AMSTI 20Lit 20Review by cioWYmd

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									           REPORT
            ON THE
     REVIEW OF LITERATURE

               ALABAMA
MATHEMATICS, SCIENCE, AND TECHNOLOGY
              INITIATIVE
             COMMITTEE




                Presented
                  to the
        State Board of Education
             October 26, 2000
                                       Acknowledgements

Members of the Alabama Mathematics, Science and Technology Initiative Committee:

Trudy Anderson
Science Teacher
Jefferson County International Baccalaureate School
Jefferson County School System

Mary Boehm
Manager
Community and Education Relations
BellSouth

Patricia Buchanan
Mathematics Teacher
Albertville High School
Albertville City School System

Paula Cannon
Education Specialist
Twenty-First Century Solutions, Inc.

Camille Cochrane
Mathematics Instructor
Shelton State Community College

Gregory N. Cox
Assistant Director for US Partnerships
The GLOBE Program - Washington, DC
Senior Research Scientist
National Space Science and Technology Center
University of Alabama in Huntsville - Huntsville, AL

Ron Dodson
Assistant Principal and International Baccalaureate Coordinator
Hoover High School
Hoover City School System

Anita Dominick-Hardin, Ed. D.
Teacher
South Shades Crest Elementary School
Hoover City School System




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Julie Ferriss
Director of Education
U. S. Space and Rocket Center
Huntsville, Alabama

John A. Fulgham
Administrative Assistant
Brewbaker Primary School
Montgomery County School System

Wilma Guthrie
Science Teacher
Talladega County Central High School
Talladega County School System

Kim Harris
Mathematics Teacher
Eufaula High School
Eufaula City School System

Pam Henson
Secondary Curriculum Supervisor
Baldwin County School System

Tim Huddleston
Director of the Aerospace Development Center
Jacksonville State University

David Laurenson, Ph. D.
Executive Director
Alabama School of Mathematics and Science

Brenda Litchfield, Ed. D.
Professor
University of South Alabama

Sara Little
Mathematics Teacher
Baker Middle - High School
Mobile County School System

Jennifer Lockett
Deputy Director
GLOBE in Alabama




                                               3
Chiquita Marbury
Project Manager
Technology In Motion

Bill Martin
Science Teacher
Fort Payne Middle School
Fort Payne City School System

Alethia Mauldin
Science Teacher
Notasulga High School
Macon County School System

Donna McKay
School Counselor
Clay County High School
Clay County School System

Charles Ray Nash, Ed. D.
Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs
University of Alabama System

Elizabeth Offutt
Professor
Director of Educational Technology Center
Samford University

Keith Price
Technology Coordinator
Alabama School of Fine Arts

Susan Pruet, Ph. D.
Director, Maysville Math Initiative
Mobile Area Education Foundation

Jim Pruitt
Manager
 Education Programs Department
NASA Marshall Space Flight Center

Rebecca Richardson
Assistant Project Director
Alabama Science In Motion
University of Montevallo




                                            4
Shelly R. Rider
Mathematics Teacher
Spanish Fort School
Baldwin County School System

Sandra Taylor
Elementary Teacher
Dadeville Elementary School
Tallapoosa County School System

Mary Thomaskutty
Science Teacher
Demopolis High School
Demopolis City School System

Linda Ussery
Mathematics Teacher
Colbert Heights High School
Colbert County School System

Victor Vernon
Director of Education and Workforce Development
Business Council of Alabama

Joyce Waid
Mathematics Teacher
Locust Fork High School
Blount County School System

Nancy Washburn
Benjamin Russell High School
Alexander City School System

Judy Welch
Elementary Teacher
Wetumpka Elementary School
Elmore County School System

Larry Williams
Assistant Principal
Bibb County High School
Bibb County School System

Donna M. Wolfinger Ed. D.
Professor of Science and Mathematics Education
Auburn University Montgomery



                                             5
Alabama State Department of Education Project Staff:


Anita Buckley-Commander, Ed. D., Director

Steve Ricks, Initiative Coordinator

Deborah Borcik, Mathematics Specialist

Bob Davis, Science Specialist

Martha Donaldson, Mathematics Specialist

John Halbrooks, Science Specialist

Robin Long, Assessment and Science Specialist

Melinda Maddox, Office of Technology and Information Coordinator

DeAnn Stone, Curriculum and Technology Specialist

Lisa Woodard, Office of Technology and Information Coordinator




Consultants:

Ken Kansas
President, Ken Kansas Communications
Former Manager of Communications, Contributions, and the Exxon Foundation
Exxon, International


Malcolm B. Butler, Ph. D.
Program Specialist
Eisenhower Consortium for Mathematics and Science Education @ SERVE




                                             6
                                                           Table of Contents


EXECUTIVE SUMMARY ............................................................................................ 9
     Summary of Activities ...................................................................................... 13

RECOMMENDATIONS .............................................................................................. 15

INTRODUCTION ........................................................................................................ 19

Current State of Mathematics, Science, and Technology Education ............................ 20
            The Third International Mathematics and Science Study.......................... 21
               Findings on Curriculum and Teaching ................................................. 21
       The National Assessment of Educational Progress .......................................... 22
               Findings................................................................................................. 23
       Indicators of Mathematics and Science Learning in Alabama ......................... 24
       Use of Technology in Mathematics and Science Classrooms .......................... 26
               Calculators ............................................................................................ 26
               Computers ............................................................................................. 26

National Reform Movements ........................................................................................ 26
       Project 2061: Science for All Americans.......................................................... 26
       Benchmarks....................................................................................................... 27

National Standards in Mathematics, Science, and Technology .................................... 27
       Principles and Standards for School Mathematics ........................................... 27
       National Science Education Standards ............................................................. 29
       National Educational Technology Standards ................................................... 30

Business/Industry Research .......................................................................................... 31

The Alabama State Courses of Study in Mathematics and Science ............................. 32

Summary of Alabama Mathematics, Science, and Technology Initiative Survey
 Results. ........................................................................................................................ 34
       Questionnaire Results ....................................................................................... 34
       Comments, Suggestions, and Recommendations ............................................. 36

Discussion of Terms ..................................................................................................... 37
       Curriculum ........................................................................................................ 37
       Instruction ......................................................................................................... 37
       Resources .......................................................................................................... 37
       Assessment ........................................................................................................ 38
       Professional Development ................................................................................ 38




                                                                         7
MATHEMATICS ......................................................................................................... 40
Professional Development ............................................................................................ 40

Curriculum .................................................................................................................... 43

Instruction ..................................................................................................................... 44
        Worthwhile Mathematical Tasks ...................................................................... 45
        The Role of the Teacher .................................................................................... 45
        The Role of the Student .................................................................................... 46
        Resources/Instructional Tools ........................................................................... 46
        The Learning Environment ............................................................................... 46
        Analysis of Teaching and Learning .................................................................. 47

Resources ...................................................................................................................... 47

Assessment .................................................................................................................... 48

SCIENCE ...................................................................................................................... 50

Professional Development ............................................................................................ 50

Curriculum .................................................................................................................... 52

Instruction ..................................................................................................................... 53

Resources ...................................................................................................................... 57

Assessment .................................................................................................................... 59

TECHNOLOGY ........................................................................................................... 62
Professional Development ............................................................................................ 62
       What should teachers know to be successful in technology integration? ......... 64

Curriculum and Instruction ........................................................................................... 66

Resources ...................................................................................................................... 66
      Effective Integration ......................................................................................... 67

Assessment .................................................................................................................... 68

Bibliography ................................................................................................................. 69

Endnotes........................................................................................................................ 91




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                                      EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

        In November of 1999, the Alabama State Board of Education requested the development
of an initiative to improve mathematics, science, and technology education throughout the state.
A 38 member committee was appointed by the board and charged with making recommendations
and formulating an action plan to begin implementing the recommendations. The committee was
comprised of K – 12 educators, university professors and administrators, and leaders from
business and industry with a strong interest in mathematics, science, and technology education in
Alabama. A Design Team was also appointed from among the committee members to assist
with setting meeting agendas and to serve as subcommittee leaders.

         The initiative, named AMSTI for the Alabama Mathematics, Science, and Technology
Initiative, set as its mission to improve mathematics and science education in Alabama such that
all students are provided the opportunities to develop the skills necessary for success in post
secondary studies and the work force. The first phase of the initiative focused on reviewing
research and existing programs, formulating recommendations for improvement, and devising a
plan to begin implementing the recommendations on a statewide level. Second and subsequent
phases were visualized as program development and implementation periods that would follow
after the adoption of the recommendations by the Alabama State Board of Education.

        Key to the formation of the committee and to the success of the initiative was the
inclusion of the business community. The Alabama Mathematics, Science, and Technology
Education Coalition, Inc. (AMSTEC) was founded in 1998 as an advocacy coalition for the
improvement of mathematics, science, and technology education in Alabama. It is comprised of
leaders from business, education, and public policy organizations. The coalition has been
highly supportive of the Department of Education activities regarding the initiative. Several
AMSTEC members, including its president, served as members of the AMSTI committee. Two
members of AMSTEC were also included on the Design Team.

         The AMSTI committee met on a monthly basis to survey mathematics, science, and
technology education throughout the world and to relate the information to education in
Alabama. The committee heard presentations on mathematics, science, and technology
initiatives of Minnesota, Louisiana, and South Carolina. A member of the National
Commission on Mathematics and Science Teaching for the 21st Century (Glenn Commission)
also shared the research findings of the commission. A teleconference and a visit to selected
mathematics, science and technology education hubs in South Carolina enabled members of the
committee to better understand the programs of that state. In addition, the Georgia Department
of Education provided the committee an on-line demonstration of its extensive new web site, the
Georgia Learning Connection (GLC).

       Presentations were also given by the National Science Resources Center's planning
organization, LASER; the environmental centered organization, GLOBE; and the state programs,
Science in Motion and Technology in Motion. Presentations from the A+ Task Force on
Teaching and Student Achievement, the Maysville Math Initiative, Integrated Science, and
AMSTEC provided the committee with additional insight into activities and programs currently


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in place in Alabama. The committee also participated in an extremely important session on the
effective use of classroom resources and materials kits. Other presentations shared with the
committee are listed in the following "Summary of Activities."

       Concurrent with the presentations, the committee set to work identifying research
relevant to mathematics, science, and technology education and applied it to the work of the
committee. As a result of initial research, the committee agreed that more information specific
to Alabama teachers was needed. Therefore, a survey was developed and administered to
mathematics and science teachers. This survey is the most extensive survey of mathematics and
science teachers in the history of Alabama. It provided significant information regarding the
needs, practices, and resources of mathematics and science teachers in the state.

        Results from the survey underscored the severe need for more resources, particularly
technology, and for professional development, especially in the area of technology integration.
This survey was one of the most significant and original pieces of research used by the
committee. Though many of the findings regarding mathematics and science instruction were
positive in nature, the survey pointed out a distressing lack of access to resources, including
access to technology, and the glaring need for professional development.

        The committee found many of the nation's best practices are in use in Alabama.
However, such practices are only found sporadically and are not being universally applied or
coordinated throughout the state. The committee felt a need to identify and emphasize these
practices and to devise a system for the universal application and delivery to the entire state.

   In reviewing the research, the committee found that the classroom teacher is the most
important factor in influencing student performance. The committee also identified five
components that play a significant role in determining the effectiveness of teachers. These
components must be in place to assure that students receive the best education possible.


1.) Curriculum

        The curriculum specifies what students should know and be able to do and provides the
teacher with an understanding of what is to be taught. In Alabama, content area curricula are
defined by the Alabama courses of study. Research has found that mathematics and science
curricula in the United States tends to be "overstuffed and undernourished;" that is, that they
contain too much information in too little depth. Recommendations include reducing the
number of topics so that those that are taught are covered in greater depth.

