COMPONENTS OF AN EFFECTIVE ATE ANNUAL PROGRESS REPORT

 

Annual reports provide a mechanism for NSF-supported projects to inform NSF via a comprehensive yearly report about project activities and impact. Program officers use these reports to learn about project  activities, monitor progress the project is making relative towards its goals and objectives, and provide feedback to projects. We also use this information as we analyze program impact and produce our own reports. Annual progress reports are required as a condition of all NSF awards; however, the FastLane template was created for the Research Directorates. It is often difficult for education projects to know where to input important information. We hope you will find this document useful as you prepare your annual report. (Note: For the purpose of this document, project means project or center.)

 

You must type or copy-and-paste information into the relevant text boxes of the FastLane report template. Attached PDF files should be used only for certain types of information, such as evaluation reports, confidential information, charts and graphs, pictures, and news articles.

 

Continuation Awards: A continuation award requires a satisfactory annual report before the next year's funds are released. Reports for these awards are due March 31 of each year unless special arrangements are made with your program officer. We know that in some cases this is an earlier date than the report submission date specified in the ATE solicitation or the Grant Proposal Guide. NSF requires us to commit annual funds no later than the beginning of July. To allow program officers time to read and respond to your report, the ATE program cannot allow you an extension beyond May 31. (Note: If the annual report is not satisfactory or sufficient progress is not being made, NSF can delay the funding increment, reduce it, or withhold it.)

Standard Awards: The report is due 90 days before the anniversary date of your award.

 

Part I. Participants: Include in this section only those people and organizations that have made major contributions to the project or spent significant time on the project. What people have worked on your project? What other organizations have been involved as partners? Have you had other collaborators or contacts?

 

Major contributors to the TBR-Teacher Preparation Partnership:

Mr. Chuck English, Independent Science Education Consultant

Dr. Senta Raizen, WestEd, Washington, D.C.

Dr. Kathleen Lynch Davis, Appalachian State University,

Dr. Steve Robinson, Professor of Physics, Tennessee Technological University

Ms. Andrea Wentworth, doctoral student in science education, University of Tennessee Knoxville

Ms. Audrey Williams, Technology Specialist, Pellissippi State Technical Community College

Dr. Terry Lashley, Assistant Professor of Education, Tennessee Technological University, former Director of Appalachian Rural Systemic Initiative and University of Tennessee Director for the NSF Appalachian Math/Science Partnership(MSP) Project; current PI for the Tennessee MSP East Tennessee Science Partnership Project. Mr. Garry Pennycuff, Ms. Yolanda Sankey, and Dr. Kathleen Affholter, TBR-TP participants, are all area leaders in the MSP project.

Mr. Joel Zachry and Ms. Kathy Zachry, and Ms. Susan Pearson, Local naturalists.

Dr. Don Byerly, University of Tennessee, Department of Geology, retired.

Dr. Al, Hazari, Department of Chemistry, University of Tennessee-Knoxville.

Ms. Pam Stidham, Mathematics Specialist, Kingsport City Schools, TN.

Dr. Vicki Metzgar, Associate Director, Center for Science Outreach, Vanderbilt University.

Dr. Ellen Keene, Pellissippi State Technical Community College.

Dr. Ann Kronk, Pellissippi State Technical Community College.

 

 

 

 

Dr. Richard Audet, Associate Professor of Teacher Education, Roger Williams University and Ms. Linda Jordan, Tennessee State Science Coordinator; producers of the CD, Tennessee’s Next

Generation Tools for Teaching Standards-Based Science in the Twenty-first Century.

Dr. Scott Eddins,  Tennessee State Mathematics Coordinator.

Dr. Jack Rhoton, Teacher Education Science Coordinator, East Tennessee State University

Dr. Dovie Kimmins, Associate Professor Mathematical Sciences, Middle Tennessee State University

Dr. Gary Skolits, Project Evaluator, University of Tennessee-Knoxville

 

Part II.  Activities and Findings (If Part II, Sections 1 - 4, is drafted using a word processor, it should be approximately 6 to 10 pages in length. You should type or copy-and-paste the relevant section into the appropriate FastLane text box. The Executive Summary should be approximately one page of this total.)

    

     Section 1:  Research and Education Activities

1. Executive Summary:  The Executive Summary includes:

·         A brief overview of your project.

·         A short description of major accomplishments.

·         The number of faculty and students you have impacted directly or indirectly and how they were impacted (students in ATE classes, internships, faculty workshops, materials, etc.).

·         Specific measures of the effectiveness of your activities on students, faculty, and employers. (What difference has your project made and how do you know?)

   In the second year of the TBR-TP project we are continuing to address teacher education among the Tennessee Board of Regents (TBR) System schools in the Eastern portion of Tennessee. 

Originally this project included seven community colleges and two four-year universities from the TBR system participating. Those schools are as follows: Northeast State CC, East Tennessee State University, Walters State CC, Roane State CC, Tennessee Technological University, Motlow State CC, Chattanooga State Technical CC, Cleveland State CC, and Pellissippi State Technical CC. After subsequent discussion, Cleveland State Community College opted not to participate in this project.

   As I wrote in the annual report last year, “This project turned out to be like a horse race, except that the horses were all starting at different places on the track, but they would finish together.” Well I am pleased to report this year that the field is tightening up and everyone has a much expanded view of the track.

   The development of the specific courses for math, science and teaching and technology are developing nicely. The monies related to this project are being effectively used to promote course development, purchase materials to provide interactive classroom sessions, and provide for faculty travel. With the declining of Cleveland State to participate in this project, additional participant fund became available. These have been used to allow additional faculty from the participating schools to join the group. This includes some adjunct faculty, which are need by some schools, due to small size, or large course enrollments. As will be discussed in detail later, the ruling by TBR attorneys on the payment of participants also influenced the disbursement of funds.

      Course development continues to be guided by the TBR mandated Associate of Science in Teaching Degree for the community colleges (Attachment 1). The guidelines were established in March 2006 with full implementation to occur by Fall Semester 2008.  Within the AST context, twelve hours of science, nine hours of math and a three hour Introduction to Teaching and Technology course are being prepared and taught to the K-6 pre-service teachers. Logistically this posed no problem for the community colleges, because most courses were created specifically for this K-6 curriculum. Some schools are following the three 4-hour course pattern for science while others follow the four 3-hour course patterns. There continues to be some considerations in the science sequence at ETSU and this will be discussed in detail later. There is some difference in third math course among the participating schools, based on what they feel are the needs of their students.  The remaining TBR point of discussion is the development of disposition forms for all schools. These will be prepared by faculty associated with the students’ specific pre-service teacher curriculum, prior to students being accepted to the junior level of the four-year school teacher education program.

   The professional development plan of the project continues to center around workshops for all participants. These occur in February and May. The pattern initiated in the first year of the project proved very successful and continues to be followed. This means that the February workshop focuses on items with which the participants are pretty much unfamiliar, while the May workshop focuses on discussion and specialization for specific areas.

      Thus the February 2007 workshop ( agenda, Attachment 2) began with an in depth examination and discussion of the National Assessment of Education Progress (NAEP) and its uses. We were led in this by Dr. Senta Raizen of WestEd, and Dr. Kathleen Lynch-Davis for Appalachian State University and Dr. Judy Hector, Co-PI for this project. Dr. Hector put together and coordinated the bulk of this part of the workshop. Certainly this involved brilliant presentations, but it was really good to see the light bulbs start coming on in the heads of the participants. Lots of thoughts, ideas, and possibilities were now coming together. It was great.

   After the NAEP introduction, the participant requested presentations from each school occurred, showing what they had accomplished and where they were in the development of parts of their program. Everyone felt good about what they were doing and saw some new ideas from other schools. This also turned out to be a very effective mechanism to for our guest presenters to get further insight into the total project. After the presentations, we returned to work even more in depth with the NAEP materials.

   On the second day of the workshop, we continued the

The May workshop (agenda, Attachment 3) also started with a set of presentations from all schools. This was most helpful, because this workshop focused on about one and one-half days of discussion within areas and within individual school groups. These discussions were led primarily by people from outside this project. (There were a couple of exceptions to this plan, when there were some last minute facilitator cancellations.) Thus the initial presentation brought focus to the most recent progress by all schools and the facilitators. Each of the discussion sessions (field of study/course areas and individual schools) followed a format presented in template form (Attachment 4). The completed template for the individual schools then served as the backdrop for the development of each schools summary of what they saw themselves doing and where they saw themselves going for the coming year. This information for each school was subsequently presented to the group.

   Finally there was a group discussion period in which all schools presented ideas and reviewed ideas for the project workshops in the coming year. At this time other opportunities for project participants were also reviewed.

 

2.      Describe what was proposed to be done during the reporting period and explain any differences (e.g., changes in schedule, small modifications in the project). In particular, describe enhancement and development activities for college faculty and secondary school teachers; processes used for developing, testing, and validating materials; processes used for recruiting students, including those from underserved populations; activities and classes for students; and involvement of industry in your project.

   According to our original timeline (Attachment 5) for this project, we completed fourteen out of eighteen items which were planned. The most significant differences were not doubt related to some of the suggested logistics. For example, it had been anticipated that Two-Way Audio/Video meetings would be held regularly among the participating schools. Because of the diversity among schools in terms of where each school was in its implementation, this was found not to be very feasible. This was coupled with the problem of what can actually be considered a good development. That is, four of the six community colleges have been able to at least begin expansion of the fruits of this project to their branch campuses. This pretty much uncoupled possible live interactions among participating faculty. The project management team and the campus coordinators continue to communicate regularly via email.

   Our second timetable discrepancy was in the area of related to the timing of course initiation. As we discovered last year, not all schools started at the same point and some had much more complex processes for new course approval (PSTCC can do this in about two weeks, a couple of other schools literally require two semesters).  Additionally each school spent some time deciding upon the science course format, 3, 4-hour courses, or 4, 3-hour courses.

   Aside from those areas, everything else proceeded on schedule.

   During the year, the project PI visited all schools and on most occasions was able to talk directly with the Chief Academic Officers. It was great to see the support that the CAO’s had for the project. On one occasion in particular, the campus coordinator had stepped down due to illness within the family. The CAO made sure that a meeting was quickly convened and a replacement named to that progress remained on track. At another school it was very apparent that a concerted effort was being made to recruit minority students. Publicity about the teacher education program was being posted in civic center located in areas with high minority populations and some churches were interested in distributing teacher education program related information. In talking with the CAO’s and project participants in these visits, this PI also made certain to review items brought to the attention of the project management team by the National Visiting Committee, and Project Evaluator, Dr. George Vaughn.

   From the previous workshops (February and May, 2006), it appeared that a good pattern emerged. For the February workshops, participants would be introduced to specific new items related that spanned both math and science, while in May much more time would be spent with individual information, exploration and discussion related to specific field and courses. At the same time, feedback from the campus coordinators indicated that schools were feeling quite good about their accomplishments and would like some time in February to report on their successes. And although healthy discussions have taken place in the general sessions of each workshop, the consensus is that the February/May combination is the best plan.

   With this format in mind it was decided that the February workshop) would have two components. First each school would have twenty minutes for a presentation related to what they had done since last May. Most school chose to do w PowerPoint presentation and they were quite enlightening.

These were followed by an in depth discussion of National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP). Sometimes referred to as the nation’s report card, this information source provides a swath of teaching materials and processes that our participants could only have dreamed about until they saw it. Project Co-PI Dr. Judy Hector planned and coordinated the NAEP effort. We were extremely fortunate to have Dr. Senta Raizen of WestED and Dr. Kathleen Lynch Davis of Appalachian State University leading the NAEP discussions. Math and science spent sometime together, but eventually broke out into their separate areas.

   At the conclusion of the NEAP sessions there was a general meeting and discussion prior to dismissal. Recalling Mr. English’s comment from February 2006 [“Some of these folks were not happy with each other,” (in subject area groups)], what occurred this time was truly amazing. The participants actually asked if they could break out by subject area at the May workshop, have discussions, and then come back together for individual school discussions. Two things struck this PI at that point. First they genuinely liked each other, and second they realized that they can learn from each other. That coupled with NAEP indicated this was a pretty successful workshop.

   The May workshop now arrives with great enthusiasm. First, the school year has ended for all participants, and second everyone has been able to think about, create, try, rework and/or purchase something for their classes. The participants are full of information.

   As the participants requested, we began with a round of presentations from each school indicating where they were in developing their overall program. This was helpful not only for the participants, but also for the facilitators who would be working with our breakout groups. Again based on the participants comments and requests, two break out sessions were planned for the first day of the workshop.

   The first breakout session were by field of study using appropriate facilitators. The sessions and facilitators were as follows:

            Math with Co-PI’s Anant Godbole and Judy Hector;

Earth Science with Dr. Don Byerly, University of Tennessee, Department of Geology, retired;

Physical Science with  Dr. Vicki Metzgar, Vanderbilt University, and Andrea Henri (nee Wentworth, who worked with the May session 2006), University of Tennessee;

Biology with Drs. Ellen Keene and Ann Kronk, Pellissippi State;

Teaching and Technology with Dr. Mary Monroe-Ellis Pellissippi State.

 

While it has been the plan to use Pellissippi State faculty  minimally in leadership roles, the use of the facilitators listed above was necessitated by a couple of last minute withdrawals by people from other places who had previously committed. All facilitators attended the initial presentation sessions and had previously been provided with background information about this project, including the 2006 Effective NSF Annual Report. In terms of credentials, Dr. Byerly was a long term educator at the University of Tennessee, and was exceptionally active in work related to K-12 education in the state. He promoted and gained acceptance for Earth Science being a creditable high school science course, with established state standards just like biology, chemistry and physics. Dr. Metzgar is also a long term educator working specifically with K-12 math and science education through her work as Associate Director, Center for Science Outreach at Vanderbilt University. Dr. Keene is the program coordinator for biology at Pellissippi State and is in charge of course scheduling for the Natural and Behavioral Sciences Department at Pellissippi State, thus interfacing with all teacher education science courses and faculty in that area. Dr. Kronk has in fact taught Pellissippi State’s Concepts of Biology course. Dr. Monroe-Ellis was one of the creators of Pellissippi State’s Teaching and Technology course.

   The facilitators guided the course area discussions using a templates developed by Mr. Chuck English. That template is seen in Attachment 4.

   After the area break outs, the individual schools reconvened for their discussions. Once again facilitators were present. Those sessions also used the same templates.

These discussion groups received direction from the following:

            Northeast State  with Judy Hector

            ETSU  with Vicki Metzgar

            Walters State with Anant Godbole

            Roane State  with Maggie Phelps

            TTU  with Andrea Henri

            Motlow State  with Ann Kronk         

            Chattanooga State with  Ellen Keene

            Pellissippi State  with  Don Byerly

   It should be noted specific facilitators were paired with specific schools. That is certain community colleges transfer most of their students to specific four-year schools. For example Godbole (ETSU) and Hector (Walters State) were with the schools directly related to the Northeast State, Walters State, ETSU connection, while Phelps (TTU) was with Roane State, which is linked to TTU. At the same time Byerly worked with PSTCC because their newest faculty member was in the earth science area.

   At the conclusion of the individual school discussions, each team developed a presentation indicating what they hoped to accomplish in the next year. The development of these presentations involved some “homework” on the part of the teams, because all of them opted to create materials in PowerPoint. Each team also submitted their completed template from their facilitated discussion. These presentations were made on the third day of the workshop.

   On the second day of the workshop the groups divided by field of study, with the teaching and technology faculty picking fields of their choice. In February discussions some members of the earth science and biology groups suggested that field trips be considered as part of the May workshop. Knowing that well planned field trips are an excellent mechanism for science awareness and teaching, and that most of our participants were lacking in the knowledge of how to pursue this idea, trips were planned for earth science and biology. As mentioned previously Dr. Don Byerly was the perfect resource for work with the earth science group (seven participants). His long standing work with K-12 allowed him to easily develop what was needed for our teacher of pre-service teachers. The biology field trip was conducted by Mr. Joel Zachry (a retired Pellisippi State biology faculty member), his wife Kathy and their assistant Susan Pearson. Mr. and Ms. Zachry are experienced naturalists, hikers and campers, having officially recorded their completion of the whole Appalachian Trail in 2005. Their excursion with the project participants proved to be an excellent experience, as the trip took them to an area of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, an area which would be accessible for six of the eight schools in this project.

   On the final day of the workshop (Wednesday), all schools gave a summary from their final meeting on Monday. Clearly they had worked thorough a number of ideas and processes in preparation for the coming year.

