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Full-Text Articles in Science and Mathematics Education

The Long-Term Effects On Conceptual Change And Affect For Preservice Teachers One Year After A Cave Automatic Virtual Environment (Cave) Experience, Margaret Depasquale May 2018

The Long-Term Effects On Conceptual Change And Affect For Preservice Teachers One Year After A Cave Automatic Virtual Environment (Cave) Experience, Margaret Depasquale

SMTC Plan B Papers

The current research evaluated the long-term effects of a cave automatic virtual environment (CAVE) experience on preservice teachers’ conceptual change and affect. To evaluate the lasting effects, four students from a physical science class were interviewed one year following their experience in a CAVE simulation in which they learned about molecular density. For each participant the interview produced a transcript of his/her spoken responses and a drawing that was compared to the drawing s/he had done the year before. The results of the research showed that participants manifested both positive and negative affect in regard to their CAVE ...


Impacts Of Place-Based Professional Development On Teachers, Margaret Vest Apr 2018

Impacts Of Place-Based Professional Development On Teachers, Margaret Vest

SMTC Plan B Papers

The qualitative case study investigated the relationship between high-quality professional development for place-based education and long-term impacts on teacher practices. The case study focused on a small subset of teachers who attended all four years of the PLACE (Place-based Learning and Civic Engagement) program from 2011-2014. This study was built off a previous program evaluation of PLACE. The purpose of this research study was to evaluate the PLACE professional development's long-term impact on teachers' perceptions and practices and the teachers' implementation of place-based education. The data collection methods for this study involved interviews, observations, and surveys. Based on the ...


Learning Mathematics The Write Way: How Does Writing In Mathematics Affect Mathematics Learning In Middle School?, Kristy M. Palmer Apr 2018

Learning Mathematics The Write Way: How Does Writing In Mathematics Affect Mathematics Learning In Middle School?, Kristy M. Palmer

SMTC Plan B Papers

Writing in mathematics has been recommended by professionals and researchers for almost 30 years. The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, Common Core State Standards, university professors, and employers have emphasized the need for individuals to write in mathematics. The purpose of this literature review is to explore and possibly make recommendations about using writing to help solve mathematics problems in middle school mathematics classes. This paper examines what the literature tells us about the use of writing in solving mathematics problems, what ways writing in mathematics can affect middle school comprehension, and how writing in mathematics can affect students ...


Teacher Knowledge And Perception Of Mathematics Disabilities And Dyscalculia, Theresa Graves Apr 2018

Teacher Knowledge And Perception Of Mathematics Disabilities And Dyscalculia, Theresa Graves

SMTC Plan B Papers

The inclusion of students with mathematical learning disabilities (MLD) in the general education (GE) math classroom has become increasingly prevalent, and with the adoption of the Common Core State Standards, it has become the role of GE math teachers to ensure that all students work towards grade-level math standards. The following research utilized a survey to evaluate the perceptions of Wyoming middle-level math teachers in order to: (a) determine the extent of their knowledge and understanding of MLD and the disability dyscalculia; (b) examine the nature of their attitudes regarding MLD; (c) identify what supports and interventions are utilizing within ...


Auditing Higher Order And Creative Thinking Skills In Teacher Created Instructional Units For Elementary Gifted And Talented Students: An Action Research Study, Anna Kluver Oct 2017

Auditing Higher Order And Creative Thinking Skills In Teacher Created Instructional Units For Elementary Gifted And Talented Students: An Action Research Study, Anna Kluver

SMTC Plan B Papers

(1)The action research project focused on formative assessment in the context of an elementary education gifted and talented program. The project took place over the course of ten months in a mid-sized district in northeastern Wyoming and included a review of literature as well as the development and field test of an original teacher self assessment tool. The review of literature identified and confirmed features of higher order thinking and creativity that reflected best practices in the field. Higher order thinking and creativity features were then displayed in an original auditing matrix, the assessment tool. The matrix guides a ...


