Explanation Illustration Intervention
General Middle School High School Undergraduate
Spatial visualization is considered to be one of eight human intelligences and has been the subject of educational research over the past hundred years. Two distinct themes have emerged from this research: 1. Well-developed 3-D spatial skills are critical to success in STEM fields. 2. The 3-D spatial skills of women typically lag behind those of men.
Reducing Gender Differences in 3-D Spatial Skills
GRADE LEVEL: MIDDLE SCHOOL, HIGH SCHOOL, UNDERGRADUATE
Researchers are developing a web site of resources for K–12 STEM teachers, offering information on experiential and service learning. The investigators will evaluate, distill and classify the most easy-to-use, inexpensive, and effective methods. Having a central, user-friendly, and easily accessible repository for the resources will make it easier for teachers to identify and use them in their curricula. Hands-on and community-based projects help students make connections between STEM subjects and real-world issues, which in turn increases student interest in STEM disciplines. This approach has been shown to enhance the interest of girls and other underrepresented populations in these fields. The use of service learning also teaches students social responsibility and ethics, showing them the human side of science, math, and engineering.
RESOURCES FOR K–12 SERVICE AND EXPERIENTIAL LEARNING IN STEM
GRADE LEVEL: ELEMENTARY SCHOOL, MIDDLE SCHOOL, HIGH SCHOOL, PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT
An education research development organization is conducting a study to determine which characteristics of online science courses for teachers correlate with positive learning outcomes for female students. The project staff and the advisory committee comprise highly experienced online developers, science educators, professional development experts, and educational researchers with experience in diversity and gender issues.
STANDARDS FOR ONLINE TEACHER-DEVELOPMENT COURSES
The informal, non-competitive atmosphere of after school programs makes them especially suited to engaging girls’ interest in STEM. A web site has been created where teachers, researchers and policymakers can share their knowledge about the intersection of science, gender and after-school programs.
A COMMUNITY OF PRACTICE ON SCIENCE: AFTER-SCHOOL PROGRAMS FOR GIRLS
GRADE LEVEL: PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT