STEMTEC Evaluation Report For Year 4
The Year 4 evaluation of STEMTEC was extremely comprehensive, involving surveys of students and faculty, interviews with faculty and campus coordinators, analysis of course evaluation data, and classroom observations. In the final chapter of this report we provide a brief summary and some recommendations. In this Executive Summary, we briefly describe some of the most pertinent findings.
1) STEMTEC has had a positive impact on reinvigorating science and math teaching on college campuses
results conclusively indicate that STEMTEC has had a positive effect on
math and science teachers to reform their teaching to facilitate
learning. The faculty survey,
student surveys, the campus coordinator interviews, and the classroom
observations all provided data that the STEMTEC teaching philosophy is being
successfully applied in STEMTEC classrooms. For example:
· A survey of STEMTEC faculty found that all of the responding faculty were using STEMTEC advocated teaching and assessment practices with 63% using them “to a great extent.”
· The faculty survey also revealed that 85% of STEMTEC faculty have their students working in pairs or small groups more often than before STEMTEC; 70% are using more whole class discussions, and 61% are incorporating more hands-on activities.
· STEMTEC faculty rated the support offered by STEMTEC in a very positive light. All respondents reported that the course redesign and development was very good (85%) or good (15%). Ongoing course support was rated very good (50%) or good (38%) by the majority of respondents.
· Systematic classroom observations found that hands-on activities, teacher interaction with students, small group discussions, and writing work are being implemented in STEMTEC classrooms. Results of the student survey supported this finding. Seventy-five percent of student respondents indicated that they worked in small groups often.
· Seven of eight campus coordinators reported that the teaching reform aspect of STEMTEC is one of its most important accomplishments. STEMTEC professors’ reformed teaching practices have filtered into their non-STEMTEC courses and into the teaching done by non-STEMTEC faculty, as well. The coordinators are confident that these teaching improvements will persevere, with faculty unlikely to return to their “old ways.”
2. STEMTEC has had a positive impact on the improvement of K-12 mathematics and science teacher preparation
The evaluation results suggest that STEMTEC is providing rewarding
teaching experiences for many math and science students.
The teaching scholars rated their teaching experiences highly, and
campus coordinators thought this was one of the most positive aspects of the
program. In addition, many of the faculty incorporated teaching
experiences into their classes or invited K-12 teachers into their
Other faculty reported that more needs to be done in this area and
requested help from STEMTEC to coordinate K-12 connections.
STEMTEC has had limited success in fostering collaboration among its
The Collaborative is operating on all eight campuses and participating faculty seem to be in touch with the program. However, it appears the program is running well on each individual campus, but that the inter-campus aspects of the program could be improved. Both the campus coordinators and STEMTEC faculty called for more inter-campus dialogue and professional development activities. Specifically:
· Top-down information sharing among the collaborative institutions is in place. Of the 28 faculty members who completed surveys, 88% felt that the mechanism for information dissemination established by the STEMTEC program was good or very good.
· Several campus coordinators felt that STEMTEC is not truly collaborative since there is not much inter-campus collaboration among faculty. These coordinators felt that the inter-campus dialogue STEMTEC created during its first two years has lost momentum.
fallen short of its goal to recruit underrepresented minorities into the
and science teaching profession
STEMTEC is increasing math and science students’ interest in teaching, it
not appear to be achieving success in recruiting underrepresented minorities
into the math and science teaching profession. This finding was particularly
evident from the campus coordinator interviews. The difficulty of this task
acknowledged, but the importance of this project goal warrants further
to try to improve recruitment and retention of underrepresented