2.) Instruction

       Research clearly indicates that the most effective mathematics and science instruction
emphasizes hands-on, inquiry learning. In addition to producing significant improvements in
achievement, hands-on, inquiry-based instruction has been proven to have positive effects on the
development of higher-order, critical thinking and process skills, on problem solving abilities,
and in fostering positive attitudes towards mathematics and science. Teachers should infuse



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technology into instruction so that it becomes an integral part of the learning experience and
provides students with opportunities and experiences beyond the traditional setting.

3.) Resources

        Without proper resources, hands-on, activity-based instruction is impossible. One of the
major obstacles associated with hands-on instruction is the availability of the needed resources at
the appropriate time. Research calls for the establishment of an effective infrastructure that can
identify, maintain, store, and make available needed resources to teachers in a timely manner.
The National Science Resources Center has concluded that the most efficient and cost effective
way to provide teachers with needed supplies is through the creation of materials support centers.
Other issues that must be addressed when providing mathematics and science resources include
properly relating the resources to the curricula and adequately training teachers in their use. In
today's classrooms, technology must be viewed as a basic resource for teaching and learning.

4.) Assessment

       Teachers must understand and be skilled in the use of a variety of assessments with their
students. While paper-and-pencil tests are important, research also calls for teachers to
understand and utilize performance-based and alternative assessments with their students. Such
assessments align well with hands-on, activity-based instruction.

5.) Professional Development

       Professional development is the mechanism for helping teachers understand each of the
four previously listed components and for linking the four components to assure that students
receive a quality education. Many well meaning educational programs and initiatives fail due to
lack of adequate teacher preparation and support. Research indicates that for professional
development to be effective, it should be content specific, ongoing, and involve teachers with the
resources and strategies that they will use in their classrooms. In addition, research emphasizes
that new teachers need the support and guidance of mentors.

        Based on the foregoing research, the committee recommends the development of a
support system that will assure consistency and coordination in the delivery of the best practices
throughout the state. Key to the plan is the establishment of a series of Mathematics, Science,
and Technology Education Resource sites (MASTER sites) throughout the state. Each
MASTER site is charged with delivering the needed professional development, resources, and
support discussed above to teachers. The committee believes that this structure, which has
similarities to initiatives in other states, makes the best use of our state resources and can result
in better managerial oversight. Each MASTER site will employ a director, a mathematics
specialist, a science specialist, a resource manager, and an office assistant.

        There are three keys to the effective development and use of MASTER sites. The first is
structuring the site for effective collaboration. The site should be organized so as to assure
collaboration among local universities, colleges, inservice centers, science museums and centers,
and other public organizations and businesses wishing to support mathematics and science



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education. Having the site associate with such entities would help provide schools in the service
area access to resources far beyond those at the MASTER site itself. It would also result in
reduced costs.

        The second key is putting the educational materials, supplies and equipment necessary
for effective instruction in the hands of teachers and students. Ready access to such materials
and equipment will provide students with opportunities to engage in the types of hands-on,
inquiry-based activities that are strongly advocated by research.

       Finally, each MASTER site will provide teachers with quality professional development.
The training will be content specific, relating proper resources to the curriculum, and will
provide sustained support for the teacher at the local school.

       The committee respectfully requests that the Alabama State Board of Education adopt
and implement the submitted recommendations as a complete framework so as to assure the
goals of the initiative are met. The deletion of any of the recommendations would weaken the
plan and reduce the effectiveness. The committee further believes that, when implemented, the
recommendations will help ensure that the students of Alabama are provided a world-class
education that will allow them to succeed in the workplace of the 21st century.




                                               12
                                     Summary of Activities

Members from the Alabama Mathematics, Science, and Technology (AMSTI) committee
participated in the following activities, presentations, and visits:

   Presentation to establish ground rules - The committee agreed to consider any research
    brought forward, to avoid personal agendas, and to let the research guide the
    recommendations and implementation plan.

   Presentation on the Third International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) and the
    National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) - Implications for Alabama
    classrooms

   Overview of initiatives in other states - Minnesota, Louisiana, and South Carolina

   Mathematics, science, technology and business/industry subcommittees compiled a lists of
    the strengths, weaknesses, and needs for improving mathematics and science education

   Presentation on certification requirements pertinent to mathematics and science

   Maysville Math Initiative presentation

   A+ Task Force presentation

   Presentation on national standards for mathematics (NCTM)

   Presentation on national standards for science (NRC and NSES)

   Presentation on national standards for technology (NETS)

   Alabama Reading Initiative presentation

   Science in Motion presentation

   Technology in Motion presentation

   Presentation on the Alabama Course of Study: Science

   Presentation on the Alabama Course of Study: Mathematics

   Update on the National Alliance of State Science and Mathematics Coalition (NASSMC)

   TIMSS presentation and video on instructional practices

   Presentation of extracted comments report from the AMSTI mathematics and science teacher
    survey

   Presentation on research and findings by the National Commission on Mathematics and
    Science Teaching for the 21st Century (by national committee member)

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   Audio conference with the state coordinator and local hub directors of the South Carolina
    Math, Science, and Technology Initiative

   Presentation on the National Science Resource Center's LASER program (by Deputy
    Director of NSRC)

   Presentation on GLOBE (by the Assistant Director for U S Partnerships)

   Integrated Science presentation (by the project director)

   Trip to South Carolina to observe operation of three regional hubs sites involved in
    implementing that state's initiative *

   Presentation on the report of data analysis from the AMSTI mathematics and science teacher
    survey

   Trip to Huntsville to participate in the HASP Strategic Planning Institute for Middle Grades
    (in association with NSRC) *

   Trip to meet with University of Alabama in Birmingham research mathematicians to discuss
    needs/concerns for mathematics education *

   Trip to Mobile to observe Maysville Math Initiative *

   Presentation and hands-on exposure to science resource kits *

   Presentation on selected mathematics programs *

   Trip to Washington D.C. to participate in the LASER Strategic Planning Conference for
    Mathematics and Science provided by NSRC (in association with the Smithsonian Institute
    and National Academy of Sciences) *

   Presentation of findings from the South Carolina trip

   Presentation of the Alabama Mathematics, Science, and Technology Education Coalition's
    (AMSTEC) research and recommendations pertaining to business needs and opportunities
    for involvement

   Presentation on the Georgia Learning Connection web site

   Tour of the McWane Center*

   Workshop on how to enhance science literacy for all Americans through the development of
    instructional materials for classroom use. Presented by the American Association for the
    Advancement of Science (AAAS) with support from NASA*


* Indicates that only selected members participated, not the entire committee.

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             ALABAMA MATHEMATICS, SCIENCE, AND TECHNOLOGY INITIATIVE
                              RECOMMENDATIONS


                                                October 26, 2000

     The Alabama Mathematics, Science, and Technology Initiative Committee
recommends the following:

Instruction

1. Focus mathematics and science instruction on understanding and concept development at all
   grade levels. Strategies will address the diverse needs of students and will incorporate the
   following:

     a)        Purposeful, hands-on, inquiry-based instruction
     b)        Active engagement in problem solving, reasoning, and investigation
     c)        Relevant, real-life experiences
     d)        Effective questioning
     e)        Appropriate application of knowledge in novel situations
     f)        Meaningful communication of mathematical and scientific ideas
     g)        Mastery and application of basic computational skills
     h)        Integration of appropriate technology

Curriculum

1.        Reduce the breadth of mathematics and science content to allow time for increased depth
          of student understanding and to eliminate unnecessary repetition.

2.        Develop and implement courses of study for mathematics and science that define
          grade-level knowledge, process, and application standards aligned with NCTM, NRC, and
          ISTE standards.

3.        Identify benchmarks for student achievement in mathematics and science curricula at each
          grade K-8.

4.        Establish alternative learning opportunities that provide intervention and remediation at all
          grade levels.

Assessment

1. Implement an appropriate student assessment program that is ongoing, an integral part of
   instruction, and reflective of NCTM and NRC standards. This program will include varied
   forms of assessment at both the classroom and statewide levels.

2. Align forms of student assessment with instructional objectives.



                                                    15
3. Implement criterion-referenced benchmark tests in mathematics and science to replace
   norm-referenced tests in Grades 3 and 7.

Professional Development

1. Provide appropriate, effective, ongoing, and extensive professional development for
   mathematics and science teachers and administrators.

   a)         Professional development for teachers will include the following:
        i.)      Content knowledge and pedagogy
        ii.)     Knowledge of state curricula requirements
        iii.)    Effective research-based teaching strategies
        iv.)     Appropriate selection and use of curricula, materials, and resources
        v.)      Multiple assessment strategies
        vi.)     Strategies for working with students from diverse backgrounds
        vii.) Technology integration in planning and instruction

   b)           Professional development for administrators will address the following:
        i.)        Understanding the need for effective mathematics and science instruction
        ii.)       Orientation regarding successful teaching and assessment strategies
        iii.)      Enhancing superintendents', principals', and other system and school
                   administrators' technology leadership skills in support of mathematics and science
                   teaching and learning

2. Ensure the placement of qualified, well-prepared teachers in all K-12 mathematics and
     science classrooms. This will be achieved through the following strategies:

   a)           Early identification and recruitment of talented people
   b)           Careful screening of teacher education candidates
   c)           Development and implementation of a mentoring system for supporting the specific
                needs of new teachers, career change teachers, and experienced teachers assigned to
                mathematics or science for the first time
   d)           Incentive programs to attract and retain well-qualified teachers and administrators in
                all schools, especially those that are high-need and at-risk

3. Ensure that pre-service education programs are consistent with the mathematics standards
   promoted by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM), the science
   standards promoted by the National Research Council (NRC), and the technology standards
   promoted by the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE). The following
   components will be included in approved pre-service programs:

   a)      Revised requirements for General Science certification that include increased
           coursework in biology, chemistry, physics, and earth/space science
   b)      Extensive fieldwork, observations, and interaction with students and teachers
   c)      Extended, intensive student teaching experiences with an exemplary cooperating
           teacher
   d)      Coordinated coursework and fieldwork
   e)      Time to reflect on and improve instruction and to collaborate with peers


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   f)     Revised requirements for elementary certification, including coursework that develops
          a deep and thorough knowledge of the mathematics and science that will be taught

4. Promote broad participation in meaningful teacher externships, where interdisciplinary teams
   of teachers from the same school or school clusters take on responsibilities of the workplace
   and formally transfer to their classrooms the knowledge gained through workplace
   experiences.

5. Establish graduate-level certification programs as follows:

   a)     Elementary (K-6) mathematics specialist
   b)     Elementary (K-6) science specialist
   c)     Middle grades (6-8) mathematics specialist
   d)     Middle grades (6-8) science specialist

Resources

1. Provide grade-level appropriate mathematics and science teacher leaders for every school.
   These individuals will have appropriate training and reduced teaching responsibilities in
   order to assist teachers with the following:

   a)       Planning
   b)       Location and use of resources
   c)       Curriculum implementation
   d)       Content knowledge
   e)       Instructional methodologies
   f)       Assessment
   g)       Classroom and laboratory management
   h)       Safety

2. Provide a full-time technology specialist at each school to handle hardware, software, and
   related questions; provide training for teachers; document usage data for assessment; enable
   integration of technology into the curriculum; and work collaboratively with the mathematics
   and science teacher leaders.

3. Equip, update, and maintain all mathematics and science classrooms so teachers have easy
   access to appropriate materials, supplies, and technology necessary to deliver quality
   instruction. Appropriate materials, supplies, and technology include, but are not limited to,
   the following:

   a)       Manipulatives
   b)       Activity kits
   c)       Science consumables
   d)       Science nonconsumables
   e)       Literature
   f)       Related media (videos, CDs, audiotapes, etc.)
   g)       Computers (minimum ratio of one computer for every five students in each
            classroom)
   h)       Internet access

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   i)      Calculators (grade appropriate)
   j)      Software
   k)      Peripherals (probe-ware, overhead calculators, data collectors, graph links, digital
           imaging and capturing devices, palm top interactive devices, etc.)
   l)      Overhead projectors
   m)      Laboratory safety equipment

4. Provide adequate space, including dedicated laboratory areas or classrooms, conducive to
   mathematics and science teaching.