Exploring Benefits And Pedagogical Considerations For Integrating Quantitative Literacy In Science At The Middle Level, Willow Curtis Oct 2017

Exploring Benefits And Pedagogical Considerations For Integrating Quantitative Literacy In Science At The Middle Level, Willow Curtis

SMTC Plan B Papers

No abstract provided.


Conceptual Change Theory’S Potential To Support Collaborative Environmental Problem Solving: Analogous Values And Convergent Properties, Thomas Desiderio Aug 2017

Conceptual Change Theory’S Potential To Support Collaborative Environmental Problem Solving: Analogous Values And Convergent Properties, Thomas Desiderio

SMTC Plan B Papers

Contemporary understanding of our nervous system supports the contention that environment is inexorably linked to learning; that all experiences are learning experiences and all learning is experiential (Gooding & Metz, 2011; Hayward, 2012; Wilson, 1999). Public education systems in the US grew to accommodate cultural developments and were not designed to implement experiential education (Bishop & Scott, 1998; Dewey, 1915; Hayward, 2012). Ecologists and sociologists agree that global population growth and development are pushing our society to a precipice where traditional methods of production, valuation, and resource management become inadequate (IPCC, 2014; Proctor, Smith, & Wallace, 2013; Steffen & McNeill, 2007; Tietenberg & Lewis, 2012). Respected analysts from multiple disciplines have consistently expressed a need to update our system to one in which public good and sustainable development are guiding principles (Morton, 2012; Proctor, Smith, & Wallace, 2013; Steffen & McNeill, 2007; White, 1967). A populace that is informed ...


Curriculum Alignment And Science And Engineering Practices In The Classroom, Victoria L. Davis Jul 2017

Curriculum Alignment And Science And Engineering Practices In The Classroom, Victoria L. Davis

SMTC Plan B Papers

The release of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) in 2013 introduced educators to the three dimensions of science literacy, which are the (a) Disciplinary Core Ideas (DCIs), (b) Cross-Cutting Concepts (CCCs), and the (c) Science and Engineering Practices (SEPs). For educators to address all three dimensions, they must analyze not only the expected content, but also how that content is presented and connected. Curriculum mapping is a tool developed in 1980 that can be used to analyze curricular alignment. This project focused on the creation of rubrics to analyze and evaluate the use of SEPs in conjunction with curriculum ...


The Impact Of Teacher Beliefs On Integrated Unit Design, Amanda J. Lopez Jul 2017

The Impact Of Teacher Beliefs On Integrated Unit Design, Amanda J. Lopez

SMTC Plan B Papers

Teacher beliefs are personal constructs that develop over a lifetime and are influenced by a teacher’s personal experiences, experience with schooling and instruction, and experience with formal knowledge. A teacher’s belief system has a greater impact on their practice than their subject matter knowledge, which translates into the design of classroom materials. This study was conducted to explore the impact of my teacher beliefs and understanding of threedimensional learning on the development of a theme-based, integrated, standards aligned unit. Teacher beliefs can be changed through the implementation of authentic professional learning communities (PLCs). PLCs are defined as the ...


Ngss And Science Museums: How Learning Progressions Can Inform Field Trip Lesson Planning For Informal Science Centers, Dorothy Jablonski Jul 2017

Ngss And Science Museums: How Learning Progressions Can Inform Field Trip Lesson Planning For Informal Science Centers, Dorothy Jablonski

SMTC Plan B Papers

Many states, including Wyoming, have adopted the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) or a very similar version of science standards. Research shows that in order to remain competitive in the field trip market, science museums need to align their curriculum to the same standards (Anderson, Kisiel, & Storksdieck, 2006). The major challenge for museums engaged in this process is the gaps in content introduced to various grade levels across performance expectations. I proposed that these gaps may be filled by creating a learning progression to inform the alignment process. Literature on cognitive development, informal learning, and previous learning progressions is used ...


