supplements the curricula provided within each student's chosen major. iCons is a platform for students to perform student-led research in interdisciplinary collaborative teams. With a schedule of one course per year over four years, the cohort of students move through case studies, analysis of real-world problems, development of potential solutions, integrative communication, laboratory practice, and capstone research projects. In this presentation, a track emphasizing renewable energy science is used to illustrate the iCons pedagogical methods. This includes discussion of a third-year laboratory course in renewable energy that is educationally scaffolded: beginning with a boot camp in laboratory techniques and culminating with student-designed research projects. Among other objectives, this course emphasizes the practice of using reflection and redesign, as a means of generating better solutions and embedding learning for the long term. This work is supported in part by NSF grant DUE-1140805.

  13. Implementation of a Service-learning Module in Medical Microbiology and Cell Biology Classes at an Undergraduate Liberal Arts University.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larios-Sanz, Maia; Simmons, Alexandra D; Bagnall, Ruth Ann; Rosell, Rosemarie C

    2011-01-01

    Here we discuss the implementation of a service-learning module in two upper-division biology classes, Medical Microbiology and Cell Biology. This exciting hands-on learning experience provided our students with an opportunity to extend their learning of in-class topics to a real-life scenario. Students were required to volunteer their time (a minimum of 10 hours in a semester) at an under-served clinic in Houston, Texas. As they interacted with the personnel at the clinic, they were asked to identify the most prevalent disease (infectious for Medical Microbiology, and cellular-based for Cell) seen at the clinic and, working in groups, come up with educational material in the form of a display or brochure to be distributed to patients. The material was meant to educate patients about the disease in general terms, as well as how to recognize (symptoms), prevent and treat it. Students were required to keep a reflective journal in the form of a blog throughout the semester, and present their final materials to the class orally. Students were surveyed about their opinion of the experience at the end of the semester. The vast majority of student participants felt that the project was a positive experience and that it helped them develop additional skills beyond what they learn in the classroom and understand how lecture topics relate to every day life.

  14. Reaching the Next Stephen Hawking: Five Ways to Help Students with Disabilities in Advanced Placement Science Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howard, Lori A.; Potts, Elizabeth A.; Linz, Ed

    2013-01-01

    As the federal government encourages all students to attempt advanced math and science courses, more students with disabilities are enrolling in Advanced Placement (AP) science classes. AP science teachers can better serve these students by understanding the various types of disabilities (whether physical, learning, emotional, or behavioral),…

  15. Scientist Spotlight Homework Assignments Shift Students' Stereotypes of Scientists and Enhance Science Identity in a Diverse Introductory Science Class.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schinske, Jeffrey N; Perkins, Heather; Snyder, Amanda; Wyer, Mary

    2016-01-01

    Research into science identity, stereotype threat, and possible selves suggests a lack of diverse representations of scientists could impede traditionally underserved students from persisting and succeeding in science. We evaluated a series of metacognitive homework assignments ("Scientist Spotlights") that featured counterstereotypical examples of scientists in an introductory biology class at a diverse community college. Scientist Spotlights additionally served as tools for content coverage, as scientists were selected to match topics covered each week. We analyzed beginning- and end-of-course essays completed by students during each of five courses with Scientist Spotlights and two courses with equivalent homework assignments that lacked connections to the stories of diverse scientists. Students completing Scientist Spotlights shifted toward counterstereotypical descriptions of scientists and conveyed an enhanced ability to personally relate to scientists following the intervention. Longitudinal data suggested these shifts were maintained 6 months after the completion of the course. Analyses further uncovered correlations between these shifts, interest in science, and course grades. As Scientist Spotlights require very little class time and complement existing curricula, they represent a promising tool for enhancing science identity, shifting stereotypes, and connecting content to issues of equity and diversity in a broad range of STEM classrooms. © 2016 J. N. Schinske et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2016 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  16. Undergraduate Students' Earth Science Learning: Relationships among Conceptions, Approaches, and Learning Self-Efficacy in Taiwan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shen, Kuan-Ming; Lee, Min-Hsien; Tsai, Chin-Chung; Chang, Chun-Yen

    2016-01-01

    In the area of science education research, studies have attempted to investigate conceptions of learning, approaches to learning, and self-efficacy, mainly focusing on science in general or on specific subjects such as biology, physics, and chemistry. However, few empirical studies have probed students' earth science learning. This study aimed to…

  17. [Supply and demand of clinical practice fields for training undergraduate health sciences students in Peru, 2005-2009].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alva, Javier; Verastegui, George; Velasquez, Edgar; Pastor, Reyna; Moscoso, Betsy

    2011-06-01

    To describe the supply and demand of clinical fields for undergraduate students of Peru. A descriptive study was considering as supply of clinical fields the total number of existing hospital beds in Peru. The demand was calculated using the total number of alumni registered in health science carrers following the clinical years or the internship. We calculated the number of beds per student and the coverage of clinical fields nationally and in some selected regions (Lima, Arequipa, La Libertad and Lambayeque). In 2009, Peru had 34,539 hospital beds, 78.5% of which pertained to the public sector and 48.4% are from Lima. We estimated that in 2008 44,032 alumni needed clinical fields, 70% from private universities, which grew 65% since 2005. The coverage of clinical fields, considering only interns from four carreers (medicine, nursery, obstetrics and dentistry) was only 31.5% at the national level. The number of beds per student oscillated between 0.5 in La Libertad to 0.82 in Lima with a national mean of 0.45. The supply of clinical fields for teaching undergraduates is insufficient to satisfy the demand, which continues to grow because of private universities, and hence requires urgent regulation.

  18. Use of Geodetic Surveys of Leveling Lines and Dry Tilt Arrays to Study Faults and Volcanoes in Undergraduate Field Geophysics Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polet, J.; Alvarez, K.; Elizondo, K.

    2017-12-01

    In the early 1980's and 1990's numerous leveling lines and dry tilt arrays were installed throughout Central and Southern California by United States Geological Survey scientists and other researchers (e.g. Sylvester, 1985). These lines or triangular arrays of geodetic monuments commonly straddle faults or have been installed close to volcanic areas, where significant motion is expected over relatively short time periods. Over the past year, we have incorporated geodetic surveys of these arrays as part of our field exercises in undergraduate and graduate level classes on topics such as shallow subsurface geophysics and field geophysics. In some cases, the monuments themselves first had to be located based on only limited information, testing students' Brunton use and map reading skills. Monuments were then surveyed using total stations and global navigation satellite system (GNSS) receivers, using a variety of experimental procedures. The surveys were documented with tables, photos, maps and graphs in field reports, as well as in wiki pages created by student groups for a geophysics field class this June. The measurements were processed by the students and compared with similar data from surveys conducted soon after installation of the arrays, to analyze the deformation that occurred over the last few decades. The different geodetic techniques were also compared and an error analysis was conducted. The analysis and processing of these data challenged and enhanced students' quantitative literacy and technology skills. The final geodetic measurements are being incorporated into several senior and MSc thesis projects. Further surveys are planned for additional classes, in topics that could include seismology, geodesy, volcanology and global geophysics. We are also considering additional technologies, such as structure from motion (SfM) photogrammetry.

  19. Journal of Undergraduate Research, Volume VIII, 2008

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Stiner, K. S.; Graham, S.; Khan, M.; Dilks, J.; Mayer, D.

    2008-01-01

    Th e Journal of Undergraduate Research (JUR) provides undergraduate interns the opportunity to publish their scientific innovation and to share their passion for education and research with fellow students and scientists. Fields in which these students worked include: Biology; Chemistry; Computer Science; Engineering; Environmental Science; General Sciences; Materials Sciences; Medical and Health Sciences; Nuclear Sciences; Physics; Science Policy; and Waste Management.

  20. Dear Professor Dyson twenty years of correspondence between Freeman Dyson and undergraduate students on science, technology, society and life

    CERN Document Server

    Neuenschwander, Dwight E

    2016-01-01

    Freeman Dyson has designed nuclear reactors and bomb-powered spacecraft; he has studied the origins of life and the possibilities for the long-term future; he showed quantum mechanics to be consistent with electrodynamics and started cosmological eschatology; he has won international recognition for his work in science and for his work in reconciling science to religion; he has advised generals and congressional committees. An STS (Science, Technology, Society) curriculum or discussion group that engages topics such as nuclear policies, genetic technologies, environmental sustainability, the role of religion in a scientific society, and a hard look towards the future, would count itself privileged to include Professor Dyson as a class participant and mentor. In this book, STS topics are not discussed as objectified abstractions, but through personal stories. The reader is invited to observe Dyson's influence on a generation of young people as they wrestle with issues of science, technology, society, life in g...

  1. Implementation of a Service-Learning Module in Medical Microbiology and Cell Biology Classes at an Undergraduate Liberal Arts University

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maia Larios-Sanz

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Here we discuss the implementation of a service-learning module in two upper-division biology classes, Medical Microbiology and Cell Biology. This exciting hands-on learning experience provided our students with an opportunity to extend their learning of in-class topics to a real-life scenario. Students were required to volunteer their time (a minimum of 10 hours in a semester at an under-served clinic in Houston, Texas. As they interacted with the personnel at the clinic, they were asked to identify the most prevalent disease (infectious for Medical Microbiology, and cellular-based for Cell seen at the clinic and, working in groups, come up with educational material in the form of a display or brochure to be distributed to patients. The material was meant to educate patients about the disease in general terms, as well as how to recognize (symptoms, prevent and treat it. Students were required to keep a reflective journal in the form of a blog throughout the semester, and present their final materials to the class orally. Students were surveyed about their opinion of the experience at the end of the semester. The vast majority of student participants felt that the project was a positive experience and that it helped them develop additional skills beyond what they learn in the classroom and understand how lecture topics relate to every day life. Here we discuss the implementation of a service-learning module in two upper division biology classes, Medical Microbiology and Cell Biology. This exciting hands-on learning experience provided our students with an opportunity to extend their learning of in-class topics into a real life scenario. Students were required to volunteer their time (a minimum of 10 hours in a semester at an under-served clinic in Houston, Texas. As they interacted with the personnel at the clinic, they were asked to identify the most prevalent disease (infectious for Medical Microbiology, and cellular-based for Cell seen at the

  2. Evaluation of doctors' performance as facilitators in basic medical science lecture classes in a new Malaysian medical school

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ismail S

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Salwani Ismail,1 Abdus Salam,2 Ahmed G Alattraqchi,1 Lakshmi Annamalai,1 Annamalai Chockalingam,1 Wan Putri Elena,3 Nor Iza A Rahman,1 Abdullahi Rabiu Abubakar,1 Mainul Haque1 1Faculty of Medicine, Universiti Sultan Zainal Abidin, Kuala Terengganu, Terengganu, Malaysia; 2Department of Medical Education, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia Medical Centre, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; 3School of Health Sciences, Health Campus, Universiti Sains Malaysia, Kubang Kerian, Kelantan, Malaysia Background: Didactic lecture is the oldest and most commonly used method of teaching. In addition, it is considered one of the most efficient ways to disseminate theories, ideas, and facts. Many critics feel that lectures are an obsolete method to use when students need to perform hands-on activities, which is an everyday need in the study of medicine. This study evaluates students' perceptions regarding lecture quality in a new medical school. Methods: This was a cross-sectional study conducted of the medical students of Universiti Sultan Zainal Abidin. The study population was 468 preclinical medical students from years 1 and 2 of academic year 2012–2013. Data were collected using a validated instrument. There were six different sections of questions using a 5-point Likert scale. The data were then compiled and analyzed, using SPSS version 20. Results: The response rate was 73%. Among 341 respondents, 30% were male and 70% were female. Eighty-five percent of respondents agree or strongly agree that the lectures had met the criteria with regard to organization of lecture materials. Similarly, 97% of students agree or strongly agree that lecturers maintained adequate voices and gestures. Conclusion: Medical students are quite satisfied with the lecture classes and the lectures. However, further research is required to identify student-centered teaching and learning methods to promote active learning. Keywords: lecture, effectiveness, evaluation, undergraduate medical

  3. Research and Teaching: An Investigation of the Evolution of High School and Undergraduate Student Researchers' Understanding of Key Science Ethics Concepts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mabrouk, Patricia Ann

    2013-01-01

    High school and undergraduate research students were surveyed over the 10-week period of their summer research programs to investigate their understanding of key concepts in science ethics and whether their understanding changed over the course of their summer research experiences. Most of the students appeared to understand the issues relevant to…

  4. "I Know This Is Supposed to Be More Like the Real World, but . . .": Student Perceptions of a PBL Implementation in an Undergraduate Materials Science Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henry, Holly R.; Tawfik, Andrew A.; Jonassen, David H.; Winholtz, Robert A.; Khanna, Sanjeev

    2012-01-01

    This qualitative case study examines the initial implementation of a problem-based version of an undergraduate course in materials science for the purpose of identifying areas of improvement to the curriculum prior to a planned second implementation. The course was designed around problems that students work in small teams to solve under the…

  5. Designing and Implementing a Computational Methods Course for Upper-level Undergraduates and Postgraduates in Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, E.; L'Ecuyer, T. S.; Douglas, A.; Hansen, Z.

    2017-12-01

    In the modern computing age, scientists must utilize a wide variety of skills to carry out scientific research. Programming, including a focus on collaborative development, has become more prevalent in both academic and professional career paths. Faculty in the Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences at the University of Wisconsin—Madison recognized this need and recently approved a new course offering for undergraduates and postgraduates in computational methods that was first held in Spring 2017. Three programming languages were covered in the inaugural course semester and development themes such as modularization, data wrangling, and conceptual code models were woven into all of the sections. In this presentation, we will share successes and challenges in developing a research project-focused computational course that leverages hands-on computer laboratory learning and open-sourced course content. Improvements and changes in future iterations of the course based on the first offering will also be discussed.

  6. Effectiveness of mathematics education in secondary schools to meet the local universities missions in producing quality engineering and science undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bakar Hasan, Abu; Fatah Abdul, Abdul; Selamat, Zalilah

    2018-01-01

    Critical claims by certain quarters that our local undergraduates are not performing well in Mathematics, Statistics and Numerical Methods needs a serious thinking and actions. Yearly examinations results from the Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM equivalent to A-Level) and Sijil Tinggi Pelajaran Malaysia (STPM equivalent to O-Level) levels have been splendid whereby it is either increasing or decreasing in a very tight range. A good foundation in mathematics and additional mathematics will tremendously benefit these students when they enter their university education especially in engineering and science courses. This paper uses SPM results as the primary data, questionnaires as secondary, and apply the Fish Bones technique for analysis. The outcome shows that there is a clear correlation between the causes and effect.

  7. From established science to class room science, or how to take into account didactic activity in the history of science

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bruno Belhoste

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available This paper deals with the relationship between science and education in historiography, questioning the separation between the two activities, and highlighting the role of education to scientific activity. First, it distinguishes the largely accepted needs of historical contextualization from the epistemological problem, related to the place of history education in the history of science. It defends that the history of science education is not foreign to the history of science. It criticizes Chevallard’s notion of didactic transposition for reinforcing the gap between scientific knowledge and teaching knowledge. Finally, it argues that the sciences are in permanent reconstruction and that scientific knowledge is not tied to socio-cultural contexts from which it emerged.

  8. Differences between Lab Completion and Non-Completion on Student Performance in an Online Undergraduate Environmental Science Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corsi, Gianluca

    2011-12-01

    Web-based technology has revolutionized the way education is delivered. Although the advantages of online learning appeal to large numbers of students, some concerns arise. One major concern in online science education is the value that participation in labs has on student performance. The purpose of this study was to assess the relationships between lab completion and student academic success as measured by test grades, scientific self-confidence, scientific skills, and concept mastery. A random sample of 114 volunteer undergraduate students, from an online Environmental Science program at the American Public University System, was tested. The study followed a quantitative, non-experimental research design. Paired sample t-tests were used for statistical comparison between pre-lab and post-lab test grades, two scientific skills quizzes, and two scientific self-confidence surveys administered at the beginning and at the end of the course. The results of the paired sample t-tests revealed statistically significant improvements on all post-lab test scores: Air Pollution lab, t(112) = 6.759, p virtual reality platforms and digital animations. Future research is encouraged to investigate possible correlations between socio-demographic attributes and academic success of students enrolled in online science programs in reference to lab completion.

  9. Interactive mobile learning: a pilot study of a new approach for sport science and medical undergraduate students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruce-Low, S S; Burnet, S; Arber, K; Price, D; Webster, L; Stopforth, M

    2013-12-01

    Mobile learning has increasingly become interwoven into the fabric of learning and teaching in the United Kingdom higher education sector, and as technological issues become addressed, this phenomena has accelerated. The aim of the study was to examine whether learning using a mobile learning device (Samsung NC10 Netbook) loaded with interactive exercises promoted learning compared with a traditional library exercise. Using a randomized trial, 55 students from an undergraduate sports science course (n = 28) and medical course (n = 27) volunteered to participate in this study. A mixed-model design ANOVA was used to examine the percent change in test score after a 3-wk intervention. Results showed that there was a significant difference between the two courses (P science and medical students. The sports science group demonstrated proportionally greater increases in test performance when exposed to the mobile interactive intervention compared with the traditional library approach. Qualitative data suggest an increased level of engagement with the Netbooks due to the stimulating interactive content. In conclusion, the Netbooks were an effective additional learning tool, significantly enhancing knowledge and understanding in students. Further research should ensure that participants are assessed for preferred learning styles, the subjective task value of expectancy value, and readiness for mobile learning to ascertain if this has an effect on the potential for using mobile learning and interactivity.

  10. Class-first analysis in a continuum: an approach to the complexities of schools, society, and insurgent science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valdiviezo, Laura Alicia

    2010-06-01

    This essay addresses Katherine Richardson Bruna's paper: Mexican Immigrant Transnational Social Capital and Class Transformation: Examining the Role of Peer Mediation in Insurgent Science, through five main points . First, I offer a comparison between the traditional analysis of classism in Latin America and Richardson Bruna's call for a class-first analysis in the North American social sciences where there has been a tendency to obviate the specific examination of class relations and class issues. Secondly, I discuss that a class-first analysis solely cannot suffice to depict the complex dimensions in the relations of schools and society. Thus, I suggest a continuum in the class-first analysis. Third, I argue that social constructions surrounding issues of language, ethnicity, and gender necessarily intersect with issues of class and that, in fact, those other constructions offer compatible epistemologies that aid in representing the complexity of social and institutional practices in the capitalist society. Richardson Bruna's analysis of Augusto's interactions with his teacher and peers in the science class provides a fourth point of discussion in this essay. As a final point in my response I discuss Richardson Bruna's idea of making accessible class-first analysis knowledge to educators and especially to science teachers.

