Rutgers University proposes a Planning Grant that leverages and expands an existing Research Practitioner Partnership (RPP) in order to lay the groundwork for a project that will investigate best practices in computer science (CS) teacher professional development (PD). The growing demand from companies for professionals with computing experience, and from young adults wishing to pursue CS and CS-enabled careers is driving major investments in CS education. Yet, many high schools are still struggling to deliver rigorous CS curriculum. This larger project will inform efforts to change that. It will help to build the knowledge base needed to infuse high quality, engaging CS curriculum and instructional practices into K-12 classrooms across diverse and geographically dispersed school districts in Maryland, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. The planned activities will include a needs assessment, expand the existing RPP, develop initial research questions, and design and pilot CS PD in the summer of 2018. This ground work is seen as Phase 1 of a four-phase project, positioning the RPP for success in the larger project. Phase 2 will include 2 intensive, 5-day summer institutes--one for teachers that will be differentiated by the participant's prior experience with CS, and the other for administrators aiming to add CS to their school's curriculum. Phase 3 will involve the RPP, functioning as a Professional Learning Community, in providing continued engagement of participants via an online collaborative learning platform, and Phase 4 will complete a summative evaluation. The inclusion of administrators will position districts and schools to develop sustainable systems and processes that will enable them to offer rigorous CS classes to all of their students at the same time they are building the expertise of their faculty. Process and outcomes evaluation will be carried out by an independent evaluator.This award reflects NSF's statutory mission and has been deemed worthy of support through evaluation using the Foundation's intellectual merit and broader impacts review criteria.
|Effective start/end date||4/1/18 → 9/30/19|
- National Science Foundation (National Science Foundation (NSF))