National standards in science (NRC, 1996), mathematics (NCTM 1989, 2000), and technology (NETS, 2000) have informed the direction of reform efforts to guide curriculum development, improve the instructional practices of teachers and increase student learning. STEM Standards-Based Reform Initiatives: The Impact on Student Learning and the Curricular, Instructional, and Assessment Practices of Teachers, involves a series of three studies completed around the theme of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) standards-based reform initiatives and the impact on teacher curricular and instructional practices and student learning. Study 1, Block Scheduling and Mathematics: Enhancing Standards-Based Instruction (Flynn, Lawrenz & Shultz, 2005), is a quantitative study investigating differences in eighth-grade mathematics students' engagement in standards-based curriculum and instruction practices between block- and traditional-schedule schools. Results indicate there are few differences in curriculum and instruction based on the type of school schedule. Study 2, Building a Successful Middle School Outreach Effort: Microscopy Camp (Penn, Flynn & Johnson, 2007), focuses on the development and implementation of curriculum and instruction based on national and state standards designed to assist middle school science learners in their understanding of the atomic structure of solid crystals and the design and use of an assessment tool to monitor student understanding of the topic. Qualitative results indicate improved post-camp understanding of students' understanding of the atomic structure of solid crystals. Study 3, Integrating Technology into a Secondary Science Licensure Program: Modeling Students' Competencies to Use and Teach with Technology over the Course of the Program, is a longitudinal study modeling secondary science student teachers changes in their technology competencies over the course of their program. Results indicate teachers self-reported competencies in skill to use and preparedness to teach with technology in their science classrooms increased. Barriers to technology integration due to physical resources, knowledge and skills, and school supports are reported. Collectively, the three studies inform future research and practice in the area of STEM standards-based reform initiatives by highlighting the impact of implementation efforts across multiple disciplines and settings. Researchers and practitioners may use the research design, curriculum framework, instructional practices, assessment techniques, and results and conclusions of these studies to advance their own research and practice.
University of Minnesota Ph.D. dissertation. May 2013. Major:Education, Curriculum and Instruction. Advisor: Dr. Frances P. Lawrenz. 1 computer file (PDF); vi, 173 pages, appendices A-F.
Flynn, Mary Leslie.
STEM standards-based reform initiatives: the impact on student learning and the curricular, instructional, and assessment practices of teachers.
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