  11. What Types of Instructional Shifts Do Students Experience? Investigating Active Learning in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math Classes across Key Transition Points from Middle School to the University Level

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kenneth Akiha

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Despite the need for a strong Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM workforce, there is a high attrition rate for students who intend to complete undergraduate majors in these disciplines. Students who leave STEM degree programs often cite uninspiring instruction in introductory courses, including traditional lecturing, as a reason. While undergraduate courses play a critical role in STEM retention, little is understood about the instructional transitions students encounter upon moving from secondary to post-secondary STEM courses. This study compares classroom observation data collected using the Classroom Observation Protocol for Undergraduate STEM from over 450 middle school, high school, introductory-level university, and advanced-level university classes across STEM disciplines. We find similarities between middle school and high school classroom instruction, which are characterized by a large proportion of time spent on active-learning instructional strategies, such as small-group activities and peer discussion. By contrast, introductory and advanced university instructors devote more time to instructor-centered teaching strategies, such as lecturing. These instructor-centered teaching strategies are present in classes regardless of class enrollment size, class period length, or whether or not the class includes a separate laboratory section. Middle school, high school, and university instructors were also surveyed about their views of what STEM instructional practices are most common at each educational level and asked to provide an explanation of those perceptions. Instructors from all levels struggled to predict the level of lecturing practices and often expressed uncertainty about what instruction looks like at levels other than their own. These findings suggest that more opportunities need to be created for instructors across multiple levels of the education system to share their active-learning teaching practices and

  12. Standards-based teaching and educational digital libraries as innovations: Undergraduate science faculty in the adoption process

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ridgway, Judith Sulkes

    This study describes undergraduate science faculty in terms of their feelings of preparedness for and their use of standards-based teaching methods, their stages of concern related to Educational Digital Libraries (EDLs), and their adoption and diffusion of both innovations. These innovations may have a synergistic relationship that may result in enhanced adoption of both. The investigation began with a series of group meetings with life science, chemistry, physics, and geology faculty from a 2-year and a 4-year institution. Faculty were introduced to dimensions of standards-based teaching and examples of EDLs. Faculty completed the Demographics and Experience Questionnaire, the Standards-Based Teaching Instrument, and the Stages of Concern Questionnaire (SoCQ). Semi-structured interviews containing literature-based questions were conducted with one faculty member from each discipline from the 2-year and 4-year institutions. Document analyses were performed on mission/goal web-based statements for the institutions and their science departments. Triangulated data were used to construct individual faculty case studies based on four facets: background, standards-based teaching profile, EDLs profile, and rate of innovation diffusion. The individual case studies were used to perform cross-case analyses by type of institution, discipline, and locus of control. Individual case studies and cross-case analyses suggest the following conclusions: (a) faculty felt prepared to use and frequently used textbooks as a reference, (b) feelings of preparedness and frequency of use of standards-based teaching categories may be related to discipline, (c) all faculty had relatively high awareness and informational EDL concerns, and (d) faculty central to the locus of control were more likely to use methods to develop student conceptual understanding, use inquiry methods, and be agents of change. A grounded theoretical model connects study results with literature related to educational

  13. The issues that class teachers encounter during application of science and technology teaching curriculum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mustafa Ugras

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available This study aimed at investigating the challenges class teachers face in the curriculum implementation and whether these challenges differ in relation to teachers’ gender, level of education, department they graduated from and teaching experience. For this purpose; a questionnaire was developed by the researcher. Items of the questionnaire were selected from the related literature and validated by a group of expert in the field. A pilot study was conducted to assess the clarity of the questionnaire items. The internal reliability of the final version of questionnaire was calculated by using Cronbach’s Alpha Formula and found be high (α=0.85. The participants of this research included 342 class teachers who were teaching 4th and 5th class in 57 different elementary schools in 2010-2011 academic years in Bingol and Diayrbakir cities. The results of the survey were considered by using SPSS packet program. In the analyzing of data obtained from this study, frequency, arithmetic average, t-test and variance analysis were used. From the obtained data, it was determined that the 4th and 5th class teachers encounter different problems in science and technology teaching program, especially in performance homework, sourcing and lesson time topics.

  14. Science Seeker: A New Model for Teaching Information Literacy to Entry-Level Biology Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petzold, Jacquelyn; Winterman, Brian; Montooth, Kristi

    2010-01-01

    In order to integrate library instruction seamlessly into an introductory biology course, two librarians collaborated with a biology faculty member to create a three-part series of instruction sessions known as the Science Seeker. The Science Seeker taught students about the structure of scientific information by tracing the path that discoveries…

  15. Stem Cells and Society: An Undergraduate Course Exploring the Intersections among Science, Religion, and Law

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pierret, Chris; Friedrichsen, Patricia

    2009-01-01

    The intersection of science and our society has led to legal and ethical issues in which we all play a part. To support development of scientific literacy, college science courses need to engage students in difficult dialogues around ethical issues. We describe a new course, Stem Cells and Society, in which students explore the basic biology of…

  16. The Undergraduate Statistics Major--A Prelude to Actuarial Science Training.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ratliff, Michael I.; Williams, Raymond E.

    Recently there has been increased interest related to the Actuarial Science field. An actuary is a business professional who uses mathematical skills to define, analyze, and solve financial and social problems. This paper examines: (1) the interface between Statistical and Actuarial Science training; (2) statistical courses corresponding to…

  17. Technology to Advance High School and Undergraduate Students with Disabilities in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leddy, Mark H.

    2010-01-01

    Americans with disabilities are underemployed in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) at higher rates than their nondisabled peers. This article provides an overview of the National science Foundation's Research in Disabilities Education (RDE) program, of technology use by students with disabilities (SWD) in STEM, and of…

  18. Linking Essential Learning Outcomes and Interprofessional Collaborative Practice Competency in Health Science Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reed, Carole-Rae; Garcia, Luis Ivan; Slusser, Margaret M.; Konowitz, Sharon; Yep, Jewelry

    2017-01-01

    Assessing student learning outcomes and determining achievement of the Interprofessional Collaborative Practice (IPCEP) Core Competency of Values/Ethics in a generic pre-professional Bachelor of Science in Health Science (BSHS) program is challenging. A course level Student Learning Outcome (SLO) is: "….articulate the impact of personal…

  19. Connecting undergraduate science education with the needs of today’s graduates [v1; ref status: indexed, http://f1000r.es/4pl

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Viviane Callier

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Undergraduate science programs are not providing graduates with the knowledgebase and skills they need to be successful on today’s job market. Curricular changes relevant to today’s marketplace and more opportunities for internships and work experience during students’ secondary education would facilitate a smoother transition to the working world and help employers find graduates that possess both the hard and soft skills needed in the workplace. In this article, we discuss these issues and offer solutions that would generate more marketplace-ready undergraduates.

  20. Magical beliefs and discriminating science from pseudoscience in undergraduate professional students

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bernard M. Garrett

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Paranormal beliefs and magical thinking exist in the public, and amongst university students. Researchers have found that media can influence such beliefs. A 2012 study suggested pseudoscientific rationales can influence acceptance of reported paranormal phenomena. Using a paranormal belief survey and controlled experiment this work explores the paranormal beliefs and test the effects of three versions of a supernatural news story on undergraduate professional students. One version of the story presented a simple news article, another the same with a pseudoscientific rationale, and another gave a discrediting scientific critique. Results confirmed that many students do hold magical beliefs but discriminated between scientific and pseudoscientific narratives. However, pre-existing paranormal beliefs were associated with an increased likelihood of students finding paranormal reports scientific, believable and credible. Keywords: Education, Psychology

  1. Magical beliefs and discriminating science from pseudoscience in undergraduate professional students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garrett, Bernard M; Cutting, Roger L

    2017-11-01

    Paranormal beliefs and magical thinking exist in the public, and amongst university students. Researchers have found that media can influence such beliefs. A 2012 study suggested pseudoscientific rationales can influence acceptance of reported paranormal phenomena. Using a paranormal belief survey and controlled experiment this work explores the paranormal beliefs and test the effects of three versions of a supernatural news story on undergraduate professional students. One version of the story presented a simple news article, another the same with a pseudoscientific rationale, and another gave a discrediting scientific critique. Results confirmed that many students do hold magical beliefs but discriminated between scientific and pseudoscientific narratives. However, pre-existing paranormal beliefs were associated with an increased likelihood of students finding paranormal reports scientific, believable and credible.

  2. Inclusion of Pedigree-analysis (NUSAP) in undergraduate science education: An example

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dam, Marie Inger; Kjær Jensen, Jon; Jónsson, Jóhann Gunnar

    2009-01-01

    Aalborg University applies a problem-based learning model. Each semester all students form groups. Group members formulate and agree upon a problem they want to address, within their course of study, and write a long report on their findings (length depends on the year of study, the number of group...... members etc.). Key principles for the choice problem is praxis-orientation, interdisciplinarity, and contextualisation. To facilitate inter-disciplinarity two supervisors – a disciplinary and a contextual – might be associated with student groups. A team of seven undergraduate students of Chemistry...... and a contextual part. In the technical part we investigated the theoretical foundation of methane production in landfills and we measured the concentration of methane at different places at the landfill Skrænten in Hjørring. In the contextual part a NUSAP analysis was done on the risk assessment of the gas...

  3. Another nail in the coffin for learning styles? Disparities among undergraduate anatomy students' study strategies, class performance, and reported VARK learning styles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Husmann, Polly R; O'Loughlin, Valerie Dean

    2018-03-13

    The concept and existence of learning styles has been fraught with controversy, and recent studies have thrown their existence into doubt. Yet, many students still hold to the conventional wisdom that learning styles are legitimate, and may adapt their outside of class study strategies to match these learning styles. Thus, this study aims to assess if undergraduate anatomy students are more likely to utilize study strategies that align with their hypothetical learning styles (using the VARK analysis from Fleming and Mills, , Improve Acad. 11:137-155) and, if so, does this alignment correlate with their outcome in an anatomy course. Relatedly, this study examines whether students' VARK learning styles are correlated with course outcomes regardless of the students' study strategies, and whether any study strategies are correlated with course outcomes, regardless of student-specific VARK results. A total of 426 anatomy students from the 2015 and 2016 Fall semesters completed a study strategies survey and an online VARK questionnaire. Results demonstrated that most students did not report study strategies that correlated with their VARK assessment, and that student performance in anatomy was not correlated with their score in any VARK categories. Rather, some specific study strategies (irrespective of VARK results), such as use of the virtual microscope, were found to be positively correlated with final class grade. However, the alignment of these study strategies with VARK results had no correlation with anatomy course outcomes. Thus, this research provides further evidence that the conventional wisdom about learning styles should be rejected by educators and students alike. Anat Sci Educ. © 2018 American Association of Anatomists. © 2018 American Association of Anatomists.

  4. Student Contributions to Citizen Science Programs As a Foundation for Independent and Classroom-Based Undergraduate Research in the Earth Sciences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guertin, L. A.

    2014-12-01

    Environmental monitoring projects on the grounds of a campus can serve as data collection sites for undergraduate research. Penn State Brandywine has utilized students in independent study projects to establish two citizen science programs and to begin collecting data, with the data sets serving as a foundation for authentic inquiry-based exercises in introductory-level Earth science courses. The first citizen science program is The Smithsonian Institution's Global Tree Banding Project, which contributes to research about tree biomass by tracking how trees respond to climate. We are going beyond the requirements of the Smithsonian project. Instead of only taking two measurements each in the spring and fall, undergraduate researchers are taking measurements every two weeks throughout the year. We started taking measurements of ten trees on campus in 2012 will continue until each tree outgrows its tree band. The data is available for download in Google Spreadsheets for students to examine changes in tree diameter within one or between growing seasons, supplemented with temperature and precipitation data (see http://sites.psu.edu/treebanding/). A second citizen science program we have begun on campus is the NASA-funded Digital Earth Watch (DEW) Picture Post Project, allowing students to monitor the environment and share observations through digital photography. We established four Picture Post sites on campus, with students taking weekly photos to establish an environmental baseline of the campus landscape and to document future environmental changes pre- and post-construction. We started taking digital photos on campus in 2014 will continue well past the completion of construction to continue to look for changes. The image database is less than a year old, but the images provide enough information for some early analyses, such as the variations in "greenness" over the seasons. We have created a website that shares the purpose of our participation in the Picture Post

  5. Development, Evaluation and Use of a Student Experience Survey in Undergraduate Science Laboratories: The Advancing Science by Enhancing Learning in the Laboratory Student Laboratory Learning Experience Survey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barrie, Simon C.; Bucat, Robert B.; Buntine, Mark A.; Burke da Silva, Karen; Crisp, Geoffrey T.; George, Adrian V.; Jamie, Ian M.; Kable, Scott H.; Lim, Kieran F.; Pyke, Simon M.; Read, Justin R.; Sharma, Manjula D.; Yeung, Alexandra

    2015-07-01

    Student experience surveys have become increasingly popular to probe various aspects of processes and outcomes in higher education, such as measuring student perceptions of the learning environment and identifying aspects that could be improved. This paper reports on a particular survey for evaluating individual experiments that has been developed over some 15 years as part of a large national Australian study pertaining to the area of undergraduate laboratories-Advancing Science by Enhancing Learning in the Laboratory. This paper reports on the development of the survey instrument and the evaluation of the survey using student responses to experiments from different institutions in Australia, New Zealand and the USA. A total of 3153 student responses have been analysed using factor analysis. Three factors, motivation, assessment and resources, have been identified as contributing to improved student attitudes to laboratory activities. A central focus of the survey is to provide feedback to practitioners to iteratively improve experiments. Implications for practitioners and researchers are also discussed.

  6. An Undergraduate Research Experience that Integrates Traditional Field Mapping, LiDAR, and 3D Numerical Modeling: Applying Lessons from a Recent Report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine in an Intermediate-Level Tectonic Landscapes Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reinen, L. A.; Brenner, K.

    2017-12-01

    Ongoing efforts to improve undergraduate education in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields focus on increasing active student participation and decreasing traditional lecture-based teaching. Undergraduate research experiences (UREs), which engage students in the work of STEM professionals, are an example of these efforts. A recent report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine (Undergraduate Research Experiences for STEM Students: Successes, Challenges, and Opportunities; 2017) provides characteristics of UREs, and indicates that participation in UREs increases student interest and persistence in STEM as well as provides opportunities to broaden student participation in these fields. UREs offer an excellent opportunity to engage students in research using the rapidly evolving technologies used by STEM professionals. In the fall of 2016, students in the Tectonic Landscapes class at Pomona College participated in a course-based URE that combined traditional field mapping methods with analysis of high-resolution topographic data (LiDAR) and 3D numerical modeling to investigate questions of active local faulting. During the first ten weeks students developed skills in: creation of fault maps from both field observations (GPS included) and high-resolution digital elevation models (DEMs), assessment of tectonic activity through analyses of DEMs of hill slope diffusion models and geomorphic indices, and evaluation of fault geometry hypotheses via 3D elastic modeling. Most of these assignments were focused on a single research site. While students primarily used Excel, ArcMap, and Poly3D, no previous knowledge of these was required or assumed. Through this iterative approach, students used increasingly more complex methods as well as gained greater ownership of the research process with time. The course culminated with a 4-week independent research project in which each student investigated a question of their own

  7. Rubbing Elbows and Blowing Smoke: Gender, Class, and Science in the Nineteenth-Century Patent Office.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swanson, Kara W

    2017-03-01

    The United States Patent Office of the 1850s offers a rare opportunity to analyze the early gendering of science. In its crowded rooms, would-be scientists shared a workplace with women earning equal pay for equal work. Scientific men worked as patent examiners, claiming this new occupation as scientific in opposition to those seeking to separate science and technology. At the same time, in an unprecedented and ultimately unsuccessful experiment, female clerks were hired to work alongside male clerks. This article examines the controversies surrounding these workers through the lens of manners and deportment. In the unique context of a workplace combining scientific men and working ladies, office behavior revealed the deep assumption that the emerging American scientist was male and middle class.

  8. A Non-science Major Undergraduate Seminar on the NASA Earth Observing System (EOS): A Student Perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weatherford, V. L.; Redemann, J.

    2003-12-01

    Titled "Observing Climate Change From Space-what tools do we have?", this non-science major freshman seminar at UCLA is the culmination of a year-long interdisciplinary program sponsored by the Institute of the Environment and the College Honors programs at the University. Focusing on the anthropogenic and natural causes of climate change, students study climate forcings and learn about satellite and other technological means of monitoring climate and weather. NASA's Terra satellite is highlighted as one of the most recent and comprehensive monitoring systems put into space and the role of future NASA platforms in the "A-train"-constellation of satellites is discussed. Course material is typically presented in a Power-Point presentation by the instructor, with assigned supplementary reading to stimulate class discussion. In addition to preparing lectures for class presentation, students work on a final term paper and oral presentation which constitutes the majority of their grade. Field trips to the San Gabriel mountains to take atmospheric measurements with handheld sunphotometers and to JPL, Pasadena (CA) to listen to a NASA scientist discuss the MISR instrument aboard the Terra satellite help bring a real-world perspective to the science learned in the classroom. In this paper, we will describe the objectives and structure of this class and present measurement results taken during the field trip to the San Gabriel Mountains. In this context we will discuss the potential relevance of hands-on experience to meeting class objectives and give a student perspective of the overall class experience.