5. Provide a web site that offers mathematics and science resources or links. The site will
   include the following:

    a)     State Department of Education documents that support mathematics, science, and
           technology instruction
    b)     Database of lesson plans targeting course of study objectives (searchable by key
           word)
    c)     Grant information that supports mathematics, science, and technology (searchable by
           key word)
    d)     Business, community, and higher education contacts that are available to schools
           (searchable by key word)
    e)     Schedules for professional development training, workshops, and institutes available
           to mathematics and science teachers
    f)     Postings of local school system positions available in mathematics, science, and
           technology
    g)     Mathematics, Science, and Technology Education Resource (MASTER) site
           information (including a local mentor contact list)
    h)     Status and plans of the Alabama Mathematics, Science, and Technology Initiative
    i)     Links to professional organizations related to mathematics, science, and technology
           instruction
    j)     Alabama Learning Resource Center and Office of Technology Initiatives information
    k)     Research in mathematics, science, and technology
    l)     Other resources available to mathematics and science teachers
    m)     Links to the Alabama Virtual Library

6. Establish business, family, and community partnerships with local schools, school systems,
   and MASTER sites to enhance mathematics and science programs and to facilitate input
   from business and industry as to the skills and competencies that are needed in the
   workplace.

7. Create and make available to educators a video collection of lessons taught by exemplary
   teachers on key concepts, topics and objectives in mathematics and science.

8. Establish Mathematics, Science, and Technology Education Resource (MASTER) sites
   across the state to assist local schools and school systems in implementing the above list of
   recommendations. MASTER sites will promote high student achievement in mathematics,
   science, and technology by providing resources, professional development, and support,
   emphasizing on-site service in the classroom.


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                               ALABAMA
       MATHEMATICS, SCIENCE, AND TECHNOLOGY INITIATIVE COMMITTEE
                 REPORT ON THE REVIEW OF LITERATURE

                                         INTRODUCTION

        Beginning in January 2000, a committee of thirty-eight representatives of K - 12 educators,
university professors, and business persons convened under the direction of the Alabama State
Department of Education to consider ways in which to improve mathematics and science education in
Alabama. This committee believed that technology should play a vital role in this endeavor, known as
the Alabama Mathematics, Science, and Technology Initiative (AMSTI). The Committee continued to
meet on a monthly basis to address the following tasks:

          Consider the strengths and weaknesses of mathematics and science education in Alabama.
          Hear presentations dealing with the current state of mathematics and science education in
           the world, the nation, and the state.
          Develop and administer a questionnaire to determine the perceptions of teachers as to the
           status and needs of mathematics and science education in Alabama.
          Examine promising programs already being implemented in the state.
          Study initiatives for mathematics and science education in other parts of the United States.
          Review research dealing with effective practices in mathematics and science education as
           well as with effective means for infusing technology into the mathematics and science
           curricula.
          Develop a plan of action focusing on the teacher as the central agent for improving
           mathematics and science education in Alabama.
          Discuss issues relating to mathematics, science, and technology with leaders in the fields of
           education, business, and industry.

         The Committee reviewed statewide systemic initiatives in Louisiana, Minnesota, and South
Carolina. The common themes among these initiatives were professional development, social and
material resources, web access, and information dissemination. These four areas enabled the states to
improve mathematics and science instruction through the use of technology. An audio conference with
officials from South Carolina prompted representatives from the Committee to travel to Clemson,
Greenville, and Aiken for further investigation of the South Carolina Statewide Systemic Initiative.
Valuable information was gathered on this trip that positively impacted the recommendations made by
the AMSTI Committee.

         AMSTI Committee members began to realize during the early stages of the literature review that
common themes were repeated. The literature indicates that the teacher is the most important factor in
educational achievement in the elementary through high school classroom.i As a result of the discussion
and research of the Committee, AMSTI chose to focus on five areas directly affecting the performance of
science and mathematics teachers: professional development, curriculum, resources, instruction, and
assessment. The graphic on page 39 illustrates how these areas work together to influence the
effectiveness of the teacher.




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        The mission of the Alabama Mathematics, Science, and Technology Initiative is to
improve mathematics and science education in Alabama so all students develop the concepts,
skills, and understanding necessary for success in post secondary studies and in the work
force.


Current State of Mathematics, Science, and Technology Education

       Mathematics and science are vital areas of study in today‘s technological world.
Citizens must make decisions based on their knowledge of mathematics and science. University
students complete mathematics and science requirements in every area of study. Businesses
seek individuals able to solve problems and make decisions based on fact. Society is
surrounded by technology: personal computers, VCRs, DVD players, cell phones, and
automobiles with performance monitored by computer chips.

       Today, over 1.6 million computers are in American schools, and billions of dollars are
being spent to connect these computers to the Internet. Despite this investment, a recent survey
completed by the National Center for Education Statistics found that only 20 percent of the 2.5
million teachers who currently work in public schools feel comfortable using technology in their
classrooms.ii For a society to function effectively both now and in the future, its citizens must
be well-grounded in mathematics and science. They must understand how technology is
incorporated into the application of these disciplines. That foundation and comprehension of
technology and its uses must begin in Alabama‘s schools.

        A major challenge that America faces as it moves into the 21st Century is assuring that its
citizens have the mathematical, scientific and technological skills and knowledge necessary to be
productive members of society. Another challenge that America faces is finding a way to
replenish the pool of scientists, engineers, and mathematicians. It is important that our
educational system keep the rapidly diminishing pool vibrant, alive, and filled with people who
have innovative ideas and are armed with the skills and knowledge required to assure that
America remains a leader in technology. For example, over the past two decades females have
made impressive strides toward equal representation and achievement in most high school
mathematics and science courses. However, despite receiving good grades and test scores in
high school, current trends indicate that disproportionately few females will pursue degrees or
careers in the technological fields of science, mathematics, or engineering. In our increasingly
complex and technological world, American scientists and engineers cannot afford to disregard
half the creative population.iii Similar cases may be made for other under-represented groups.
One outcome of the Alabama Mathematics, Science, and Technology Initiative must be to
increase the educational achievement and participation of all Alabama students in mathematics
and science by preparing citizens who value critical thinking and life-long learning. This goal
will be accomplished by the preparation and support of elementary, middle, and secondary
teachers to teach in the rapidly changing age of information and technology and through
fostering public understanding, collaboration, and support of mathematics, science, and
technology education by stakeholders.




                                                20
The Third International Mathematics and Science Study

        The Third International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) is the largest and most
comprehensive of the international comparative studies of achievement in science and
mathematics. Students from over forty countries in five grade levels are included in the study.
The 1999 data are reported on three grade levels: fourth, eighth and twelfth.    The following
tables show the mathematics and science achievement scores for students in the United States.

                                Mathematics Achievementiv
      Grade Level            Mean for      Mean for United           International
                             Alabama            States                   Mean
     Fourth Grade             No data            545                      529
     Eighth Grade              463               500                      513
     Twelfth Grade            No data            461                      500

                                      Science Achievementv
      Grade Level            Mean for        Mean for United         International
                             Alabama               States                Mean
     Fourth Grade             No data               565                   524
     Eighth Grade              502                  534                   516
     Twelfth Grade            No data               480                   500

        Students in fourth grade scored above the international mean in mathematics
achievement. However, at the eighth and twelfth grade levels, the mean scores for mathematics
fall below the international mean. In science achievement, fourth grade students tied for second
place among all nations participating in the TIMSS study. Eighth-grade students scored slightly
above the international mean, and twelfth grade students scored below the international mean.
Alabama students in eighth grade scored below the national and international means in both
mathematics and science, according to TIMSS data that was linked to National Assessment of
Education Progress (NAEP) data.vi

        American students tend to score at an average level or a below average level in
international comparisons. Trends in international rankings show that in the areas of
mathematics and science, scores continually decline from fourth grade through twelfth grade.
The TIMSS data provides some insight as to the differences in curricula and teaching strategies
in the United States as compared to those in other nations.

Findings on Curriculum and Teaching

       The TIMSS study revealed the following findings about curricula and teaching in the
United States:vii

          Textbooks in the United States include more topics in science and mathematics than
           other nations.
          Science and mathematics curricula in the United States lack coherence.
          Science and mathematics curricula in the United States lack intellectual rigor.
          Teaching strategies in the United States emphasize direct instruction by the teacher.

                                              21
       When compared with other nations, mathematics and science textbooks in the United
States include more topics than other nations. ―We have characterized U.S. science and
mathematics curricula as ‗a mile wide and an inch deep.‘ We can hardly be surprised to find the
achievement gains in all of those topics only an ‗inch deep‘ as well.‖viii, ix

        Rather than a coherent, conceptually organized curriculum, which demonstrates
interrelationships among the various branches of mathematics and science, the curriculum
fragments. ―Americans have chosen to distribute educational responsibilities so consistently to
states and local districts that it is not meaningful to speak of a single U.S. educational system but
only of ‗educational systems.‘‖x As a result, the children in the United States receive their
mathematics and science through a fragmented system. Such fragmentation is not conducive to
learning with understanding.

        The continual attention to elementary fundamentals may be the most compelling reason
for the decline in American test scores from the fourth through the twelfth grades. While the
fundamentals are covered in all international curricula up to the fourth grade, the curricula
become more detailed, more advanced, and more challenging as students progress through
school. American schools, in contrast, continue to devote a large amount of time to reviewing
and re-teaching fundamentals in the middle and higher grades.

        Mathematics and science classrooms in the United States are predominately organized
around teacher-led instruction. Instructors in other nations consistently involve students in
problem solving, hands-on learning, discussion, and group work. Teachers in the United States
are predominantly purveyors of information.

        The results of the TIMSS study give important information as to the current status of
science and mathematics teaching in the United States. However, any international comparison
has the difficulty of comparing different curricula. Perhaps a more appropriate means for
assessing the current state of science and mathematics in the United States lies in the National
Assessment of Educational Progress.

The National Assessment of Educational Progress

         The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) assesses what students in
fourth, eighth, and twelfth grades know and can do in various content areas. This test is
administered to a small number of randomly-selected schools. The NAEP assessment measures
a mathematics domain containing five mathematics strands (number sense, properties, and
operations; measurement; geometry and spatial sense; data analysis, statistics, and probability;
and algebra and functions). The science assessment includes questions to assess students‘
knowledge of important facts and concepts. It also uses hands-on tasks to probe students‘
abilities to use materials to make observations, perform investigations, evaluate experimental
results, and apply problem-solving skills. The results are reported both as average scale scores
on the NAEP scale and in terms of the percentage of students attaining NAEP achievement
levels in accordance with the standards developed by the National Assessment Governing
Board.xi




                                                 22
   Findings

        In 1990 Congress authorized a voluntary state-by-state NAEP assessment. The 1990
Trial State Assessment in mathematics at eighth grade was the first state-level NAEP assessment.
Since then, state-level assessments have taken place in 1992 and 1994 in reading (fourth grade),
in 1992 and 1996 in mathematics (fourth and eighth grades), and in 1996 in science (eighth
grade). In 1996, 44 states, the District of Columbia, Guam, and the Department of Defense
Schools took part in the NAEP state assessment program.xii

       The 1996 NAEP results in the areas of mathematics and science showed that Alabama
students at the fourth and eighth grade levels scored below the national average. Alabama
scores were among the lowest in the United States.xiii

       The NAEP mathematics scale ranges from 0 to 500.            Major findings for Alabama
include the following:xiv

          The average mathematics scale score for a student in fourth grade was 212. This
           average was lower than the national average of 222.
          In terms of achievement levels established for the NAEP mathematics assessment, 11
           percent of the fourth-grade students in Alabama performed at or above the Proficient
           level. Nationally, 20 percent of students scored at or above the Proficient level.
          >From 1992 to 1996, the average scale score of fourth-grade students in Alabama did
           not change significantly, while that of students across the nation increased.
          Only fourth-grade students in Guam and the District of Columbia scored lower than
           fourth-grade students in Alabama.
          The average mathematics scale score for eighth-grade students in Alabama was 257.
           This average was lower than the national average of 271.
          In terms of achievement levels, 12 percent of the eighth-grade students in Alabama
           performed at or above the Proficient level. Nationally, 23 percent of students scored
           at or above the Proficient level.
          >From 1992 to 1996, the average scale score of eighth-grade students in Alabama did
           not change significantly while that of students across the nation increased somewhat.
          The average scale score for eighth graders in Alabama in 1996 (257) was not
           significantly different from that in 1990 (253).
          Only eighth-grade students in Mississippi, Guam, and the District of Columbia scored
           lower than eighth graders in Alabama.

