PhD student Priyanka Agarwal presented her research, conducted in association with Tesha Sengupta Irving of Vanderbilt University's Peabody College, at the 13th International Conference of the Learning Sciences (ICLS) in London, June 23-27. The title of her presentation was "Power as a Lens: A Critical Revision to Productive Disciplinary Engagement." In her talk, Ms. Agarwal argued for a critical revision to one of the most cited and used frameworks in the learning sciences by Engle & Conant (2002), to explicitly attend to power, race, and politics in studies of disciplinary engagement and learning.
ICLS is a major international event, which gathers people involved in all aspects of the field of the learning sciences, including empirical, conceptual, theoretical, design-based, practitioner and policy perspectives
Engle and Conant’s (2002) articulation of productive disciplinary engagement (PDE) highlights problematizing, resources, intellectual authority and accountability as important principles for designing learning environments. Yet, in the years since their writing, the field has advanced significantly in its articulation of power in relation to learning. Students’ disciplinary engagement is not only dependent on how they author, share or convince others of their ideas, but also how such practices invoke issues of power. This suggests a need to revise the framework to engage specifically with what are now readily understood as racialized, classed, and gendered dimensions of learning. In this paper, we bring the issues of power to the forefront to explore the equity potential of the PDE framework. This preliminary move – which centers on the promise of positioning as a principle – is a starting point for the field in working toward a more integrated understanding of power and disciplinary learning.
"The Roles of Transfer of Learning and Forgetting in the Persistence and Fadeout of Early Childhood Mathematics Interventions"
PhD student Connie Kang, Professor Greg Duncan, Assistant Professor Drew Bailey and colleagues Douglas Clements and Julie Sarama have published in the July issue of the Journal of Educational Psychology: "The Roles of Transfer of Learning and Forgetting in the Persistence and Fadeout of Early Childhood Mathematics Interventions."
Although effective interventions have generated immediate positive effects on mathematics achievement, these effects often diminish over time, leading to the important question of what causes fadeout and persistence of intervention effects. This study investigates how children's forgetting contributes to fadeout and how transfer contributes to the persistence of effects of early childhood mathematics interventions. We also test whether having a sustaining classroom environment following an intervention helps mitigate forgetting and promote new learning. Students who received the intervention forgot more in the following year than students who did not, but forgetting accounted for only about one-quarter of the fadeout effect. A small offsetting, non-significant transfer effect accounted for some of the persistence of the intervention effect, approximately one-tenth of the end-of-program treatment effect and a quarter of the treatment effect one year later. These findings suggest that most of the fadeout was attributable to control-group students catching up to the treatment-group students in the year following the intervention. Finding ways to facilitate more transfer of learning in subsequent schooling could improve the persistence of early intervention effects.
Kang, C., Duncan, G. J., Clements, D., Sarama, J, & Bailey, D. H. (2018). The roles of transfer of learning and forgetting in the persistence and fadeout of early childhood mathematics interventions. Journal of Educational Psychology.
Dr. Tamara Tate, postdoctoral scholar, has joined the US Department of Education Award R305A150429, Project 84.305A: Digital Scaffolding for English Language Arts (IES Goal 3 Intervention), administered by Professor Mark Warschauer, Penelope Collins, and George Farkas. The team of researchers, assisted by Dr. Tate during her PhD studies, has been researching the impact of a digital literacy intervention using visual-syntactic text formatting among middle school students in seventh- and eighth-grade English Language Arts classes.
Their within-teacher randomized control trial in a large, urban district with high number of English learners has been designed to measure students’ improvement in reading and writing performance. A previous intervention was implemented over one school year using modified text formatting, digital devices in classrooms, and integrated professional development designed to foster pedagogically sound use of the devices and formatted text. Results from that intervention revealed improved ELA and writing scores for students in the treatment group.
Dr. Therese (Terry) Shanahan delivered a heartfelt address to the 2018 CalTeach graduating class as she prepares to retire from full-time engagement in UCI's CalTeach Science and Math program, (Fortunately for UCI, Dr. Shanahan will be returning part-time next fall to supervise CalTeach students during their classroom teaching experiences.)
