The effect of a science work experience program for teachers on the classroom environment: A qualitative program evaluation
Wendy Michelle Frazier, Teachers College, Columbia University, United States
Teachers College, Columbia University . Awarded
Science Work Experience Programs for Teachers (SWEPTs) provide an opportunity for science and math teachers to work in research laboratories during the summer to experience science as it is practiced in the laboratory-setting. Through the use of interviews with teachers and students, classroom observations, and an analysis of printed student sheets and student work, the lived experience of a cohort of program participants in Columbia University's Summer Research Program for Secondary School Science Teachers was recorded in an effort to describe the effect of experience in a SWEPT on the classroom environment of teacher participants and student outcomes. Relying on Social Learning Theory and science education reform documentation as a theoretical framework the following dimensions of the classroom were examined: (1) emergent themes that include the participants' perceptions of the importance of technology in the classroom, (2) interpersonal relationships with the teachers at the participants' schools, fellow program participants, research scientists, and students, and (3) changes in epistemological structure, curriculum, instructional strategies, and classroom practices. Methodological and theoretical implications are addressed with respect to future studies, and suggestions for refinement of SWEPTs are provided.
Frazier, W.M. The effect of a science work experience program for teachers on the classroom environment: A qualitative program evaluation. Ph.D. thesis, Teachers College, Columbia University.
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