The Go-To Guide for Engineering Curricula, Grades 9–12: Choosing and Using the Best Instructional Materials for Your Students

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Edited by: Cary I. Sneider

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    Foreword

    Janet L. Kolodner, Georgia Institute of Technology

    I have a dream. Nearly all our youngsters will graduate high school, and nearly all will be excellent readers, manipulate numbers and estimate easily, be able to argue a point using trustworthy evidence to back it up, make decisions informed by common knowledge, solve complex problems well, understand how scientists and engineers reason and be able to do some of that reasoning themselves, express themselves articulately, work well with others, recognize what they know and when they need to learn more, have passionate opinions backed by knowledge, and appreciate the roles they might take on (and love to engage in) as productive adults.

    By middle school, students will begin to have some idea of the kinds of employment they might want to engage in as adults, and as a result of the experiences they are having in school and at home, they will evolve their interests over time and develop mature passions as they move through high school and beyond, imagining what they might be or be doing as adults, working toward aligning themselves with some of these possibilities, deciding they are interested in some and not interested in others, and eventually identifying how they will live their lives and achieve their goals. Some will be scientists or engineers; some will be writers or expressive artists; some will provide services; some will be technicians; but all will be gainfully employed doing something they want to be doing.

    Plenty of research on how people learn suggests that engaging learners in achieving engineering challenges that they are personally interested in and capable of solving successfully (with help) can go a long way toward fulfilling my dream, which I hope you share. You can play an essential role in your students’ lives by engaging them in design challenges that are relevant to their personal interests and helping them extract lessons from their work about how to define and solve problems and to imagine themselves as grownups who can solve important problems in the real world. A tall order, for sure, but not an impossible one. It won't happen tomorrow, and it won't happen at all if we don't seriously take on the challenge.

    There are many reasons to be optimistic about the role design challenges can play in helping our youngsters grow and learn. First, it is not hard to make engineering design challenges fun, and it is not hard to help students see the value of math and science in their everyday lives if they are using disciplinary knowledge to address challenges they recognize as important. Achieving complex design challenges will not be easy fun for students, but if they are interested enough, they will put in the hard work. And if they see the value in what they are doing and learning and experience the success of learning and using science, more might enjoy science, more might see themselves as people who can engage well in thinking scientifically, more might understand the role science plays in our everyday world, more might become scientists, engineers, technicians, or policymakers who use science, and more might engage, during their adult lives, in thinking scientifically at times when that is appropriate.

    Second, we know that developing deep understanding and masterful capabilities is hard and requires considerable time, but we also know that when somebody is really interested in what they are learning or in what they are attempting to do, and if the expectations are not so far beyond their capabilities that activities are overly frustrating, then people are willing to put in the time and effort. Learning something well, whether we are gaining understanding or learning how to do something, requires time and patience; it requires that we try our best to understand or achieve a challenge, that we pay attention to results and judge what is successful and not as successful, that we work on explaining when we don't understand something well or when we are not as successful as we want at solving a problem, that we develop new ideas and understandings, and that we have chances to try again (and fail again, and so on).

    Achieving engineering design challenges provides opportunities for doing all these things—trying and not quite getting it right, observing what happens, explaining, developing new understandings, and trying again. When a science class is achieving engineering challenges together, the teacher and class can work as a unit to provide the help everyone in the class needs to engage successfully in all these processes. Not every student in the class will learn everything in depth or become masterfully adept at all skills and practices, but engaging together as a class in achieving engineering design challenges makes the classroom a place to help all students achieve as well as they can.

    Third, engineering design challenges provide opportunities to use science, to engage in carrying out disciplinary practices, to engage in engineering design practices, and to engage in 21st century skills. When students get excited about achieving a challenge, they will want to develop the necessary skills well enough to be able to achieve the challenge; if they need each other's advice, they will want to learn how to give good advice and take advice well, and if they are working on a challenge that requires several kinds of expertise or perspective, they will want to learn to collaborate well. When a class engages in engineering design together, there are opportunities to reflect on and discuss how to carry out skills and practices well, and when students are eager to achieve the engineering design goal, they will also be eager to know how to do whatever is necessary to achieve that goal; they will take the time to reflect on what they are doing and work on refining the way they carry out processes if time is set aside for that and appropriate help is given.

