CEHD News Homepage STEM

CEHD News Homepage STEM

Dr. Lesa Clarkson Featured on CEHD Homepage

Congratulations to Dr. Lesa Clarkson for her recently published feature on the CEHD homepage. Dr. Clarkson’s story is an inspiration to all at the STEM Education Center and the greater CEHD community.  The STEM Education Center would like to thank her for her leadership and hard work and encourage our readers to check out Dr. Clarkson’s story here!


MDE September Science Updates- Available Now!

The Minnesota Department of Education has recently published its September issue of Science Update . As a proud partner of MDE, the STEM Education Center is happy to forward this newsletter to its STEM Community. This periodic update is sent to contacts in school districts, higher education, informal education, organizations, and other science educators- readers are encouraged to forward this newsletter to anyone they believe would be interested.


NSF to continue I-Corps for Learning project

After a successful pilot led in large part by STEM Education Center co-director Dr. Karl Smith, the National Science Foundation has granted $1.2 million to support the next 24 I-Corps for Learning teams.

The I-Corps for Learning (I-Corps-L)  project was designed to guide research teams on how to use business strategies to propagate and scale their educational innovations. 

Steve Blank, key architect of the I-Corps model and author of  “The Startup Owner’s Manual”  wrote in the Huffington Post, “It turns out that on the whole educators are great innovators but have had a hard time translating their ideas into widespread adoption.”

With this in mind, Don Millard of NSF and  Karl Smith developed the I-Corps for learning project using Blank’s Lean LaunchPad system. Blank writes, “Karl and his teaching team really nailed it. So much so that the NSF is now rolling out I-Corps for Learning on a larger scale.” Read more of Blank’s blog here.

Congratulations to the I-Corps for Learning team! The STEM Center is excited to hear more about future team accomplishments and further advances to the I-Corps initiative. 


Great Lakes to continue support for Prepare2Nspire program

CovingtonClarksonLGreat Lakes Community Investments has granted the Prepare2Nspire project a continuation to further provide mathematics “mentutors” to eighth and eleventh graders in the Minneapolis area.

Prepare2Nspire is an innovative, cascading, multi-grade mathematics tutoring and mentoring opportunity that will include graphing calculator technology.

Principal Investigator Dr. Lesa Covington Clarkson, associate professor, has a history of working in urban schools with diverse populations in the Twin Cities. “Too often, underrepresented students aren’t served in our urban classrooms,” she said, “This program will provide additional time and tools to support students in their mathematics learning.”

As University undergraduate students are tutoring and mentoring eleventh grade algebra 2 students in the program, the eleventh grade cohort is tutoring and mentoring eighth grade algebra students. Graphing calculator technology supports students’ development of algebraic thinking and their preparation for postsecondary study.

Every student profits from this model, according to Clarkson. Tutors are developing mathematics communication and reasoning skills as they explain content in which they are recently engaged and at the same time they are developing roots in mathematics that are fundamental to their current study. Middle school participants are receiving individualized tutoring and mentoring services designed to meet their unique challenges in the mathematics content studied. Simultaneously, grade-level skills will be continually addressed through mini lessons at weekly meetings.

Read more about the project:


STEM Center Authors to Receive ASTE Award IV: Innovations in Teaching Science Teachers

Congratulations to Graduate Students Josh Ellis, Justin McFadden, Tasneem Anwar and to Professor Gillian Roehrig for being awarded the ASTE Award IV: Innovations in Teaching Science Teachers for their paper, “If You Can’t Say Something Nice: A Design-Based Research Approach Investigating the Social Interactions of New Science and Math Teachers Using a Video Annotation Tool”. Each author will receive a plaque from ASTE (The Association for Science Teacher Education) at the 2015 Annual ASTE International Conference Awards Luncheon on Saturday, January 10th in Portland, OR as well as a cash award from Carolina Biological Supply.


STEM Education Center at ASEE Annual Conference

Check out the highlights from the 2014 Annual ASEE conference in Indianapolis, IN and see if you can spot the STEM Education Center representatives! The EngrTEAMS project was also recognized for its interactive session. The STEM Education Center is happy to be an active member of the ASEE community and thank the organization for another successful event.



STEM Center Congratulates Ph.D. Candidates for Successfully Defending Projects

The STEM Education Center would like to congratulate the following individuals for successfully defending their Ph.D. project.