       The NAEP 1996 state science assessment was administered in the eighth grade only,
although grades four, eight, and twelve were assessed at the national level as usual. The NAEP
science scale ranges from 0 to 300. Major findings for Alabama include the following: xv

          The average science scale score for eighth-grade students in Alabama was 139. This
           average was lower than the national average of 148.
          In terms of achievement levels established for the NAEP science assessment, 18
           percent of the eighth-grade students in Alabama performed at or above the Proficient
           level, with only one percent at the Advanced level. Nationally, 27 percent of
           students scored at or above the Proficient level, with 60 percent at or above the Basic
           level, and three percent at the Advanced level.

                                               23
          Only eighth-grade students in Louisiana, Mississippi, Guam, and the District of
           Columbia scored lower than eighth graders in Alabama.

Indicators of Mathematics and Science Learning in Alabama

       In the report State Indicators of Mathematics and Science Education 1999, data gathered
in 1998 showed that 92 percent of mathematics teachers and 84 percent of science teachers in
grades 9 – 12 in Alabama were certified in their field. xvi        Nationally, 88 percent of
mathematics teachers and 83 percent of science teachers reported certification in their field.xvii
The following chart reports professional development practices of teachers in the areas of
mathematics and science.xviii

             8th Grade Public School Teachers‘ Reports on Professional Development
   During the last year, how much         ALABAMA                           NATION
   time in total have you spent in
   professional development
   workshops or seminars in your
   field?
                                      Math          Science          Math          Science
   None                                4%             4%              5%             8%
   Less than 6 hours                  22%            10%             19%            16%
   6 – 15 hours                       30%            29%             28%            19%
   16 – 35 hours                      23%            23%             21%            26%
   More than 35 hours                 22%            34%             27%            31%

        As noted in the chart and in the information on certification, lower standings of Alabama
students on the NAEP cannot be directly traced to teachers teaching without proper certification
or the amount of professional development they receive.

       Exposure to mathematics and science and the opportunity to learn have a positive effect
on the performance of students. The following statements report course-taking patterns for
students in Alabama and the nation:xix

          In eighth grade, more than half of the students reported taking eighth-grade
           mathematics (54 percent), compared to 21 percent taking pre-algebra and 20 percent
           taking algebra. The percentage of students taking algebra did not differ significantly
           from that for the nation (24 percent).
          Less than half of the eighth-grade students expected to take pre-algebra (12 percent)
           or algebra (33 percent) in the ninth grade. Another 16 percent anticipated taking a
           geometry class.
          In eighth-grade, one percent of the students in Alabama reported not taking a science
           course this year. This did not differ significantly from the national percentage (3
           percent).
          In Alabama, 90 percent of the students reported studying science three or more times
           a week.

       Lower standings cannot be traced to the amount of mathematics and science exposure
students have. What then are indicators that might explain the lower scores of Alabama
students in mathematics and science?
                                               24
        Although graduation requirements in both mathematics and science have increased
recently in Alabama, data shows that in 1998 only 18% of students took
trigonometry/pre-calculus and only 9% completed calculus by graduation. Similarly, only 11%
of students had taken physics by the end of twelfth grade. Alabama ranks last of all states in the
number of students taking advanced mathematics and science courses.xx

       Instructional practices may also contribute to Alabama's lower scores on the NAEP
assessment. These practices in mathematics teaching were included in the NAEP data for eighth
grade. In the following table, Alabama is compared to the four high-ranking states:xxi

      STATE           Discuss math     Write about math   Use calculators     30 minutes
                     problems almost   problems once a     Daily/weekly     homework a day
                          daily         week or more
   Alabama                36%                25%            30%/57%             73%
   Minnesota              33%                27%            65%/86%             70%
  North Dakota            37%                25%            71%/86%             78%
   Montana                39%                35%            60%/85%            No data
  Connecticut             35%                34%            44%/73%             74%

        A consideration of the above table indicates that Alabama students engage in discussion
and writing about mathematics problems at about the same rate as students in high scoring states.
Students in Alabama differ only slightly in the amount of homework given. The main area of
difference is in the use of calculators. Students in higher-scoring states have the opportunity to
use calculators more frequently than students in Alabama.

       The NAEP 1996 Science Assessment included a teacher and student survey, and results
were reported by state on instructional practices in science classrooms in eighth grade. In the
following table, Alabama is compared to the four high-ranking states:xxii

          STATE             Teacher demonstrates     Hands-on activities     Long-term science
                             once a week or more    once a week or more          projects
         Alabama                   60%                     47%                     58%
          Maine                    62%                     80%                     77%
         Michigan                  69%                     74%                     63%
         Wisconsin                 58%                     82%                     65%
         Minnesota                 62%                     85%                     62%

        A comparison of instructional practices in mathematics and science between high and
low scoring states gives an indication of reasons for lower scores. Alabama science teachers
include demonstrations in their classrooms at about the same rate as teachers in higher scoring
states. The difference begins to show when Alabama‘s schools are compared to schools in
high-scoring states in terms of hands-on activities and the use of long-term science projects. A
part of the difficulty in this area may be that only 64 percent of mathematics teachers and 40
percent of science teachers in Alabama indicate getting most or all the resources they need for
instruction. This is in comparison to the national average of 67 percent in mathematics and 63
percent in science.xxiii



                                               25
Use of Technology in Mathematics and Science Classrooms

        Recommendations for facilitating mathematics and science instruction in the nation‘s
schools often include increasing the use of calculators and computers.xxiv The National Council
of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) Standards recognizes the technological world in which
students are living and the opportunities that technology provides for students to learn and use
mathematics. The use of computers in the collection of data, interpretation of results, and
communication of findings is part of the Benchmarks for Science Literacy and the recently
published National Science Education Standards.xxv Given the importance of using technology
in mathematics and science instruction, NAEP asked students and their teachers about the use of
calculators and computers.

   Calculators
       Less than half of the students in Alabama used a calculator in their mathematics class
         almost every day (26 percent) or once or twice a week (20 percent). About one
         quarter of the students never or hardly ever used a calculator (27 percent). The
         percentage of students using a calculator almost every day was smaller than that for
                                  xxvi
         the nation (57 percent).

   Computers
      In Alabama, 10 percent of students had teachers who reported that no computers were
        available for use in their mathematics class, and 9 percent had teachers who reported
        that computers were available in a computer laboratory but difficult to access or
        schedule. Nationally, 6 percent of students had teachers who reported that no
        computers were available. xxvii
      In Alabama, 29 percent of students were in science classes where computers were not
        available. This percentage was greater than that for the nation (17 percent).xxviii


National Reform Movements

       In science and mathematics, we are not where we want to be. To go forward, we
       need to work together to develop a national focus, or coherent vision, of math and
       science education. Our diversity must become part of our solution. Our children,
       our teachers, and our schools are working hard. We must think clearly together so
       that we may help them to work smart as well.xxix

Project 2061: Science for All Americans

        Project 2061: Science for All Americans reported on scientific literacy and attempted to
define the understandings and habits of mind that are essential for a scientifically literate society.
Project 2061 could be considered as the beginning of the newest reform movement in both
mathematics and science education. It was through Project 2061 that certain problems
associated with science education were brought to the forefront.

       The Science for All Americans report identified three problem categories in mathematics
and science education: teachers, textbooks, and curricula. According to the report, elementary
and junior high school teachers are under prepared to teach mathematics and science. Some
                                                 26
high school teachers are not as prepared as they should be. Textbooks and methods of
instruction often emphasize memorization at the expense of critical thinking, understanding, and
doing. Textbooks rarely encourage students to work together, to share information, or to use
technology as part of their mathematics and science studies. The curricula for mathematics and
science were described as ―overstuffed and undernourished,‖xxx thus focusing attention on the
volume of information presented in textbooks.

       Science for All Americans affirmed the idea that all children deserve to have a basic
education that will prepare them for a future world shaped by mathematics, science, and
technology. This basic education would require a firm foundation in each of these disciplines.

Benchmarks

          While Science for All Americans identified the problems in mathematics and science
education in the United States and presented a beginning framework of content for developing a
literate population, it did not attempt to provide curriculum guidelines for schools. Curriculum
was addressed in the second report developed in 1993, entitled Project 2061: Benchmarks for
Science Literacy.

        Benchmarks specifies how students should progress toward literacy, recommending what
they should know and be able to do by the time they reach specified grade levels. Grades two,
five, eight, and twelve were established as checkpoints, or benchmarks, for estimating student
progress. Benchmarks provides curriculum developers with a common core of learning for
students.

        In terms of the reform movement, Benchmarks calls attention not only to the content of
science, but to the very nature of science as a human endeavor. It develops and defines the
concepts of inquiry and its integral role in the scientific enterprise as well as the necessity for
integrating mathematics into the science program. Benchmarks provides support for three areas
of curriculum development:

          Content from all areas of science focusing on the themes of systems, models,
           stability, patterns of change, evolution, and scale found in Science for All Americans
          The integration of science, mathematics, and technology
          The use of inquiry-based learning in order to demonstrate science as a human
           endeavor conducted in teams rather than in isolation

        Both Project 2061: Science for All Americans and Project 2061: Benchmarks for Science
Literacy address the three major areas of mathematics, science, and technology as an integration
into scientific literacy rather than as separate areas of study.


National Standards in Mathematics, Science, and Technology

Principles and Standards for School Mathematics

       Principles and Standards for School Mathematics (PSSM) defines a vision in which all
students have the opportunity to participate in ―rigorous, high-quality mathematics instruction,
including four years of high school mathematics.‖xxxi It provides a ―guide for focused, sustained

                                                27
efforts to improve students‘ school mathematics education,‖xxxii but leaves decisions related to
specific curriculum issues to local schools. The document has four main components:

1. A foundation for school mathematics programs is provided by Principles and Standards for
   School Mathematics. The document describes the broad issues of equity, curriculum,
   teaching, learning, assessment, and technology. It also describes particular characteristics of
   high-quality mathematics programs.xxxiii

          Equity. Excellence in mathematics education requires equity – high expectations
           and strong support for all students.
          Curriculum. A curriculum is more than a collection of activities: it must be coherent,
           focused on important mathematics, and well articulated across the grades.
          Teaching. Effective mathematics teaching requires understanding what students
           know and need to learn and then challenging and supporting them to learn it well.
          Learning. Students must learn mathematics with understanding, actively building
           new knowledge from experience and prior knowledge.
          Assessment. Assessment should support the learning of important mathematics and
           furnish useful information to both teachers and students.
          Technology. Technology is essential in teaching and learning mathematics; it
           influences the mathematics that is taught and enhances students‘ learning.