   The group then moved on to a discussion of what they would like to do in the next round of February and May workshops as well as next Fall’s visit by our national Visiting Committee. We also discussed the upcoming Regional/National Math and Science Symposium (MAS2) currently being assembled by Dr. Terry Lashley and her team and to be held at Pellissippi State. Even though this event falls on the TBR 2007 Fall Break, a number of the participants plan on attending. This discussion brought our May workshop to a close.

     Section 2:  Major Findings

1.      Describe the accomplishments and findings for items you described in Section 1, Part 2, including results of evaluations. 

   The major findings from this years activities can be divided into four portions:

            a. Items related to the February Workshop.

            b. Items related to the May workshop.

            c. What they participating schools learned about themselves and each other.

            d. Where the participating schools see themselves going in the future.

The last two items are inherently blended into the discussion of the February and May activities.

   There were two primary accomplishments for the February workshop. In sequence, first was the presentation of information by each school. This approach was good from several standpoints. Each school could now see where they were in terms of course and curriculum development, the establishment of faculty for specific courses, the establishment of specific space for teaching the courses, the development of the project specific math and science courses on branch campuses, and the materials being purchased with project funds.

   Within this context it was most interesting to see that individual schools had chosen their own rotes in these areas. Certainly the activities of ETSU, with its “Habitat” and TTU with its “STEM Center,” have set the pace for everyone else. As will be mentioned later, the Habitat and its founding ideas have blossomed into top notch teacher education planning in math and Science at ETSU. Meanwhile, TTU’s STEM Center, while still in the fund raising stage, represents an equally strong commitment to powerful and creative math and science teacher education. Four of the six community colleges have established specific areas for their math and science courses, but the interesting part here is that three of the four have committed to the development of the curriculum on branch campuses. This type of choice indicates a strong commitment for the future. I was also good for the groups to see that their expenditures were going into everything from classic base-10 and pattern blocks to “Personal Response System “clickers.”

   The second real focus for the February workshop was NEAP. A quick poll at the beginning of the workshop indicated that less than one-fourth of the participants were familiar with NAEP and most of those were in math. Most of those only recognized NAEP as it relates to being “the nation’s report card.”

  The NAEP discussion was led by Dr. Senta Raizen, Dr. Kimberly Lynch-Davis, and Co-PI, Dr. Judy Hector. Using both the NAEP web site and hand outs the following were points of focus:

                  Classroom-level assessments that guide instructional decisions that help teachers                      prepare students for high-stakes assessments.

                  The analysis of  multiple-choice distractors helps a teacher determine their                          relative usefulness.

                  Preparation of users to make informed decisions about the types of assessment to use in          their classroom.

 

   The class (participants) thoroughly enjoyed the various exercises, as they worked their way though the information. (It was also good to see that in some of the May workshop reports, some participants had already begun to discuss and use NAEP information related to their courses.) At the conclusion of the February workshop, the participants expressed the desire to spend more time in their field specific groups. They were assured this would happen in May

   The May workshop kicked-off again with individual school presentations. As mentioned earlier it was great to see participants had been discussing and using information from previous workshops. Once the presentations were completed, the participants moved into breakout sessions by field of study. These sessions were guided by facilitators who were present for the initial presentations, and had received pertinent project information prior to the workshop. The discussions were guided by a project information related template. During these one and one-half hour discussions, the participants were able to have a significant sharing of information related to their areas. The facilitators were also able to contribute, as well as gain additional insight into the overall picture of what was happening in the specific fields. As will be noted later, these sessions simply whetted the appetites of the participants.

   The next set of facilitated discussions were held by the individual schools. Once again a template guided the discussion. The outcome of these discussions was the individual schools’ assessment of where they were in terms of courses, personnel, facilities and materials, recognize who was looking after what items, and what their next steps should be to best enhance things related this project at their school. Each school then took the information from these sessions and prepared a presentation which was given on the last day of the workshop.

   From these two discussions and the ensuing presentations several thing became clear. First, all schools were working toward the goals of the project. In their own time frames, courses were established, appropriate faculty were handling those courses. This included all schools having an Introduction to teaching and Technology course with an early field experience. Designated areas were being developed at all schools for course materials. All schools had established Student Tennessee Education Association (STEA) chapters; and all schools had organized/participated in local or regional Future Teachers Conferences. All schools were working at minority recruitment for their K-6 teacher education programs. All schools were seeing some involvement of in-service teachers in the newly developed courses. And finally, the development of the AST degree coupled with the original articulation connections among the participating two- and four-year schools provides for precise transfer of students to the junior year at ETSU and TTU.