John Czaplewski, Mathematics Education, Ph.D. “An Evaluation of Blended Learning Method of Instruction in Terms of Knowledge Acquisition and Attitude in an Introductory Mathematics Course”

Kristina M. Tank, Science Education, Ph.D. “Examining the Effects of an Integrated Science Unit on Student Learning”

Scot Hovan, Science Education, Ph.D. “Contributing to Meaning Making: Facilitating Discourse in the High School Physics Classroom”

Eric McDonald, Science Education Ph.D. “Sharing and Moving Toward, the Evolution of Expertise in the Science Classroom”

Mary Hoelscher, Science EducationLGBTQ-Inclusion in Educator Preparation: Getting Ready for Gender and Sexual Diversity in Secondary School Settings”

Roehrig wins CEHD Marty and Jack Rossman Award

The STEM Education Center would like to congratulate Dr. Gillian Roehrig, Associate Director of Research on Teacher Development in the STEM Education Center and Associate Professor of Science Education in the School of Curriculum and Instruction, for receiving the Marty and Jack Rossman Award presented at the CEHD Spring Assembly. This prestigious award recognizes a tenured faculty member who has “demonstrated a truly exceptional level of creativity and productivity in scholarship, teaching and service, and who shows great promise of continuing such achievement.” Dr. Roehrig will receive an $8,000 award over two years to support research, travel, or professional development.

Congratulations to Prepare2Nspire for Diversity and Globalization prize at CEHD Research Day

The Prepare2Nspire team received the prize for Diversity and Globalization for their research poster at the 2014 CEHD Research Day. Congratulations to Dr. Lesa Clarkson, Sousada Chidthachack, Forster Ntow and Beth Crotty for all of their hard work!

Each year, CEHD selects research projects through an application process to present during a lunch-time poster session. Colleagues are invited to attend and vote for the best project in three separate categories: Diversity and Globalization, Excellence in Research, and Technology and Innovation. The winning projects receive $250 from CEHD towards their research funding.


STEM Spotlight- Emily Dare

Every month the STEM Education Center will highlight one of its many outstanding graduate students who work hard to improve the field of STEM Education.
This month the STEM Education Center would like to spotlight- Emily Dare
Emily has received a B.S. and M.S. in Physics and will receive her Ph.D. in the spring of 2015. She is currently working on the EngrTEAMS project where she works with eleven elementary and middle school teachers to create integrated STEM modules that the teachers bring into their classrooms and later publish onto a nation-wide website for other K-12 teachers to use. Emily is also working with the St. Paul science coaches to conduct classroom observations of all of their science teachers in an effort to understand the needs these teachers have that will be addressed in district-wide summer professional development sessions. Born in Somers Point, New Jersey, Emily dreamed of owning an art shop and grew to love the color green. Emily is the proud parent of a retired greyhound named Bernie and is often nicknamed Em. Her favorite food is any kind of cheese and her favorite place to visit in Minneapolis/St. Paul, besides the STEM Education Center, is the restaurant Pannekoeken Huis. Lastly, is Emily could have one super power she would like to fly. The STEM Education Center would like to thank Emily for her accomplishments and contributions to our research and we are happy to have her as a part of the team.
Read about out other highlighted graduate students here

Congratulations to District 622 on new STEM Grant!

From: www.lillienews.com
The North St. Paul-Maplewood-Oakdale School District will be taking its Science Technology Engineering and Math (STEM) program to the next level, thanks to two grants totaling $350,000 from the 3M Foundation.
In December, the 3M Foundation Board approved District 622’s request to fund a comprehensive K-12 STEM program, including equipment for Fabrication Labs (FabLabs) at both North and Tartan high schools.
The funding will allow District 622 to expand its successful elementary STEM program and incorporate new classes and new opportunities at both the middle and high schools.
Included in the $350,000 is a $66,000 grant from Project Lead The Way (PLTW), the nation’s leading STEM program.
Beginning next fall, students in grades sixth and seventh will all take the PLTW Modeling and Design course. Eighth grade students will also have the opportunity to take this course as an elective. Additional PLTW courses will be added in subsequent years.
At the high school level, an engineering focus will be added to the required ninth grade science course during the 2014-2015 school year. The District will also begin the process of exploring options for creating FabLabs at both North and Tartan high schools.
FabLabs allow students to use hands-on, state-of-the-art technology including 3D printers, laser engravers and plasma routers. $200,000 of the grant funds from 3M will be used to purchase FabLab equipment for the two high schools.
This summer, District science teachers will begin training on curriculum for the new courses. The training is being provided through a partnership with the University of Minnesota’s STEM Education Center.
“In just one year of implementing the STEM curriculum at our elementary schools we have seen incredible academic growth for our students in the area of science,” said Superintendent Patty Phillips. “I am thrilled that the 3M Foundation is providing us with a way to extend that success for all students.”