  9. Debates of science vs. religion in undergraduate general education cosmology courses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lopez-Aleman, Ramon

    2015-04-01

    Recent advances in theoretical physics such as the discovery of the Higgs boson or the BICEP2 data supporting inflation can be part of the general science curriculum of non-science majors in a cosmology course designed as part of the General Education component. Yet to be a truly interdisciplinary experience one must deal with the religious background and faith of most of our students. Religious faith seems to be important in their lives, but the philosophical outlook of sciences like cosmology or evolutionary biology is one in which God is an unnecessary component in explaining the nature and origin of the universe. We will review recent advances in cosmology and suggestions on how to establish a respectful and intelligent science vs. religion debate in a transdisciplinary general education setting.

  10. Enhancing Diversity in Undergraduate Science: Self-Efficacy Drives Performance Gains with Active Learning

    OpenAIRE

    Ballen, Cissy J.; Wieman, Carl; Salehi, Shima; Searle, Jeremy B.; Zamudio, Kelly R.

    2017-01-01

    Efforts to retain underrepresented minority (URM) students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) have shown only limited success in higher education, due in part to a persistent achievement gap between students from historically underrepresented and well-represented backgrounds. To test the hypothesis that active learning disproportionately benefits URM students, we quantified the effects of traditional versus active learning on student academic performance, science self...

  11. Developments in undergraduate wood science education at Stellenbosch University, South Africa

    OpenAIRE

    Rypstra,Tim

    2011-01-01

    In South Africa, Stellenbosch University (SU) is the designated provider of Bachelor, Master and Doctorate level qualifications in Forestry and Wood Products Science. SU provides educational programs to both mechanical (sawmilling, preservation, composite products, furniture, etc.) and the chemical (pulp & paper) processing sectors. To ensure academic quality, SU regularly has her academic programs assessed externally. In 2000, several changes to the then existing 4 year B.Sc. Wood Scienc...

  12. The Student Writing Toolkit: Enhancing Undergraduate Teaching of Scientific Writing in the Biological Sciences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dirrigl, Frank J., Jr.; Noe, Mark

    2014-01-01

    Teaching scientific writing in biology classes is challenging for both students and instructors. This article offers and reviews several useful "toolkit" items that improve student writing. These include sentence and paper-length templates, funnelling and compartmentalisation, and preparing compendiums of corrections. In addition,…

  13. Demographics of undergraduates studying games in the United States: a comparison of computer science students and the general population

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGill, Monica M.; Settle, Amber; Decker, Adrienne

    2013-06-01

    Our study gathered data to serve as a benchmark of demographics of undergraduate students in game degree programs. Due to the high number of programs that are cross-disciplinary with computer science programs or that are housed in computer science departments, the data is presented in comparison to data from computing students (where available) and the US population. Participants included students studying games at four nationally recognized postsecondary institutions. The results of the study indicate that there is no significant difference between the ratio of men to women studying in computing programs or in game degree programs, with women being severely underrepresented in both. Women, blacks, Hispanics/Latinos, and heterosexuals are underrepresented compared to the US population. Those with moderate and conservative political views and with religious affiliations are underrepresented in the game student population. Participants agree that workforce diversity is important and that their programs are adequately diverse, but only one-half of the participants indicated that diversity has been discussed in any of their courses.

  14. Mobilizing the Forgotten Army: Improving Undergraduate Math and Science Education through Professional Development of Graduate Teaching Assistants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gerton, Jordan

    Evidence-based best practices for improving undergraduate STEM education abound. Unfortunately, these practices have not been widely adopted, in part because typical dissemination efforts are mediated in a top-down fashion and fail to obtain critical buy-in from key local stakeholders. Here, we present a novel framework to increase nationwide uptake of STEM-education best practices through grassroots propagation of Professional Development programs for Graduate Teaching Assistants (GTA-PD). Our model pays special attention to overcoming resistance to change by soliciting, from the very start, critical buy-in from departmental chairs, faculty, and GTAs who have direct control over and responsibility for instruction. A key component of our approach involves an annual National GTA Workshop where faculty-GTA leadership teams from many different Physics and Chemistry departments come together to develop best-practices-based GTA-PD improvement plans for their own departments while guided by a core group of nationally recognized expert practitioners in GTA-PD and STEM education. As a pre-condition for participation, each department chair must pledge to facilitate implementation of their leadership team's plan; additional and ongoing support is provided by the core group of experts, together with other teams from the workshop cohort. Our initial pilot efforts point to success via enthusiastic buy-in within each STEM department due to the potential for immediate positive impacts on both undergraduate instruction and the long term research productivity of GTAs. In the future, longitudinal data on the progress of the GTA-PD programs will be gathered and analyzed to provide guidance for improving the success of future GTA-PD programs. Financial support provided by the Research Corporation for Science Advancement and the American Chemical Society.

  15. Undergraduate Convexity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lauritzen, Niels

    -Motzkin elimination, the theory is developed by introducing polyhedra, the double description method and the simplex algorithm, closed convex subsets, convex functions of one and several variables ending with a chapter on convex optimization with the Karush-Kuhn-Tucker conditions, duality and an interior point......Based on undergraduate teaching to students in computer science, economics and mathematics at Aarhus University, this is an elementary introduction to convex sets and convex functions with emphasis on concrete computations and examples. Starting from linear inequalities and Fourier...

  16. Perceptions and attitudes of formative assessments in middle-school science classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chauncey, Penny Denyse

    No Child Left Behind mandates utilizing summative assessment to measure schools' effectiveness. The problem is that summative assessment measures students' knowledge without depth of understanding. The goal of public education, however, is to prepare students to think critically at higher levels. The purpose of this study was to examine any difference between formative assessment incorporated in instruction as opposed to the usual, more summative methods in terms of attitudes and academic achievement of middle-school science students. Maslow's theory emphasizes that individuals must have basic needs met before they can advance to higher levels. Formative assessment enables students to master one level at a time. The research questions focused on whether statistically significant differences existed between classrooms using these two types of assessments on academic tests and an attitude survey. Using a quantitative quasi-experimental control-group design, data were obtained from a sample of 430 middle-school science students in 6 classes. One control and 2 experimental classes were assigned to each teacher. Results of the independent t tests revealed academic achievement was significantly greater for groups that utilized formative assessment. No significant difference in attitudes was noted. Recommendations include incorporating formative assessment results with the summative results. Findings from this study could contribute to positive social change by prompting educational stakeholders to examine local and state policies on curriculum as well as funding based on summative scores alone. Use of formative assessment can lead to improved academic success.

  17. How science teachers balance religion and evolution in the science classroom: A case study of science classes in a Florida Public School District

    Science.gov (United States)

    Willems, Pierre Dominique

    The purpose of this case study was to research how science teachers balance both religion and evolution in the science classroom with as little controversy as possible. In this study I attempted to provide some insight on how teachers are currently teaching evolution in their science classes in light of the religious beliefs of the students as well as their own. The case study was conducted in a school district in Florida where I attempted to answer the following questions: (a) How do science teachers in the Florida School District (FSD) approach the religion--evolution issue in preparing students for a career in a field of science? (b) How do science teachers in the FSD reconcile the subject of evolution with the religious views of their students? (c) How do science teachers in the FSD reconcile their own religious views with the teaching of evolution? (d) How do science teachers in the FSD perceive the relationship between religion and science? The data was collected through interviews with two high school teachers, and one middle school teacher, by observing each participant teach, by collecting site documents and by administering an exploratory survey to student volunteers. Analysis was conducted by open coding which produced four themes from which the research questions were answered and the survey answers were counted to produce the percentages displayed in the tables in chapter four. The teachers avoided discussion on religiously oriented questions or statements by the students and did not reveal their own religious orientation. The topic of microevolution appeared to reduce stress in the classroom environment, as opposed to addressing macroevolution.

  18. Case Studies of Interactive Whole-Class Teaching in Primary Science: Communicative approach and pedagogic purposes

    Science.gov (United States)

    McMahon, Kendra

    2012-07-01

    By developing two case studies of expert teaching in action, this study aimed to develop knowledge of talk in whole-class teaching in UK primary science lessons and understand this in relation to both the teachers' interpretations and sociocultural theoretical frameworks. Lessons were observed and video-recorded and the teachers engaged in video-stimulated-reflective dialogue to capture participants' reflections upon their own pedagogic purposes and interactions in the classroom. The analytic framework was developed at three levels: sequence of lessons, lesson, and episode. For each episode, the 'communicative approach' and teaching purposes were recorded. Transcripts were developed for fine grain analysis of selected episodes and a quantitative analysis was undertaken of the use of communicative approaches. Findings exemplify how different communicative approaches were used by the case-study teachers for different pedagogical purposes at different points in the sequence of lessons, contributing to primary teachers' repertoire for planning and practice. The initial elicitation of children's ideas can be understood as pooling them to enhance multivoicedness and develop a shared resource for future dialogues. Whole-class talk can support univocality by rehearsing procedural knowledge and exploring the meanings of scientific terminology. Identifying salient features of phenomena in the context of the whole-class marks them as significant as shared knowledge but valuing other observations extends the multivoicedness of the discourse.

  19. Essential Ingredients of a Good Research Proposal for Undergraduate and Postgraduate Students in the Social Sciences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raymond Talinbe Abdulai

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available As part of the requirements for the award of degrees in higher education institutions, students at undergraduate and postgraduate levels normally carry out research, which they report in the form of dissertations or theses. The research journey commences with the selection of a research topic and the preparation of a proposal on the selected topic. Experience has shown that students tend to encounter difficulties in writing research proposals for their supervisors because they do not fully comprehend what constitutes a research proposal. The purpose of this article is to take students through a step-by-step process of writing good research proposals by discussing the essential ingredients of a good research proposal. Thus, it is not a didactic piece—the aim is to guide students in research proposal writing. In discussing these ingredients, relevant examples are provided where necessary for ease of understanding. It is expected that on reading this article, students should be able to: (a demonstrate knowledge and understanding of what research is all about and its challenging nature; (b display an enlarged comprehension of research gap(s, problem or question(s, aim, objectives, and hypotheses as well as their distinguishing characteristics; (c demonstrate a good understanding of the relevant elements to be considered in the constituent sections of a good research proposal; and (d comprehend the elements of a research proposal that should feature in the final written dissertation or thesis.

  20. Writing-to-learn in undergraduate science education: a community-based, conceptually driven approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reynolds, Julie A; Thaiss, Christopher; Katkin, Wendy; Thompson, Robert J

    2012-01-01

    Despite substantial evidence that writing can be an effective tool to promote student learning and engagement, writing-to-learn (WTL) practices are still not widely implemented in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) disciplines, particularly at research universities. Two major deterrents to progress are the lack of a community of science faculty committed to undertaking and applying the necessary pedagogical research, and the absence of a conceptual framework to systematically guide study designs and integrate findings. To address these issues, we undertook an initiative, supported by the National Science Foundation and sponsored by the Reinvention Center, to build a community of WTL/STEM educators who would undertake a heuristic review of the literature and formulate a conceptual framework. In addition to generating a searchable database of empirically validated and promising WTL practices, our work lays the foundation for multi-university empirical studies of the effectiveness of WTL practices in advancing student learning and engagement.

  1. Teaching Development of Foundation Environmental Science Course Using Undergraduate Handbook of Buriram Rajabhat University

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kuntida Thammamrat

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available The present study is an attempt to apply the handbook as a tool for teaching foundation of environmental science. The aims of this investigation were 1 to develop a course handbook that fills the standard criteria of 80/80 2 to compare mean derived from pretest and posttest scores 3 to compare student’s attitude toward environmental science from the pretest and posttest scores and 4 to compare student’s environmental scientific skills prior to and after using a study handbook. The key informants were 56 students drawn from 1st- year students of Environmental Science Department of Buriram Rajabhat University in 2558 (B.E academic year. Four instruments of data collection were constructed including 1 the course handbook 2 test of student’s basic knowledge on environmental science, 3 the test of student’s attitude toward environmental science, and 4 the test of student’s environmental scientific skills. The statistics analysis in this study comprised frequency percentage, mean, standard deviation and dependent t – test, which were of used for examining the hypothesis. The findings of this investigation revealed that 1 the efficiency of the handbook entitled “Foundation of environmental science” met the criteria of 80/80 in all aspects with value 83.93/91.81 2 the scores derived from student’s posttest is higher than pretest with .05 statistical significant difference 3 teaching through the handbook enhanced the level of student attitude toward environmental science with .05 statistical significant difference and 4 the environmental scientific skills of the students learning through the handbook are significantly higher than before, at .05 level.

  2. Understanding social reproduction: The recursive nature of structure and agency within a science class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seiler, Gale A.

    Schools and science classrooms within schools continue to contribute to social reproduction and to the disenfranchisement of inner city African American students though attempts have been made to remedy the situation through standards, high-stakes testing, and compensatory programs. Such reforms ignore the sociocultural, political, and economic contexts of the individual students in the schools they are impacting. They do not take into account the uniqueness and diversity of the learners in these settings and have not included the voices of the students. Another possibility was studied here; that of starting with the cultural capital of the learner rather than with external standards. In a non-required science course at a local high school two coteachers endeavored to enact a student-emergent curriculum as a way to foster student agency and to counteract the reproductive nature of schools. The class was examined as a field within multiple other fields. The dialectical relationship between structure and agency in the class was used to frame the analysis and the tension between them was examined at several levels through video and audio analysis. Structural and rational choice views of action were abandoned in favor of an understanding hinged upon strategies of action that actors construct from cultural toolkits in and through practice. In this setting the students and teachers co-constructed a class that can be described and characterized in certain ways yet contained many counter-examples and alternative characterizations. A continuum of successes and failures, agency and subjectivity can be found in the trends and counter-trends in the course. The contradictions were examined to portray the complexity of the interactions and the possibilities for agency within them.

  3. “Biotecnological War” - A Conceptual And Perceptual Assessment Tool For Teaching Biotechnology And Protein Chemistry For Undergraduate Students In Biological Sciences.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. R. C. Cruz et al.

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available "Biotecnological War" board game, a conceptual and perceptual assessment tool for biotechnology and protein chemistry teaching for undergraduate students in biological sciences and related areas. It is a proposal initially conceived as an alternative complementary tool for biochemistry teaching of proteins and peptides, challenging students, aiming to review concepts transmitted in classroom, stimulating diverse student’s abilities, such as their creativity, competitiveness and resource management. OBJECTIVES. Correlate biochemistry importance of proteins and peptides with the development of new products. MATERIAL AND METHODS. Firstly, theoretical-practical classes were given with seminars to be presented by the groups, including topics that will be addressed in game. Groups of 5 students, with previously viewed themes drawn a goal to be achieved. There are two drawn goals variations: Academic or Commercial. Board is divided into provinces, which must be bought with an initial resource to complete the goal. Before the beginning each group will have 15 minutes to plan their actions. The objective is to develop the entire objective drawn with appropriate methodology, having at least 1 territory in each province. RESULTS. This game proved to be an excellent tool for complementary evaluation of students, which stimulated teamwork and a strong competitive spirit within classroom, which allowed to analyze students' perception regarding the protein subject and team work. On the other hand, for teacher and students participating in compulsory traineeship program this game demonstrated new ways to approach complex subjects in biochemistry using creativity with the development of new activities such as this board game. CONCLUSION: Overall, students had a good impression of “Biotecnological war” game since it helped to secure and administer the protein and peptides biochemical subject in a competitive and team work way.

  4. Promoting Learning by Inquiry Among Undergraduates in Soil Sciences: Scaffolding From Project-based Courses to Student-Staff Research Grants by the National Research Agency in Oman

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al-Ismaily, Said; Kacimov, Anvar; Al-Maktoumi, Ali

    2016-04-01

    Three strategies in a soil science undergraduate programme with inquiry-based learning (IBL) principles at Sultan Qaboos University, Oman, are presented. The first strategy scaffolds courses into three phases: with direct instructional guidance, structured IBL, and finally, guided to open IBL. The second strategy involves extra-curricular activities of undergraduates, viz. conducting workshops on soils for pupils in grades 7-9 with their teachers. The third strategy promotes the teaching-research nexus through collaboration between the undergraduates and faculty within a student-supporting, government-funded programme through 1-year long research grants of up to 5,500 US/project. The efficiency of the strategies was evaluated by students' evaluations of courses and instructors and questionnaire-based surveys. Statistics of students' responses in teaching evaluations of IBL courses showed a significantly higher level of satisfaction compared with regular courses taught in the department and college. In surveys of other constituencies of the program, viz. the secondary schools, more than 90% of respondents "agreed" or "strongly agreed" that they had learned new information/secrets about soils. The indicators of success in the third strategy are: winning a highly competitive grant and, moreover, earning an even more competitive annual national award for the best executed research project. The two top graduates of the IBL soil programme progressed into the MSc programme with the university and national scholarships. Key words: inquiry based learning, soil science undergraduate program, scaffold of courses, outreach activities, teaching-research nexus, evaluation of program's efficiency

  5. Attitudes among students and teachers on vertical integration between clinical medicine and basic science within a problem-based undergraduate medical curriculum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brynhildsen, J; Dahle, L O; Behrbohm Fallsberg, M; Rundquist, I; Hammar, M

    2002-05-01

    Important elements in the curriculum at the Faculty of Health Sciences in Linköping are vertical integration, i.e. integration between the clinical and basic science sections of the curriculum, and horizontal integration between different subject areas. Integration throughout the whole curriculum is time-consuming for both teachers and students and hard work is required for planning, organization and execution. The aim was to assess the importance of vertical and horizontal integration in an undergraduate medical curriculum, according to opinions among students and teachers. In a questionnaire 102 faculty teachers and 106 students were asked about the importance of 14 different components of the undergraduate medical curriculum including vertical and horizontal integration. They were asked to assign between one and six points to each component (6 points = extremely important for the quality of the curriculum; 1 point = unimportant). Students as well as teachers appreciated highly both forms of integration. Students scored horizontal integration slightly but significantly higher than the teachers (median 6 vs 5 points; p=0.009, Mann-Whitney U-test), whereas teachers scored vertical integration higher than students (6 vs 5; p=0.019, Mann-Whitney U-test). Both students and teachers considered horizontal and vertical integration to be highly important components of the undergraduate medical programme. We believe both kinds of integration support problem-based learning and stimulate deep and lifelong learning and suggest that integration should always be considered deeply when a new curriculum is planned for undergraduate medical education.

