The POD Project: Harnessing the Power of Data
This project increases (STEM) skills through problem-based learning modules in which 9-12 grade students solve problems through data collection and analysis utilizing geospatial technologies. Professional development is provided for 40 secondary teachers in Career and Technical Education (CTE), mathematics, and science. Participants and researchers then examine the effectiveness of the modules on the learning and science and technology efficacy of 800 secondary students. The project has five objectives. 1. Increase higher-level technology integration, database use and management, spatial thinking, and web interface skills of teacher participants. 2. Increase teacher participant pedagogical content knowledge in science, data analysis, and spatial thinking skills. 3. Provide an opportunity for teachers to develop and implement their own problem-based teaching modules in their classrooms. 4. Increase data analysis, critical thinking, and spatial thinking skills of students in grades 9-12. 5. Expose 9-12 grade students to STEM content and careers and encourage students to participate in STEM classes. The project will utilize the facilities of Northern Arizona University, especially the Geospatial Research and Information Laboratory (GRAIL). Deliverables include three modules created using the Legacy Cycle (Schwarz and Bransford) on analysis of temperature data. Each of the 40 teachers will create a curriculum module that can be shared. Research on the educational model will be disseminated through professional meetings and journals.