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Collaborative Inquiry with Technology in Secondary Science Classrooms: Professional Learning Community Development at Work

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Title: Collaborative Inquiry with Technology in Secondary Science Classrooms: Professional Learning Community Development at Work
Author(s): Harnisch, Delwyn; Comstock, Sharon; Bruce, Bertram C.
Subject(s): Collaboration, Information and Communication Technologies in Education Science education k-12 teachers Graduate student inquiry-based learning GK-12 Mentoring
Abstract: The development of critical scientific literacy in primary and secondary school classrooms (AAAS, 1993) requires authentic inquiry (NRC, 2000) with a basis in the real world. Pairing scientists with educators and employing informatics and visualization tools are two successful ways to achieve this. This paper is based on rich data collected over eight years from middle and high school chemistry, physics, biology, vocational, social studies, engineering, mathematics, computer science, and environmental studies classrooms across Illinois. Situated, longitudinal, external evaluation reveals strategies for successful—and significant—technology integration with demonstrable impact on science learners. Conclusions from the data are: (1) Collaboration within teams composed of graduate students and faculty from the university and cooperating schools influences the degree of sustainable and transformative change in the classroom; (2) When teachers, scientists, and students feel supported by their institutions, meaningful inquiry occurs; (3) Technologies have long-term impact when they are utilized for authentic problem solving, creating engaging experiences for both students and teachers; (4) Sustainability and scalability can be achieved at and between institutions where teaming, tools, and inquiry are allowed to develop. This research was conducted as part of the National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Teaching Fellows in K-12 Education (GK-12) Program at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign (; Jakobsson & Braatz, 2000; Bievenue, 2005).
Issue Date: 2010-10-22
Citation Info: Harnisch, Delwyn L.; Comstock, Sharon L.; & Bruce, Bertram C. (2010, October 24). Collaborative inquiry with technology in secondary science classrooms: Professional learning community development at work. In Ali Akdemir & Oktay Koç (Eds.), World Universities Congress Proceedings (pp. 922-926). Çanakkale, Turkey: Çanakkale Onsekiz Mart University. [ISBN: 978-605-4222-02-7]
Genre: Presentation / Lecture / SpeechConference Paper / Presentation
Type: Text
Language: English
Publication Status: unpublished
Peer Reviewed: is peer reviewed
Sponsor: National Science Foundation
Date Available in IDEALS: 2010-10-25

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