Know Thyself: Using Student Self-Assessment To Increase Student Learning Outcomes, Winsor Demore Jul 2017

Know Thyself: Using Student Self-Assessment To Increase Student Learning Outcomes, Winsor Demore

SMTC Plan B Papers

Student assessment in the classroom is necessary to support student growth and increase students’ content knowledge. Formative assessment, or assessment that helps guide instruction and learning, can take many forms. One widely-used form is student self-assessment, in which students assess their own learning and set goals to increase their understanding of a topic. While experts agree that the process of self-assessment is valuable, this value is dependent on the teaching methods, practice and support provided by teachers for students in the classroom throughout the school year. A number of research-based best practices were incorporated into a middle-school science self-assessment, which ...


Algebra, Calculus, And The Act, Alex S. Krysl Apr 2017

Algebra, Calculus, And The Act, Alex S. Krysl

Honors Theses AY 16/17

It is a common saying that “the hardest part of calculus is the algebra”. Unfortunately, I found that many students lack the necessary, prerequisite algebra skills and knowledge in order to utilize completely the novel calculus concepts learned. For calculus to be effective, algebraic manipulation presents itself as an essential precondition.

As an example, students apply exponent rules throughout the whole differentiation and integration process—like the power rule. For students who lacked a solid background or basis in algebraic concepts like exponent rules, factoring, rewriting equations, and graphing functions, I observed their learning taking place in the calculus classroom ...


Best Practices In Co-Teaching Mathematics, Teacher Efficacy, And Teacher And Student Perceptions, Nanna M. Rexroat-Frazier Apr 2017

Best Practices In Co-Teaching Mathematics, Teacher Efficacy, And Teacher And Student Perceptions, Nanna M. Rexroat-Frazier

SMTC Plan B Papers

Students that qualify for special education services, with a learning disability in math, may receive these services through a variety of formats. Co-teaching is an instructional teaching model that provides an opportunity for students to receive instruction in the least restrictive environment (LRE). An extensive literature review was completed in order to identify best practices and effective co-teaching practices in mathematics classrooms. A clearly defined purpose for co-teaching and selecting co-teaching partners is key to the success of co-teaching. Also, student and teacher perceptions impact the implementation of co-teaching. The effectiveness of co-teaching is further impacted by co-teaching practices, along ...


The Role Of Secondary Stem Teacher Professional Development In Integrating Critical Thinking Skills Through Teacher Perception And Classroom Observation, Martha Inouye Apr 2017

The Role Of Secondary Stem Teacher Professional Development In Integrating Critical Thinking Skills Through Teacher Perception And Classroom Observation, Martha Inouye

SMTC Plan B Papers

Following the adoption of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), drastic shifts in science teaching will be necessary to meet the standards. Because critical thinking skills are an underlying component of the NGSS, examining how educators are teaching critical thinking skills to their students can help to identify what additional shifts in practice must occur. Given the theoretical connections between teacher beliefs and classroom instruction, this research examined the how secondary science teachers participating in professional development perceived their ability to integrate critical thinking skills in the classroom. A mixed-methods approach consisting of self-reported questionnaires measuring teacher perception and classroom ...


Creating A Context-Adapted Evaluation Tool For The Outdoor Leadership Development Series Of The Outdoor Program At The University Of Wyoming, Kaitlyn Bunting Apr 2017

Creating A Context-Adapted Evaluation Tool For The Outdoor Leadership Development Series Of The Outdoor Program At The University Of Wyoming, Kaitlyn Bunting

SMTC Plan B Papers

I created a literature based, context-adapted evaluation tool at the University of Wyoming for the Outdoor Leadership Development Series (OLDS) of the Outdoor Program (UWOP). I developed this summative survey to assess the outcome of the OLDS program’s learning objectives, filling a need for programmatic evaluation and assessment. The survey anonymously evaluates participant attitudes and skills regarding community and relationship building, technical skills development, exposure to the natural environment, leadership, and general programmatic assessment. I worked closely with the UWOP to build and pilot a user-friendly evaluation specific to their needs that will be implemented by UWOP staff in ...