  6. NanoJapan: international research experience for undergraduates program: fostering U.S.-Japan research collaborations in terahertz science and technology of nanostructures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phillips, Sarah R.; Matherly, Cheryl A.; Kono, Junichiro

    2014-09-01

    The international nature of science and engineering research demands that students have the skillsets necessary to collaborate internationally. However, limited options exist for science and engineering undergraduates who want to pursue research abroad. The NanoJapan International Research Experience for Undergraduates Program is an innovative response to this need. Developed to foster research and international engagement among young undergraduate students, it is funded by a National Science Foundation Partnerships for International Research and Education (PIRE) grant. Each summer, NanoJapan sends 12 U.S. students to Japan to conduct research internships with world leaders in terahertz (THz) spectroscopy, nanophotonics, and ultrafast optics. The students participate in cutting-edge research projects managed within the framework of the U.S-Japan NSF-PIRE collaboration. One of our focus topics is THz science and technology of nanosystems (or `TeraNano'), which investigates the physics and applications of THz dynamics of carriers and phonons in nanostructures and nanomaterials. In this article, we will introduce the program model, with specific emphasis on designing high-quality international student research experiences. We will specifically address the program curriculum that introduces students to THz research, Japanese language, and intercultural communications, in preparation for work in their labs. Ultimately, the program aims to increase the number of U.S. students who choose to pursue graduate study in this field, while cultivating a generation of globally aware engineers and scientists who are prepared for international research collaboration.

  7. Collaborative, Early-undergraduate-focused REU Programs at Savannah State University have been Vital to Growing a Demographically Diverse Ocean Science Community

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilligan, M. R.; Cox, T. M.; Hintz, C. J.

    2011-12-01

    Formal support for undergraduates to participate in marine/ocean science research at Savannah State University (SSU), a historically-Black unit of the University System of Georgia, began in 1989 with funding from the National Science Foundation for an unsolicited proposal (OCE-8919102, 34,935). Today SSU, which has offered B.S degrees since 1979 and M.S. degrees since 2001 in Marine Sciences, is making major contributions nationally to demographic diversity in ocean sciences. 33% of Master's degrees in marine/ocean sciences earned by African Americans in the U.S. from 2004-2007 were earned at SSU. 10% of African American Master's and Doctoral students in marine/ ocean sciences in 2007 were either enrolled in the Master's program at SSU or were former SSU students enrolled in Doctoral programs elsewhere. Collaborative REU programs that focus on early (freshman and sophomore) undergraduate students have been a consistent and vital part of that success. In the most recent iteration of our summer REU program we used six of the best practices outlined in the literature to increase success and retention of underrepresented minority students in STEM fields: early intervention, strong mentoring, research experience, career counseling, financial support, workshops and seminars. The early intervention with strong mentoring has proven successful in several metrics: retention in STEM majors (96%), progression to graduate school (50%), and continuation to later research experiences (75%). Research mentors include faculty at staff at SSU, the Skidaway Institute of Oceanography, Gray's Reef National Marine Sanctuary and Georgia Tech-Savannah. Formal collaborative and cooperative agreements, externally-funded grants, and contracts in support of student research training have proven to be critical in providing resources for growth and improvement marine science curricular options at the University. Since 1981 the program has had four formal partnerships and 36 funded grant awards

  8. The Content and Integrative Component of Capstone Experiences: An Analysis of Political Science Undergraduate Programs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hummer, Jill Abraham

    2014-01-01

    In 1991, the APSA Task Force on Political Science recommended elements of a curricular structure that would best promote student learning. The report stated that there should be a capstone experience at the end of the senior year and that the capstone should require students to integrate their whole learning experience in the major. This article…

  9. A Pedagogy of Civic Engagement for the Undergraduate Political Science Classroom

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeLaet, Debra L.

    2016-01-01

    This article provides an overview of a classroom project, titled the Priorities Project, which is designed to promote responsible and informed civic engagement on the part of students in upper level political science courses at Drake University. It provides an overview of the Priorities Project, a brief summary highlighting the process and results…

  10. Social Media for Learning and Teaching Undergraduate Sciences: Good Practice Guidelines from Intervention

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thalluri, Jyothi; Penman, Joy

    2015-01-01

    In 2013, Facebook was used in learning and teaching clinical problem solving in a Pathology and a Clinical Sciences course delivered at a South Australian university. It involved first- and second-year Medical Radiation students and second-year Nursing students, Of the 152 students enrolled in the Pathology course, there were 148 students who…

  11. Teaching and Assessing Ethics and Social Responsibility in Undergraduate Science: A Position Paper

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schultz, Madeleine

    2014-01-01

    Institutional graduate capabilities and discipline threshold learning outcomes require science students to demonstrate ethical conduct and social responsibility. However, the teaching and assessment of these concepts are not straightforward. Australian chemistry academics participated in a workshop in 2013 to discuss and develop teaching and…

  12. Making Bioinformatics Projects a Meaningful Experience in an Undergraduate Biotechnology or Biomedical Science Programme

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sutcliffe, Iain C.; Cummings, Stephen P.

    2007-01-01

    Bioinformatics has emerged as an important discipline within the biological sciences that allows scientists to decipher and manage the vast quantities of data (such as genome sequences) that are now available. Consequently, there is an obvious need to provide graduates in biosciences with generic, transferable skills in bioinformatics. We present…

  13. Scaffolding the Science: Problem Based Strategies for Teaching Interdisciplinary Undergraduate Research Methods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keebaugh, Alaine; Darrow, Lyndsey; Tan, David; Jamerson, Heather

    2009-01-01

    Previous research has highlighted the effectiveness of Problem-Based Learning (PBL) in multiple disciplinary settings, including medicine, teacher education, business, allied health, and the social sciences. Yet interdisciplinary educators have very little information about how to implement PBL in classrooms where multiple disciplines are…

  14. Understanding the Complex Relationship between Critical Thinking and Science Reasoning among Undergraduate Thesis Writers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dowd, Jason E.; Thompson, Robert J., Jr.; Schif, Leslie A.; Reynolds, Julie A.

    2018-01-01

    Developing critical-thinking and scientific reasoning skills are core learning objectives of science education, but little empirical evidence exists regarding the interrelationships between these constructs. Writing effectively fosters students' development of these constructs, and it offers a unique window into studying how they relate. In this…

  15. DNA, Drugs, and Detectives: An Interdisciplinary Special Topics Course for Undergraduate Students in Forensic Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coticone, Sulekha Rao; Van Houten, Lora Bailey

    2015-01-01

    A special topics course combining two relevant and contemporary themes (forensic DNA analysis and illicit drug detection) was developed to stimulate student enthusiasm and enhance understanding of forensic science. Building on the interest of popular television shows such as "CSI" and "Breaking Bad," this course connects…

  16. Enhancing Diversity in Undergraduate Science: Self-Efficacy Drives Performance Gains with Active Learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ballen, Cissy J; Wieman, Carl; Salehi, Shima; Searle, Jeremy B; Zamudio, Kelly R

    2017-01-01

    Efforts to retain underrepresented minority (URM) students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) have shown only limited success in higher education, due in part to a persistent achievement gap between students from historically underrepresented and well-represented backgrounds. To test the hypothesis that active learning disproportionately benefits URM students, we quantified the effects of traditional versus active learning on student academic performance, science self-efficacy, and sense of social belonging in a large (more than 250 students) introductory STEM course. A transition to active learning closed the gap in learning gains between non-URM and URM students and led to an increase in science self-efficacy for all students. Sense of social belonging also increased significantly with active learning, but only for non-URM students. Through structural equation modeling, we demonstrate that, for URM students, the increase in self-efficacy mediated the positive effect of active-learning pedagogy on two metrics of student performance. Our results add to a growing body of research that supports varied and inclusive teaching as one pathway to a diversified STEM workforce. © 2017 C. J. Ballen et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2017 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  17. Impact of Undergraduates' Stereotypes of Scientists on Their Intentions to Pursue a Career in Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider, Jennifer

    2010-01-01

    Women remain disproportionately underrepresented in certain science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) majors and occupations. Stereotypes of scientists may be contributing factors in this phenomenon. However, this relationship has not yet been empirically examined. This is partly because of the dearth of literature addressing the…

  18. Female Computer Science and Engineering Undergraduates: Reflections on Participation in the Academic Landscape

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruiz, Patricia Adriana

    2017-01-01

    Women continue to be underrepresented in computer science and technology related fields despite their significant contributions. The lack of diversity in technology related fields is problematic as it can result in the perpetuation of negative stereotypes and closed-minded, unchecked biases. As technology tools become integral to our daily lives…

  19. Undergraduate Origins of Recent (1991-95) Science and Engineering Doctorate Recipients. Special Report.

    Science.gov (United States)

    National Science Foundation, Arlington, VA. Div. of Science Resources Studies.

    Baccalaureate institutions are an essential part of the educational process for persons earning science and engineering doctorates. This report summarizes data on the baccalaureate institutions reported by persons completing doctorates from 1991 through 1995. It provides an institutional context for examining this aspect of the educational…

  20. Exploration of the Lived Experiences of Undergraduate Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Minority Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Snead-McDaniel, Kimberly

    2010-01-01

    An expanding ethnicity gap exists in the number of students pursuing science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) careers in the United States. The National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering revealed that the number of minorities pursuing STEM degrees and careers has declined over the past few years. The specific origins of…

  1. Revision and Evaluation of a Course in Behavioral Sciences for Undergraduate Medical Students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGuire, Frederick L.; Friedmann, Claude T. H.

    1981-01-01

    The new teaching format of a behavioral science course at the University of California, Irvine, College of Medicine is described. Specific objectives were to present an introduction of life's developmental cycles, the nature of mind-body relationships, and dynamics of the doctor-patient relationship, and to develop interviewing skills. (MLW)

  2. Exploring the Self-Reported ICT Skill Levels of Undergraduate Science Students

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jef C. Verhoeven

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Computers have taken an important place in the training of science students and in the professional life of scientists. It is often taken for granted that most students have mastered basic Information and Communication Technologies (ICT skills; however, it has been shown that not all students are equally proficient in this regard. Starting from theories of socialization and technology acceptance we report how we constructed a structural equation model (SEM to explore the variance in the basic ICT skill levels of science students. We also present the results of a test of this model with university bachelor’s science students. Basic ICT skills were measured using a new, elaborate instrument allowing students to rate their skills in detail. Our results show that science students score high on basic ICT skills and that our SEM explains a large part of the variation in the ICT skill levels of these students. The most explanatory power is coming from four variables: the perceived ease of use and the perceived usefulness of a personal computer, the anxiety for using a personal computer, and students’ belief that ICT is necessary for scientific research.

  3. A Vocabulary Learning Tool for L2 Undergraduates Reading Science and Technology Textbooks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsu, Chihcheng; Ou Yang, Fang-Chuan

    2013-01-01

    Students of English as a second language who major in science and technology use English-language textbooks to ensure that they can read English materials upon graduation. Research indicates that teachers spend little time helping these students on the linguistic complexity of such textbooks. Vocabulary, grammar, and article structure are elements…

  4. A Diagnosis of the Levels of Information Literacy Competency among Social Sciences Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pinto, María; Fernández-Pascual, Rosaura

    2017-01-01

    Restricted to five Spanish public universities, this paper examines knowledge about information literacy competencies--that is, the objective dimension--among a population of social sciences students, as well as two subjective dimensions: students' belief in the importance of information literacy, hereafter called "belief-in-importance",…

  5. The Undergraduate Capstone Course in the Social Sciences: Results from a Regional Survey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hauhart, Robert C.; Grahe, Jon E.

    2010-01-01

    Among the common requirements for receipt of a degree in the social sciences is the completion of a senior seminar in which a senior thesis or capstone project is produced. A number of educational goals have been proposed for this requirement: integrating the knowledge base supplied by the regular curriculum, contributing to students' future roles…

  6. Enhancing Diversity in Undergraduate Science: Self-Efficacy Drives Performance Gains with Active Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ballen, Cissy J.; Wieman, Carl; Salehi, Shima; Searle, Jeremy B.; Zamudio, Kelly R.

    2017-01-01

    Efforts to retain underrepresented minority (URM) students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) have shown only limited success in higher education, due in part to a persistent achievement gap between students from historically underrepresented and well-represented backgrounds. To test the hypothesis that active learning…

  7. Exploring the Self-Reported ICT Skill Levels of Undergraduate Science Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heerwegh, Dirk; De Wit, Kurt; Verhoeven, Jef C.

    2016-01-01

    Computers have taken an important place in the training of science students and in the professional life of scientists. It is often taken for granted that most students have mastered basic Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) skills; however, it has been shown that not all students are equally proficient in this regard. Starting from…

  8. Cross-Cultural Comparisons of Undergraduate Student Views of the Nature of Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arino de la Rubia, Leigh S.; Lin, Tzung-Jin; Tsai, Chin-Chung

    2014-01-01

    Past studies investigating university level students' views of nature of science (NOS) were relatively few and most of them were conducted in Western countries. This paper focuses upon comparing the quantitative patterns in Western (US Caucasian and African-American) and non-Western (Taiwanese) students' views of NOS (VNOS) by adopting a survey…

  9. Providing Real Research Opoportunities to Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ragozzine, Darin

    2016-01-01

    The current approach to undergraduate education focuses on teaching classes which provide the foundational knowledge for more applied experiences such as scientific research. Like most programs, Florida Institute of Technology (Florida Tech or FIT) strongly encourages undergraduate research, but is dominated by content-focused courses (e.g., "Physical Mechanics"). Research-like experiences are generally offered through "lab" classes, but these are almost always reproductions of past experiments: contrived, formulaic, and lacking the "heart" of real (i.e., potentially publishable) scientific research. Real research opportunities 1) provide students with realistic insight into the actual scientific process; 2) excite students far more than end-of-chapter problems; 3) provide context for the importance of learning math, physics, and astrophysics concepts; and 4) allow unique research progress for well-chosen problems. I have provided real research opportunities as an "Exoplanet Lab" component of my Introduction to Space Science (SPS1020) class at Florida Tech, generally taken by first-year majors in our Physics, Astronomy & Astrophysics, Planetary Science, and Astrobiology degree programs. These labs are a hybrid between citizen science (e.g., PlanetHunters) and simultaneously mentoring ~60 undergraduates in similar small research projects. These projects focus on problems that can be understood in the context of the course, but which benefit from "crowdsourcing". Examples include: dividing up the known planetary systems and developing a classification scheme and organizing them into populations (Fall 2013); searching through folded light curves to discover new exoplanets missed by previous pipelines (Fall 2014); and fitting n-body models to all exoplanets with known Transit Timing Variations to estimate planet masses (Fall 2015). The students love the fact that they are doing real potentially publishable research: not many undergraduates can claim to have discovered

  10. Identifying barriers to Science, Technology, Society and environment (STSE) educational goals and pedagogy in science education: A case study of UMASS Lowell undergraduate engineering

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phaneuf, Tiffany

    The implementation of sustainable development in higher education is a global trend. Engineers, as gatekeepers of technological innovation, confront increasingly complex world issues ranging from economic and social to political and environmental. Recently, a multitude of government reports have argued that solving such complex problems requires changes in the pedagogy of engineering education, such as that prescribed by the Science, Technology, Society, and education (STS) movement that grew out of the environmental movement in the 70s. In STS students are engaged in the community by understanding that scientific progress is innately a sociopolitical process that involves dimensions of power, wealth and responsibility. United States accreditation criteria now demand "the broad education necessary to understand the impact of engineering solutions in a global, economic, environmental, and societal context" (ABET Engineering Accreditation Commission 2005). With such emphasis on STS education as necessary to address complex world issues, it is vital to assess the barriers in the traditional engineering curriculum that may inhibit the success of such educational reform. This study identifies barriers to STS goals and pedagogy in post secondary science education by using the Francis College of Engineering at UMASS Lowell as a single case study. The study draws on existing literature to develop a theoretical framework for assessing four hypothesized barriers to STS education in undergraduate engineering. Identification of barriers to STS education in engineering generates a critical reflection of post secondary science education and its role in preparing engineers to be active citizens in shaping a rapidly globalizing world. The study offers policy recommendations for enabling post secondary science education to incorporate STS education into its curriculum.

  11. The Earth2Class Model for Professional Development to Implement the Next Generation Science Standards

    Science.gov (United States)

    Passow, M. J.; Assumpcao, C. M.; Baggio, F. D.; Hemming, S. R.; Goodwillie, A. M.; Brenner, C.

    2014-12-01

    Professional development for teachers involved in the implementation of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) will require a multifaceted approach combining curriculum development, understanding the nature of science, applications of engineering and technology, integrating reading and writing, and other pedagogical components. The Earth2Class Workshops (E2C) at the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University (LDEO) provides one model for creating effective training to meet the NGSS challenges. E2C has provided more than 135 workshops since 1998 that have brought together LDEO research scientists with classroom teachers and students from the New York metropolitan area and elsewhere. Each session provides teachers with the chance to learn first-hand about the wide range of investigations conducted at LDEO. This approach aligns strongly with the NGSS goals: mastery of the disciplinary core ideas, science and engineering practices, understanding the nature of science, and cross-cutting relationships. During workshops, participating teachers interact with scientists to gain understanding of what stimulated research questions, how scientists put together all the components of investigations, and ways in which results are disseminated. Networking among teachers often leads to developing lesson plans based on the science, as well as support for professional growth not always possible within the school setting. Through the E2C website www.earth2class.org, teachers and students not able to attend the live workshops can access archival versions of the sessions. The website also provides a wide variety of educational resources. These have proved to be valuable on a national basis, as evidenced by an average of more than 300,000 hits per month from thousands of site visitors. Participating researchers have found E2C to be an effective approach to provide broader outreach of their results. During the next couple of years, the E2C program will expand to provide

  12. Being a Scientist While Teaching Science: Implementing Undergraduate Research Opportunities for Elementary Educators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hock, Emily; Sharp, Zoe

    2016-03-01

    Aspiring teachers and current teachers can gain insight about the scientific community through hands-on experience. As America's standards for elementary school and middle school become more advanced, future and current teachers must gain hands-on experience in the scientific community. For a teacher to be fully capable of teaching all subjects, they must be comfortable in the content areas, equipped to answer questions, and able to pass on their knowledge. Hands-on research experiences, like the Summer Astronomy Research Experience at California Polytechnic University, pair liberal studies students with a cooperative group of science students and instructors with the goal of doing research that benefits the scientific community and deepens the team members' perception of the scientific community. Teachers are then able to apply the basic research process in their classrooms, inspire students to do real life science, and understand the processes scientists' undergo in their workplace.