    Fourth, we know that learners become more engaged and interested and willing to work hard when they are able to take on agency—that is, when they are trusted to make choices. There are rarely optimal choices in achieving engineering goals; engineers are constantly involved in making trade-offs, and several engineers working on the same real-world problem might come up with very different designs. The context of achieving engineering design challenges is perfect for allowing learners agency. When different groups suggest different solutions, have a chance to present and justify their solutions for the class, and have a chance to argue with each other using evidence, learning opportunities are enhanced for everybody in the class, as each group gets to experience and think about not only their own ideas but also the ideas of others.

    Finally, when learners are allowed to try on the shoes of scientists and engineers, they also can begin to imagine themselves in those shoes. Students who are helped to be successful student scientists and student engineers, as they are asked to do in achieving engineering design challenges, will also begin to develop understandings of the kinds of activities they enjoy and the kinds of work they might want to do later in life. If the set of challenges they attempt is large, encompassing a large variety of disciplines, life situations, and roles they might take on, they will have solid foundations to build on in imagining their futures.

    Everything we know about how people learn and how to promote learning suggests that engaging our young people in achieving engineering challenges and solving engineering problems has potential to promote deep science learning and mastery of important disciplinary and life skills. The NGSS (NGSS Lead States, 2013), in encouraging curriculum approaches that foster learning STEM skills and practices along with science content, gives school systems and teachers permission to move in that direction.

    * * *

    This book documents 12 sets of curriculum materials for the high school years that integrate engineering design as a part of science. Although these materials were developed before publication of the NGSS, the authors of these chapters explain ways that they can be used today to support the NGSS at the high school level. And nearly all will be fine-tuned in the years to come as developers gain further experience with the NGSS.

    Each of the chapters illustrates different ways that engineering design can help achieve my dream, starting with Chapter 1. “The INSPIRES Curriculum” is about a series of modules, designed to be integrated into science courses, or taught together in an engineering design course. Each module focuses on an engaging real-world problem. The chapter describes two of the modules: Engineering in Healthcare: A Hemodialysis Case Study and Engineering Energy Solutions: A Renewable Energy System Case Study.

    Chapter 2, “Active Physics,” is about a full-year high school physics course with a strong engineering component. A different engineering challenge for each chapter provides the context in which students will learn physics principles and transfer their knowledge to the completion of a project. Challenges include, for example, designing a vehicle safety device, a light and sound show, an appliance package for a family driven by a wind generator, a museum display, and a proposal to NASA for a sport that can be played on the moon.

    Chapter 3, “Active Chemistry,” is also a full-year high school science program in which scientific concepts in each chapter are introduced as needed to meet an engineering design challenge. In the Artist as Chemist chapter, for example, students learn various chemistry concepts, such as the physical properties of metals, behind art techniques, then apply those techniques by creating their own artifacts.

    In Chapter 4, “Engineering the Future: Science, Technology, and the Design Process,” students have an opportunity to see how science, technology, mathematics, and engineering (STEM) are part of their everyday world and why it is important for every citizen to be technologically and scientifically literate. The essential science concept of energy weaves through engineering projects related to insulating buildings, improving engines, and designing electric circuits.

    Chapter 5, “Engineer Your World: Engineering Design and Problem Solving” from the University of Texas at Austin, is a full-year engineering curriculum that engages students in socially relevant design challenges intended to develop design skills and engineering habits of mind. Projects include designing a pinhole camera for artists with disabilities, designing safer buildings for an earthquake-prone region, and redesigning a human-powered flashlight.

    Chapter 6, “Global Systems Science,” concerns a set of curriculum materials for high school teachers and students that is centered on critical societal issues of global concern, such as ecosystem change, losing biodiversity, climate change, and energy use, all which require science for full understanding and thoughtful intelligent engineering for solutions. The curriculum is modularized to easily be used in existing high school biology, physics, chemistry, Earth science, or social studies courses to better support the NGSS.

    Chapter 7, “Science and Global Issues: Electricity: Global Energy and Power, features one unit of a two-year high school sequence designed to provide a full year of biology and one semester each of physics and chemistry through units focused on the everyday application of science and engineering to everyday life. In the featured unit, students look at sustainability issues surrounding the generation and consumption of electricity, moving from global issues to local evidence-based decisions. During the unit students build, test, and redesign circuits focused on the storage of electrical energy. In a culminating activity, students meet a challenge to help restore power to an island that has suffered a catastrophic natural disaster.

    Chapter 8, “Engineering by Design High School Courses,” describes a sequence of courses that complete a K–12 curriculum sequence to educate all students about the world of engineering and technology and to inspire more students to pursue STEM fields. The six high school courses range from an introductory course for 9th graders, to an advanced capstone course for 11th and 12th-grade students. Each of the courses is briefly described along with the instructional model, assessment, professional development, and how the course can be integrated into the high school curriculum.