The Role Of Critical Pedagogy In Place-Based Education: An Extensive Literature Review, Emma E. Griffin Jan 2017

The Role Of Critical Pedagogy In Place-Based Education: An Extensive Literature Review, Emma E. Griffin

SMTC Plan B Papers

Self-discovery, sense of place, and experiential education have been largely disregarded in the United States’ Education System, and replaced with test scores and standardization. Incorporating place in education focuses students on the local and brings the ideas of “self” back to the center of education, while also improving test scores. This paper explores each of the place pedagogies, which I define as Outdoor Education, Environmental Education, and Place-based Education, examining and critiquing their effective use of place. Focusing on Place-based Education, which strives towards the use of place in education through sense of place and stewardship, I found that it ...


Analysis Of Latino Outdoors’ Organizational Performance: A Multiple Constituency Approach, Alfonso Orozco Jan 2017

Analysis Of Latino Outdoors’ Organizational Performance: A Multiple Constituency Approach, Alfonso Orozco

SMTC Plan B Papers

Large demographic shifts are occurring in the United States and one of the largest growing groups is Latinos. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Latinos are expected to account for 28% of the population by 2060. An annual report done by the Outdoor Foundation in 2016 shows that Latinos tend to recreate at lower rates than their white counterparts and are often underrepresented in outdoor recreation, conservation, and environmental organizations (Outdoor Foundation, 2016). In this paper, I look at a young nonprofit organization, Latino Outdoors, that is addressing issues of underrepresentation and lack of access to outdoor recreation and ...


Educational Lessons And Strategies For Wildlife Educators And Teachers At Animal-Associated Wildlife Centers, Anna Luhrmann Jan 2017

Educational Lessons And Strategies For Wildlife Educators And Teachers At Animal-Associated Wildlife Centers, Anna Luhrmann

SMTC Plan B Papers

Increasing industrialization and urbanization are causing a decreasing amount of non-urban wildlife interaction and nature experiences. Less contact with the natural world is potentially creating a lack of interest in the wildlife, ecology, and natural phenomena. Animal-associated wildlife centers (AAWCs) provide the public with unique opportunities to experience wildlife and nature directly and vicariously through educational programs. AAWCs are nonprofit organizations that provide sanctuary to native or exotic animals, rehabilitate and release native wildlife that is injured or orphaned, and/or house non-releasable wildlife for educational purposes. This applied project examined educational methods used by AAWCs within the United States ...


How Students, Schools, And The Community Benefit From Garden-Based Education: Frameworks For Developing A Garden-Based Education Center, Claire Ratcliffe Jan 2017

How Students, Schools, And The Community Benefit From Garden-Based Education: Frameworks For Developing A Garden-Based Education Center, Claire Ratcliffe

SMTC Plan B Papers

Gardens can be used as a valuable tool in schools to teach curriculum, improve student behavior and self-confidence, instill a sense of responsibility in participants, and strengthen connections between schools and the community. The benefits of school gardens are well documented, but several challenges impede the effective use of gardens in many youth programs due to the time and knowledge required in maintaining garden-based education programs. In response to this need, a business plan was developed for a garden-based education center that will provide schools and communities with educational resources and support for maintaining gardening programs.

The business plan is ...


Is This More Than A Field Trip? Exploring Memories Of Teton Science Schools' Field Education Program, Maryellen Amen Jan 2017

Is This More Than A Field Trip? Exploring Memories Of Teton Science Schools' Field Education Program, Maryellen Amen

SMTC Plan B Papers

For more than two decades, upper elementary students in one of the larger school districts in Wyoming have participated in Teton Science Schools’ Field Education Program (TSS). During this time, the district has sent hundreds of students. Since the expense of the program often exceeds school budgets, teachers and students are often involved in fundraising. This research examined the memories of students who were some of the district’s first attendees. In this qualitative study, the teacher and six of the 13 students were interviewed. Three of the six students participated in a focus group. The participants expressed a variety ...