  13. Mentoring for Inclusion: The Impact of Mentoring on Undergraduate Researchers in the Sciences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haeger, Heather; Fresquez, Carla

    Increasing inclusion of underrepresented minority and first-generation students in mentored research experiences both increases diversity in the life sciences research community and prepares students for successful careers in these fields. However, analyses of the impact of mentoring approaches on specific student gains are limited. This study addresses the impact of mentoring strategies within research experiences on broadening access to the life sciences by examining both how these experiences impacted student success and how the quality of mentorship affected the development of research and academic skills for a diverse population of students at a public, minority-serving institution. Institutional data on student grades and graduation rates (n = 348) along with postresearch experience surveys (n = 138) found that students mentored in research had significantly higher cumulative grade point averages and similar graduation rates as a matched set of peers. Examination of the relationships between student-reported gains and mentoring strategies demonstrated that socioemotional and culturally relevant mentoring impacted student development during mentored research experiences. Additionally, extended engagement in research yielded significantly higher development of research-related skills and level of independence in research. Recommendations are provided for using mentoring to support traditionally underrepresented students in the sciences. © 2016 H. Haeger and C. Fresquez. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2016 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  14. Test-enhanced learning: the potential for testing to promote greater learning in undergraduate science courses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brame, Cynthia J; Biel, Rachel

    2015-01-01

    Testing within the science classroom is commonly used for both formative and summative assessment purposes to let the student and the instructor gauge progress toward learning goals. Research within cognitive science suggests, however, that testing can also be a learning event. We present summaries of studies that suggest that repeated retrieval can enhance long-term learning in a laboratory setting; various testing formats can promote learning; feedback enhances the benefits of testing; testing can potentiate further study; and benefits of testing are not limited to rote memory. Most of these studies were performed in a laboratory environment, so we also present summaries of experiments suggesting that the benefits of testing can extend to the classroom. Finally, we suggest opportunities that these observations raise for the classroom and for further research. © 2015 C. J. Brame and R. Biel. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2015 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  15. “Biotecnological War” - A Conceptual And Perceptual Assessment Tool For Teaching Biotechnology And Protein Chemistry For Undergraduate Students In Biological Sciences.

    OpenAIRE

    C. R. C. Cruz et al.

    2017-01-01

    "Biotecnological War" board game, a conceptual and perceptual assessment tool for biotechnology and protein chemistry teaching for undergraduate students in biological sciences and related areas. It is a proposal initially conceived as an alternative complementary tool for biochemistry teaching of proteins and peptides, challenging students, aiming to review concepts transmitted in classroom, stimulating diverse student’s abilities, such as their creativity, competitiveness and resource manag...

  16. A comparison of online versus face-to-face teaching delivery in statistics instruction for undergraduate health science students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Fletcher; Lemonde, Manon

    2013-12-01

    The objective of this study was to assess if online teaching delivery produces comparable student test performance as the traditional face-to-face approach irrespective of academic aptitude. This study involves a quasi-experimental comparison of student performance in an undergraduate health science statistics course partitioned in two ways. The first partition involves one group of students taught with a traditional face-to-face classroom approach and the other through a completely online instructional approach. The second partition of the subjects categorized the academic aptitude of the students into groups of higher and lower academically performing based on their assignment grades during the course. Controls that were placed on the study to reduce the possibility of confounding variables were: the same instructor taught both groups covering the same subject information, using the same assessment methods and delivered over the same period of time. The results of this study indicate that online teaching delivery is as effective as a traditional face-to-face approach in terms of producing comparable student test performance but only if the student is academically higher performing. For academically lower performing students, the online delivery method produced significantly poorer student test results compared to those lower performing students taught in a traditional face-to-face environment.

  17. The experimental teaching reform in biochemistry and molecular biology for undergraduate students in Peking University Health Science Center.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Xiaohan; Sun, Luyang; Zhao, Ying; Yi, Xia; Zhu, Bin; Wang, Pu; Lin, Hong; Ni, Juhua

    2015-01-01

    Since 2010, second-year undergraduate students of an eight-year training program leading to a Doctor of Medicine degree or Doctor of Philosophy degree in Peking University Health Science Center (PKUHSC) have been required to enter the "Innovative talent training project." During that time, the students joined a research lab and participated in some original research work. There is a critical educational need to prepare these students for the increasing accessibility of research experience. The redesigned experimental curriculum of biochemistry and molecular biology was developed to fulfill such a requirement, which keeps two original biochemistry experiments (Gel filtration and Enzyme kinetics) and adds a new two-experiment component called "Analysis of anti-tumor drug induced apoptosis." The additional component, also known as the "project-oriented experiment" or the "comprehensive experiment," consists of Western blotting and a DNA laddering assay to assess the effects of etoposide (VP16) on the apoptosis signaling pathways. This reformed laboratory teaching system aims to enhance the participating students overall understanding of important biological research techniques and the instrumentation involved, and to foster a better understanding of the research process all within a classroom setting. Student feedback indicated that the updated curriculum helped them improve their operational and self-learning capability, and helped to increase their understanding of theoretical knowledge and actual research processes, which laid the groundwork for their future research work. © 2015 The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

  18. Using a dynamic, introductory-level volcanoes class as a means to introduce non-science majors to the geosciences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cook, G. W.

    2012-12-01

    At the University of California, San Diego, I teach a quarter-long, introductory Earth Science class titled "Volcanoes," which is, in essence, a functional class in volcanology designed specifically for non-majors. This large-format (enrollment ~ 85), lecture-based class provides students from an assortment of backgrounds an opportunity to acquire much-needed (and sometimes dreaded) area credits in science, while also serving as an introduction to the Earth Science major at UCSD (offered through Scripps Institution of Oceanography). The overall goal of the course is to provide students with a stimulating and exciting general science option that, using an inherently interesting topic, introduces them to the fundamentals of geoscience. A secondary goal is to promote general science and geoscience literacy among the general population of UCSD. Student evaluations of this course unequivocally indicate a high degree of learning and interest in the material. The majority of students in the class (>80%) are non-science majors and very few students (degree-seeking students. In addition, only a handful of students have typically had any form of geology class beyond high school level Earth Science. Consequently, there are challenges associated with teaching the class. Perhaps most significantly, students have very little background—background that is necessary for understanding the processes involved in volcanic eruptions. Second, many non-science students have built-in anxieties with respect to math and science, anxieties that must be considered when designing curriculum and syllabi. It is essential to provide the right balance of technical information while remaining in touch with the audience. My approach to the class involves a dynamic lecture format that incorporates a wide array of multimedia, analogue demonstrations of volcanic processes, and small-group discussions of topics and concepts. In addition to teaching about volcanoes—a fascinating subject in and of

  19. INFORMATION-SEEKING BEHAVIOUR ON INTERNET: A comparison between Arts and Science Undergraduate Students in Iran

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Faranak OMIDIAN

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available The demand of responsibilities among teachers has evolved not only in classroom management but also to the extent of promoting communication and interpersonal skills. Social media is integrated in schools and higher learning institutions for communication and reflection of learning which enhance teachers’ performance in leadership quality and effective teaching. This study was designed in a qualitative approach mainly to explore the extent of interest and enjoyment students experienced during an intensive ICT course. Blog was used as a medium for reflection during the class where students posted their creations of videos, posters and other ICT materials. The three needs investigated were namely autonomy, competence, and relatedness support. The researcher further examined on students’ awareness of the usefulness of the ICT skill they learned and how much they can use the blog for teaching and learning. Based on the Basic Psychological Needs Theory framework (BPNT, this study has adopted the direct observation, journal entry, and interviews as a triangulation approach.

  20. Undergraduate Science Students are Uncertain of How to Find Facts in E-books Compared to Print Books. A Review of: Berg, S. A., Hoffmann, K., & Dawson, D. (2010. Not on the same page: Undergraduates' information retrieval in electronic and print books. The Journal of Academic Librarianship, 36(6, 518-525.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christina E. Carter

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Objective – To observe and compare the strategies that undergraduate science students use to perform information retrieval tasks in e-books and in print books.Design – Qualitative analysis, employing a “prompted think-aloud” methodology and thematic analysis.Setting – Taylor Library (serving the Faculty of Science, University of Western Ontario, London, Ontario, Canada.Subjects – Twenty undergraduate science students (11 females, 9 males who had completed at least two years of study in Faculty of Science programs at the University of Western Ontario.Methods – Participants for the study were recruited through informational posters in Taylor Library, science departments, and in undergraduate science classes. Participants were assigned fact-finding tasks in e-book and print versions of eight health, computer science, and engineering textbooks and handbooks available in the Taylor Library. Book titles and tasks are included in a table in the study. Each student completed four tasks using e-books and four tasks using print books. Half of the participants performed tasks in print books first, and half began with tasks in e-books. Print books were “pre-selected” for each participant. The e-books were all from the same platform: Electronic Book Library. Participants were provided with a laptop computer to access the e-book versions, and a list of questions or facts to locate within each book. Following the methodology of Cotton & Gresty (2006, one researcher prompted students to verbalize actions while performing assigned tasks. A second researcher captured audio and video of the laptop screen as students individually conducted their e-book searches. A third researcher took notes on each session. An exit survey was given to each participant, asking about previous use, knowledge, and attitudes towards e-books. Thematic analysis was then used to examine the collected data.Main Results – Researchers identified four major themes from the

  1. Features of the Researches that Studying the Use of ICTs in Science Class

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Miranda

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available In recent years an increasing interest in the study of technological mediation in the educational processes at all levels of education. In this paper we communicate the characteristics found in current research on learning environments which integrate Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs into a science class. Analysis of the research uses Gowin’s heuristic technique V as a metacognitive strategy that allows the identification of the the relevant aspects of the research process. Reviewed and described were the different works selected to determine current trends in the study of teaching and learning processes using technology. It was possible to determine that the majority of the works analyzed study the aspects associated with the didactic efficacy of the use of ICTs, and only a few make reference to the interactive processes that emerge from learning activities.

  2. Understanding the experiences of a group of Yemeni students in an ESL science class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fradi, Gihan

    American classrooms are experiencing an influx of diverse language speaking students while for science educators the study of EBL students' learning in science classrooms is a relatively new field (Lee & Buxton, 2010). At the same time there is a growing emphasis on the importance of science practices (NGSS). This poses significant challenges for science educators who are enacting science curriculum that supports all students' learning. Supporting EBL students' academic achievement is significant because literacy is important for students' access to economic and social benefits that come with science literacy (Atwater, 1996). The purpose of this study was to examine the socio-linguistic challenges that a specific group of EBL students (Yemeni) faced and the extent to which such challenges affected their academic performance in science. These challenges are related to linguistic and cultural interactions, which can lead to conflicts between student and school, thereby interfering with the effectiveness of their education. This study also examined these students' and their science teacher's perspectives on strategies that can be used to facilitate their language acquisition during science class and help them become active participants in the school and classroom communities. The study used a qualitative interpretive research methodology and involved four Arab-American EBL students (two males and two females) from Yemen, who had been in the US for different periods of time. The amount of time these students had been in the US was important to examine differences in their acculturation and challenges they faced. Similarly, the use of female and male student participants was important to understand the impact of gender in the lived experiences of these students. The results of the study indicated that all the participants struggled with linguistic, social, and cultural aspects of their life in an American high school. These in turn led to a sense of being different

  3. Discourse as mediator in environmental education in a natural science class: a case study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marta Massa

    2004-08-01

    Full Text Available Discourse is an educational practice through which students and teachers are related by a sequence of meanings that are expressed, interchanged, negociated and constructed in the dynamic of a class. In this article, we analize the discursive practices and the arguments that are stated during a Science class when the teacher and her students discuss about the concepts “drinkable water – pollute water” when they are dealing with Environmental Education contents. A qualitative research within the perspective of a case study, centred on discourse analysis, was performed. We examine the content, the resources and the structural features that are used by the teacher and the students in order to construct the arguments and to establish the ideas. Two different templates were detected: the teacher’s, is based on perceptions and operative concepts, while the student’s one is organized in order to seek a microscopic explanation. Nevertheless, negotiation between these two perspectives fails during the dialogic interaction.

  4. Transforming Spatial Reasoning Skills in the Upper-Level Undergraduate Geoscience Classroom Through Curricular Materials Informed by Cognitive Science Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ormand, C. J.; Shipley, T. F.; Dutrow, B. L.; Goodwin, L. B.; Hickson, T. A.; Tikoff, B.; Atit, K.; Gagnier, K. M.; Resnick, I.

    2014-12-01

    Spatial visualization is an essential skill in the STEM disciplines, including the geosciences. Undergraduate students, including geoscience majors in upper-level courses, bring a wide range of spatial skill levels to the classroom. Students with weak spatial skills may be unable to understand fundamental concepts and to solve geological problems with a spatial component. However, spatial thinking skills are malleable. As a group of geoscience faculty members and cognitive psychologists, we have developed a set of curricular materials for Mineralogy, Sedimentology & Stratigraphy, and Structural Geology courses. These materials are designed to improve students' spatial skills, and in particular to improve students' abilities to reason about spatially complex 3D geological concepts and problems. Teaching spatial thinking in the context of discipline-based exercises has the potential to transform undergraduate STEM education by removing one significant barrier to success in the STEM disciplines. The curricular materials we have developed are based on several promising teaching strategies that have emerged from cognitive science research on spatial thinking. These strategies include predictive sketching, making visual comparisons, gesturing, and the use of analogy. We have conducted a three-year study of the efficacy of these materials in strengthening the spatial skills of students in upper-level geoscience courses at three universities. Our methodology relies on a pre- and post-test study design, with several tests of spatial thinking skills administered at the beginning and end of each semester. In 2011-2012, we used a "business as usual" approach to gather baseline data, measuring how much students' spatial thinking skills improved in response to the existing curricula. In the two subsequent years we have incorporated our new curricular materials, which can be found on the project website: http://serc.carleton.edu/spatialworkbook/activities.html Structural Geology

  5. Adapting to Student Learning Styles: Using Cell Phone Technology in Undergraduate Science Instruction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Richard Pennington

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available Students of science traditionally make 3x5 flash cards to assist learning nomenclature, structures, and reactions. Advances in educational technology have enabled flashcards viewed on computers, offering an endless array of drilling and feedback opportunities for students. The current generation of students is less inclined to use computers, but they use their cell phones 24 hours a day. This report outlines these trends and an even more recent educational technology initiative, that of using cell phone flash cards to help students learn biology and chemistry nomenclature, structures, and reactions. Students responded positively to cell phone flash cards in a pilot study and a more detailed study is planned for the coming year.

  6. Integration of NASA Research into Undergraduate Education in Math, Science, Engineering and Technology at North Carolina A&T State University

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monroe, Joseph; Kelkar, Ajit

    2003-01-01

    The NASA PAIR program incorporated the NASA-Sponsored research into the undergraduate environment at North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University. This program is designed to significantly improve undergraduate education in the areas of mathematics, science, engineering, and technology (MSET) by directly benefiting from the experiences of NASA field centers, affiliated industrial partners and academic institutions. The three basic goals of the program were enhancing core courses in MSET curriculum, upgrading core-engineering laboratories to compliment upgraded MSET curriculum, and conduct research training for undergraduates in MSET disciplines through a sophomore shadow program and through Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) programs. Since the inception of the program nine courses have been modified to include NASA related topics and research. These courses have impacted over 900 students in the first three years of the program. The Electrical Engineering circuit's lab is completely re-equipped to include Computer controlled and data acquisition equipment. The Physics lab is upgraded to implement better sensory data acquisition to enhance students understanding of course concepts. In addition a new instrumentation laboratory in the department of Mechanical Engineering is developed. Research training for A&T students was conducted through four different programs: Apprentice program, Developers program, Sophomore Shadow program and Independent Research program. These programs provided opportunities for an average of forty students per semester.

  7. Building Bridges between Science Courses Using Honors Organic Chemistry Projects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hickey, Timothy; Pontrello, Jason

    2016-01-01

    Introductory undergraduate science courses are traditionally offered as distinct units without formalized student interaction between classes. To bridge science courses, the authors used three Honors Organic Chemistry projects paired with other science courses. The honors students delivered presentations to mainstream organic course students and…

  8. Latent class analysis of diagnostic science assessment data using Bayesian networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steedle, Jeffrey Thomas

    2008-10-01

    Diagnostic science assessments seek to draw inferences about student understanding by eliciting evidence about the mental models that underlie students' reasoning about physical systems. Measurement techniques for analyzing data from such assessments embody one of two contrasting assessment programs: learning progressions and facet-based assessments. Learning progressions assume that students have coherent theories that they apply systematically across different problem contexts. In contrast, the facet approach makes no such assumption, so students should not be expected to reason systematically across different problem contexts. A systematic comparison of these two approaches is of great practical value to assessment programs such as the National Assessment of Educational Progress as they seek to incorporate small clusters of related items in their tests for the purpose of measuring depth of understanding. This dissertation describes an investigation comparing learning progression and facet models. Data comprised student responses to small clusters of multiple-choice diagnostic science items focusing on narrow aspects of understanding of Newtonian mechanics. Latent class analysis was employed using Bayesian networks in order to model the relationship between students' science understanding and item responses. Separate models reflecting the assumptions of the learning progression and facet approaches were fit to the data. The technical qualities of inferences about student understanding resulting from the two models were compared in order to determine if either modeling approach was more appropriate. Specifically, models were compared on model-data fit, diagnostic reliability, diagnostic certainty, and predictive accuracy. In addition, the effects of test length were evaluated for both models in order to inform the number of items required to obtain adequately reliable latent class diagnoses. Lastly, changes in student understanding over time were studied with a

  9. Examination of Knowledge and NOS in a PBL Curriculum: Comparing the Impact on Pre-service Teachers and Science Career Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schleigh, S.; Manda, A. K.