June 15, 2018
Yosemite Ballroom, UC Irvine
Dr. Therese Shanahan
There is so much I want to tell you. So much still unsaid.
We have come to this moment in time via different paths, and after this moment, our paths will once more diverge. But right now, we are here together, gathered together for one last time.
Although you have different needs, my apologies that I am not going to differentiate this talk. This is a "one size fits all" talk, but maybe, just maybe, you will hear different things that you can take away with you as you begin the best career in the world: making a difference in the lives of children.
Instead of letting you discover some of the following ideas on your own, I am going to share a few that have helped me in my 39 years of teaching.
In Physical Science 5/Biological Science 14, our Introduction to Teaching Class, you learned about the five Es, the lesson plan template we use to promote student engagement in learning.
In Classroom Interactions, ED 143A, we learned about the five "Practices for Productive Discussion in Math and Science." In Classroom Interactions, we also discussed Liping Ma's four Cs: collaboration, concepts, consciousness, and connections.
Since we are used to numbers of letters in CalTeach, I am going to share Terry's Ten Cs for a rewarding teaching career. Pay attention, because there will be a test later.
To be a happy, successful teacher, you need to:
1. Collaborate: with teachers in your department and in other departments as well as with parents. If you are lucky enough, you might find someone as smart, talented, and generous as Kris [Houston, Master Teacher for Mathematics] as a collaborator. Work with others so that you are working together for the benefit of the children you teach.
2. Communicate: be sure to talk to colleagues when you are having trouble, share your challenges and your successes with them. Be sure to communicate with Kris if you need lesson ideas in math. She is a great resource and is very generous in sharing her lessons.
3. Create: lessons that meet the needs of your students and offer them multiple ways to engage in concepts, multiple ways to represent their understanding.
4. Connect: with your students. Get to know them, their strengths, their interests, their families. It is only when you connect with your students on a personal level that they will want to learn from you.
5. Challenge: yourselves to be the best version of yourself as a teacher. Do not listen to the siren call of your colleagues in the teachers' room as they complain about Common Core Math and NGSS. You know that the students learn best when they are active, when they are talking to each other. So, continue to strive for greatness in yourself and in your students. Keep our CalTeach vision of good teaching in your brain and in your heart.
6. Choose: to have a positive mindset. You can do great things as a teacher as long as you see possibilities for yourself and your students. Don't be discouraged or defeated. At the same time, choose to have balance in your lives. Rest. Play. Eat well. Take care of your bodies. Spend time with your family and friends so that you keep your batteries charged.
7. Commit: to excellence, which is not a destination, but a way of being, every day.
8. Continue: to be life-long learners. Continue your membership in your professional organization: NCTM or NSTA. Go to conferences. Be intentional in the professional development that you attend. Get the most out of good ideas that others share with you and find ways to incorporate these into your lessons. Learn from your students--in the end, they are your best teachers.
All of the above have been verbs, but here is a noun:
9. Comedy: laugh often, laugh at yourself, laugh in the face of hardship. Laugh in good times and in bad. The chemicals that laughing releases in your brain are good for you. Research shows that laughing out loud is especially beneficial.
Finally, here is a two-fer.
10. Stay Calm and Carry-on: you have shown Kris and me that you are going to be effective teachers. When you get stuck, think: What would Kris do? What would Terry do? Do that and you probably will not go wrong.
Teaching is not a job. It is a way of life. Kris will tell you she gets great ideas for lessons while driving to work. I get mine when I take a shower and sometimes when I am just waking up. When you are a teacher, you cannot turn off your brain. You are always searching for phenomena or teaching ideas while you are hiking or grocery shopping.
Finally, it has been a joy to be with you the last few years watching you grow into being the best teachers you can be at this moment in time. I am excited for you to begin your new journey. It definitely will be a roller coaster ride for you with many highs and lows. This is hard, but you can do hard things.
Oh, and the test I promised you? That is coming the day you walk into your own classroom.
Good luck. I will carry you in my heart from this moment forward.