2. Ten standards, five content and five process, describe a connected body of mathematical
   understanding and competencies that specify the knowledge and skills students need from
   pre-kindergarten through grade 12. The five content standards present goals in the
   mathematical content areas of number and operations, algebra, geometry, measurement, and
   data analysis and probability. Each standard spans the entire range from pre-kindergarten
   through grade 12 and gives a sense of how the ideas encompassed in a standard develop over
   all four grade bands, highlighting points at which certain levels of mastery or closure are
   appropriate. The five process standards describe goals for the processes of problem solving,
   reasoning and proof, connections, communication, and representation.xxxiv

3. The knowledge base, mathematical understandings, and skills students should acquire
   throughout their school careers are described by Principles and Standards for School
   Mathematics.xxxv The document describes grade-level bands (PreK-2, 3-5, 6-8, and 9-12)
   that provide a set of expectations for each level and focus on the anticipated growth of
   students‘ knowledge as they progress from grade to grade.xxxvi The bands can be used to
   design instructional programs, to provide a set of expectations for implementation at each
   grade level, and to define the teacher‘s role in that process.xxxvii

4. The ―critical issues related to putting the Principles into action and…key roles played by
   various groups and communities in realizing the vision of Principles and Standards‖ are
   identified by Principles and Standards for School Mathematics. xxxviii To accomplish the
   goal of high quality mathematics programs, teachers should not make all the decisions.
   ―Others – students themselves; mathematics teacher-leaders; school, district, and state or
   province administrators; higher-education faculty; families, other caregivers, and community
   members; and professional organizations and policymakers – have resources, influence, and
   responsibilities that can enable teachers and their students to be successful.‖xxxix



                                               28
           Mathematics teachers must develop and maintain the mathematical and pedagogical
            knowledge they need to teach their students well.
           Mathematics teacher-leaders should position themselves between classroom teachers
            and administrators and assist teachers in building their mathematical and pedagogical
            knowledge.
           Administrators at all levels must be responsible for the instructional program in their
            schools, provide for the professional development of teachers, design and implement
            policies, and allocate resources.
           Students must work seriously with the material, strive to make the connections that
            are needed to support their learning, and communicate their understandings.
           Higher-education faculties must model the effective practices teachers should employ
            and ensure that they enter the profession with a strong knowledge of mathematics
            content, teaching, and learning.
           Families, other caregivers, and community members must participate in examining,
            understanding, supporting, and improving mathematics education.
           Professional organizations and policymakers should provide regional and national
            leadership to support the continued improvement of mathematics education.
            Organizations can assist through professional development, conferences, publications,
            and web-based materials.          Policymakers can assist with funding, rigorous
            teacher-certification and accreditation requirements, and resources.

National Science Education Standards

        Developed by the National Research Council, the National Science Education Standards
were created in order to help achieve the goal of scientific literacy for all students in American
schools regardless of age, gender, cultural or ethnic background, disabilities, aspirations, or
interest and motivation in science. In addition, the Standards emphasize that different students
will learn in different ways, will achieve different depths of understanding, and will relate to
science in different ways depending on interest, ability, and context. In particular, the
Standards emphasize that:xl

           Student achievement is dependent on how they are taught.
           Students learn by constructing information on their own and in cooperation with
            others.
           Achievement is greatest when students are able to use science tools, materials,
            media, and technological resources to carry out extended investigations.
           Effective professional development for teachers should engage teachers in inquiry
            strategies to introduce teachers to content, scientific literature, media, and
            technological resources.
           Assessment tasks should measure the aspects of science which are important,
            including content, inquiry skills, and scientific habits of mind.
           Science content in an effective program should include science as inquiry, physical
            science, life science, earth and space science, science and technology, personal and
            social perspectives on science, and the history and nature of science.

        The Standards particularly emphasize the role of the teacher in effective science
teaching, the role of inquiry-oriented teaching utilizing appropriate materials, and the necessity
for authentic assessment.


                                                29
National Educational Technology Standards

        The National Educational Technology Standards (NETS) provide guidelines for teachers
and students in the use of technology. The Standards for Teachers include essential conditions
that should be in place for each phase in the teacher preparation process to support effective use
of technology to improve learning, communication, and productivity. Prospective teachers have
a variety of paths to initial licensure. Regardless of the configuration of the program, all
teachers must have opportunities for experiences that prepare them to meet technology standards.

        The Technology Performance Profiles for Teacher Preparation suggest ways programs
can examine how well candidates meet the standards. The Profiles correspond to four phases in
the typical preparation of a teacher: xli

          General Preparation Performance Profile
          Professional Education Performance Profile
          Student Teaching/Internship Performance Profile
          First-Year Teacher Performance Profile

       In addition, NETS contends that all classroom teachers should be prepared to meet the
following standards:

          Demonstrate a sound understanding of technology operations and concepts.
          Plan and design effective learning environments and experiences supported by
           technology.
          Implement curriculum plans that include methods and strategies for applying
           technology to maximize student learning.
          Apply technology to facilitate a variety of effective assessment and evaluation
           strategies.
          Use technology to enhance their productivity and professional practice.
          Understand the social, ethical, legal, and human issues surrounding the use of
           technology in PreK-12 schools and apply that understanding in practice.

       The National Educational Technology Standards for Students provides a framework for
preparing students to be lifelong learners who make informed decisions in their lives. The
Technology Standards are divided into six categories:

          Basic operations and concepts – students demonstrate a sound understanding of the
           nature and operation of technology systems and become proficient in the use of
           technology.
          Social, ethical, and human issues – students understand the ethical, cultural, and
           societal issues related to technology and practice responsible use of technology
           systems, information, and software.
          Technology productivity tools – students use technology tools to enhance learning,
           increase productivity, and promote creativity. They use productivity tools to
           collaborate in constructing technology-enhanced models, prepare publications, and
           produce other creative works.
          Technology communication tools – students use telecommunications to collaborate,
           publish, and interact with peers, experts, and other audiences. Students also use a


                                               30
           variety of media and formats to communicate information and ideas effectively to
           multiple audiences.
          Technology research tools – students use technology to locate, evaluate, and collect
           information from a variety of sources. Students use technology tools to process data
           and report results. They also evaluate and select new information, resources, and
           technological innovations based on their appropriateness for specific tasks.
          Technology problem-solving and decision-making tools – students use technology
           resources for solving problems and making informed decisions. Students also
           employ technology in the development of strategies for solving problems in the real
           world.

        When the national standards for mathematics, science, and technology are all considered,
certain commonalties emerge:

          Mathematics and science are useful bodies of knowledge in problem solving and
           decision making. They are not pieces of information to be memorized in order to
           show competency.
          Mathematics, science, and technology should be integrated, when appropriate.
          Mathematics, science, and technology are viewed as integral to the education of all
           children from kindergarten through twelfth grade and beyond.
          The methods for presenting mathematics and science to children are seen to be as
           important as the content presented.
          The use of technology is a tool for more effectively teaching mathematics and
           science.


Business/Industry Research

        In order to assure that the needs of Alabama business and industry were addressed, the
AMSTI Committee requested assistance from the Alabama Mathematics, Science, and
Technology Education Coalition (AMSTEC). AMSTEC was founded in 1998 as an advocacy
coalition for the improvement of mathematics, science, and technology in Alabama and is
comprised of leaders from business, education, and public policy organizations. The AMSTI
Committee requested that AMSTEC research and provide the Committee with information on
two topics related to education in Alabama. Specifically, AMSTEC was asked to investigate the
following questions:

          What skills will students need in the areas of mathematics and science as they enter
           the workforce of the twenty-first century?

          How might education better involve business and the community in science, math,
           and technology instruction?

        As part of a formal presentation, the president of AMSTEC provided the requested
information to the AMSTI Committee. The skills students need for success in the workforce
were taken from the labor Secretary's Commission on Achieving Necessary Skills (SCANS)
report, which identifies five major competencies. The competencies are as follows:xlii

             Resources: Identifies, organizes, plans, and allocates resources

                                               31
              -   Time
              -   Money
              -   Materials and facilities
              -   Human resources

             Interpersonal: Works with others
              - Participates as a member of a team
              - Teaches others new skills
              - Serves clients/customers
              - Exercises leadership
              - Negotiates
              - Works with diversity

             Information: Acquires and evaluates information
              - Acquires and evaluates information
              - Organizes and maintains information
              - Interprets and communicates information
              - Uses computers to process information

             Systems: Understands complex inter-relationships
              - Understands systems
              - Monitors and corrects performance
              - Improves or designs systems

             Technology: Works with a variety of technologies
              - Selects technology
              - Applies technology to tasks
              - Maintains and troubleshoots equipment

        In addition, AMSTEC identified a three-part foundation that schools should address in
order for students to succeed in the workforce. The components of the foundation are listed as
follows:

          Basic skills: Reads, writes, performs arithmetic and mathematical operations,
           listens, and speaks

          Thinking Skills: Thinks creatively, makes decisions, solves problems, visualizes,
           knows how to learn, and reasons

          Personal Qualities: Displays responsibility, self-esteem, sociability, self-management,
           and integrity and honesty

        The results of the Tuscaloosa County's Employee Skills Analysis were also shared with
the Committee. AMSTEC identified partnerships, work interns, and financial and material
support as ways that business might better be involved in education. In particular, job
shadowing, where teams of teachers from schools participate in industry experiences, was
stressed.



                                               32
The Alabama State Courses of Study in Mathematics and Science

       The State of Alabama provides K-12 teachers with courses of study developed by
committees composed of elementary and secondary classroom teachers, school administrators,
college and university faculty, and representatives of business and industry. All members of
courses of study committees have knowledge in the subject area for which a course of study is
being revised. The courses of study prescribe the minimum required content students in
Alabama‘s public schools should be taught at specified grade levels or in specific courses such as
chemistry or geometry. This required curriculum, stated as content standards, indicates what
students should know or be able to do upon the completion of a particular grade or course.

       The Alabama Course of Study: Mathematics was released in 1997. It reflects the
National Council of Teachers of Mathematics‘ 1989 Curriculum and Evaluation Standards for
School Mathematics and the 1991 Professional Standards for Teaching Mathematics.xliii The
document focuses on the goal of developing mathematical power in all students. With such
power, students value the mathematics they learn, become more confident in their own abilities,
solve problems, and make connections or links to other subject areas and to real-world
applications.xliv

       Four content strands are addressed in the mathematics course of study:

          Number Sense, Number Systems, Number Theory
          Geometry, Spatial Sense, Measurement
          Patterns, Functions, Algebra
          Probability, Statistics, Discrete Mathematics

       These strands are interwoven with the processes of problem solving, communication,
connections, and reasoning, and are addressed at every grade level and course. They provide
continuous threads that unify the total mathematics program.xlv

       The Alabama Course of Study: Mathematics includes nine position statements:xlvi

          The use of a variety of instructional techniques is essential to ensure that all students
           have an opportunity to learn mathematics and to become actively involved in
           meaningful activities that focus on conceptual understanding rather than
           memorization of algorithms.
          Manipulatives should be used to aid in conceptual and procedural understanding.
           Lessons should incorporate physical materials that provide opportunities for students
           to develop concepts and procedures concretely.
          A variety of assessments should be used to assess concepts and skills and to
           determine whether students can apply those concepts and skills in real-life situations.
          Mathematics should provide opportunities for students to communicate orally, in
           writing, graphically, and algebraically. Students should have the opportunity to
           explore problem-solving situations and to describe the results of their conjectures and
           conclusions.
          Technology should be used to support instruction in the mathematics classroom on a
           regular basis.
          Problem solving should provide the context in which concepts and skills are learned.


                                                33
          All students are entitled to a mathematics education that provides success in
           mathematics and adequate preparation for the future.
          Students should be provided opportunities to demonstrate estimation and mental math
           skills.
          Real-world experiences provide opportunities for students to extend mathematics
           skills beyond the classroom.

        The Alabama Course of Study: Science is currently under revision, but the current edition
is in effect until the adoption of the new version. The Alabama Course of Study: Science, like
the National Standards and supporting materials for science, emphasizes the development of
scientific literacy. The Alabama Course of Study: Science states, xlvii

     People who are literate in science are able to use Scientific Processes and Scientific
     Knowledge to think about and make sense of many of the ideas and events that they
     encounter in everyday life in a society where the accomplishments of science are
     central. The scientifically literate person is able to reflect on the effects of science,
     to comprehend the explanations offered, to weigh the positive and negative features
     of science-related issues, and to make informed decisions based on the merits of the
     issues. The scientifically literate person is not overwhelmed by the rapidity of
     changes in the world and is able to face the world with a high degree of confidence.