    2011-12-01

    "Those who don't know or can't do, teach". This is a well known statement accepted by many as an adage. It is a statement that implies that the teachers of our science content really do not understand the science. In this study, we examined whether there was some truth in this statement by comparing undergraduates heading towards science careers and undergraduates heading toward science teaching careers. Do teachers really have a different understanding for science than scientists? If so, do they learn differently from each other? Our study examines content knowledge gains and ability to apply and engage in science using the content that is being addressed. We questioned (1)if students in one track engage and develop knowledge and skills more proficiently than another; (2)if the PBL approach is more effective for a particular group of learners; (3)if the PBL environment (virtual/physical) impacts the development and understanding for NOS; and (4) how the engagement of learning through PBL transfers to classroom practice. We used the Problem Based Approach (PBL) in undergraduate courses that covered the science content related to climate change. Project-based learning (PBL) is an approach to science education that has been shown to support student understanding for science concepts by allowing them to apply knowledge to real-world, relevant applications. Recent research has focused on developing teachers' understanding for science by engaging them in learning events that are found in PBL and authentic research approaches (AR)( e.g. Abd-El-Khalick and Lederman, 2000). We used mixed methods to answer each of our questions. Our instruments included a likert scale for the nature of science as argumentation, a concept mapping activity, a written essay, a content exam and an observation protocol for the teaching practice. In this study we included a total of 40 pre-service teachers (online) 30 pre-service teachers (physical classroom) and 35 undergraduates (physical

  10. An integrative review of in-class activities that enable active learning in college science classroom settings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arthurs, Leilani A.; Kreager, Bailey Zo

    2017-10-01

    Engaging students in active learning is linked to positive learning outcomes. This study aims to synthesise the peer-reviewed literature about 'active learning' in college science classroom settings. Using the methodology of an integrative literature review, 337 articles archived in the Educational Resources Information Center (ERIC) are examined. Four categories of in-class activities emerge: (i) individual non-polling activities, (ii) in-class polling activities, (iii) whole-class discussion or activities, and (iv) in-class group activities. Examining the collection of identified in-class activities through the lens of a theoretical framework informed by constructivism and social interdependence theory, we synthesise the reviewed literature to propose the active learning strategies (ALSs) model and the instructional decisions to enable active learning (IDEAL) theory. The ALS model characterises in-class activities in terms of the degrees to which they are designed to promote (i) peer interaction and (ii) social interdependence. The IDEAL theory includes the ALS model and provides a framework for conceptualising different levels of the general concept 'active learning' and how these levels connect to instructional decision-making about using in-class activities. The proposed ALS model and IDEAL theory can be utilised to inform instructional decision-making and future research about active learning in college science courses.

  11. A Research Experiences for Undergraduates program (REU) Program Designed to Recruit, Engage and Prepare a Diverse Student Population for Careers in Ocean Sciences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarkston, B. E.; Garza, C.

    2016-02-01

    The problem of improving diversity within the Ocean Sciences workforce—still underperforming relative to other scientific disciplines—can only be addressed by first recruiting and engaging a more diverse student population into the discipline, then retaining them in the workforce. California State University, Monterey Bay (CSUMB) is home to the Monterey Bay Regional Ocean Science Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) program. As an HSI with strong ties to multiple regional community colleges and other Predominantly Undergraduate Institutions (PUIs) in the CSU system, the Monterey Bay REU is uniquely positioned to address the crucial recruitment and engagement of a diverse student body. Eleven sophomore and junior-level undergraduate students are recruited per year from academic institutions where research opportunities in STEM are limited and from groups historically underrepresented in the Ocean Sciences, including women, underrepresented minorities, persons with disabilities, and veterans. During the program, students engage in a 10-week original research project guided by a faculty research mentor in one of four themes: Oceanography, Marine Biology and Ecology, Ocean Engineering, and Marine Geology. In addition to research, students develop scientific self-efficacy and literacy skills through rigorous weekly professional development workshops in which they practice critical thinking, ethical decision-making, peer review, writing and oral communication skills. These workshops include tangible products such as an NSF-style proposal paper, Statement of Purpose and CV modelled for the SACNAS Travel Award Application, research abstract, scientific report and oral presentation. To help retain students in Ocean Sciences, students build community during the REU by living together in the CSUMB dormitories; post-REU, students stay connected through an online facebook group, LinkedIn page and group webinars. To date, the REU has supported 22 students in two

  12. Interprofessional ethics education seminar for undergraduate health science students: A pilot study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cino, Kathleen; Austin, Rita; Casa, Cristina; Nebocat, Christine; Spencer, Adele

    2018-03-01

    To prepare for the modern collaborative healthcare system, health science academia is charged with educating future professionals to be competent members of the interprofessional team. The purpose of this pilot study was to assess self-efficacy for interprofessional education (IPE) in medical laboratory technology, dental hygiene, and nursing students before and after an IPE session. The specific topic of ethics was the focus of the session. The interprofessional seminar was designed to compare the codes of ethics from each programme through discussion and a case-based approach. The Self-Efficacy for Interprofessional Experiential Learning scale was used to collect quantitative data. A total of 75 participants rated self-efficacy for IPE before and after the educational offering. A paired sample t-test was used to analyse data. Significant results were found in students' pre- and post-test scores that indicated increased levels of self-efficacy related to working as a collaborative team for the benefit of the patient. Overall, there was an increase in participants' self-efficacy after collaborating with students from different health professions programmes. Healthcare students that learn together are more confident in their abilities to implement a team-structured approach, and understand that doing so will foster optimal patient wellbeing.

  13. A Vocabulary Learning Tool for L2 Undergraduates Reading Science and Technology Textbooks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsu, Chihcheng; Yang, Fang-Chuan Ou

    2013-05-01

    Students of English as a second language who major in science and technology use English-language textbooks to ensure that they can read English materials upon graduation. Research indicates that teachers spend little time helping these students on the linguistic complexity of such textbooks. Vocabulary, grammar, and article structure are elements of this complexity, but to many students, these elements can be akin to locked doors. This study presents MyVLS-Reader, which focuses on unlocking the first of these doors-vocabulary-while assisting in reading. With explicit vocabulary learning, students learn and memorize individual vocabulary, but the context is lost if the depth of learning discards context. In implicit vocabulary learning, students acquire vocabulary through repeated exposure to contexts, but repeated encounters with new words are required. Few e-learning systems combine both vocabulary-learning approaches. MyVLS-Reader achieves such synergy by (1) using a keyword setting to provide context-matched vocabulary explanation while reading and (2) embedding multiple learning choices, such as keyword setting, the review and memorization of explicit vocabulary, and the option to ask instructors. This study includes two rounds of evaluations: (1) an evaluation of the learning achievements of control and treatment groups and (2) a quantitative and qualitative investigation of perceptions regarding the use of MyVLS-Reader. The evaluation results indicate that the treatment group developed a better vocabulary than the control group in significantly less time. The use of MyVLS-Reader also slightly improved higher-order thinking skills. This result suggests that MyVLS-Reader can effective assist students in building their vocabulary while reading.

  14. Engaging actively with issues in the responsible conduct of science: lessons from international efforts are relevant for undergraduate education in the United States.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clements, John D; Connell, Nancy D; Dirks, Clarissa; El-Faham, Mohamed; Hay, Alastair; Heitman, Elizabeth; Stith, James H; Bond, Enriqueta C; Colwell, Rita R; Anestidou, Lida; Husbands, Jo L; Labov, Jay B

    2013-01-01

    Numerous studies are demonstrating that engaging undergraduate students in original research can improve their achievement in the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields and increase the likelihood that some of them will decide to pursue careers in these disciplines. Associated with this increased prominence of research in the undergraduate curriculum are greater expectations from funders, colleges, and universities that faculty mentors will help those students, along with their graduate students and postdoctoral fellows, develop an understanding and sense of personal and collective obligation for responsible conduct of science (RCS). This Feature describes an ongoing National Research Council (NRC) project and a recent report about educating faculty members in culturally diverse settings (Middle East/North Africa and Asia) to employ active-learning strategies to engage their students and colleagues deeply in issues related to RCS. The NRC report describes the first phase of this project, which took place in Aqaba and Amman, Jordan, in September 2012 and April 2013, respectively. Here we highlight the findings from that report and our subsequent experience with a similar interactive institute in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Our work provides insights and perspectives for faculty members in the United States as they engage undergraduate and graduate students, as well as postdoctoral fellows, to help them better understand the intricacies of and connections among various components of RCS. Further, our experiences can provide insights for those who may wish to establish "train-the-trainer" programs at their home institutions.

  15. Discovery of the Collaborative Nature of Science with Undergraduate Science Majors and Non-Science Majors through the Identification of Microorganisms Enriched in Winogradsky Columns.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramirez, Jasmine; Pinedo, Catalina Arango; Forster, Brian M

    2015-12-01

    Today's science classrooms are addressing the need for non-scientists to become scientifically literate. A key aspect includes the recognition of science as a process for discovery. This process relies upon interdisciplinary collaboration. We designed a semester-long collaborative exercise that allows science majors taking a general microbiology course and non-science majors taking an introductory environmental science course to experience collaboration in science by combining their differing skill sets to identify microorganisms enriched in Winogradsky columns. These columns are self-sufficient ecosystems that allow researchers to study bacterial populations under specified environmental conditions. Non-science majors identified phototrophic bacteria enriched in the column by analyzing the signature chlorophyll absorption spectra whereas science majors used 16S rRNA gene sequencing to identify the general bacterial diversity. Students then compiled their results and worked together to generate lab reports with their final conclusions identifying the microorganisms present in their column. Surveys and lab reports were utilized to evaluate the learning objectives of this activity. In pre-surveys, nonmajors' and majors' answers diverged considerably, with majors providing responses that were more accurate and more in line with the working definition of collaboration. In post-surveys, the answers between majors and nonmajors converged, with both groups providing accurate responses. Lab reports showed that students were able to successfully identify bacteria present in the columns. These results demonstrate that laboratory exercises designed to group students across disciplinary lines can be an important tool in promoting science education across disciplines.

  16. Addressing medical school diversity through an undergraduate partnership at Texas A&M Health Science Center: a blueprint for success.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parrish, Alan R; Daniels, Dennis E; Hester, R Kelly; Colenda, Christopher C

    2008-05-01

    Imperative to increasing diversity in the physician workforce is increasing the pool of qualified underrepresented minority applicants to medical schools. With this goal in mind, the Texas A&M Health Science Center College of Medicine (A&M College of Medicine) has partnered with Prairie View A&M University (PVAMU), a historically black college and university that is a component of the Texas A&M university system, to develop the undergraduate medical academy (UMA). The UMA was established by legislative mandate in 2003 and is a state-funded program. The authors describe the development of partnership between the A&M College of Medicine and PVAMU, focusing on the key attributes that have been identified for success. The administrative structure of the UMA ensures that the presidents of the two institutions collaborate to address issues of program oversight and facilitates a direct relationship between the dean and associate dean for academic affairs of A&M College of Medicine and the director of the UMA to define the program objectives and structure. The authors delineate the admission process to the UMA, as well as the academic requirements of the program. Students attend lecture series during the academic year and participate in summer programs on the A&M College of Medicine campus in addition to receiving intensive academic counseling and opportunities for tutoring in several subjects. The authors also describe the initial success in medical school admissions for UMA students. This partnership provides a model blueprint that can be adopted and adapted by other medical schools focused on increasing diversity in medicine.

  17. The Quality of Instruction in Urban High Schools: Comparing Mathematics and Science to English and Social Studies Classes in Chicago

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Valerie E.; Robinson, Shanta R.; Sebastian, James

    2012-01-01

    Is the quality of instruction systematically better in one subject than another? Teachers and students in the same Chicago high schools reported on one core-curriculum class (English, mathematics, science, or social studies) in 2007 surveys. Teachers commented on instructional demands and student participation. Students described engagement,…

  18. Identifying Students' Expectancy-Value Beliefs: A Latent Class Analysis Approach to Analyzing Middle School Students' Science Self-Perceptions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phelan, Julia; Ing, Marsha; Nylund-Gibson, Karen; Brown, Richard S.

    2017-01-01

    This study extends current research by organizing information about students' expectancy-value achievement motivation, in a way that helps parents and teachers identify specific entry points to encourage and support students' science aspirations. This study uses latent class analysis to describe underlying differences in ability beliefs, task…

  19. Discovery of the Collaborative Nature of Science with Undergraduate Science Majors and Non-Science Majors through the Identification of Microorganisms Enriched in Winogradsky Columns

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jasmine Ramirez

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Today’s science classrooms are addressing the need for non-scientists to become scientifically literate. A key aspect includes the recognition of science as a process for discovery. This process relies upon interdisciplinary collaboration. We designed a semester-long collaborative exercise that allows science majors taking a general microbiology course and non-science majors taking an introductory environmental science course to experience collaboration in science by combining their differing skill sets to identify microorganisms enriched in Winogradsky columns. These columns are self-sufficient ecosystems that allow researchers to study bacterial populations under specified environmental conditions. Non-science majors identified phototrophic bacteria enriched in the column by analyzing the signature chlorophyll absorption spectra whereas science majors used 16S rRNA gene sequencing to identify the general bacterial diversity. Students then compiled their results and worked together to generate lab reports with their final conclusions identifying the microorganisms present in their column. Surveys and lab reports were utilized to evaluate the learning objectives of this activity. In pre-surveys, nonmajors’ and majors’ answers diverged considerably, with majors providing responses that were more accurate and more in line with the working definition of collaboration. In post-surveys, the answers between majors and nonmajors converged, with both groups providing accurate responses. Lab reports showed that students were able to successfully identify bacteria present in the columns. These results demonstrate that laboratory exercises designed to group students across disciplinary lines can be an important tool in promoting science education across disciplines. Editor's Note:The ASM advocates that students must successfully demonstrate the ability to explain and practice safe laboratory techniques. For more information, read the laboratory

  20. Evaluation of Facebook© to Create an Online Learning Community in an Undergraduate Animal Science Class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whittaker, Alexandra L.; Howarth, Gordon S.; Lymn, Kerry A.

    2014-01-01

    There has been widespread comment on the use and impact of Web 2.0 technologies in education. Given the use of such technologies, particularly social networking sites such as Facebook amongst the student body, it would be remiss of educators to not consider their use as part of a pedagogical strategy. This paper provides a preliminary…

  1. Undergraduate Research Program Between SCU and SOFIA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kulas, Kristin Rose; Andersson, B.-G.

    2018-06-01

    We present results on an undergraduate research program run in collaboration between Santa Clara University (SCU), a predominately undergraduate liberal arts college and the SOFIA Science Center/USRA. We have started a synergistic program between SCU and SOFIA (located at NASA Ames) where the students are able to be fully immersed in astronomical research; from helping to write telescope observing proposal; to observing at a world-class telescope; to reducing and analyzing the data that they acquired and ultimately to presenting/publishing their findings. A recently awarded NSF collaborative grant will allow us to execute and expand this program over the next several years. In this poster we present some of our students research and their success after the program. In addition, we discuss how a small university can actively collaborate with a large government-funded program like SOFIA, funded by NASA.

  2. The effect of parental education, prior achievement, self-efficacy, goal orientation, and effort on undergraduate science performance of Latinos and Caucasians

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stansbury, Sydney Lynn

    Compared with majority students, underrepresented minorities have demonstrated weaker undergraduate science performance. Previous research has attributed the weaker performance to socioeconomic factors that influence poorer precollege preparation. Studies also have found that, compared with majority students, underrepresented minorities are less confident about their science skills and more interested in extrinsic rewards of science careers. Social Cognitive Theory posits that low self-efficacy coupled with high extrinsic goal orientation diminishes cognitive engagement, resulting in weak performance. Applying motivational characteristics of underrepresented minority students to a Social Cognitive Model may explain why their performance is weaker than that of Caucasians. Thus, the purpose of this study was to investigate the degree to which motivation variables account for the difference between underrepresented minority and majority students' undergraduate science performance. The study was conducted at a large, predominantly Caucasian, private university located in an urban setting in the Southwest. Two hundred twenty-two students--154 Caucasians and 68 Latinos--enrolled in a general chemistry course participated. Students were administered the Motivation for Learning Questionnaire, designed specifically for this study, consisting of scales measuring the following variables: ethnicity, level of parental education, and effort exertion; self-efficacy, effort regulation, intrinsic goal orientation, and extrinsic goal orientation, measures from the Motivated Strategies for Learning Questionnaire (Pintrich, Smith, Garcia, & McKeachie, 1991); and ability orientation, a measure from the Patterns of Adaptive Learning Survey (Midgley, Maehr, & Urdan, 1995). Financial aid information, chemistry and math placement test scores, and chemistry grades were obtained from other on-campus departments. Results demonstrated that the hypotheses were only partially confirmed by the

  3. A grounded theory study on the academic success of undergraduate women in science, engineering, and mathematics fields at a private, research university

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hroch, Amber Michelle

    2011-12-01

    This grounded theory study revealed the common factors of backgrounds, strategies, and motivators in academically successful undergraduate women in science, engineering, and mathematics (SEM) fields at a private, research university in the West. Data from interviews with 15 women with 3.25 or better grade point averages indicated that current academic achievement in their college SEM fields can be attributed to previous academic success, self awareness, time management and organizational skills, and maintaining a strong support network. Participants were motivated by an internal drive to academically succeed and attend graduate school. Recommendations are provided for professors, advisors, and student affairs professionals.