STEM Spotlight- Laura Fox

Every Month the STEM Education Center will highlight one of its many outstanding graduate students who work hard to improve the field of STEM Education.
This month the STEM Education Center would like to spotlight- Laura Fox
Laura Fox has received her B.S. and an M.S. in Chemistry and is pursing her PhD in Chemistry Education through the Curriculum and Instruction department. Her research revolves around improving teaching practices and student understanding in general and physical chemistry. Born in West Chester, PA, Laura is the proud owner of two unique cats, Cedric and Delaware. Laura’s favorite food is her dad’s Italian home cooking and her favorite place to go in Minneapolis is a social dance studio for a night of swing dancing. If Laura had one super power, it would be to apparate like Harry Potter and her favorite color is green. Ms. Fox is a valued member of the STEM Education Center team and we look forward to her many successes to come.
Read about out other highlighted graduate students here

Ying-Chih Chen to be awarded with the 2014 NARST Outstanding Paper Award and the Jhumki Basu Equity Scholars Award

STEM Education Center’s Ying-Chih Chen will be awarded the 2014 NARST Outstanding Paper Award for his paper, “Tracing Elementary Students’ Use of Talk and Writing for Knowledge Development through Argument-Based Inquiry”. Chen will be presented with a plaque at the Awards Luncheon held during the 2014 NARST International conference on April 1st, 2014 in Pittsburgh, PA.
Ying-Chih Chen will also be receiving the Jhumki Basu Equity Scholars Award at the 2014 NARST International conference. Chen will present his research at the Jhumki Basu Scholars Symposium and receive his award at that time. He is also encouraged to attend the Equity and Ethics Committee Pre-conference workshop for scholars from underrepresented groups as well as other Equity and Ethics events.
Please join us in congratulating Ying-Chih Chen on his hard work and well-deserved honors!

Tamara Moore to receive Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers

Dr. Tamara Moore of the STEM Education Center will be awarded the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers. This award is the highest honor bestowed by the United States Government on science and engineering professionals in the early stages of their independent research careers. Dr. Moore will receive her award during a ceremony held in Washington, D.C., in the coming year.
Dr. Moore is currently the principal investigator of an 8 million dollar grant awarded by the National Science Foundation titled EngrTEAMS: Engineering to Transform the Education of Analysis, Measurement, and Science in a Team-Based Targeted Mathematics-Science Partnership. The grant is one of the many Dr. Moore has been awarded while at the STEM Education Center. To learn more about EngrTEAMS click here.
The Presidential Early Career Awards embody the high priority the Obama Administration places on producing outstanding scientists and engineers to advance the Nation’s goals, tackle grand challenges, and contribute to the American economy.
“The impressive achievements of these early-stage scientists and engineers are promising indicators of even greater successes ahead,” President Obama said. “We are grateful for their commitment to generating the scientific and technical advancements that will ensure America’s global leadership for many years to come.”
For more information about this award please read the official press release from the White House.

Karl Smith to talk at the Board on Science Education’s Winter Meeting

Dr. Karl Smith, Co-Director of the STEM Education Center, will speak at the Board on Science Education’s winter meeting in Irvine CA on January 16th-17th, 2014. The Board on Science Education is interested in exploring what is known about preparing undergraduate college students for team science, including areas of overlap between the general goals of undergraduate STEM education and the competencies required for team science. Relating to his experiences working at the University of Minnesota, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia and other institutions, Dr. Karl Smith will discuss the characteristics of and relationship between high performance teamwork and high quality learning environments as well as theoretical, conceptual and empirical foundations to teams such as the social interdependence theory & social cognitive theory.
For more information on the Board of Science Education please visit their website.

STEM Graduate Students Receive NARST Jhumki Basu Equity Scholars Award!

The STEM Education Center would like to congratulate Shiyu Liu and Devarati Bhattacharya for receiving the 2014 Jhumki Basu Equity Scholars Award presented by the NARST Equity and Ethics Committee.
The award includes a $700 stipend for travel expenses to attend the 2014 NARST International conference in Pittsburgh, PA, March 30-April 2, 2014. Both Shiyu and Devarati will present their research at the Jhumki Basu Scholars Symposium held during the conference and will receive their award at this time. They are also encouraged to attend the Equity and Ethics Committee Pre-conference workshop for scholars from underrepresented groups as well as other Equity and Ethics events.
Please join us in congratulating our hard working graduate students!