        This state level view of science literacy as the goal of science education is in line with the
views of the National Standards. In addition, the Alabama Course of Study: Science emphasizes
six issues:

          The importance of teaching science every day to every student in every grade
          The necessity for an inquiry-based science program, including process, knowledge,
           and application
          The incorporation of various types of technology into science instruction
          An emphasis on laboratory instruction in science
          An emphasis on critical thinking and investigative processes that reveal consistencies,
           relationships, and patterns
          An emphasis on interdisciplinary instruction


Summary of Alabama Mathematics, Science, and Technology Initiative Survey Results

       The Alabama Mathematics, Science, and Technology Initiative Committee requested that
the Alabama State Department of Education randomly survey teachers across the state to better
understand their needs and to determine what is occurring in classrooms. The Committee also
wanted to determine what technology currently exists in the classrooms. In addition to a
questionnaire, teachers were provided the opportunity to list comments, suggestions, and
recommendations concerning mathematics and science teaching. Five hundred mathematics
teachers were surveyed in grades K-12. A similar number were surveyed in science.xlviii

Questionnaire Results

       Analysis of the data reveals that Alabama mathematics and science teachers need
resources and professional development designed to assist them in effectively using resources in

                                                 34
the classroom. Accessing technology and incorporating it into the classroom are listed as
primary concerns by teachers, as are accessing quality hands-on activities, accessing supplies and
equipment, using a variety of instructional techniques, and having time to develop lessons.

       Alabama students are at a severe disadvantage if one assumes at least five computers are
necessary in a classroom for students to spend even a modest amount of time using a computer.
Only 5 percent of mathematics classrooms and 3 percent of science classrooms are equipped
with five or more computers. Forty-nine percent of mathematics teachers and 48 percent of
science teachers have only a single computer in their classrooms.

       Students use technology on a daily or weekly basis in 44 percent of mathematics classes
and in 39 percent of science classes. Thirty-seven percent of mathematics teachers and 36
percent of science teachers rarely or never have their classes use technology. Approximately
one out of every four mathematics teachers and one out of every five science teachers are either
uncertain of their technology skills or feel that they do not have the technology skills needed to
enhance instruction.

        Planning with other teachers occurs much more frequently in grades K-2 than at higher
grades. When planning does occur, it is usually with teachers in the same school. Still, 39
percent of mathematics teachers and 42 percent of science teachers rarely or never plan at least
monthly with other teachers who teach the same course. Over 90 percent of teachers report that
they rarely or never have the opportunity to participate in vertical feeder pattern planning where
teachers meet with teachers at other schools who either had or will have their students.

        Mathematics teachers list teacher demonstrations (69 percent), small group work (47
percent), worksheets (47 percent), group discussion (45 percent), student board work (43
percent), and hands-on activities (43 percent) as the primary instructional methods that they use
in the classroom. The most commonly used instructional methods of science teachers include
group discussion (56 percent), lecture (51 percent), experiments performed by students (41
percent), worksheets (41 percent), and teacher demonstrations (40 percent). No math or science
teachers report using lecture as a primary method of instruction for grades K-2; however, the
percentages increase steadily at each higher grade grouping. By grades 9-12, lecture is used as a
primary method of instruction by 60 percent of the mathematics teachers and 77 percent of
science teachers. In science, this is the highest reported method for the grade grouping.

        Approximately 10 percent of mathematics teachers and 20 percent of science teachers do
not appear to be guided by the course of study in lesson preparation. This means that one out of
ten mathematics teachers and one out of five science teachers may not be covering the
curriculum that students need to pass the Alabama High School Graduation Exam. Four percent
of mathematics teachers and 7 percent of science teachers indicate a strong need for assistance in
understanding the course of study. Following the course of study, textbook chapters are most
often used to plan lessons (72 percent mathematics, 60 percent science).

        Ninety-seven percent of mathematics teachers and 89 percent of science teachers report
using traditional paper and pencil tests as a common means of assessment. No other assessment
methods are reported by over 45 percent of mathematics teachers as being used regularly; in
science, 65 percent of teachers report assessing students by having them create a project, 49
percent by having them perform an experiment, and 45 percent by having them write a report.


                                               35
Comments, Suggestions, and Recommendations

        Many teachers indicate that technology simply does not exist in their classrooms. Where
it does exist, it often is not adequately supported or provided in sufficient quantities to allow it to
be used effectively. Some teachers feel that they are missing what many employees outside
education would consider the most basic and rudimentary technology. As one teacher
commented, "We also need better access to a phone to have private conversations with parents or
school officials about students. Usually there is only one phone, and this is in the office which
may be some distance from the teacher's classroom."

        Lack of equipment, materials, and supplies is also a major concern. Science teachers
indicate that they want to provide students with hands-on, inquiry-based learning activities, but
they are often unable to do so because of lack of resources. Similarly, many mathematics
teachers voice a need for manipulatives for student use. A number of teachers specifically
praised the Alabama Science in Motion (ASIM) program that provides equipment and
technology to classrooms. They suggest the program be expanded to other schools. Every
reference to ASIM was positive.

        Lack of time to complete all of the requirements of the school day is listed consistently as
a problem. Teachers feel they do not have time to collaborate, plan quality lessons, prepare for
classes and labs, complete the paperwork documentation required by the state and system, and
effectively teach their students.

        According to many respondents, the courses of study for mathematics and science are too
broad in scope and contain too many content objectives. Teachers indicate that they feel
overwhelmed and frustrated from having to cover many objectives without time to teach the
material in detail. Some teachers are trying to address all course of study, SAT-9, and Alabama
High School Graduation Exam (AHSGE) objectives, all of the material contained in their
textbooks, remediate students on objectives not mastered in previous grades, and teach other
mandated topics like character education and health. As a result, little is taught well, and
students are being exposed only briefly to many of the objectives or skills. In addition, some
teachers express concern that science instructional time is often shortened in order to address
other school needs. At the elementary level, other subjects like reading and mathematics are
often viewed as more important, thus relegating science instruction to whatever time is left in the
school day.

        In mathematics, the number of students that are being promoted or placed in classes but
are unable to perform basic computations frustrates middle and high school teachers. These
teachers complain that they must spend time reteaching skills that should have been mastered in
the elementary grades. At the high school level, both mathematics and science teachers feel
they are being forced to assume the major responsibility for helping students pass the AHSGE,
with little accountability being shared by middle or elementary school teachers.

        Teachers state that they need more opportunities for professional development. Specific
recommendations for training range from deepening subject matter knowledge to helping
teachers better understand and apply technology. Teachers see little practical use for generic
workshops that address multiple disciplines and subjects. Recommendations suggest that
inservice activities should be content specific and extend over time to provide teachers with an
opportunity to practice and master the material being taught.

                                                 36
        Several comments raise questions regarding teacher quality and appropriate certification.
There is a concern that the shortage of mathematics and science teachers is encouraging some
systems to assign teachers to these content areas who lack the training and skills necessary to
teach effectively. In addition, several teachers express concerns about whether or not students
are receiving adequate science and mathematics experiences at the elementary level, due to the
lack of specialization during teacher preparation.


Discussion of Terms

        Research indicates that the classroom teacher is the greatest factor in influencing student
performance.xlix All students deserve to be taught by motivated, capable, and qualified teachers.
Based upon this knowledge, the Committee identified five major components that play
significant roles in determining the effectiveness of teachers. Assuring that these components
are in place will allow teachers to provide the best education possible for their students.

Curriculum

        The curriculum specifies what students should know and be able to do after receiving
instruction. It provides the teacher with an understanding of what is to be taught. The
curriculum must be age-appropriate as it defines the content of what is to be learned.
Curriculum is mandated by the Alabama State Board of Education through the adopted courses
of study.

        Classroom teachers must have a clear and thorough understanding of the curriculum.
They must also understand how different parts of the curriculum are related. Obviously,
teachers who are weak in content knowledge have more difficulty helping students master
content than teachers who have a more thorough knowledge of the subject. Teachers who are
guided by a quality curriculum and who themselves have a thorough and in-depth understanding
of the content are most likely to be successful in helping their students master course material.

Instruction

         Instruction is a second component that must be addressed if students are to receive the
best education possible. Teachers must understand how to present the curriculum so that it is
mastered. This requires an understanding of how students learn and of effective methods,
activities, and techniques for presenting content. Teachers must also understand how to structure
and sequence lessons for optimal learning. Most importantly, they must possess the skills
needed to effectively implement the methods and activities in the learning setting. Included in
the instructional component is the ability to organize and manage classes.

 Resources

       A third component that is necessary for teachers to be successful with students is access
to and knowledge of physical and social resources. Teachers must have easy access both to the
materials, supplies, and equipment needed for instruction and to the physical settings needed to
support the instructional methods and activities associated with instruction. Technology is a
physical resource that supports many of the methods and activities of the classroom. It can also

                                                37
serve as a means for helping provide curriculum and social resources. Social resources such as
university, business and community contacts, and other colleagues and staff members are
necessary as well.

Assessment

        Assessment is identified as the fourth component for assuring success in the classroom.
Teachers must understand and be skilled in using a variety of assessment techniques with their
students. Paper and pencil tests definitely have a place in evaluation; however, it is important
that teachers also use performance-based and alternative assessments with their students.
Teachers need to understand how to adequately and frequently assess their students and use the
results in planning for future instruction. Assessment should not only help assure that the
curriculum is being mastered, it should also assist teachers in making decisions concerning the
structure and content of future lessons. In addition to student assessment, teachers need
opportunities to assess their own skills and effectiveness, both formatively and summatively.
Such assessment allows teachers to hone their own skills so that they provide the best possible
instruction for their students.

Professional Development

        The final component, professional development, is the mechanism for helping teachers
understand each of the four other components and for linking them together to assure that
students receive a quality education. It includes both preservice and inservice activities. An
infrastructure must exist to assure that teachers have and receive the support and professional
development required for success in the classroom. New teachers need support and guidance
from mentors. All teachers need frequent access to relevant quality professional development
and time for planning, lesson development, and collaboration.




                                              38
              CURRICULUM
INSTRUCTION




                           RESOURCES
              TEACHER




              ASSESSMENT




                    39
                                     MATHEMATICS

Professional Development

       Major changes in mathematics education began in the early 1980s and were driven in
large part by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM). These changes grew
from research that began to look not only at student achievement outcomes, but also at the depth
to which students understood the mathematical procedures they were taught. The results of two
decades of research have revealed that understanding the logic behind the mathematics is key to
becoming a confident, competent student of mathematics.

        Studies by Kamii, Lewis, and Livingston show that students who are being taught with
traditional, skills-focused methods do not necessarily understand the logic of the mathematics
taught. When students are encouraged to invent their own problem-solving strategies based on
common understandings, however, they become more proficient in understanding the logic of
mathematics. Students taught with more traditional methods often fail to connect with the
reasoning behind the mathematical procedures.l

       To become proficient in teaching methods that foster understanding, many teachers need
additional training. A 1994 survey of middle school teachers in Columbia, South Carolina,
revealed that teachers felt uncomfortable with the mathematics they were being asked to teach.
The teachers requested help in implementing new techniques of instruction and in choosing
appropriate materials. li For these teachers and others, intensive and on-going professional
development is needed.

        A brief prepared for the National Institute for Science Education offers seven principles
for the best professional development experiences. lii

   1. Base professional development on a clear, well-defined image of effective classroom
      teaching and learning:

          Commit to the concept that all students can and should learn mathematics.
          Create sensitivity to diverse learning needs.
          Emphasize inquiry-based learning, problem solving, student investigation and
           discovery, and application of knowledge.
          Carefully approach the understanding of mathematics and science skills that help
           students acquire new understanding through experiences that extend and challenge
           what they already know.
          Develop in-depth understanding of core concepts in mathematics and science, not just
           breadth of topics.
          Encourage collaboration among teachers.
          Determine desired outcomes and assess the progress toward these outcomes,
           accurately reflecting meaningful achievement.