  4. Negotiating the Inquiry Question: A Comparison of Whole Class and Small Group Strategies in Grade Five Science Classrooms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cavagnetto, Andy R.; Hand, Brian; Norton-Meier, Lori

    2011-03-01

    The purpose of this study is to examine the effect of two strategies for negotiating the question for exploration during science inquiry on student achievement and teachers' perceptions. The study is set in the context of the Science Writing Heuristic. The first strategy (small group) consisted of each group of four students negotiating a question for inquiry with the teacher while the second strategy (whole class) consisted of the entire class negotiating a single question for inquiry with the teacher. The study utilized a mixed-method approach. A quasi-experimental repeated measures design was used to determine the effect of strategy on student achievement and semi-structured teacher interviews were used to probe the question of teacher perceptions of the two strategies. Teacher observations were conducted using the Reformed Teaching Observation Protocol (RTOP) to check for variation in implementation of the two strategies. Iowa Test of Basic Skills Science (ITBSS) (2005 and 2006) and teacher/researcher developed unit exams (pre and post) were used as student achievement measures. No statistically significant differences were found among students in the two treatment groups on the ITBSS or unit exams. RTOP observations suggest that teacher implementation was consistent across the two treatment strategies. Teachers disclosed personal preferences for the two strategies, indicating the whole class treatment was easier to manage (at least at the beginning of the school year) as students gained experience with science inquiry and the associated increased responsibility. Possible mechanisms linking the two strategies, negotiated questions, and student outcomes are discussed.

  5. Trends in gender diversity American soil science classes: 2004-2005 to 2013-2014 academic years

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindbo, David L.; Brevik, Eric C.; Vaughan, Karen L.; Parikh, Sanjai J.; Dilliver, Holly; Steffan, Joshua J.; Weindorf, David; McDaniel, Paul; Mbila, Monday; Edinger-Marshall, Susan; Thomas, Pamela

    2017-04-01

    A diverse workforce has been viewed for a long time as a healthy workforce. Traditionally however Soil Science has been seen as a male dominated field. The total number of female students enrolled showed increasing trends in all classes investigated during this study, but the percentage of female students showed a decline when analyzed by total students enrolled and also declined in four of the seven individual classes investigated. While both total enrollment and female enrollment increased during the study, male enrollment increased more rapidly than female enrollment. Soil biology/microbiology classes had a trend of more than 45% female enrollment throughout the study period, but many classes had less than 40% female enrollment, especially after the 2008-2009 academic year, and some hovered around only 35% female enrollment. The percentage of female soil science students had increased in the USA and Canada from 1992 to 2004 (Baveye et al., 2006) and Miller (2011) reported an increase in the number of female students at Iowa State University in the early 2000s. Therefore, the decrease in percentage of female soil science students found in our study was disappointing, even though absolute numbers of female students increased. It appears there is still a need to find ways to better market soil science coursework to female students. One possible way to accomplish this is to take advantage of the fact that many schools are now focusing efforts on STEM training specifically for females in grades 5-12, whereby science projects, after school programs, and mentorship can substantively influence females to pursue science-based fields in college. Another possibility is to promote the trends in female employment. As an example female employment within the Soil Science Division of the USDA-NRCS has increased over the same period. It should also be noted that the number of females in leadership roles has also increased. As a profession, soil science should look to take

  6. Utilizing Public Access Data and Open Source Statistical Programs to Teach Climate Science to Interdisciplinary Undergraduate Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collins, L.

    2014-12-01

    Students in the Environmental Studies major at the University of Southern California fulfill their curriculum requirements by taking a broad range of courses in the social and natural sciences. Climate change is often taught in 1-2 lectures in these courses with limited examination of this complex topic. Several upper division elective courses focus on the science, policy, and social impacts of climate change. In an upper division course focused on the scientific tools used to determine paleoclimate and predict future climate, I have developed a project where students download, manipulate, and analyze data from the National Climatic Data Center. Students are required to download 100 or more years of daily temperature records and use the statistical program R to analyze that data, calculating daily, monthly, and yearly temperature averages along with changes in the number of extreme hot or cold days (≥90˚F and ≤30˚F, respectively). In parallel, they examine population growth, city expansion, and changes in transportation looking for correlations between the social data and trends observed in the temperature data. Students examine trends over time to determine correlations to urban heat island effect. This project exposes students to "real" data, giving them the tools necessary to critically analyze scientific studies without being experts in the field. Utilizing the existing, public, online databases provides almost unlimited, free data. Open source statistical programs provide a cost-free platform for examining the data although some in-class time is required to help students navigate initial data importation and analysis. Results presented will highlight data compiled over three years of course projects.

  7. Developing Science Communication in Africa: Undergraduate and Graduate Students should be Trained and Actively Involved in Outreach Activity Development and Implementation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karikari, Thomas K; Yawson, Nat Ato; Quansah, Emmanuel

    2016-01-01

    Despite recent improvements in scientific research output from Africa, public understanding of science in many parts of the continent remains low. Science communication there is faced with challenges such as (i) lack of interest among some scientists, (ii) low availability of training programs for scientists, (iii) low literacy rates among the public, and (iv) multiplicity of languages. To address these challenges, new ways of training and motivating scientists to dialogue with non-scientists are essential. Developing communication skills early in researchers' scientific career would be a good way to enhance their public engagement abilities. Therefore, a potentially effective means to develop science communication in Africa would be to actively involve trainee scientists (i.e., undergraduate and graduate students) in outreach activity development and delivery. These students are often enthusiastic about science, eager to develop their teaching and communication skills, and can be good mentors to younger students. Involving them in all aspects of outreach activity is, therefore, likely to be a productive implementation strategy. However, science communication training specifically for students and the involvement of these students in outreach activity design and delivery are lacking in Africa. Here, we argue that improving the training and involvement of budding scientists in science communication activities would be a good way to bridge the wide gap between scientists and the African public.

  8. "Adotta scienza e arte nella tua classe": The results of a successfully teaching project which combines science with art⋆

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giansanti, S.

    2015-03-01

    The project called Adotta scienza e arte nella tua classe ("Adopt Science and Art in your class"), on the interconnection between science and art, has been addressed to the Italian secondary middle and high school involving more than 200 teachers and about 2200 students. The main purpose of this project is to make the young students aware of the strong link between science and art is a unique cultural and interdisciplinary occasion. To reach this goal, the Adotta project asked students to produce an artwork inspired by the interpretation of a quotation among a hundred commented quotes by physicists, mathematicians, scientist, writers, artists, accompanied by an original short sentence written by students themselves. More than 1000 artworks have been produced and collected in two galleries on Facebook. From their analysis emerges the students' feeling about science, which is usually associated to human brain, based on mathematical laws and related to technological progress, but it is also a powerful tool that should be responsibly used. This project also valorizes teachers' role in scientific education through activities that encourage students to recognize science in every aspect of their lives.

  9. "Hands-On" Undergraduate Research Opportunities in the Life Sciences: Preparing the Next Generation of Biological Researchers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levis-Fitzgerald, Marc; Denson, Nida; Kerfeld, Cheryl A.

    2004-01-01

    Over the past decade, a number of scholars have publicly criticized large research universities for failing to provide undergraduate students with the skills and abilities needed to succeed both in life and in the workforce. At the heart of this criticism is the concern that research institutions have de-emphasized teaching by increasing the size…

  10. Increased Interest in Physiology and Science among Adolescents after Presentations and Activities Administered by Undergraduate Physiology Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    da Silva de Vargas, Liane; Rosa de Menezes, Jefferson; Billig Mello-Carpes, Pâmela

    2016-01-01

    In this article, the authors describe a set of activities performed in south Brazil that are aligned with the objectives of PhUn Week and promote the integration between universities and public schools and the dissemination of knowledge of physiology. To achieve this goal, the authors adopted a program in which undergraduate physiology students…

  11. Can Creative Podcasting Promote Deep Learning? The Use of Podcasting for Learning Content in an Undergraduate Science Unit

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pegrum, Mark; Bartle, Emma; Longnecker, Nancy

    2015-01-01

    This paper examines the effect of a podcasting task on the examination performance of several hundred first-year chemistry undergraduate students. Educational researchers have established that a deep approach to learning that promotes active understanding of meaning can lead to better student outcomes, higher grades and superior retention of…

  12. Undergraduate Chemistry Education: A Workshop Summary

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sawyer, Keegan; Alper, Joe

    2014-01-01

    "Undergraduate Chemistry Education" is the summary of a workshop convened in May 2013 by the Chemical Science Roundtable of the National Research Council to explore the current state of undergraduate chemistry education. Research and innovation in undergraduate chemistry education has been done for many years, and one goal of this…

  13. The Relationship between Preservice Science Teachers' Attitude toward Astronomy and Their Understanding of Basic Astronomy Concepts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bektasli, Behzat

    2016-01-01

    Turkish preservice science teachers have been taking a two-credit astronomy class during the last semester of their undergraduate program since 2010. The current study aims to investigate the relationship between preservice science teachers' astronomy misconceptions and their attitudes toward astronomy. Preservice science teachers were given an…

  14. High School Class for Gifted Pupils in Physics and Sciences and Pupils' Skills Measured by Standard and Pisa Test

    Science.gov (United States)

    Djordjevic, G. S.; Pavlovic-Babic, D.

    2010-01-01

    The "High school class for students with special abilities in physics" was founded in Nis, Serbia (www.pmf.ni.ac.yu/f_odeljenje) in 2003. The basic aim of this project has been introducing a broadened curriculum of physics, mathematics, computer science, as well as chemistry and biology. Now, six years after establishing of this specialized class, and 3 years after the previous report, we present analyses of the pupils' skills in solving rather problem oriented test, as PISA test, and compare their results with the results of pupils who study under standard curricula. More precisely results are compared to the progress results of the pupils in a standard Grammar School and the corresponding classes of the Mathematical Gymnasiums in Nis. Analysis of achievement data should clarify what are benefits of introducing in school system track for gifted students. Additionally, item analysis helps in understanding and improvement of learning strategies' efficacy. We make some conclusions and remarks that may be useful for the future work that aims to increase pupils' intrinsic and instrumental motivation for physics and sciences, as well as to increase the efficacy of teaching physics and science.

  15. The Effect of Media on Preservice Science Teachers' Attitudes toward Astronomy and Achievement in Astronomy Class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bektasli, Behzat

    2013-01-01

    Studies show that it is hard to change students' attitudes toward science. This study specifically explored if media affect preservice science teachers' attitudes toward astronomy and their astronomy achievement. The sample for the pilot study consisted of 196 preservice science and mathematics teachers for attitude assessment and 230 preservice…

  16. Can a Rabbit Be a Scientist? Stimulating Philosophical Dialogue in Science Classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunlop, Lynda; de Schrijver, Jelle

    2018-01-01

    Philosophical dialogue requires an approach to teaching and learning in science that is focused on problem posing and provides space for meaning making, finding new ways of thinking and understanding and for linking science with broader human experiences. This article explores the role that philosophical dialogue can play in science lessons and…

  17. Working with the Nature of Science in Physics Class: Turning "Ordinary" Classroom Situations into Nature of Science Learning Situations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hansson, Lena; Leden, Lotta

    2016-01-01

    In the science education research field there is a large body of literature on the "nature of science" (NOS). NOS captures issues about what characterizes the research process as well as the scientific knowledge. Here we, in line with a broad body of literature, use a wide definition of NOS including also e.g. socio-cultural aspects. It…

  18. Scientist Spotlight Homework Assignments Shift Students' Stereotypes of Scientists and Enhance Science Identity in a Diverse Introductory Science Class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schinske, Jeffrey N.; Perkins, Heather; Snyder, Amanda; Wyer, Mary

    2016-01-01

    Research into science identity, stereotype threat, and possible selves suggests a lack of diverse representations of scientists could impede traditionally underserved students from persisting and succeeding in science. We evaluated a series of metacognitive homework assignments ("Scientist Spotlights") that featured counterstereotypical…

  19. Escrevendo em aulas de ciências Writing in science classes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carla Marques Alvarenga de Oliveira

    2005-12-01

    Full Text Available Neste artigo, apresentamos uma análise dos registros escritos dos alunos do 3° ano do Ensino Fundamental nas aulas de Ciências, em que a professora utilizou as atividades de conhecimento físico, criadas pelo Laboratório de Pesquisa e Ensino de Física da Faculdade de Educação da Universidade de São Paulo. Os registros analisados foram coletados na Escola de Aplicação da Feusp, no ano de 2001, durante o acompanhamento de três aulas de Ciências: o problema do submarino, o problema do barquinho e o problema da pressão. O artigo procura mostrar um panorama de como aparecem os registros realizados pelos alunos, após uma aula de Ciências em que eles são levados a resolver situações problemáticas por meio da experimentação, argumentar e escrever sobre os fenômenos físicos. Durante a análise, levou-se em consideração os tipos de textos que os alunos escrevem, o uso da primeira pessoa, o uso de verbos de ação, o respeito à ordem cronológica dos eventos e quais os tipos de explicações os alunos atribuem aos fenômenos trabalhados.This article analyzed the written records of Third Grade students of Elementary School at Escola de Aplicação, Universidade de São Paulo, gathered during the Science classes of the 2001 school year, in which activities about physical understanding were used. Created by the Laboratory of Research and Teaching of Physics - LAPEF, of the College of Education of USP, the activities "The Problem of the Submarine", "The Problem of the Little Boat" and "The Problem of the Pressure" required the students to solve problematic situations through experimentation, developing arguments and write about the phenomena. The study developed a framework of how the records are presented by the students, considering the types of texts they produce, the use of the first person, the use of verbs of action, the respect of the chronological order of events and the types of explanations the students give for the

  20. Girls and science education in Mauritius: a study of science class practices and their effects on girls

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naugah, Jayantee; Watts, Mike

    2013-11-01

    Background: The population of Mauritius consists of 52% females and scientific literacy is seen to be of vital importance for all young people if they are to be sufficiently equipped to meet the challenges of a fast changing world. Previous research shows, however, that science is not popular among girls. This paper explores one of many reasons why few girls opt for science subjects after compulsory schooling. Purpose: This study investigated the approaches to teaching in four science classrooms in Mauritius, with particular emphases on the preferences of girls as they learn science. Sample: A total of 20 student interviews and 16 teacher interviews were conducted in four schools in Mauritius. The four mixed-faith schools comprised two all-girl schools (one state, one fee-paying), and two mixed-sex schools (one state, one fee-paying), within urban, suburban and rural situations. Design and method: 80 non-participant lessons were observed, of which 60 were science lessons while the remaining 20 non-science lessons were in economics, accounts and commerce. Group interviews with five pupils in each of the four schools were conducted and 16 individual interviews with teachers in the four schools gave an insight into the pedagogic approaches used for the teaching and learning of science. Results: Transmissive approaches to teaching, giving little opportunity for collaborative or activity-based learning, were found to be the most important factors in alienating the girls from science. Conclusions: There need to be radical changes in approaches to teaching to retain young girls' interest in the sciences.

  1. "Anisakis Simplex" Infection in Mackerel: A Reliable Laboratory Exercise to Demonstrate Important Principles in Parasitology to Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coombs, I.; Tatner, M.; Paterson, V.

    2013-01-01

    Practical laboratory work in parasitology can be very limited, due to the difficulty in maintaining multi-host parasite life cycles, especially for a large, once-yearly undergraduate laboratory class for life science students. The use of mackerel, "Scomber scombrus," bought from a local fishmonger, is an ideal model to investigate important…

  2. Microwave-assisted phenytoine synthesis: proposed practical class for undergraduate students; Sintese da fenitoina assistida por micro-ondas: proposta de aula pratica para alunos de graduacao

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Konrath, Eduardo L; Piedade, Maristela; Eifler-Lima, Vera Lucia, E-mail: edukonrath@yahoo.com.br [Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), Porto Alegre, RS (Brazil). Fac. de Farmacia. Dept. de Producao de Materia-Prima

    2012-07-01

    Microwave synthesis is considered a breakthrough in the field of chemistry due to its benefits over conventional heating methods. We describe, for the first time, the total synthesis of phenytoine adapted for a microwave reactor, proposed as an experiment for undergraduate courses. When carried out with microwaves, the synthetic route provided phenytoine in 6 min and 30 s, while for conventional heating the total time was 170 min. The experiment also involves rapid identification of compounds by TLC, {sup 1}H NMR, FT-IR and melting points determination. (author)

  3. Doing, talking and writing science: A discourse analysis of the process of resemiotization in a middle school lab-based science class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wright, Laura J.

    This study examines students' sense making practices in a middle school science class from a discourse analytic perspective. Using Mediated Discourse Analysis (MDA) (Scollon 1998, 2001) and interactional sociolinguistics (Gumperz 1999, 2001, Schiffrin 1994), my research seeks to enrich findings from recent sociocultural studies of science classrooms that focus on doing, talking and writing science (Roth 2005, Kress, et al. 2002, Halliday & Martin 1993, Lemke 1990). Within a middle school science classroom, these fundamental activities form a nexus of practice (Scollon 1998, 2001) basic to science literacy (AAAS 1989) and reflective of the work of practicing scientists. Moreover, students' engagement in these practices provides insight into the cultural production and reproduction of science and scientist. I first examine how the students' curriculum text encourages these three scientific practices and then trace students' uptake; that is, how they subsequently do, talk, and write science throughout the course of the unit. I argue that learning science with this curriculum unit requires students to resemiotize (Iedema 2001, 2003) first hand experience so they can represent their knowledge cohesively and coherently in evaluable forms. Ultimately, students must transform language from the curriculum text and their teacher into action in their laboratory activities and action in their laboratory activities into language. In addition, I show how students are apprenticed to the conventionalized practices and voices (Bakhtin 1986) of science (i.e. the scientific register), and how their figures of personhood (Agha 2005) reflect the development of their scientific identities. Overall, I argue that the microanalytic methods I use illuminate how students draw upon curricular resources to become scientifically literate and develop scientific identities.

  4. Impact of backwards faded scaffolding approach to inquiry-based astronomy laboratory experiences on undergraduate non-science majors' views of scientific inquiry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lyons, Daniel J.

