- Award ID(s):
- NSF-PAR ID:
- Date Published:
- Journal Name:
- IDC '19
- Page Range / eLocation ID:
- 642 to 647
- Medium: X
- Sponsoring Org:
- National Science Foundation
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With the urgent call for supporting science teachers to promote equity and justice through their daily work of teaching, there is a growing need for better understanding how science teachers come to engage in transformative teaching and learning that is equitably consequential. In this participatory design research project (Bang & Vossoughi, 2016), we created a professional learning context in which high school chemistry teachers engaged in a pedagogical imagining (Gutiérrez & Calabese Barton, 2015) by leveraging their teaching experiences, knowledge about students and communities, values, and concerns to create powerful learning contexts for Latinx and multilingual students from immigrant, low-income families. Drawing upon the perspective of learning as making and sharing of the world interwoven with making and sharing of selves (Warren et al, 2020), we analyzed teachers’ participations and discourses to examine teachers’ making and sharing that were equitably consequential. The findings illustrated three critical moments of teachers’ making and sharing where: (a) the teachers collectively developed shared pedagogical goals toward transformative learning while formulating agency, (b) the teachers and the researchers came to design a creative stoichiometry unit where students use chemistry to make their community better, and (c) the teachers came to be committed to being ‘intentional’ in their relational work to create a welcoming and safe learning environment using concrete pedagogical strategies. The analyses point out three design features of the professional learning context that were associated with the teachers’ consequential makings: (a) the use of a conceptual tool (i.e., ‘design principles’), (b) the power of “what if” discourses, and (c) creating a space for collective learning. Recommendations for designing professional learning context toward transformative teaching and learning are discussed.more » « less
Elementary educators are increasingly asked to teach engineering design, motivating study of how they learn to teach this discipline. In particular, there is a need to examine how teachers reason about pedagogical situations and dilemmas in engineering—how they draw on their disciplinary understandings, attention to students' thinking, and pedagogical practices to support students' learning.
The purpose of our qualitative study was to examine elementary teachers' pedagogical reasoning in an online graduate program. We asked: What stances do teachers take toward learning and teaching engineering design? How do these stances shift over the course of the program?
We identified two teachers, Alma and Margaret, who exhibited productive shifts in their pedagogical reasoning during the program. Drawing on interviews and videos of their teaching, we developed case studies characterizing their stances toward teaching and learning engineering.
Alma shifted in her reasoning about teaching the design process, from treating it as linear, discrete steps to recognizing the dynamic, overlapping nature of design practices. Similarly, Margaret shifted in how she reasoned about failure and iteration, recognizing the need to help students analyze unexpected design performances to learn from and iterate on their designs. For both teachers, these shifts were dynamic and nonlinear, reflecting both context‐sensitivity and growing stability in their reasoning.
Engineering teacher educators should provide opportunities for teachers to reason about the specific pedagogical dilemmas in engineering and consider how teachers integrate disciplinary understandings with attention to students' reasoning and actions and pedagogical practices.
This exploratory paper highlights how problem‐based learning (PBL) provided the pedagogical framework used to design and interpret learning analytics from C
rystal Island: EcoJourneys, a collaborative game‐based learning environment centred on supporting science inquiry. In C rystal Island: EcoJourneys, students work in teams of four, investigate the problem individually and then utilize a brainstorming board, an in‐game PBL whiteboard that structured the collaborative inquiry process. The paper addresses a central question: how can PBL support the interpretation of the observed patterns in individual actions and collaborative interactions in the collaborative game‐based learning environment? Drawing on a mixed method approach, we first analyzed students' pre‐ and post‐test results to determine if there were learning gains. We then used principal component analysis (PCA) to describe the patterns in game interaction data and clustered students based on the PCA. Based on the pre‐ and post‐test results and PCA clusters, we used interaction analysis to understand how collaborative interactions unfolded across selected groups. Results showed that students learned the targeted content after engaging with the game‐based learning environment. Clusters based on the PCA revealed four main ways of engaging in the game‐based learning environment: students engaged in low to moderate self‐directed actions with (1) high and (2) moderate collaborative sense‐making actions, (3) low self‐directed with low collaborative sense‐making actions and (4) high self‐directed actions with low collaborative sense‐making actions. Qualitative interaction analysis revealed that a key difference among four groups in each cluster was the nature of verbal student discourse: students in the low to moderate self‐directed and high collaborative sense‐making cluster actively initiated discussions and integrated information they learned to the problem, whereas students in the other clusters required more support. These findings have implications for designing adaptive support that responds to students' interactions with in‐game activities. Practitioner notes
What is already known about this topic
Learning analytic methods have been effective for understanding student learning interactions for the purposes of assessment, profiling student behaviour and the effectiveness of interventions.