Now, let's CELEBRATE!
"Leveraging Analysis of Students’ Disciplinary Thinking in a Video Club to Promote Student-Centered Science Instruction"
Alumna Tara Barnhart (Assistant Professor, CSU Fullerton) and Associate Professor Elizabeth van Es have published in CITE (Contemporary Issues in Technology and Teacher Education): "Leveraging Analysis of Students’ Disciplinary Thinking in a Video Club to Promote Student-Centered Science Instruction."
Recent policy reports and standards documents advocate for science teachers to adopt more student-centered instructional practices. Four secondary science teachers from one school district participated in a semester-long video club focused on honing attention to students’ evidence-based reasoning and creating opportunities to make students’ reasoning visible in practice. Although all participants expressed value in attending to students’ ideas and shifting autonomy to students in the classroom, they experienced varying levels and types of integration in their practice. Analysis revealed that teachers’ goals and commitments influenced the incremental ways in which participants integrated learning from the video club. Sustained and substantial changes to practice likely require support through multiple cycles of shifting visions of what is possible, coupled with collaborative attempts to work through challenges of implementation.
Barnhart, T., & van Es, E. (2018). Leveraging analysis of students’ disciplinary thinking in a video club to promote student-centered science instruction. Contemporary Issues in Technology and Teacher Education, 18(1), 1-18.
"The Roles of Teachers, Classroom Experiences, and Finding Balance: A Qualitative Perspective on the Experiences and Expectations of Females Within STEM and Non-STEM Careers"
Alumnae Meeta Banerjee (CSUN), Katerina Schenke (UCLA), Arena Lam (WestEd), and Distinguished Professor Jacquelynne Eccles have published in the International Journal of Gender, Science and Technology: "The Roles of Teachers, Classroom Experiences, and Finding Balance: A Qualitative Perspective on the Experiences and Expectations of Females Within STEM and Non-STEM Careers."
In this article we explore the factors associated with women’s choices to pursue Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) careers. Two 20-year longitudinal studies that were conducted in the United States surveyed adolescents on their educational and career aspirations. Interviews were conducted with a special subset of women when they were in their mid-30s and 40s to understand their decisions to (1) aspire to STEM careers if they initially had non-STEM career aspirations, or (2) leave or not pursue a STEM career if they initially had STEM career aspirations. Findings from semi-structured interviews uncovered three themes that participants used in explaining their career decisions: (1) the importance of family and work/life balance; (2) the importance of teachers and classroom experiences; and (3) interest in, and perceived value of, STEM subjects. We discuss the implications of these findings in relation to initiatives to encourage more women to pursue and persist in STEM careers.
Banerjee, M., Schenke, K., Lam, A., & Eccles, J. S. (2018). The roles of teachers, classroom experiences, and finding balance: A qualitative perspective on the experiences and expectations of females within STEM and non-STEM careers. International Journal of Gender, Science and Technology, 10(2). 288-307.
"Examining the Efficacy of Targeted Component Interventions on Language and Literacy for Third and Fourth Graders who are at Risk of Comprehension Difficulties"
Professors Carol M. Connor and Young-Suk Kim have published with colleagues in Scientific Studies of Reading: “Examining the Efficacy of Targeted Component Interventions on Language and Literacy for Third and Fourth Graders who are at Risk of Comprehension Difficulties.”
Note: This paper is an IES-funded Reading for Understanding study.
Testing a component model of reading comprehension in a randomized controlled trial, we evaluated the efficacy of 4 interventions that were designed to target components of language and metacognition that predict children’s reading comprehension: vocabulary, listening comprehension, comprehension of literate language, academic knowledge, and comprehension monitoring. Third- and 4th-graders with language skills falling below age expectations participated (N = 645). Overall, the component interventions were only somewhat effective in improving the targeted skills, compared to a business-as-usual control (g ranged from −.14 to .33), and no main effects were significant after correcting for multiple comparisons. Effects did not generalize to other language skills or to students’ reading comprehension. Moreover, there were Child Characteristic × Treatment interaction effects. For example, the intervention designed to build sensorimotor mental representations was more effective for children with weaker vocabulary skills. Implications for component models of reading and interventions for children at risk of reading comprehension difficulties are discussed.
