Marine Technology for Teachers and Students (MaTTS)
The Marine Technology for Teachers and Students (MaTTS) program provides opportunities for teams of teachers and students from southern New England to experience new technologies related to exploring the global ocean, discover pathways in marine careers using these new tools, and develop leadership capacity. These interventions are being evaluated to determine their impact on the skills, knowledge, practices, and attitudes of the teachers and students that are related to the STEM workforce. Partner school districts include high-need schools. Each year, a cohort of 12 teacher leaders is selected to participate in 99 hours of face-to-face professional development. In addition, a minimum of 15 hours of virtual contact using Information and Communication Technology occurs through monthly webinars and live broadcasts from the Inner Space Center (ISC) at URI. MaTTS doubles the number of direct contact hours found to tip the scales toward improved practice in traditional teacher PD. The teacher professional development contains ocean science and technology training to prepare them for working with student leaders during an intensive summer institute. Twenty-four high school student leaders join each year's teacher cohort, two students from each of the participating teachers' schools. The teacher/student teams are in residence at the ISC, where they will build, calibrate, and deploy sensor-based instruments; participate in field exercises and collect and analyze data; and meet with ocean scientists, engineers, and technicians from academia and industry. The project engages the teams over a 14 month period.