NARST 2017

San Antonio, TX
Apr. 22–25, 2017
Conference Website

The National Association for Research in Science Teaching (NARST) is a worldwide organization of professionals committed to the improvement of science teaching and learning through research. Since its inception in 1928, NARST has promoted research in science education and the communication of knowledge generated by the research. The ultimate goal of NARST is to help all learners achieve science literacy. The theme of the 2017 annual international conference is “GLOCALization and Sustainability of Science Education Research and Practice.”

Saturday, April 22

Strand 10: Curriculum, Evaluation, and Assessment
Symposium: Assessing Systems Thinking through Science and Engineering Practices

Discussant: Susan Yoon (University of Pennsylvania)

Hee-Sun Lee, Daniel Damelin, Amy Pallant, Jie Chao, Charles Xie, Carolyn Staudt, Nanette Marcum-Dietrich (Millersville University: Millersville, PA), Susan Yoon (University of Pennsylvania)

4:20 – 5:50 PM, Hyatt Bonham D

The purpose of this symposium is to bring together four projects that have developed various approaches to assess student thinking involved in systems and system models, one of the seven crosscutting concepts listed in the Next Generation Science Standards. These projects incorporated systems thinking assessments as part of science and engineering practices such as developing and using models, constructing explanations, using computational thinking, and designing engineering solutions. This array of projects will provide the breadth and depth necessary to generate pedagogical and academic interests in designing and implementing systems thinking assessments in terms of (1) how to conceptualize systems thinking in the context of a science practice, (2) how to design assessment tasks and instruments to collect data from students, (3) how to determine students’ performance levels (i.e., scoring), and (4) how to interpret assessment data in relation to other attributes of instruction.

Technical and Conceptual Challenges for Students Designing Systems Models
Daniel Damelin

Explaining Environmental Systems Based on Stocks, Flows, and Loops
Hee-Sun Lee, Amy Pallant

Embedding Computational Thinking into Middle School Science Classrooms
Carolyn Staudt, Nanette Dietrich (Millersville University)

Assessing Systems Thinking Using a Design Improvement Task and CAD Logs
Jie Chao, Charles Xie

Sunday, April 23

Strand 10: Curriculum, Evaluation, and Assessment
Related Paper Set: Supporting Secondary Students’ Modeling Practice Using a Web-based Modeling Tool

Presider: Joseph S. Krajcik (Michigan State University)

1:15 – 2:45 PM, HBG Convention Center 006C

This related paper set describes the development and uses of a modeling tool designed to scaffold students when constructing dynamic models. As a collection, the papers promote our understanding of the teaching and learning of modeling by secondary science students and present the potential and challenges of implementing the modeling tool and supporting teaching materials. We discuss the development process and initial implementation results of an online modeling tool and associated Project Based Learning (PBL) materials. The tool aligns with three-dimensional learning, described in the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), aiming to support secondary science students in making sense of phenomena using disciplinary core ideas, crosscutting concepts (in particular, “systems and system models” and “cause and effect”), and scientific and engineering practices (especially “developing and using models”).

Designing a Systems Modeling Tool That is Accessible to Secondary Students
Daniel Damelin, Joseph S. Krajcik (Michigan State University), William Finzer

A Collaborative Model for the Development of NGSS-aligned Units that Incorporates Student Model Building
Steven Roderick

Explanations and Relationships in Students’ Mental and External Models
Li Ke (Michigan State University), A. Lynn Stephens (University of Massachusetts)

Using Technologies to Support Middle School Students in Building Models of Stream Water Quality
Ann M. Novak (Greenhills School)

Using a Modeling Tool and Project-based Learning Materials to Promote Students’ Classroom Engagement
Tom Bielik (Michigan State University), Sebastian T. Opitz (Michigan State University)

Strand 12: Educational Technology Designing for Learning

Presider: Joshua A. Ellis (Michigan Technological University)

10:15 – 11:45 AM, HBG Convention Center 006B

Evidence-centered Design & Usability Analysis: An Iterative Design Approach to a Genetics Digital Learning Environment
Eric N. Wiebe (North Carolina State University), James H. Creager (North Carolina State University), Osman Aksit (North Carolina State University), Katherine Chesnutt (North Carolina State University), Bita Akram (North Carolina State University), Bradford Mott (North Carolina State University), James C. Lester, (North Carolina State University), Frieda Reichsman, Chad Dorsey

Strand 12: Educational Technology Virtual and Augmented Reality

Presider: Len Annetta (East Carolina University)

1:15 – 2:45 PM, Hyatt Crockett AB

Designing Gestures to Control a Simulation for the Causes of Seasons
Nathan Kimball, Christina Silliman (University of Illinois, Urbana Champaign), Robb Lindgren (University of Illinois, Urbana, Champaign)

Our study investigates the role of body movement or gestures of the hands in the development of students’ reasoning with difficult science concepts, particularly concepts that underlie phenomena that have unseen structures and unobservable mechanisms. One such phenomena, and our focus here, is the cause of the seasons, a complex and unobservable system involving the Earth’s tilt and the consequential variation of the angle of direct sunlight across a point on the Earth’s surface throughout year. This study has two overarching goals. The first goal is to identify gestures that support the development of causal explanations of this phenomenon. The second goal seeks to apply gestures that are helpful in building explanations to the control of a computer simulation of the Earth-sun system using gesture-input technologies. This paper will focus on the second goal by examining the gesture-based control of our seasons simulation. We will describe our rationale for design as informed by data from students and how we have reconciled our findings about generative explanatory gestures with the limitations of gesture-input technologies. We will discuss our findings from data collected from student use.

Strand 12: Educational Technology Poster Session B

4:15 – 5:15 PM, Hyatt Texas Ballroom A, B, and C

Using Field and Online Technologies to Learn Watershed Modeling
Nanette Dietrich (Millersville University), Carolyn Staudt, Steven Kerlin (Northern Kentucky University)

Monday, April 24

Strand 2: Science Learning: Contexts, Characteristics and Interactions
Argumentation Interventions

Presider: Annemarie Palincsar (University of Michigan)

4:15 – 5:45 PM, HBG Convention Center 007A

Technology-enabled Real-time Scaffolding for Improving Secondary School Students’ Written Scientific Argumentation about Complex Systems
Hee-Sun Lee, Amy Pallant, Ou Lydia Liu (Educational Testing Service)

Seamless integration of scientific argumentation into classroom teaching is essential but difficult to achieve. Most needed is a mechanism by a more knowledgeable other to scaffold students while they are constructing a scientific argument. We developed an automated feedback system that (1) diagnoses students’ arguments through an automated scoring engine based on natural language processing algorithms, (2) is programmed to provide students with tailored feedback matching students’ current performance, and (3) is built on a software architecture that connects students’ computer monitors, a curriculum server, and an automated scoring engine server within a very short time frame, i.e., less than five seconds. We embedded the feedback system in an online curriculum module teaching climate change. This study addresses how students improved their scientific arguments when this automated feedback system was fully deployed in real time.

Tuesday, April 25

Strand 12: Educational Technology Related Paper Set: Studying Science and Engineering Learning using Design and Simulation Technologies

Presider: Senay Purzer (Purdue University)

Discussants: Alejandra Magana (Purdue University), Jennifer Chiu (University of Virginia), Joyce Massicotte, Mitchell Zielinski (Purdue University)

8:30 – 10:00 AM, Hyatt Seguin AB

Empowering Students to Be Change Makers with Innovative Design Tools
Jie Chao, Charles Xie, Corey Schimpf, Joyce Massicotte, Saeid Nourian

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