1. Karen Yanowitz
  2. Professor of Psychology
  4. Arkansas State University
  1. Renee Carroll
  2. Project Manager
  4. Arkansas State University

CSI: Creating classroom investigators

NSF Awards: 1031679

2015 (see original presentation & discussion)

Grades 6-8, Grades 9-12

Using forensics as a “hook”, the goal of CSI: Classroom student investigations) is to impact classroom students in the mid-South by equipping their teachers with the necessary skills and resources to implement inquiry-based forensic projects in their classrooms. Ultimately, these classroom experiences should change students’ attitudes towards STEM and may influence STEM career goal aspirations. Teachers participated in a 2-week summer institute designed to teach STEM content knowledge and to develop their laboratory skills using forensic science as an integrative theme. A two-day summer camp for 7 – 12th grade students provided teachers with the experience of organizing and implementing an inquiry-based forensic unit with support of grant personnel and other teachers. Teachers continued to use techniques learned in the summer institute in their own classrooms during the academic year and by implementing a family science night event. Teachers, students, and parents all had positive reactions towards the experience. Students had more positive attitudes towards science, teachers changed their pedagogical styles, and parents became more involved in their child’s STEM education.

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