   Coupled to these successes in these goal areas, some other items should be noted. For the first time (Summer 2007), the Tennessee State Department of Education is employing project participants as “teachers” in their summer in-service programs. Previously they typically used their own K-12 teachers. The emergence of the “Habitat,” at ETSU and the subsequent evaluation and changes in their K-6 program caught the attention of Eastman Chemical Company. Eastman has now committed  approximately $1,000,000.00 over the next five years to using ideas and approaches native to the Habitat, for the upgrading of in-service teachers in the Upper East Tennessee service area. This type of accomplishment is very significant, because the efforts and outcomes of this project are now recognized as being good for all stages of K-6 math/science teacher education. Finally, as previously mentioned, the development of K-6 programs in at some community college branch campuses represents a significant commitment to success of this project and was something we had not considered or counted upon. The recognition at all levels of participating school administration, that training K-6 teachers in their areas of residence, using the processes developed in this project is worth a fortune to the future of math/science in the elementary school setting.

   Returning to the process of the workshop certain other items should be noted. Although it was great to have additional classroom ideas and materials presented in the physical sciences, the addition of the geology and biology field trips was another surprising success. The participants left with wealth of materials and ideas about how to incorporate field trips and related items into the courses for the K-6 pre-service teachers. During our final workshop discussions, all field trip participants expressed a desire for similar outings for next May.

  On this same day, the math group took the opportunity to discuss many of the import issues specifically related to their field. The continued examination of the three math courses in the AST Degree was particularly important. The exchange of information concerning the nature of courses at all schools was essential. At this pint, there is no argument over what should be specifically covered, or for the most part what techniques should be employed. They simply need to assess what type of course structure works best for a given school. Fro example, ETSU has found that the first two courses mentioned in the previous section coupled with a teacher oriented statistics works best for the; Motlow State found their students need a more basic introduction course built in; while TTU developed a course aimed at more critical thinking techniques.

   Accompanied by the presentations, the final day of the workshop revealed some interesting lines of thought for further pursuit in the next year. First, while the processes of the Praxis I exam is fairly well understood by a number of the math participants, knowledge within the science group is limited. Part of the February 2008 workshop will involve bringing specific people from Educational Testing Service to do a presentation for us. Coupled with this was the math groups request that a second part of the February workshop be field specific. The sighted the use Geometer Sketch Pad as a typical presentation item.

   Second, now everyone wanted a field trip! In addition to geology and biology, the other math and science participants wanted to explore the possibilities of visiting functioning K-6 classrooms where math/science activities were ongoing. Because this was mentioned for our consideration last year and some implications discussed with our NVC chair, it was suggested that we would either schedule this for a May activity, or work with the schools in this project on mechanisms to get specific project participants out into classroom settings.

   One comment that had particular merit related to the push for K-6 to focus more intensely of reading (writing) and math, thus leaving science on the sideline. A suggested solution was to have a specialist in the use of writing/reading in the area of science. Dr. Mike Klentschy (Superintendent, El Centro School District, California) was noted as a possible presenter for approaching science in this manner. All groups expressed a desire to spend one whole day in the May workshop interacting with their peers in given field of study. Using facilitators familiar with the project along with a guiding template would lead this idea in a very productive direction. It was noted that such an endeavor would include participants bringing textbooks of their choice along with specific items used in their courses( e.g. math manipulatives, specific science apparati). To broaden the scope of this idea, the management team will pursue the possibility of having book reps from companies whose texts we use join us for an evening presentation of their products.       Finally, the State of Tennessee is examining the mechanism of gathering dispositions for prospective teachers. With the growth in the community college teacher education programs within this project, the importance of the disposition plan has become increasingly important. Some time should be devoted to developments in this area to be certain that the two-and four-year schools in this project concur on the handling of the disposition process.

                    

 

2. Describe awards that your project or investigators have received, special contributions, major innovations, news articles about your project, and any other recognition of achievements of the project or the investigators. 

   Through the work of Co-PI Godbole and Dr. Jack Rhoton (ETSU teacher education science coordinator, ETSU received approximately one million dollars for the next five years in grant monies to further develop its math and science teacher training facility to begin working with in-service teachers, K-8, from Eastman Chemical Company. This has been a consistent source of newspaper articles and discussion since the announcement in March 2007.

