NIH SCIENCE EDUCATION PARTNERSHIP AWARDS

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Science Posse: Enhancing Biomedical Science Awareness and Understanding in Wyoming

Grant Website

http://www.scienceposse.com

Audience

1. Wyoming middle school science students and teachers, 2. University of Wyoming graduate fellows, 3. Rural Wyoming community members.

Subjects Addressed

1. Current biomedical science information, research techniques, resources, and careers, 2. Inquiry and standards-based middle school curriculum, 3. Innovative use of technology to connect students to science, 4. Community outreach.

Project Description

1. Development and delivery of motivational, inquiry-based, biomedical science curriculum - Learning modules are developed by graduate fellows in collaboration with Wyoming middle school science teachers and students. They are designed to allow students to explore relevant biomedical science topics and careers. 2. Development and delivery of science podcasts - Graduate fellows explore innovative educational possibilities for connecting students to science by creating interesting and fun podcasts, delivering the science information to students via iPods. 3. Community outreach - Graduate fellows develop and deliver biomedical awareness presentations to members of the community throughout Wyoming, illustrating the complexities, issues, and opportunities of biomedical research. 4. Professional development for teachers - Our program includes tuition and fee waivers for graduate courses, as well as the opportunity to participate in spring and summer workshops that are designed to increase the sustainable science expertise of middle school science teachers and increase student and parent understanding of science. 5. Advancement of graduate fellow learning - Our program provides graduate fellows with learning opportunities to enhance their communication and teaching skills, and introduces them to potentially new career possibilities in the K-12 educational system.

Resources for Sharing

1. Learning modules and community awareness presentations, 2. Science podcasts delivered via iPods, 3. Sample student, teacher, community, and graduate fellow assessment surveys.

Dissemination Strategies

1. Delivery of learning modules to middle school classrooms throughout Wyoming, 2. Community outreach through a variety venues, 3. Workshops for teachers, student, and parents, 4. Public relations through news and magazine articles, television, radio, and internet.

Abstract

Rural areas face unique challenges with respect to community understanding of the nature, complexity, and outcomes of basic and clinical biomedical research. This has important consequences in political and social decision-making and establishing learning environments that inspire student understanding of biomedical sciences and the selection of related careers. These areas are characterized by peer and K-12 school isolation, few appropriate community models including biomedical industries or research institutes, and a population lacking an educational background in these areas. In order to overcome these obstacles, the overarching goals of this project are to deliver awareness units to targeted communities, develop and deliver motivational and experiential learning modules with biomedical themes, bolster continuing education for teachers, and enhance the graduate enterprise at the University of Wyoming. Multimedia, interactive awareness units will be presented to communities and 7-12 grade assemblies. These will engage the community and contribute to the understanding of basic and clinical aspects of biomedical scholarship, its tremendous contributions to society, and the need for sustainable support. The learning modules, complete with detailed lesson plans, will prepare students for self-directed learning and will nurture an appreciation for discovery. They will be developed by science teachers, graduate fellows, and university faculty. The modules will focus on the interdisciplinary nature and unifying concepts of basic and clinical aspects of selected biomedical areas, complement current curricula and align with state standards. Program participants will have opportunities to participate in ongoing workshops, the university science fair, and summer research apprenticeships. In order to intervene in the prevalent socio-educational culture that now directs students into non-college curricular tracts in the 9th grade, the program will target 7th and 8th grade sciece classes. Initially, school districts with significant Native American and Hispanic populations have been targeted. However, our long-term goal is to reach all counties in Wyoming, in part, via distance delivery technologies and continuing education workshops. Benchmarks for progress will be established and continually assessed in order to track projected outcomes. Modifications of the methodology will be based upon analysis of quantitative assessment data.

Evaluation(s)

Evaluation Goals - The goal of the evaluation is to assess the impact of the project with respect to the following objectives: 1. Increase community awareness of basic and clinical biomedical research processes, complexities, and outcomes. 2. Increase middle school students' appreciation and understanding of biomedical research complexities, knowledge, and issues. 3. Increase middle school students' interest in science courses and in choosing a STEM related career. 4. Advance graduate student learning. 5. Increase the sustainable expertise of 6th through 9th grad science teachers.

Evaluation Design and Instruments Used - MIDDLE SCHOOL STUDENTS: 1. The exposure of middle school students (number and duration) to learning modules will be measured. 2. Students will be administered pre and post surveys referring to their attitudes about science before and after exposure to the learning modules. TEACHERS: 1. The participation of teachers (number of teachers, times learning modules administered) will be tracked. 2. Teachers will be administered a survey referring to the usefulness of the learning module. MEMBERS OF THE COMMUNITY: 1. The exposure of the community (number and duration) to the presentation will be measured. 2. Audience members will be administered a survey referring to their awareness of the biomedical sciences after each presentation. GRADUATE FELLOWS: 1. The participation of fellows (number of fellows, time involved in the project) will be measured. 2. Graduate fellows will be administered a survey addressing their experiences with the project.

Type of Data to Be Collected - We will collect both quantitative and qualitative data from all participants in the project.

Results of Data Analysis - At this time, no data has been collected yet.