The Exclusionary Affect Of Biased Rhetoric And Passive Teaching Styles Used By Faculty In Undergraduate Stem Courses On Females And Underrepresented Minorities, Sabrina Rosalyn Georgio Westover Dec 2016

The Exclusionary Affect Of Biased Rhetoric And Passive Teaching Styles Used By Faculty In Undergraduate Stem Courses On Females And Underrepresented Minorities, Sabrina Rosalyn Georgio Westover

Honors Theses AY 16/17

Research suggests that the culture in gateway undergraduate STEM classes does not promote an environment in which students feel welcome to ask questions and actively participate in the learning process. It has been observed that rhetoric used in these classrooms negatively affects underrepresented students in these fields. Gender and racial biases further play a negative role in whether or not students feel welcome in their STEM department (Malcom, 2016). Overall, the pervasive culture of undergraduate STEM education appears to ineffectively gauge student understanding due to stereotypes and unproductive rhetoric that affects student retention and ultimate success in the field. Through ...


The Convergence Of A Framework For K-­‐12 Science Education And Place-­‐Based Education, Micah S. Herrboldt Jul 2016

The Convergence Of A Framework For K-­‐12 Science Education And Place-­‐Based Education, Micah S. Herrboldt

SMTC Plan B Papers

The goal of this literature review was to look at what the literature says about place-based methods and how they relate to A Framework for K-12 Science Education (NRC 2012) as well as the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) (Achieve, 2013). Place-based education (PBE) aims to connect students to their local community and environment by using them as educational starting points and contexts through which to learn in school (Sobel, 2004). However, with recent standards-based reforms teachers find little time to give to place-based methods in the classrooms (Gruenewald, 2003b). The NGSS (Achieve, 2013) were created using the recommendations laid ...


Informational Writing For Research Using Common Core State Standards And Next Generation Science Standards, Jamie Litvinoff Apr 2016

Informational Writing For Research Using Common Core State Standards And Next Generation Science Standards, Jamie Litvinoff

SMTC Plan B Papers

The adoption of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) and the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) by many districts may leave teachers feeling overwhelmed and anxious about implementing the required standards. Through careful and thoughtful planning, both the CCSS and NGSS can be combined to both relieve some of the pressure for the teacher and allow students to gain a deeper understanding to scientific concepts through the connection of writing. This mix-method action research project was conducted to show that CCSS can be supported by the NGSS in a second grade classroom. Students used argumentation and procedural writing to assist ...


Exploring The Impacts Of Teton Science Schools’ Field Education Programs On Visiting Teachers’ Beliefs And Practices About Place-Based Education, Julie Thomsen Apr 2016

Exploring The Impacts Of Teton Science Schools’ Field Education Programs On Visiting Teachers’ Beliefs And Practices About Place-Based Education, Julie Thomsen

SMTC Plan B Papers

This study was conducted to explore the impacts of Teton Science Schools’ field education programs on visiting teachers. It was conducted to specifically investigate the impacts on teachers’ beliefs and practices about place-based education. A review of the literature indicates that there is a gap in current research about the effects of residential education programs on visiting teachers. Qualitative and quantitative data were gathered to enhance the understanding of how Teton Science Schools’ field education programs impact visiting teachers. The data suggest that participants demonstrated increased use of several place-based education practices with increasing visits to Teton Science Schools. A ...


Development Of A 5th Grade Ecology Unit About The Sagebrush Ecosystem Using Next Generation Science Standards, Place Based Education Principles, And English Language Learner Best Practices, Paige L. Fisher Apr 2016

Development Of A 5th Grade Ecology Unit About The Sagebrush Ecosystem Using Next Generation Science Standards, Place Based Education Principles, And English Language Learner Best Practices, Paige L. Fisher

SMTC Plan B Papers

When developing science curriculum that incorporates the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), research has shown that it is important for teachers to adapt their units in order to provide context and meaning to what their students are learning. Place based education (PBE) is one way to provide this meaning within context (Sobel, 2004). NGSS can provide all students an equal opportunity to become scientifically literate (Lee, Miller, & Januszyk, 2014). Since 1995, the population of English Language Learners (ELLs) in the United States has increased by 57% (Maxwell 2009). ELLs across the nation share the same common challenge of learning English while also meeting the academic content demands (Bautista & Castaneda, 2011). There has been no research conducted to date that incorporates these three elements into curriculum development. Therefore, this research project aimed to look at how a science unit could be developed using PBE principles, NGSS, and ELL best practices in order to (a) increase understanding of scientific concepts related to the sagebrush ecosystem for 5th grade students; (b) incorporate diverse instructional strategies, intended to enhance the student’s connection to place and (c) include strategies and best practices for ELLs in order to meet these students’ language needs without sacrificing ...