   Also at a variety of meetings across the state of Tennessee, including TBR functions, the TBR-TP  Project and its participants are consistently recognized. At a recent TBR meeting related to faculty development, this PI was asked directly by some CAO’s what could be done for the remaining state community colleges to bring them up to the same level as the Eastern corridor group. The reply for now is, we’re working on it. Dr. Dovie Kimmins at Middle Tennessee State University has coordinated several teacher education professional development  programs sponsored by Middle Tennessee State University, and consistently issues invitations to TBR-TP Project participants. Most recently she offered a two-day in depth presentation on

            the CD, Tennessee’s Next Generation Tools for Teaching Standards-Based Science in the Twenty-first Century. This was presented by the authors, Dr. Richard Audet, Associate             Professor of Teacher Education, Roger Williams University and Ms. Linda Jordan, Tennessee           State Science Coordinator.

 

2.      Describe additional support from non-NSF sources (industry, academic, government).

Most  project faculty members have made use of funds committed by each institution to travel to professional conferences such as the Association of Mathematics Educators and National Science Teachers Association national conferences. Dr. Kathleen Affholter, PSTCC project participant (earth science), participated as part of Dr. Terri Lashley’s team selected for the education portion of SuperComputing SC06 project and will continue working as part of the SC07 Project. Dr. Affholter’s expenses are covered by the SC Project.

 

     Section 3:  Training and Development: Describe the opportunities for training and development for college faculty and secondary teachers and their impact and effectiveness. How many faculty and teachers participated? How did faculty and teachers improve programs and student achievement as a result of these activities? (Or refer the reader to Section 1 unless there is additional relevant information.)

 

   There were two major thrusts in the area of training and development. First, the participants had an extensive experience with information related to NAEP. As previously cited, This gave them significant insight in use of an additional tool with which to work. Because, most college faculty tend to use multiple choice exam and certainly K-6 classroom teachers need experience in this area, the project participants needed a strong exposure to this type of information. At this point it should be noted that standardized testing begins in second grade in the State of Tennessee. Drs. Raizen, Lynch-Davis and Hector provided exactly what was needed for the 63 participants in the February workshop.

   The second major focus was upon the schools themselves. The February and May presentation sessions coupled with the facilitated May discussion groups provided the needed opportunity for the participants to access themselves and learn from their colleagues. Time was also provided for the individual schools to come together and compare notes on what they had learned from their peers in the field of study breakouts. Truly the group has become a cohesive entity recognizing the power of interaction and sharing. A year ago, they had very little to share, now they are asking for a whole day to do nothing but that. This is a significant change.

   Finally as mentioned previously, as they became able to examine themselves within the scope of the project as a whole, they recognized that it was time for some quantitative assessment. This will be a key point in the 2007-2008 workshops.

 

     Section 4:  Outreach Activities

1.      List project related presentations to professional societies, community organizations, and other relevant groups.

2.      List outreach activities to students, educators, parents, administrators, and others in schools, colleges, and community organizations.

The establishment of the Future Teachers Conferences represents the broadest outreach mechanism by this project. All FTC’s now contact local high schools with information about their conferences and possible high school student participation. As mentioned earlier, minority recruitment is specifically being pursued in the PSTCC and CSTCC areas, where African-American populations are highest. At PSTCC is seeing a gradual increase in our teacher education course enrollments at our magnolia Avenue Campus, which serve the Empowerment Zone of Knox County.

3.      Describe work with industry.

While all groups have been seeking cooperative activities with industries, as suggested by the NVC, certainly ETSU’s connection with Eastman Chemical Company represents the most significant relationship developed thus far.

  

Part III:  Publications and Products: Include here dissemination activities such as books, articles, videos, software, and web sites. Provide your web site's URL.

            Information elated to presentations is now being loaded on the TBR-TP Project’s URL, which  is http://pstcc15.pstcc.edu/misc/tppnsf/. This up load should be complete by mid-June.