Science Posse: Enhancing Biomedical Science Awareness and Understanding in Wyoming /grants/science-posse-enhancing-biomedical-science-awareness-and-understanding-wyoming 209 R25RR022740 1 2 WY 2005 09/25/2005 06/30/2008 University of Wyoming 103 Knight Hall, 1000 E. University Ave.
Laramie WY 82071 Graduate School, Dept.3108 PI ROTH DON (307) 766-3796 (307) 766-2374 rothdon@uwyo.edu Program Coordinator ANDERSON JESSE S. (307) 766-6310 (307) 766-2374 jessesa@uwyo.edu http://www.scienceposse.com http://www.scienceposse.org

1. Wyoming middle school science students and teachers, 2. University of Wyoming graduate fellows, 3. Rural Wyoming community members.

1. Current biomedical science information, research techniques, resources, and careers, 2. Inquiry and standards-based middle school curriculum, 3. Innovative use of technology to connect students to science, 4. Community outreach.

1. Development and delivery of motivational, inquiry-based, biomedical science curriculum - Learning modules are developed by graduate fellows in collaboration with Wyoming middle school science teachers and students. They are designed to allow students to explore relevant biomedical science topics and careers. 2. Development and delivery of science podcasts - Graduate fellows explore innovative educational possibilities for connecting students to science by creating interesting and fun podcasts, delivering the science information to students via iPods. 3. Community outreach - Graduate fellows develop and deliver biomedical awareness presentations to members of the community throughout Wyoming, illustrating the complexities, issues, and opportunities of biomedical research. 4. Professional development for teachers - Our program includes tuition and fee waivers for graduate courses, as well as the opportunity to participate in spring and summer workshops that are designed to increase the sustainable science expertise of middle school science teachers and increase student and parent understanding of science. 5. Advancement of graduate fellow learning - Our program provides graduate fellows with learning opportunities to enhance their communication and teaching skills, and introduces them to potentially new career possibilities in the K-12 educational system.

1. Learning modules and community awareness presentations, 2. Science podcasts delivered via iPods, 3. Sample student, teacher, community, and graduate fellow assessment surveys.

1. Delivery of learning modules to middle school classrooms throughout Wyoming, 2. Community outreach through a variety venues, 3. Workshops for teachers, student, and parents, 4. Public relations through news and magazine articles, television, radio, and internet.

Rural areas face unique challenges with respect to community understanding of the nature, complexity, and outcomes of basic and clinical biomedical research. This has important consequences in political and social decision-making and establishing learning environments that inspire student understanding of biomedical sciences and the selection of related careers. These areas are characterized by peer and K-12 school isolation, few appropriate community models including biomedical industries or research institutes, and a population lacking an educational background in these areas. In order to overcome these obstacles, the overarching goals of this project are to deliver awareness units to targeted communities, develop and deliver motivational and experiential learning modules with biomedical themes, bolster continuing education for teachers, and enhance the graduate enterprise at the University of Wyoming. Multimedia, interactive awareness units will be presented to communities and 7-12 grade assemblies. These will engage the community and contribute to the understanding of basic and clinical aspects of biomedical scholarship, its tremendous contributions to society, and the need for sustainable support. The learning modules, complete with detailed lesson plans, will prepare students for self-directed learning and will nurture an appreciation for discovery. They will be developed by science teachers, graduate fellows, and university faculty. The modules will focus on the interdisciplinary nature and unifying concepts of basic and clinical aspects of selected biomedical areas, complement current curricula and align with state standards. Program participants will have opportunities to participate in ongoing workshops, the university science fair, and summer research apprenticeships. In order to intervene in the prevalent socio-educational culture that now directs students into non-college curricular tracts in the 9th grade, the program will target 7th and 8th grade sciece classes. Initially, school districts with significant Native American and Hispanic populations have been targeted. However, our long-term goal is to reach all counties in Wyoming, in part, via distance delivery technologies and continuing education workshops. Benchmarks for progress will be established and continually assessed in order to track projected outcomes. Modifications of the methodology will be based upon analysis of quantitative assessment data.

This information was gathered at the 2008 SEPA Project Directors Meeting.

Evaluation Goals - The goal of the evaluation is to assess the impact of the project with respect to the following objectives: 1. Increase community awareness of basic and clinical biomedical research processes, complexities, and outcomes. 2. Increase middle school students' appreciation and understanding of biomedical research complexities, knowledge, and issues. 3. Increase middle school students' interest in science courses and in choosing a STEM related career. 4. Advance graduate student learning. 5. Increase the sustainable expertise of 6th through 9th grad science teachers.

Evaluation Design and Instruments Used - MIDDLE SCHOOL STUDENTS: 1. The exposure of middle school students (number and duration) to learning modules will be measured. 2. Students will be administered pre and post surveys referring to their attitudes about science before and after exposure to the learning modules. TEACHERS: 1. The participation of teachers (number of teachers, times learning modules administered) will be tracked. 2. Teachers will be administered a survey referring to the usefulness of the learning module. MEMBERS OF THE COMMUNITY: 1. The exposure of the community (number and duration) to the presentation will be measured. 2. Audience members will be administered a survey referring to their awareness of the biomedical sciences after each presentation. GRADUATE FELLOWS: 1. The participation of fellows (number of fellows, time involved in the project) will be measured. 2. Graduate fellows will be administered a survey addressing their experiences with the project.

Type of Data to Be Collected - We will collect both quantitative and qualitative data from all participants in the project.

Results of Data Analysis - At this time, no data has been collected yet.

biomedical research, career, minority