    Chapter 9, “Science by Design: Construct a Boat, Catapult, Glove, and Greenhouse,” is about a series of well-tested, hands-on product design challenges developed long before STEM was hot but which has now become a valuable resource for high school teachers wishing to implement the engineering side of the NGSS. The instructional modules, now combined in a single book, describe how to present these engaging design activities so that students learn the science behind the mechanisms as they develop inquiry and team-building skills.

    Chapter 10, “Nature's Designs Applied to Technology,” begins with an introduction to biomimetics, the practice of applying biological structures to engineering. Sample modules described in the chapter include Fur, Feathers, and Scales, in which engineers learn from animals about how to create the best insulating materials; and biomechanics, that includes lessons about bridge building from animal skeletons, and designing better flying machines by observing the ways that plant structures disperse seeds.

    Chapter 11, “Voyages Through Time and the Evolution of Technology,” is a course for students in the 9th or 10th grade that presents evolution on its grandest scale, from evolution of the cosmos as a whole, to the evolution of planets, life, hominids, and our technological world. The chapter features the last module of the course, which provides a broad overview of technology and how technological change affects society and the natural environment. In the culminating lesson, students choose a particular technology, study how it has changed through history, analyze current needs, and project how it may change in the future.

    Chapter 12, “EPICS High Program,” provides training and instructional materials to high school teachers who wish to use service-learning as a means to engage students in real engineering projects to meet needs in their communities. The chapter includes a number of examples, such as helping organize charitable donations, designing a butterfly garden for a museum, improving an exhibit at a zoo so the otters on display have a more natural living environment, and improving traffic flow in their own school building. Although each project is unique, the chapter explains how they can be designed to help students develop the knowledge and skills in the NGSS.

    * * *

    It will not be easy to make traditional classrooms into engineering design classrooms. Some students who are used to reading and answering questions will balk at having to work hard; other students for whom learning comes easy will balk at having to work collaboratively with their classmates. If you are new to engineering education you will have to learn new ways of interacting with students and facilitating learning. It does not take long to draw students in if challenges are meaningful to them and if they are trusted with agency, but it will take a special effort to develop new ways of interacting with your students.

    If this is your first time teaching engineering, you may not be as successful as you want immediately, but don't worry. As you learn to be a better facilitator of the engineering design process, your students will learn more deeply. If possible, work together with other teachers who are also learning to implement engineering or other project-based activities in their classrooms. And just as your students will be learning a new approach by attempting to solve a problem but not quite succeeding, getting help in understanding why their first approach didn't work, then redesigning, and trying again, it is very likely that you will go through a similar sequence of stages in your teaching. It will take time and willingness to work through possibly frustrating attempts to enact very different kinds of activities than you are used to, but it will be worthy and worthwhile work.

    * * *

    The many chapters in this collection provide advice and resources for using design challenges and problems to promote science learning. I hope that the chapters help readers develop imagination about integrating engineering design and problem-solving experiences into science classes, passion for moving forward to implement engineering design activities in their classrooms, and understanding of the conditions under which integrating such activities into our classrooms will lead to deep learning.

    Choosing which of these instructional materials are right for you and your students is, of course, a huge part of the challenge. But it should be possible to identify likely candidates by reading the first three or four pages of each chapter, then reading the complete chapter for those that are most likely to meet your needs. As you do that, you might keep in mind several thoughts:

    • Good education is not about “covering the material.” Developing deep understanding and masterful capabilities is hard and requires considerable time. It is more important that students spend significant time on a few projects than that they do a lot of brief activities that cover a wide variety of topics.
    • To sustain your students’ interests over time, it is essential for projects to be sufficiently interesting and diverse to maintain your students’ attention. Resources will provide some advice about how to do that, but you know your students better than curriculum developers; use your judgment to help problems come alive for your students, and if you see interest waning, figure out how to bring interest back. It's not hard to keep youngsters excited about things that impact their world and that help them experience worlds they've become familiar with from TV or the movies, but sometimes they need to be reminded why they are doing what they are doing.
    • Judging the difficulty of a task will require your best judgment as a teacher. The requirements of a task should not be so difficult that it becomes frustrating so that students give up. Conversely, if what they are asked to do is too easy, students will not have opportunities to develop new skills or gain confidence in their abilities to tackle and solve really challenging problems. Some materials allow you to modify the level of the challenge to meet your students’ needs.
    • Opportunities for teamwork are evident in every one of these sets of materials. However, some are more explicit than others about how to manage teams and help students learn to work together effectively. What is important to remember is that working in teams should not just be seen as a way of managing the classroom but rather it is important for students to come to appreciate the benefits of collaboration and learn how to collaborate well. Help your students identify the understanding and capabilities they are gaining from teamwork and help them develop collaboration habits that they use and further develop across curriculum units and projects.
    • Many of the materials described in this book expose students to the world of technology and a wide variety of career possibilities. Helping students recognize those possibilities provides a way of keeping them engaged and will aim students toward goals that are part of my dream (and I hope yours).
    • In choosing materials to use in your classroom, remember that in addition to choosing particular curriculum units for the targeted content they address and the interests of your students, it is important that your students experience and appreciate the big ideas of science and technology. Curriculum materials used over a year or several years of school should build on each other in ways that allow learners to see the connections between topical areas and to exercise and develop their capabilities. Help your students see across curriculum units as well as digging deep into the content and skills targeted in each one.

    I offer my best wishes and congratulations to all your efforts! I will be cheering for all of you and looking forward to meeting your many learned and mature-thinking students and experiencing the success of your endeavors in the decades to come.

    —Janet L. KolodnerNovember 2, 2013
    Reference
    NGSS Lead States (2013) Next generation science standards: For states, by states, volume 1: The standards, and volume 2: Appendices. Washington, DC: National Academies Press.

    Acknowledgments

    First and foremost, I wish to thank the authors of these chapters, not only for taking the time to craft a compelling description of their curriculum but also for the foresight and persistence that it took to develop instructional materials in engineering, long before there were standards to support their efforts.

    Recalling my early education that technology and engineering are allied with science but are also different in important ways, I want to acknowledge my early mentors, Robert Maybury, Harold Foecke, and Alan Friedman, as well as the leaders of the National Center for Technological Literacy at the Museum of Science in Boston, including especially Ioannis Miaoulis, Yvone Spicer, Peter Wong, and Christine Cunningham, as well as the many teachers and administrators in Massachusetts who were among the early adopters of what we now call Integrated STEM education.

    I also appreciate the support of colleagues at Achieve, Inc., including the writers of the NGSS, Stephen Pruitt who led the effort, the brilliant and supportive staff, and the members of the NGSS Lead State Teams, for their steadfast dedication to crafting standards that fully embrace engineering as an equal partner to science. The current leadership of Achieve, Inc. is commended for granting permission to quote extensively from the NGSS.

    Thanks also to the extraordinary personnel at the National Research Council, including the committee members and staff who developed A Framework for K–12 Science Education: Practices, Crosscutting Concepts, and Core Ideas and members of the Board on Science Education, especially Helen Quinn, Linda Katehi, and Heidi Schweingruber, who played crucial roles in the development of new science education standards.

    Senior staff of the National Academies Press have also contributed to this work and to science education more broadly by making available free of charge the Framework and NGSS, along with many other important science education reports. The Press has given its permission to quote freely from the Framework and has asked us to publicize the availability of both the free downloads and hardcopy versions of the Framework and NGSS at its website:

    http://www.nap.edu/catalog.php?record_id=13165.

    Worthy of special thanks is the generosity of Jan Morrison, President and CEO of Teaching Institute for Excellence in STEM (TIES), whose major gift provided substantial support for this effort, and to the leadership of Corwin, who also provided financial support above and beyond the costs of publishing.

    I also want to acknowledge Robin Najar and Julie Nemer, my Editors at Corwin, their assistant, Ariel Price, and the many other people at Corwin who made this set of volumes possible, as well as David Vernot, who volunteered to be an additional critical reader.

    Although it is somewhat unusual for an editor to thank his readers, I also want to acknowledge your courage for being among the first to help bring the new world of STEM learning into being.

    Publisher's Acknowledgments

    Corwin wishes to acknowledge the following peer reviewers for their editorial insight and guidance.