    This study explored the impact of a novel inquiry-based astronomy laboratory curriculum designed using the Backwards Faded Scaffolding inquiry teaching framework on non-science majoring undergraduate students' views of the nature of scientific inquiry (NOSI). The study focused on two aspects of NOSI: The Distinction between Data and Evidence (DvE), and The Multiple Methods of Science (MMS). Participants were 220 predominately non-science majoring undergraduate students at a small, doctoral granting, research-extensive university in the Rocky Mountain region of the United States. The student participants were enrolled in an introductory astronomy survey course with an associated laboratory section and were selected in two samples over consecutive fall and spring semesters. The participants also included four of the graduate student instructors who taught the laboratory courses using the intervention curriculum. In the first stage, student participant views of NOSI were measured using the VOSI-4 research instrument before and after the intervention curriculum was administered. The responses were quantified, and the distributions of pre and posttest scores of both samples were separately analyzed to determine if there was a significant improvement in understanding of either of the two aspects of NOSI. The results from both samples were compared to evaluate the consistency of the results. In the second stage, the quantitative results were used to strategically design a qualitative investigation, in which the four lab instructors were interviewed about their observations of how the student participants interacted with the intervention curriculum as compared to traditional lab activities, as well as their suggestions as to how the curriculum may or may not have contributed to the results of the first stage. These interviews were summarized and analyzed for common themes as to how the intervention curriculum influenced the students' understandings of the two aspect of

  5. From Proposal Writing to Data Collection to Presentation: Physical Oceanography Laboratory Class Students Explore the Fundamentals of Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buijsman, M. C.; Church, I.; Haydel, J.; Martin, K. M.; Shiller, A. M.; Wallace, D. J.; Blancher, J.; Foltz, A.; Griffis, A. M.; Kosciuch, T. J.; Kincketootle, A.; Pierce, E.; Young, V. A.

    2016-02-01

    To better prepare first-year Department of Marine Science MSc students of the University of Southern Mississippi for their science careers, we plan to execute a semester-long Physical Oceanography laboratory class that exposes the enrolled students to all aspects of interdisciplinary research: writing a proposal, planning a cruise, collecting and analyzing data, and presenting their results. Although some of these aspects may be taught in any such class, the incorporation of all these aspects makes this class unique.The fieldwork will be conducted by boat in the Rigolets in Louisiana, a 13-km long tidal strait up to 1 km wide connecting the Mississippi Sound with Lake Pontchartrain. The students have the opportunity to collect ADCP, CTD, multibeam sonar, sediment and water samples.A second novel characteristic of this class is that the instructor partnered with the Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation, a not for profit environmental advocacy group. The foundation will give an hour-long seminar on the natural history of the study area and its environmental problems. This information provides context for the students' research proposals and allows them to formulate research questions and hypotheses that connect their research objectives to societally relevant issues, such as coastal erosion, salt water intrusion, and water quality. The proposal writing and cruise planning is done in the first month of the 3.5-month long semester. In the second month two surveys are conducted. The remainder of the semester is spent on analysis and reporting. Whenever possible we teach Matlab for the students to use in their data analysis. In this presentation, we will report on the successes and difficulties associated with teaching such a multi-faceted class.

  6. Black males' self-perceptions of academic ability and gifted potential in advanced science classes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rascoe, Barbara; Monroe Atwater, Mary

    2005-10-01

    The purpose of this research effort was to examine Black male students' self-perceptions of academic ability and gifted potential in science. The purposeful sample consisted of nine Black males between the ages of 14 and 18 years. Four categories of self-perceptions of academic ability and gifted potential emerged from the data. These included: (a) gifted high achievers; (b) gifted could do better high achievers; (c) gifted could do better situational nonachievers; and (d) gifted could do better underachievers. Science teachers' influences that referenced participants' academic achievement pointed to validation. Participants' perceptions regarding how science teachers' influenced their academic performance focused on science teachers' content knowledge. Power dynamics germane to Black male participants' value or worth that directed their efforts in science learning environments are discussed. Implications are posited for science teaching, science education programs, and future research. This research endeavor was based on two premises. The first premise is that Black males' self-perceptions of academic ability affect their science academic achievement. The second premise is that, given parental, peer, and community influences, science teachers have considerable influence on students' self-perceptions of academic ability. However, the focus of this research was not on parental influences, peer influences, or any potential influences that participants' communities may have on their academic achievement.

  7. Development of Integrated Natural Science Teaching Materials Webbed Type with Applying Discourse Analysis on Students Grade VIII in Physics Class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sukariasih, Luh

    2017-05-01

    This study aims to produce teaching materials integrated natural science (IPA) webbed type of handout types are eligible for use in integrated science teaching. This type of research IS a kind of research and development / Research and Development (R & D) with reference to the 4D development model that is (define, design, develop, and disseminate). Data analysis techniques used to process data from the results of the assessment by the validator expert, and the results of the assessment by teachers and learners while testing is limited (12 students of class VIII SMPN 10 Kendari) using quantitative descriptive data analysis techniques disclosed in the distribution of scores on the scale of five categories grading scale that has been determined. The results of due diligence material gain votes validator material in the category of “very good” and “good”, of the data generated in the feasibility test presentation obtained the category of “good” and “excellent”, from the data generated in the feasibility of graphic test obtained the category of “very good “and” good “, as well as of the data generated in the test the feasibility of using words and language obtained the category of“very good “and” good “, so with qualifications gained the teaching materials IPA integrated type webbed by applying discourse analysis on the theme of energy and food for Junior High School (SMP) grade VIII suitable as teaching materials. In limited testing, data generated in response to a science teacher at SMPN 10 Kendari to product instructional materials as “excellent”, and from the data generated while testing is limited by the 12 students of class VIII SMPN 10 Kendari are more students who score indicates category “very good”, so that the qualification obtained by the natural science (IPA) teaching material integrated type webbed by applying discourse analysis on the theme of energy and food for SMP / class VIII fit for use as teaching material.

  8. Undergraduate Program: Philadelphia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Betsock, Lori

    2008-08-01

    Undergraduate chemical science students—join us in Philadelphia on August 17 and 18, 2008, for an educational and career-oriented program designed specifically for you. Attend symposia about global climate change and clean energy; hear Nobel Laureate F. Sherwood Rowland speak about his fascinating career, "A Life in Tracer Chemistry". Weigh options for your future by attending the Graduate School Reality Check and graduate school recruiting events. All events will take place in the Sheraton Philadelphia City Center at 17th and Race Streets, except the Undergraduate Poster Sessions and Sci-Mix, which will be held in the Pennsylvania Convention Center.

  9. Reading Strategies in French Immersion Science Classes: Preparing Our Students for Tomorrow

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rivard, Leonard P.; Cormier, Marianne; Turnbull, Miles

    2012-01-01

    This article proposes strategies and practices that create rich discursive spaces for learning science in French immersion contexts. These strategies and practices are drawn from a variety of scholarly sources; here we adapt them to reading in the French immersion science classroom. The strategies and practices are designed for use in a…

  10. World-Class Ambitions, Weak Standards: An Excerpt from "The State of State Science Standards 2012"

    Science.gov (United States)

    American Educator, 2012

    2012-01-01

    A solid science education program begins by clearly establishing what well-educated youngsters need to learn about this multifaceted domain of human knowledge. The first crucial step is setting clear academic standards for the schools--standards that not only articulate the critical science content students need to learn, but that also properly…

  11. Shadow Puppet Plays in Elementary Science Methods Class Help Preservice Teachers Learn about Minority Scientists

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gray, Phyllis; Rule, Audrey C.; Gentzsch, Anneliese; Tallakson, Denise A.

    2016-01-01

    This practical article describes an arts-integrated project with engineering design and science concepts from the Next Generation Science Standards, art principles from the National Arts Standards, as well as ideas under the theme of "Culture" from the National Council for the Social Studies Standards. Preservice teachers in an…

  12. Teaching Science in Engineering Freshman Class in Private University in Jordan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hawarey, M. M.; Malkawi, M. I.

    2012-04-01

    A United Nations initiative for the Arab region that established and calculated National Intellectual Capital Index has shown that Jordan is the wealthiest Arab country in its National Human Capital Index (i.e. metrics: literacy rate, number of tertiary schools per capita, percentage of primary teachers with required qualifications, number of tertiary students per capita, cumulative tertiary graduates per capita, percentage of male grade 1 net intake, percentage of female grade 1 net intake) and National Market Capital Index (i.e. metrics: high-technology exports as a percentage of GDP, number of patents granted by USPTO per capita, number of meetings hosted per capita) despite its low ranking when it comes to National Financial Capital (i.e. metric: GDP per capita). The societal fabric in Jordan fully justifies this: the attention paid to education is extreme and sometimes is considered fanatic (e.g. marriage of a lot of couples needs to wait until both graduate from the university). Also, the low financial capital has forced a lot of people to become resourceful in order to provide decent living standard to their beloved ones. This reality is partially manifested in the sharp increase in the number of universities (i.e. 10 public and 20 private ones) relative to a population of around 6.5 million. Once in an engineering freshman classroom, it is totally up to the lecturers teaching science in private Jordanian universities to excel in their performance and find a way to inject the needed scientific concepts into the students' brains. For that, clips from movies that are relevant to the topics and truthful in their scientific essence have been tested (e.g. to explain the pressure on humans due to rapidly increasing "g" force, a clip from the movie "Armageddon" proved very helpful to Physics 101 students, and entertaining at the same time), plastic toys have also been tested to illustrate simple physical concepts to the same students (e.g. a set called The Junior

  13. Research and Teaching: Using Twitter in a Nonscience Major Science Class Increases Journal of College Science Teaching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Halpin, Patricia A.

    2016-01-01

    Nonscience majors often rely on general internet searches to locate science information. This practice can lead to misconceptions because the returned search information can be unreliable. In this article the authors describe how they used the social media site Twitter to address this problem in a general education course, BSCI 421 Diseases of the…

  14. The Attitudes of First Year Senior Secondary School Students toward Their Science Classes in the Sudan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lado, Longun Moses

    This study examined the influence of a set of relevant independent variables on students' decision to major in math or science disciplines, on the one hand, or arts or humanities disciplines, on the other. The independent variables of interest in the study were students' attitudes toward science, their gender, their socioeconomic status, their age, and the strength and direction of parents' and peers' influences on their academic decisions. The study answered five research questions that concerned students' intention in math or science, the association between students' attitudes and their choice to major in math or science, the extent to which parents' and peers' perspectives influence students' choice of major, and the influence of a combination of relevant variables on students' choice of major. The scholarly context for the study was literature relating to students' attitudes toward science and math, their likelihood of taking courses or majoring in science or math and various conditions influencing their attitudes and actions with respect to enrollment in science or math disciplines. This literature suggested that students' experiences, their gender, parents' and peers' influence, their socio-economic status, teachers' treatment of them, school curricula, school culture, and other variables may influence students' attitudes toward science and math and their decision regarding the study of these subjects. The study used a questionnaire comprised of 28 items to elicit information from students. Based upon cluster sampling of secondary schools, the researcher surveyed 1000 students from 10 secondary schools and received 987 responses. The researcher used SPSS to analyze students' responses. Descriptive statistics, logistic regression, and multiple regression analyses to provide findings that address the study's research questions. The following are the major findings from the study: (1) The instrument used to measure students' attitudes toward science and

  15. Developing Effective Undergraduate Research Experience

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evans, Michael; Ilie, Carolina C.

    2011-03-01

    Undergraduate research is a valuable educational tool for students pursuing a degree in physics, but these experiences can become problematic and ineffective if not handled properly. Undergraduate research should be planned as an immersive learning experience in which the student has the opportunity to develop his/her skills in accordance with their interests. Effective undergraduate research experiences are marked by clear, measurable objectives and frequent student-professor collaboration. These objectives should reflect the long and short-term goals of the individual undergraduates, with a heightened focus on developing research skills for future use. 1. Seymour, E., Hunter, A.-B., Laursen, S. L. and DeAntoni, T. (2004), ``Establishing the benefits of research experiences for undergraduates in the sciences: First findings from a three-year study''. Science Education, 88: 493--534. 2. Behar-Horenstein, Linda S., Johnson, Melissa L. ``Enticing Students to Enter Into Undergraduate Research: The Instrumentality of an Undergraduate Course.'' Journal of College Science Teaching 39.3 (2010): 62-70.

  16. O Ensino de Empreendedorismo nos Cursos de Graduação em Ciências Contábeis = Teaching entrepreneurship in undergraduate courses in accounting sciences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Márcia Athayde Matias

    2013-07-01

    sentido, o objetivo deste estudo foi o de identificar se a cultura de empreendedorismo é praticada nos cursos de graduação em ciências contábeis nas principais instituições de ensino superior do Brasil, tendo como foco as universidades federais. A pesquisa caracteriza-se como descritiva e qualitativa. A amostra analisada envolveu vinte e sete instituições federais. Cada uma delas representa uma unidade da federação. Como resultado, ficou evidenciado que o tema do empreendedorismo está presente de forma ainda muito incipiente nos projetos pedagógicos das instituições pesquisadas, mas que há uma tendência em direção à implementação em suas grades curriculares. Conclui-se, por fim, pela necessidade de maior estudo, conscientização e difusão do empreendedorismo por parte das instituições públicas de ensino superior para os cursos de ciências contábeis, no sentido de incentivar a classe contábil a desenvolver o potencial que possui no apoio aos empresários e desenvolvimento do país. Nowadays, it appears that entrepreneurship has had an ever-increasing importance in the world, because of the many changes that have been taking place, especially in labor relations. Several countries have undertaken actions to include teaching entrepreneurship in their curriculum structures in primary, secondary and higher education, being aware that the entrepreneur is one of the elements that provide rising conditions of employment and income. Accordingly, the objective of this study was to identify if the culture of entrepreneurship is practiced in undergraduate courses in accounting sciences in major institutions of higher education in Brazil, focusing on federal universities. The research is characterized as descriptive and qualitative. The sample analysed involved twenty-seven federal institutions, and each of them represents a unit of the federation. As a result, it became evident that the issue of entrepreneurship is present as very incipient in educational

  17. Exploring the undergraduate experience of Latina students in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) majors: Motivators and strategies for achieving baccalaureate attainment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carbajal, Sandy C.

    Drawing from Latino/a Critical Race Theory and the related Community Cultural Wealth (CCW) model, I concentrate on three forms of CCW---aspirational, navigational, and resistance capital---for this qualitative study on the undergraduate experience of Latina students in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) majors, focusing on strategies and achieving baccalaureate attainment. I interviewed ten Latina students and asked them questions regarding their educational experiences in STEM majors, what contributed to their degree completion, and the strategies they employed for achieving baccalaureate attainment. I identified and described six themes within the study (the underrepresentation of Latinas in STEM majors, the lack of preparation by academic programs for upper division courses, motivators, involvement, time management, and support networks) that, when combined, contributed to participants' degree attainment. This study concludes with implications for policy and practice that would allow universities to better assist Latinas in STEM majors to achieve baccalaureate attainment.

  18. Using Facebook Groups to Encourage Science Discussions in a Large-Enrollment Biology Class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pai, Aditi; McGinnis, Gene; Bryant, Dana; Cole, Megan; Kovacs, Jennifer; Stovall, Kyndra; Lee, Mark

    2017-01-01

    This case study reports the instructional development, impact, and lessons learned regarding the use of Facebook as an educational tool within a large enrollment Biology class at Spelman College (Atlanta, GA). We describe the use of this social networking site to (a) engage students in active scientific discussions, (b) build community within the…

  19. Climate Literacy: Progress in Climate and Global Change Undergraduate Courses in Meteorology and Earth System Science Programs at Jackson State University

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reddy, S. R.; Tuluri, F.; Fadavi, M.

    2017-12-01

    JSU Meteorology Program will be offering AMS Climate Studies undergraduate course under MET 210: Climatology in spring 2013. AMS Climate Studies is offered as a 3 credit hour laboratory course with 2 lectures and 1 lab sessions per week. Although this course places strong intellectual demands upon each student, the instructors' objective is to help each student to pass the course with an adequate understanding of the fundamentals and advanced and advanced courses. AMS Climate Studies is an introductory college-level course developed by the American Meteorological Society for implementation at undergraduate institutions nationwide. The course places students in a dynamic and highly motivational educational environment where they investigate Earth's climate system using real-world environmental data. The AMS Climate Studies course package consists of a textbook, investigations manual, course website, and course management system-compatible files. Instructors can use these resources in combinations that make for an exciting learning experience for their students. This is a content course in Earth Science. It introduces a new concept that views Earth as a synergistic physical system applied concepts of climatology, for him/her to understand basic atmospheric/climate processes, physical and dynamical climatology, regional climatology, past and future climates and statistical analysis using climate data and to be prepared to profit from studying more of interrelated phenomenon governed by complex processes involving the atmosphere, the hydrosphere, the biosphere, and the solid Earth. The course emphasizes that the events that shape the physical, chemical, and biological processes of the Earth do not occur in isolation. Rather, there is a delicate relationship between the events that occur in the ocean, atmosphere, and the solid Earth. The course provides a multidimensional approach in solving scientific issues related to Earth-related sciences,

  20. Pilgrims' Progress: The journey towards a knowledge building community in a university undergraduate class / Le voyage du pèlerin: Le parcours vers la création d’une communauté d’apprentissage dans une classe de premier cycle universitaire

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Donald N. Philip

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of this study was to examine the progress of a class of third- and fourth-year undergraduate science students as they attempted to create a knowledge building community in a blended or hybrid science education class. The research sought to examine this process through analyses of the frequency of their note postings and responses, and through a social network analysis of their communication patterns for note reading. These data were automatically harvested by the Knowledge Forum knowledge building environment, and downloaded for later analysis. Contribution levels indicated that the frequency of note postings increased three-fold following the mid-term of the course causing maladaptive student work patterns to reduce information overload. As well, the disparity between high-frequency note posting students and low-frequency note posting students followed a linear curve with the ratio between the highest posting and lowest posting student to be 2.7:1. A similar pattern was found with regard to responses. A disparity was also found among the students in the number of postings read, with the highest note reading student reading six times the number of notes as the lowest note reading student.The social network analyses revealed evidence of community formation in the note reading network. Analysis showed both one-way and reciprocal interactions, indicating that the pathways needed for the transfer of complex information were present. Considering all the data together, while some communication patterns necessary for a knowledge building community were present, contribution patterns suggested that a true knowledge building community did not form, but that there was progress towards it. Cette étude avait pour objet d’étudier la progression d’un groupe d’étudiants en sciences de troisième et de quatrième années du premier cycle universitaire dans leur tentative de créer une communauté d’apprentissage dans une classe hybride d