However, the interpretation of analytics from these diverse data sets are not always grounded in theory and challenges of interpreting student data are further compounded in collaborative inquiry settings, where students work in groups to solve a problem.
What this paper adds
Problem‐based learning as a pedagogical framework allowed for the design to focus on individual and collaborative actions in a game‐based learning environment and, in turn, informed the interpretation of game‐based analytics as it relates to student's self‐directed learning in their individual investigations and collaborative inquiry discussions.
The combination of principal component analysis and qualitative interaction analysis was critical in understanding the nuances of student collaborative inquiry.
Implications for practice and/or policy
Self‐directed actions in individual investigations are critical steps to collaborative inquiry. However, students may need to be encouraged to engage in these actions.
Clustering student data can inform which scaffolds can be delivered to support both self‐directed learning and collaborative inquiry interactions.
All students can engage in knowledge‐integration discourse, but some students may need more direct support from teachers to achieve this.
Electrical and computer engineering technologies have evolved into dynamic, complex systems that profoundly change the world we live in. Designing these systems requires not only technical knowledge and skills but also new ways of thinking and the development of social, professional and ethical responsibility. A large electrical and computer engineering department at a Midwestern public university is transforming to a more agile, less traditional organization to better respond to student, industry and society needs. This is being done through new structures for faculty collaboration and facilitated through departmental change processes. Ironically, an impetus behind this effort was a failed attempt at department-wide curricular reform. This failure led to the recognition of the need for more systemic change, and a project emerged from over two years of efforts. The project uses a cross-functional, collaborative instructional model for course design and professional formation, called X-teams. X-teams are reshaping the core technical ECE curricula in the sophomore and junior years through pedagogical approaches that (a) promote design thinking, systems thinking, professional skills such as leadership, and inclusion; (b) contextualize course concepts; and (c) stimulate creative, socio-technical-minded development of ECE technologies. An X-team is comprised of ECE faculty members including the primary instructor, an engineering education and/or design faculty member, an industry practitioner, context experts, instructional specialists (as needed to support the process of teaching, including effective inquiry and inclusive teaching) and student teaching assistants. X-teams use an iterative design thinking process and reflection to explore pedagogical strategies. X-teams are also serving as change agents for the rest of the department through communities of practice referred to as Y-circles. Y-circles, comprised of X-team members, faculty, staff, and students, engage in a process of discovery and inquiry to bridge the engineering education research-to-practice gap. Research studies are being conducted to answer questions to understand (1) how educators involved in X-teams use design thinking to create new pedagogical solutions; (2) how the middle years affect student professional ECE identity development as design thinkers; (3) how ECE students overcome barriers, make choices, and persist along their educational and career paths; and (4) the effects of department structures, policies, and procedures on faculty attitudes, motivation and actions. This paper will present the efforts that led up to the project, including failures and opportunities. It will summarize the project, describe related work, and present early progress implementing new approaches.more » « less
Despite the critical role of teachers in the educational process, few advanced learning technologies have been developed to support teacher-instruction or professional development. This lack of support is particularly acute for middle school math teachers, where only 37% felt well prepared to scaffold instruction to address the needs of diverse students in a national sample. To address this gap, the Advancing Middle School Teachers’ Understanding of Proportional Reasoning project is researching techniques to apply pedagogical virtual agents and dialog-based tutoring to enhance teachers' content knowledge and pedagogical content knowledge. This paper describes the design of a conversational, agent-based intelligent tutoring system to support teachers' professional development. Pedagogical strategies are presented that leverage a virtual human facilitator to tutor pedagogical content knowledge (how to teach proportions to students), as opposed to content knowledge (understanding proportions). The roles for different virtual facilitator capabilities are presented, including embedding actions into virtual agent dialog, open-response versus choice-based tutoring, ungraded pop-up sub-activities (e.g. whiteboard, calculator, note-taking). Usability feedback for a small cohort of instructors pursuing graduate studies was collected. In this feedback, teachers rated the system ease of use and perceived usefulness moderately well, but also reported confusion about what to expect from the system in terms of flow between lessons and support by the facilitator.more » « less