   2. Provide teachers with opportunities to develop knowledge and skills and broaden their
      teaching approaches:



                                               40
          Engage teachers in learning experiences that enhance their understanding of major
           mathematics and science concepts.
          Strengthen teachers‘ knowledge of how children learn.
          Enable teachers to make informed decisions about curriculum content and
           implementation.

   3. Prepare teachers using a variety of instructional methods that mirror the methods to be
      used with students. Provide extensive learning opportunities for teachers:

          Build on current knowledge.
          Allow for the acquisition of knowledge through immersion in doing mathematics.
          Provide opportunities to work in collaborative teams, to engage in discourse, and to
           observe modeling of relevant, effective teaching strategies.
          Provide adequate and ongoing support for reflecting on learning and receiving
           feedback.
          Unify the set of learning experiences through a comprehensive plan. (Effective
           programs unite these experiences through a set of goals, strategies, and support over
           time.)

   4. Build or strengthen the learning community of mathematics teachers. In an effective
      learning community, teachers:

          Participate in collaborative professional exchanges.
          Encourage experimentation.
          Support the idea that everyone is always engaged in learning.

   5. Prepare and support teachers to serve in leadership roles. Prepared teachers:

          Plan and implement professional development opportunities for themselves and
           others.
          Act as agents of change.
          Promote a shared vision of mathematics and science education.
          Support other teachers.

   6. Provide links to other parts of the educational system:

          Integrate professional development activities with other initiatives of the school or
           district.
          Align activities with curriculum frameworks, academic standards, and assessments.
          Establish active support within the school, district, and community.

   7. Include continuous assessment to determine participant satisfaction and engagement and
      to make adjustments.

      Research shows that if professional development is not designed as part of a larger
change process, it is not likely to be effective. liii Loucks-Horsley, Stiles, and Hewson report,
however,



                                               41
       Professional development is often experienced as a patchwork of fragmented,
       one-time learning opportunities, with limited potential to truly impact teaching
       and learning. Effective programs unite those experiences through a set of goals,
       strategies, and support over time.liv

       Sparks and Hirsh conclude that

       …student achievement goes up more for every $500 spent on increasing teacher
       professional training than for spending the same amount on raising teacher
       salaries or reducing class size. Studies indicate that teachers who participate in
       activities that are longer than eight hours and who participate in weekly common
       planning periods are more likely to say these activities improved their teaching.lv

       It follows that effective professional development includes teachers working together and
learning from each other throughout the day. Schools must redesign their professional
development to provide continual, collaborative opportunities for teachers.

        Another aspect associated with professional development is pre-service education.
Pre-service training is a critical stage at which change can occur. Many problems associated
with mathematics education can be appropriately addressed at this level. Methods courses
taught in college must foster teaching of mathematics for understanding and stress the
importance of including real-world applications and problem solving. Universities must require
high entrance standards for their teacher programs, and provide comprehensive pre-service
training for their participants if advances are to be made in the profession.lvi Quinn notes,

       Research indicates that a mathematics methods course can have an impact on
       pre-service teachers‘ beliefs and affect the pedagogies that they employ. It is
       particularly important to give preservice teachers the opportunity to construct the
       same mathematical knowledge that they will be teaching and to integrate
       manipulatives into the methods courses.lvii

       The National Commission on Teaching and America‘s Future assessed several teacher
education programs. The following list shows the distinct features of effective programs:lviii

          A common, clear vision of good teaching that is apparent in all coursework and
           clinical experiences
          Well-defined standards of practice and performance that are used to guide and
           evaluate courses and clinical work
          A rigorous core curriculum
          Extensive use of problem-based methods, including case studies, research on teaching
           issues, performance assessments, and portfolio evaluation
          Intensively supervised extended clinical experiences (at least 30 weeks), carefully
           chosen to support what students learned in their courses (In contrast to the
           inadequate eight to twelve weeks of practice teaching that traditional education
           programs typically offer, students in these programs get a full year of experience
           under the guidance of master teachers who work closely with the university.)
          Strong relationships with reform-minded local schools that support development of
           common knowledge and shared beliefs among school and university-based faculty


                                               42
        Vacc and Bright conclude that ―if preservice teachers are to internalize coherent
applications to teaching and learning mathematics, the environment in which they student teach
and the support they receive need to be consistent with the principles being advocated in their
professional preparation program.‖lix Teacher education programs must prepare new teachers to
transition through change successfully, learning from reflection, student reaction, and the advice
of veteran teachers.lx The quality of pre-service education, then, is extremely important.

        Professional development, however, must not stop at the college level. NCTM states,
―Pre-service preparation is the foundation for mathematics teaching, but it gives teachers only a
small part of what they will need to know and understand throughout their careers.‖ lxi Building
on the foundation of an in-depth pre-service program, ongoing professional development must be
meaningful and supportive in order to provide teachers with the tools needed to give students a
useful mathematics education.



Curriculum

        The United States Department of Education notes, ―Both research and common sense tell
us that what students learn depends upon what they are taught.‖ lxii Moreover, the programs,
textbooks, and other curriculum materials that schools choose largely determine what students
are taught. If a curriculum guide is too rigid, it may be too constraining for the teacher. If the
curriculum guide is so open as to only suggest topics to be taught, the effect on the student will
be minimal.lxiii Ostler and Gradgenett agree that ―those educators who feel they have latitude in
the instructional process are more likely to be successful using the good suggestions from
documents such as the NCTM Standards because they will realize that implementing them is not
an all or nothing venture.‖ lxiv Therefore, a school curriculum should be balanced between
prescriptive and open. Principles and Standards notes,

       …a focused curriculum is shown to be an important aspect of what is needed to
       improve school mathematics. … Focus is promoted through the idea of ‗moving
       on.‘ School mathematics programs should not address every topic every year.
       Instead, students will reach certain levels of conceptual understanding and
       procedural fluency by certain points in the curriculum.lxv

       Bay and Reys conclude that ―change is difficult. And few kinds of change are more
challenging for teachers than changing the curriculum and the teaching materials they use.‖lxvi
These changes, however, must take place if schools are to redefine the mathematics education of
students. One such change needed in many classrooms is the introduction of active learning
experiences.

      Principles and Standards for School Mathematics encourages students to engage in doing
mathematics to help them understand the why as well as the how of the mathematics they study.
Goldsmith and Mark report,lxvii

       To support students‘ construction of a deep, flexible understanding of
       mathematical content, NCTM recommends that students of all ages:



                                               43
          Interact with a range of materials for representing problem situations, such as
           manipulatives, calculators, computers, diagrams, tables, and charts
          Work collaboratively as well as individually
          Discuss mathematical ideas
          Focus on making sense of the mathematics they are studying as well as on
           learning to achieve accurate and efficient solutions to problems

        Standards-based programs must support teachers in creating classrooms in which learning
can occur through lessons and activities that motivate and engage students. Phi Delta Kappan
published an article in 1999 that listed the top ten elements that must be in place to implement a
standards-based mathematics curriculum. For teaching, the critical elements of implementation
are as follows:lxviii

          Administrative support
          Opportunities to study NCTM standards and specific curricula
          Opportunities to sample the curricula prior to implementation
          Daily planning
          Interaction with experts
          Collaboration with colleagues
          Incorporation of new assessments
          Communication with parents
          Willingness to help students adjust to problem-solving situations that require them to
           read and write as well as think mathematically
          Planning for transition

        An effective mathematics curriculum should prepare students for problem-solving
situations at home, at school, and in the work place. In addition, to be effective, curriculum
articulation must occur across all grade levels, allowing students to develop increasing levels of
understanding and content knowledge.lxix


Instruction

       Motivation, engagement, attention, imagination, communication, and group processes are
descriptors associated with the classrooms of the best teachers.lxx Principles and Standards for
School Mathematics states,

       Effective mathematics teaching requires understanding what students know and
       need to learn and then challenging and supporting them to learn it well…To be
       effective, teachers must know and understand deeply the mathematics they are
       teaching and be able to draw on that knowledge with flexibility in their teaching
       tasks. They need to understand and be committed to their students as learners of
       mathematics and as human beings and be skillful in choosing from and using a
       variety of pedagogical and assessment strategies (National Commission on
       Teaching and America‘s Future 1996). In addition, effective teaching requires
       reflection and continual efforts to seek improvement. Teachers must have
       frequent and ample opportunities and resources to enhance and refresh their
       knowledge.lxxi


                                               44
       In order to improve student learning, instruction must first be improved. Students‘
mathematical understanding, problem-solving abilities, and confidence in mathematics are all
shaped by the teachers they have in school. NCTM‘s 1991 Professional Standards for Teaching
Mathematics presented six standards for the effective teaching of mathematics. These standards
address worthwhile mathematical tasks, the role of the teacher in discourse, the role of the
student, tools, learning environment, and analysis of teaching and learning. lxxii

Worthwhile Mathematical Tasks

        ―In effective teaching, worthwhile mathematical tasks are used to introduce important
mathematical ideas and to engage and challenge students intellectually. Well-chosen tasks can
pique students‘ curiosity and draw them into mathematics.‖ lxxiii These tasks should be
challenging, be approached sometimes in more than one way, and often involve real-world
applications. Furthermore, teachers must be able to support students without doing the work or
the thinking for them.lxxiv

The Role of the Teacher

       Raising the bar for student performance also means raising the bar for teachers. lxxv
Well-qualified teachers have a significant impact on student achievement. The Alabama Task
Force on Teaching and Student Achievement states,

       In a study of 900 Texas school districts, researcher Ronald Ferguson found that,
       although social and economic status has the greatest influence on student success
       (49 percent), a qualified teacher and a well-organized school also have a major
       impact on achievement (43 percent)…In recent years, study after study has
       confirmed that skillful teachers who have a deep understanding of their subjects
       and how to teach them can help all students make dramatic gains in academic
       achievement.lxxvi

        These studies indicate that regardless of the background of students, well-prepared
teachers can make a difference. They point out that ―…students whose initial achievement
levels are comparable have ‗vastly different academic outcomes as a result of the … teachers
they are assigned.‘‖ lxxvii

        To be effective, teachers need pedagogical knowledge that enables them to understand
how students learn mathematics. They also should be able to use a variety of teaching
techniques and instructional resources and be able to successfully manage and organize their
classrooms. lxxviii Battista finds, ―Numerous scientific studies have shown that traditional
methods of teaching mathematics not only are ineffective but also seriously stunt the growth of
students‘ mathematical reasoning and problem-solving skills.‖lxxix Most students, if taught in
typical classrooms, do not truly develop an understanding of why their computations work or
when they should be applied. Battista also suggests that students must know basic number facts,
but symbolic manipulations must never become disconnected from reasoning about quantities.
Even bright students who learn symbolic algorithms quickly and do well on standard
mathematics tests may experience only superficial learning and be shortchanged by typical
mathematics instruction.lxxx



                                              45
        The role of the teacher is multi-faceted. Battista acknowledges this in stressing the
validity of a conceptual approach to mathematics:

    In the classroom environment envisioned by NCTM, teachers provide students with
    numerous opportunities to solve complex and interesting problems; to read, write, and
    discuss mathematics; and to formulate and test the validity of personally constructed
    mathematical ideas so that they can draw their own conclusions.lxxxi

       By bringing real-world problem situations into mathematics classrooms, teachers better
motivate students to learn mathematics. Such problems ―…have great potential for attracting
and holding the attention of high school students because they deal with situations with which
students have experience, for example, the clothes they wear, the places they work, or the lines in
which they wait.‖lxxxii

The Role of the Student

        Standards-based instruction shifts away from reliance on the teacher as ―sole authority for
right answers‖ and toward the use of ―logic and mathematical evidence as verification.‖ lxxxiii
Students are active participants in their everyday world. They should also be active participants
in their education, discussing mathematics, participating in hands-on activities, and engaging in
problem-solving activities and projects on a regular basis.lxxxiv