 

Part IV:  Contributions

Many of you may not have anything additional to report here, but you have the opportunity to discuss unique contributions, major accomplishments, innovations, and successes relative to

1.      Your discipline,

2.      Other disciplines,

3.      Development of human resources,

4.      Infrastructure,

In the 2006-2007 NSF Effective Annual Report, this PI wrote the italicized statement below, and it certainly still holds true. The difference from then through now is that over the past year, the participants took the information provided through all aspects of this project and applied it to their specific schools. Not only did they apply it, but because of great teamwork at their respective schools, they were able to work creatively and manipulate things to best meet their needs whether those were physical, monetary, or intellectual. As one participant put it, “This project required us to closely examine what we were doing in the area of math and science K-6 teacher education and adjust various aspects of our program based upon what we were learning.” The key words here seem to be that last set, “we were learning,” because this was now occurring in about 70 people, and the collective was putting everything they knew to use, and asking for more. We would be hard pressed to find a more receptive and creative environment.

 

This plan to prepare more highly qualified K-12 teachers who are mathematically, scientifically, and technologically literate in Tennessee was originally stimulated by a Pellissippi State team’s participation in the Phi Theta Kappa(PTK)/ National Science Foundation (NSF)Project, Preparing Tomorrow’s Science and Mathematics Teachers: The Community College Response. The PTK/NSF project brought together a plethora of community college/ university level teacher education knowledge and experience, all to be shared. That project was followed by Pellissippi State’s NSF project, The Math And Science Teacher Education Resource (MASTER) Plan. This MASTER Plan borrowed a considerable amount from the PTK/NSF project, but also drew on successful strategies learned through both of these projects as well the PI/Co-PI's work with Appalachian Education Laboratory (AEL), the NSF funded math ACCLAIM project, The Institute of Inquiry at The Exploratorium, and other activities in which that PI team has been involved.

   One of the best features of the TBR-TPP project is that this informational infrastructure borrowed from the above sources and applied to the TBR-TPP project allowed its processes for specific schools to be very flexible. This was a necessity considering that the nine schools in the project did not have extensive teacher education experience nor had they previously worked with together much as a group.

   The first step in enhancing the teacher education programs in this project was identification/creation and implementation of the most appropriate teacher education program activities. This included development at the management level, and the faculty level.  Once well qualified faculty members from the science, math, and technology areas, are identified, they were well positioned to improve the math, science, and technology knowledge and confidence of future teachers.

   The presence of quality faculty lead to the development of quality courses and programs. As schools began working together, they recognized that program expansion and modification would attract additional students. The community colleges could provide the basic courses, followed by Tennessee Tech and East Tennessee State bringing the Junior/Senior years of their programs to the community college campuses. As the number of teacher education students on community college campuses increase, the organizational structure of STEA increases. This type of increased student collaboration brings out a discussion of what is best needed for the students (i.e. what do they need to enhance passage of Praxis I).

   If we can simply start with what we already know works well, appropriate and successful teacher education programs geared to enhance math, science and technology for the pre-service teachers will move forward.

and

5.      Other aspects of public welfare beyond science and engineering.

 

Part V:  Special Requirements

Respond to the items in this section if they are applicable. There is a link from the annual report site to FastLane Notifications and Requests. For example, you may submit a request for significant modifications to the scope of work or reallocation of funds originally budgeted for participant support. You can see the web site for a complete list of notifications and requests. (NOTE: NOTIFICATIONS AND REQUESTS ARE A SEPARATE FastLane action. Merely including this information in your annual report is not sufficient).

 

Attachments:  You must put relevant information into the appropriate text boxes and ONLY attach PDF files as backup documentation. PDF files sent as attachments are not accessible to the public via the web.  Among the things that are appropriate to send as PDF attachments are:

1.      Evaluation information such as reports from your National Visiting Committee, other advisory committees, and evaluators. These are often confidential or preliminary and not appropriate to be broadly shared.

2.      Difficulties that your project is having that you do not wish to share widely, but wish your program officer to know.

3.      Charts, graphs, data tables, pictures, news articles, and like material that cannot be represented in text-only format.

4.      Documents that are too long to be included in the text boxes, such as modules or short publications.

 

Part VI: DUE Information: The Division of Undergraduate Education (DUE) has a searchable Project Information Resource System (https://www.ehr.nsf.gov/pirs_prs_web/search/) that allows the public to find out more about DUE-supported projects. In the "DUE Information" section of your report, most of the information you have filled out in Parts I - IV will be automatically duplicated. There are a few additional boxes where you will be asked to provide information such as an updated project description, curricular targets, key words, etc.