A Survey Of Best Practices And Key Learning Objectives In A Secondary Stem Academy Setting, Paul Kasza Apr 2016

A Survey Of Best Practices And Key Learning Objectives In A Secondary Stem Academy Setting, Paul Kasza

SMTC Plan B Papers

Specialized secondary schools, sometimes called academies, that focus on Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) are becoming commonplace in the United States. Natrona County School District in Casper, WY, is opening such an academy called Pathways Innovation Center (PIC) in 2016, of which I am a part of. In an attempt to aid in the design of curriculum for PIC, and to provide a resource to others involved with STEM Academies, I reviewed the literature and conducted phone and email interviews with five different STEM Academy educators throughout the United States. Through this research, I addressed two questions, a) what ...


Middle School Mathematics: Intersubjectivity And The Role Of Discussion In The Middle Level Math Classroom, Trisha Witkop Apr 2016

Middle School Mathematics: Intersubjectivity And The Role Of Discussion In The Middle Level Math Classroom, Trisha Witkop

SMTC Plan B Papers

The purpose of this paper is to summarize the literature regarding Intersubjectivity (IS) and different viewpoints of how to achieve successful IS. We also examine the importance of IDE (Initiation, Demonstration, and Evaluation) sequences in the role of discussion in the middle school math classroom. In addition, this paper is a review of my Entry 3 for my National Board Certification (NBC) process; including a partial viewing of my video and written commentary used for my certification in 2014. I will examine my video and written commentary in the lens of the IS research and make connections from my entry ...


Addressing Three-Dimensional Learning With Citizen Science Projects, Meghan Lockwood Apr 2016

Addressing Three-Dimensional Learning With Citizen Science Projects, Meghan Lockwood

SMTC Plan B Papers

Citizen science, or the inclusion of non-professionals in scientific research, has been used for decades to increase scientific knowledge and involve citizens in problems affecting their communities. These projects can be beneficial to students at the middle school level in that they provide informal learning opportunities in which they can create relationships with professional scientists and researchers, which can increase their interest in different scientific fields. There is also the possibility for citizen science projects to address changing science standards, though research on this topic is lacking.

This study looks at the use of a particular citizen science project, Girl ...


An Analysis Of Selected Upper-Division Core Courses In The Haub School’S Environment And Natural Resources Curriculum, Ashley Andersen Apr 2016

An Analysis Of Selected Upper-Division Core Courses In The Haub School’S Environment And Natural Resources Curriculum, Ashley Andersen

SMTC Plan B Papers

The Haub School of Environment and Natural Resources (ENR) is an interdisciplinary School at the land grant University of Wyoming (UW). This study begins to assess whether and how the Haub School is meeting specific learning objectives by analyzing student and alumni feedback related to two upper-division core courses in the ENR core curriculum. Current students and alumni were surveyed to determine their opinions regarding whether these courses achieved selected learning outcomes as well as the degree to which these outcomes were useful within their careers. Results showed that, categorically, students and alumni did not differ significantly in their high ...


Culminating Synthesis Research Project, Paige L. Fisher, Ana K. Houseal, Jenna Shim, Dorothy Tuthill Jan 2016

Culminating Synthesis Research Project, Paige L. Fisher, Ana K. Houseal, Jenna Shim, Dorothy Tuthill

5th Grade Ecology Unit: A Sagebrush Expedition

Students will participate in a culminating research project where they will be able to express what they have learned throughout the unit. Students will work in small groups and have the opportunity to research a topic they are curious to explore further. These topics will be based on lessons that were covered throughout the unit. Students will participate in the scientific process and in doing so continue to think about what is special about their community and what they can learn from it. Students will have time to think of their question, make a hypothesis, decide how they will gather ...