    Joan Baltezore, Science Instructor

    West Fargo High School

    West Fargo, ND

    Arthur H. Camins, Director

    Stevens Institute of Technology/CIESE

    Charles V. Schaefer School of Engineering

    Castle Point on Hudson

    Hoboken, NJ 07030

    Kelly Cannon, K–12 Science Program Coordinator

    Washoe County School District

    Reno, NV

    Mandy Frantti, Physics/Astronomy/Mathematics Teacher

    NASA Astrophysics Educator Ambassador

    Munising Middle-High School

    Munising, MI

    Loukea Kovanis-Wilson, Chemistry Instructor

    Clarkston Community Schools

    Clarkston, MI

    Sara Stewart, Educational Technology Specialist

    Washoe County School District

    Reno, NV

    About the Editor

    About the Contributors

    Taryn Melkus Bayles is Professor of the Practice of Chemical Engineering at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, where she incorporates her industrial experience to help students understand fundamental engineering principles. Her research interests include transport phenomena, engineering education, and outreach. She received her Chemical Engineering BS, MS and PhD degrees from New Mexico State University and the University of Pittsburgh.

    Janet Bellantoni served for seven years as a high school physics teacher and administrator. She completed a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering at the University of Rochester, a master's degree in science education at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, and graduate studies in deaf education at Gallaudet University. Since joining SEPUP in 2001, Janet has created over ten new units for the project and revised others. Her work includes leading the development of Issues and Earth Science and the physics units in Issues and Physical Science. She is currently developing the physics units for Science and Global Issues.

    Philip Cardella is a freelance writer living in West Lafayette, Indiana. His writing interests include formal and informal education, sociology, religion, sports, and politics. He has degrees in writing and education.

    Edna DeVore is the CEO and Director of Education and Public Outreach at the SETI Institute. She's an astronomy educator. Her work includes NASA's Kepler Mission, Astrobiology Institute, and Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy, NASA and NSF Research Experience for Undergraduates, and Co-I for Voyages Through Time. She has served boards for the ASP, AAS and Foundation for Microbiology. She has published more than 30 papers on science and astronomy education and presented over 200 invited talks, teacher workshops, and short courses. She earned a BA degree at Raymond College, University of the Pacific, an MA in Instructional technology at San Jose State University, and a MS in Astronomy from the University of Arizona.

    Arthur Eisenkraft PhD, is the Distinguished Professor of Science Education, Professor of Physics and Director of the Center of Science and Math in Context (COSMIC) at the University of Massachusetts, Boston. He is past president of the National Science Teachers Association. He is chair and cocreator of the Toshiba/NSTA ExploraVision Awards, involving 15,000 students annually. His current research projects include investigating the efficacy of a second generation model of distance learning for professional development; a study of professional development choices that teachers make when facing a large scale curriculum change and assessing the technological literacy of K–12 students.

    Cheryl Farmer is the founding project director of UTeachEngineering, which was launched in 2008 as the first engineering education-focused Math and Science Partnership of the National Science Foundation. In her role with UTeachEngineering, Ms. Farmer has led a diverse team in the development and launch of the Engineer Your World curriculum and supporting professional development programs, as well as the creation of degree programs for preservice and inservice teachers of engineering at The University of Texas at Austin. She is currently coleading a national effort to define standards for professional development for K–12 teachers of engineering.

    Alan Gould directs the Global Systems Science high school curriculum project at Lawrence Hall of Science (LHS), UC Berkeley. He has over 36 years of experience developing and presenting hands-on science activities and 22 years of experience organizing and leading teacher education workshops. He is also Co-Investigator for Education and Public Outreach for the NASA Kepler mission, Co-Directs the Hands-On Universe project, Associate Director of the LHS Planetarium, and is coauthor of Great Explorations in Math and Science (GEMS) teacher guides. He is also on the Full Option Science System (FOSS) middle school course revision team. See http://www.uncleal.net/alan.

    Pamela Harman is the Manager of Education and Public Outreach at the SETI Institute. Her work includes NASA's Kepler Mission, Astrobiology Institute, and Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy, and the Voyages Through Time science curriculum. She has served on the steering committee for the San Mateo County biotechnology education partnership Gene Connection and as a National Lead Teacher, WGBH's Evolution Project. Pamela has authored and coauthored 20 papers and posters on science, astronomy, and astrobiology education and presented countless teacher workshops and short courses. She earned a BS in Civil Engineering from Iowa State University, and a California Biological Sciences Teaching Credential from San Francisco State University.

    Mindy Hart currently serves as the academic recruiter for the Department of Technology Leadership and Innovation at Purdue University in West LaFayette, Indiana. Prior to this position, she was the EPICS High program coordinator and has spent time as a high school computer science teacher and K–12 Outreach Coordinator.