Connor, C. M., Phillips, B. M., Kim, Y.-S. G., Lonigan, C. J., Kaschak, M. P., Crowe, E.C., Dombek, J., & Al Otaiba, S. (2018). Examining the efficacy of targeted component interventions on language and literacy for third and fourth graders who are at risk of comprehension difficulties. Scientific Studies of Reading.
"Cross-Language Transfer of Phonological Awareness and Letter Knowledge: Causal Evidence and Nature of Transfer"
Professor Young-Suk Kim publishes with colleague Brenda A. Wawire in Scientific Studies of Reading: "Cross-Language Transfer of Phonological Awareness and Letter Knowledge: Causal Evidence and Nature of Transfer."
Using a randomized control trial, this study examined the causal evidence of cross-language transfer of phonological awareness and letter knowledge (names and sounds) using data from multilingual 1st-grade children (N = 322) in Kenya. Children in the treatment condition received an 8-week instruction on phonological awareness and letter knowledge in Kiswahili. The comparison group received business-as-usual classroom instruction. Children in the treatment condition showed greater improvement in phonological awareness and letter-sound knowledge in Kiswahili and English (positive transfer; effect sizes from .37 to .95), whereas a negative effect was found in letter-name knowledge (interference; effect size, g = .27). No effects were found in reading, nor did the results vary by moderators (e.g., Kiswahili vocabulary). Path analyses revealed divergent patterns of results for different outcomes. Results provide causal evidence for cross-language transfer of phonological awareness and letter knowledge and offer important theoretical and practical implications.
Wawire, B., & Kim, Y.-S. G. (2018). Cross-language transfer of phonological awareness and letter knowledge: Causal evidence and nature of transfer. Scientific Studies of Reading. doi: 10.1080/10888438.2018.1474882
Did you know that, with your teaching certificate and license, you can teach anywhere in the world? UCI alumnus, Alan Phan, shares his experience teaching overseas.
Thursday, June 28, 2018
About Alan Phan: Alan is the Middle School Principal at Shanghai American School (SAS). Before joining SAS, he was the Middle School Principal at the American International School Chennai, the founding Middle School Principal at the American School in Barcelona, Spain and the Middle School Principal at ACS Hillingdon International School in London. He also worked at international schools in Mexico and Belgium.
Alan is a former mathematics and EAL teacher in schools in California and Washington, DC before moving abroad.
"Gendered Pathways Towards STEM Careers: The Incremental Roles of Work Value Profiles Above Academic Task Values"
Distinguished Professor Jacquelynne Eccles has published with colleagues Jiesi Guo (Australian Catholic University), Florenica Sortheix (University of Helsinki) and Katariina Salmela-Ari (University of Helsinki) in Frontiers in Psychology: "Gendered Pathways Towards STEM Careers: The Incremental Roles of Work Value Profiles Above Academic Task Values."
Drawing on Eccles’ expectancy-value model of achievement-related choices, we examined how work values predict individual and gender differences in sciences, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) participations in early adulthood (ages of 25/27, 6 or 8 years after postsecondary school), controlling for subjective task values attached to academic subjects in late adolescence (11th grade, age 18) . The study examined 1259 Finnish participants using a person-oriented approach. Results showed that: a) we could identify four profile groups based on five core work values (society, family, monetary, career prospects, and working with people); b) work-value profiles predicted young adults actual STEM participation in two fields: math-intensive and life science occupations above and beyond academic task values (e.g., math/science) and background information; c) work-value profiles also differentiate between those who entered support- versus professional-level STEM jobs; and d) gender differences in work value profiles partially explained the differential representation of women across STEM sub-disciplines and the overall underrepresentation of women in STEM fields.
Guo, J., Eccles, J., Sortheix, F., & Salmela-Aro, K. (2018). Gendered pathways towards STEM careers: The incremental roles of work value profiles above academic task values. Frontiers in Psychology. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2018.01111