    John Howarth is the Associate Director of SEPUP at the Lawrence Hall of Science. A 1995 recipient of the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching, John has been involved in science education for thirty-eight years. At various times he has been a high school science teacher, science curriculum supervisor, and Executive Director for Curriculum and Instruction. He has taught science in Wyoming, Michigan, Malaysia, Singapore, and Brunei. John received his bachelor's degree in biochemistry and postgraduate certificate in education from the University of Liverpool in England and master's degree in educational leadership from Western Michigan University.

    Janet Kolodner's research addresses learning, memory, and problem solving in computers and people. She pioneered the computer method called case-based reasoning and uses its cognitive model to design formal and informal science curriculum. Learning by Design, her design-based inquiry-oriented approach to science learning, is a foundation of Project-Based Inquiry Science (PBIS), a 3-year middle-school science curriculum. In her informal science education endeavors, middle schoolers learn science through cooking and learn to explain while designing hovercraft. She is founding Editor in Chief of Journal of the Learning Sciences and a founder of the International Society for the Learning Sciences.

    Amy Fowler Murphy currently serves as the Chemistry Education Specialist with the Alabama Math, Science, and Technology Initiative at the University of Montevallo. Prior to her role with this program, Dr. Murphy taught high school chemistry in urban and suburban settings for 10 years. Dr. Murphy is a National Board certified chemistry teacher and completed her Doctorate of Education in Curriculum and Instruction in 2012. The focus of her dissertation research was sustaining inquiry-based methods of teaching and learning in science classrooms. Dr. Murphy has been working with the Active Chemistry curriculum since 2004.

    William (Bill) Oakes is Director of the EPICS Program and Professor of Engineering Education at Purdue University. He has been honored by the National Academy of Engineering, the American Society for Engineering Education and the National Society of Professional Engineers for his work with university and K–12 students related to engineering-based service-learning.

    Lee Pulis who earned his BA from Dartmouth, and MS from Cornell University, is coauthor of Science by Design, an NSF-funded curriculum developed by TERC, Cambridge, Massachusetts and published by NSTA. At TERC, Lee served as Principal Investigator and Project Director for several NSF and industry-funded high school STEM curricula. Lee is also coauthor of Engineering the Future by the Museum of Science, Boston. Recently he prepared the Teacher Guides for the Samsung/Scholastic Mobile App Academy. He teaches college transfer lab environmental science online and represents the Museum of Science and publisher, It's About Time, by presenting teacher professional development workshops and moderated online courses.

    Susan Riechert is a UTK Distinguished Service Professor in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Tennessee. She received her PhD in Zoology from the University of Wisconsin. Internationally recognized for her work in the field of behavioral ecology, she is a Fellow of both the Animal Behavior Society of America (ABS) and of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). She is also the founder and Director of the Biology in a Box Project (http://biologyinabox.utk.edu), a collaborative effort with the National Institute of Mathematical and Biological Synthesis (NIMBioS), as well as Co-Director of the VolsTeach Program (http://volsteach.utk.edu).

    Julia Ross is Dean of the College of Engineering and IT and Professor of Chemical, Biochemical, and Environmental Engineering at UMBC. She leads a multidisciplinary research team in the development and implementation of the NSF-funded INSPIRES Curriculum (Increasing Student Participation, Interest and Recruitment in Engineering and Science). Dr. Ross is a Fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering and is the recipient of the ASEE Sharon Keillor Award for Women in Engineering and a NSF CAREER Award.

    Jonathan Singer PhD is Associate Professor and Director of Secondary Education in the Department of Education at University of Maryland, Baltimore County. He has established a research agenda that focuses on the professional development of STEM teachers’ integration of technology to support student inquiry. He has been a Co-Principal Investigator on the INSPIRES project since 2008.

    Greg Strimel is the K–12 coordinator in the Academic Innovation unit at West Virginia University. He also serves as a teacher effectiveness coach and curriculum developer for ITEEA's STEM Center for Teaching and Learning. In addition, Greg is a PhD student in Occupational and Technical Studies at Old Dominion University. In 2013, he was selected as a member of the Council on Technology and Engineering Teacher Education's 21st Century Leadership Academy. Greg formerly served as a technology and engineering teacher and career/technology education instructional team leader in Howard County, Maryland.

    Jean Trusedell is a Nationally Board Certified Teacher with extensive experience working with K–12 educators and students. Her current project is working with the EPICS Program at Purdue University to create curriculum that can be used with students to integrate best classroom practices with engineering design. Previously, she was the Science and Technology Coach for MSD of Decatur Township in Indianapolis, Indiana. Ms. Trusedell is pursuing a PhD in Curriculum and Instruction with an interest in formative assessment and its relationship to student achievement.


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