        Researchers have found that students can benefit from an instructional plan that includes
three learner-centered components: choice, time with manipulatives, and student
self-reflection. lxxxv In addition to benefiting from activity-based instruction and the use of
manipulatives, students learn more when they are allowed to make choices. When a choice is
given, they select activities that interest them, that are developmentally appropriate, and that
motivate, challenge, and intrigue them. Self-reflection is also beneficial. It helps students
construct meaning from their activities. It also leads to decreased math anxiety, increased
mastery of content, and improved problem-solving and learning skills.lxxxvi

Resources/Instructional Tools

        The selection and use of suitable curricular materials and appropriate instructional
resources is an important part of the instructional process.lxxxvii If mathematics instruction is to
be effective, teachers must choose manipulatives that help students develop mathematical
understanding and help them visualize abstract mathematical ideas.lxxxviii Research also shows
that ―the curriculum for all students must provide opportunities to develop an understanding of
mathematical models, structures, and simulations applicable to many disciplines.‖ lxxxix
Instructional materials should be used that focus learning, help develop concepts, include
effective questions, and create a fostering classroom atmosphere.xc

The Learning Environment

        The learning environment is also important for instruction. An environment must be
created that fosters mathematical thinking and problem solving, essential skills in today‘s
society. ―Effective teaching requires a challenging and supportive classroom learning
environment.‖xci Maintaining this positive, supportive atmosphere places teachers in a better
position to create teachable moments. Battista states,

                                                46
    Problem solving, reasoning, justifying ideas, making sense of complex situations, and
    learning new ideas independently – not pencil-and-paper computation – are now critical
    skills for all Americans. In the Information Age and the web era, obtaining the facts is
    not the problem; analyzing and making sense of them is.xcii

       Effective teaching produces an environment in which such complex analyses can occur.
Under these positive conditions, students have a better opportunity to participate in in-depth,
independent learning.

Analysis of Teaching and Learning

       Teachers need time to reflect on and refine their teaching. Principles and Standards
suggests that teachers must be able to analyze what they and their students are doing, and to
consider the effect of their actions on students‘ learning.xciii

        Teachers also need guidance in recognizing whether they have achieved their
instructional goals and in changing their teaching strategies if goals have not been met. Many
could benefit from resource teachers, resource partners, or experienced colleagues who could
provide assistance by giving feedback on specific issues after classroom observations,
debriefing, and discussing how lessons went and why. xciv


Resources

       Manipulatives are models that can be used to help students develop mathematical
understanding. Research shows that manipulatives are important in assisting students as they
move from concrete to abstract. Studies also show that ―…students who learn math with these
types of models understand math better, develop better problem solving skills and do better on
standardized achievement tests.‖xcv

        Research findings on the classroom use of manipulatives are varied. They range from
cautious to whole-hearted endorsement.xcvi The use of manipulatives, however, must be linked
to content. Ostler and Gradgenett contend, ―Manipulative use is most effective when taught in
unison with the procedure or concept that the manipulative is being used to reinforce. The
isolated use of manipulatives may even cause confusion in procedural processing in cases where
visual or tactile links are not needed.‖xcvii

        In an article written for the Journal for Research in Mathematics Education, the results of
60 studies were compiled to provide data on the effectiveness of using manipulatives in
mathematics instruction. Students involved in the studies ranged from kindergarten through
college and studied a variety of mathematics courses. Results showed that through the
long-term use of concrete instructional materials, in classrooms where teachers are
knowledgeable about their use, students‘ achievement in mathematics increased, and attitudes
toward mathematics improved.xcviii

         The tools available to aid mathematics instruction have changed dramatically over the
last fifty years. Standards writers agree that technology has become an essential component in

                                                47
the teaching and learning of mathematics. Proven to enhance students‘ learning, technology
should be used widely and responsibly with the goal of enriching the learning experience.xcix

         The early 1970‘s brought the first four-function calculator to the classroom. Solar
powered and scientific calculators were introduced to classrooms in the 1980‘s. In 1985, the
first calculators appeared that could graph functions.c Though controversy has surrounded the
use of calculators, especially in the elementary grades, appropriate and powerful calculator use
may enhance mathematics learning at any level, creating an environment that encourages
reasoning and communication. The key to their effective use appears to be appropriate
professional development for teachers and constant availability in the classroom.ci

        Myths impeding the acceptance of calculators in the classroom exist. Pomerantz, in the
report on The Role of Calculators in Math Education, notes, ―Evidence from research has proven
calculators to be effective learning tools; yet, because of the circulation of misinformation with
regard to their use, many people continue to believe they are harmful.‖ cii The report provides
the following benefits of calculator use in mathematics: ciii

          Calculators simplify tasks, but they do not do the real work for students.
          Calculators enable students to focus more on the ―whys‖ of mathematics than on the
           ―hows.‖
          Calculators do not harm a student‘s algebraic skills or procedural knowledge.
           Students who use them often demonstrate a better understanding of concepts than do
           their non-calculator-using counterparts.
          Calculators relieve mathematics anxiety.

        Other technological tools include computer-based laboratories (CBLs) and computers.
CBLs allow students to gather data, transmit it directly to a computer or graphing calculator, and
build models based on real-life situations. civ Computers allow students to use a variety of
software programs, construct spreadsheets, gather information via the Internet, and create and
use simulations to deepen their understanding of mathematical concepts and explore connections
to other content areas.cv


Assessment

       Research reveals five major themes regarding assessment and mathematics:cvi

          Assessment should be an integral part of instruction.

                  Assessment should be more than merely a test at the end of
                  instruction to see how students perform under special
                  conditions; rather, it should be an integral part of instruction
                  that informs and guides teachers as they make instructional
                  decisions…a routine part of the ongoing classroom activity
                  rather than an interruption.cvii

           Assessment should be a key component throughout the entire instructional process.
           As such, it will contribute to and provide multiple sources of evidence about student
           learning.cviii

                                               48
   Multiple forms of assessment should be used.
    NCTM‘s Principles and Standards for School Mathematics states that students‘
    understanding can be enhanced by the use of multiple forms of assessment. cix
    Teachers can assess student understanding much more thoroughly when informal
    assessments, such as peer questioning and small-group presentations, are coupled
    with more formal testing. ―The picture of a child‘s understanding is collected in the
    context of the child‘s personality, preferred learning styles, their background and
    experiences, and what they choose to show us that they know about mathematics.‖cx

   Assessment should be a measurement of progress over time.
    Assessment needs to shift from focusing on isolated skills and procedures toward
    collecting information over a period of time. cxi Shafer and Foster believe that
    complete assessment, over time, must measure and describe a student‘s growth and
    achievement in the four major mathematical domains of algebra, geometry, number,
    and statistics and probability.cxii

   Assessment should be authentic.
    Researchers report the following conclusions concerning truly authentic assessment:
     ―A major goal of authentic assessment is to help students develop the capacity to
       evaluate their own work against public standards, to revise, modify, and redirect
       their energies, taking initiatives to assess their own progress.‖cxiii
     ―Indeed, to access genuine understanding of a concept, test items must assess
       whether students can apply their knowledge in novel situations.‖cxiv
     ―A comprehensive program of mathematics assessment includes opportunities for
       students to show what they can do with mathematics that they may not have
       studied formally, but that they are prepared to investigate.‖cxv

   Assessment should support instructional goals.
    Teachers are caught in the dilemma of choosing between what they believe best
    enhances their students‘ learning and what is required to survive in the educational
    system. Principles and Standards for School Mathematics stresses, ―High-stakes
    assessments must be closely linked to the goals teachers are being asked to achieve;
    where they are not, teachers must be supported in the decisions they make.‖ cxvi
    Unfortunately, many school districts rely on standardized tests as the measures of
    student learning. This puts a demand on students to only use abstract mathematical
    procedures instead of a deep understanding of problem solving and analytical
    thought. Achievement tests do not show how or what students are learning.cxvii




                                       49
                                                SCIENCE


Professional Development

        A study conducted by Loucks-Horsley, Stiles, and Hewson in 1999 looked at the
characteristics of teachers who were considered highly effective in the classroom. This study
identified six characteristics of highly effective teachers of science and mathematics: cxviii

          Highly effective teachers have a commitment to the concept that all children can and
           should learn mathematics and science.
          Highly effective teachers show sensitivity to diverse learning needs of individuals.
          Highly effective teachers place an emphasis on inquiry-based learning, problem
           solving, student investigations, and the discovery and application of knowledge.
          Highly effective teachers have an approach to teaching mathematics and science that
           allows students to construct new understandings through experience.
          Highly effective teachers teach for the development of in-depth understanding of core
           concepts in mathematics and science.
          Highly effective teachers use collaborative work in their classrooms.

       The characteristics of highly effective teachers should also include some consideration of
outside forces on teacher quality. Research conducted by Darling-Hammond showed that
teacher quality characteristics such as certification status and degree in field were significantly
and positively correlated with student achievement. The author showed no correlation between
teacher salaries and student achievement, class size and student achievement, or per pupil
spending and student achievement. The most consistent predictor of statewide student
achievement is the proportion of well-qualified teachers in the state: those with full certification
and a major in the field they teach. cxix

       The Darling-Hammond study also enumerated seven principles for effective professional
development:

          Professional development should be driven by a clear, well-defined image of effective
           classroom instruction.
          Professional development should provide teachers with opportunities to develop
           knowledge and broaden their teaching approaches so they can create better learning
           opportunities for their students.
          Professional development should use instructional methods to promote learning for
           adults, which mirror the methods to be used with students.
          Professional development should build or strengthen the learning community of
           science and mathematics teachers.
          Professional development should prepare and support teachers to serve in leadership
           roles.
          Professional development should provide links to other parts of the educational
           system by a) integrating development activities with support initiatives, b) aligning
           activities with curriculum frameworks, academic standards, and assessment, and, c)
           establishing support within the school, district, and community.

                                                50
          Professional development should include continuous assessment procedures.

       The most successful teachers are those with strength in content knowledge. Exemplary
teachers use questions effectively, use concrete examples in teaching, use analogies, and employ
laboratory-based teaching strategies. Tobin and Fraser‘s work shows four characteristics of
exemplary science teachers: (1) they use management strategies that facilitate sustained student
engagement, (2) they use strategies designed to increase student understanding of science, (3)
they utilize strategies that encourage students to participate in learning activities, and (4) they
maintain a favorable classroom climate. cxx

        The characteristics listed here can be developed as a part of a professional development
program. However, developers of professional development programs, particularly those for
induction of teachers into the classroom setting, must focus on content specific methods and
models. cxxi ―A discipline-specific beginning teacher-induction program will generate both
greater rates of retention of new teachers and the display of more effective science teaching.‖cxxii

        The first two to three years of teaching are the most critical. Research by Lomask states
that it is during this time period that teachers develop their unique teaching styles, teaching
strategies, and philosophies of teaching. cxxiii This research suggests that a teacher induction
program should extend over a three year period. The first year should focus on managing the
classroom environment, the second year on content specific strategies, and the third year on
assisting teachers who have not met the standards of the first two years of the induction program.

       While the work of Lomask considers first, second, and third year teachers as a total
group, Bartles and Shore state that when it comes to professional development, a single program
will not be effective for all new teachers. The authors go on to state that there are three
categories of novice teachers, and each category requires a different type of program. These
categories are the new college graduate just beginning a teaching career, the mid-career change
individual just entering the teaching profession, and the experienced teacher assigned to a
science classroom for the first time. New, young teachers are not reform minded, even if they
came from a reform-minded preservice teacher program. cxxiv These teachers tend to be
overwhelmed by the basic management issues of a classroom. Teachers in their third to fifth
years of teaching, however, tend to be ready to utilize innovative practices in their classrooms.

        Strategies for presenting professional development have also been considered in the
research literature. Research indicates that the strategies used in presenting professional
development programs should be the same as those the teachers will be expected to use in their
classrooms.cxxv Teachers involved in a learning cycle in-service implemented the learning cycle
teaching strategy into their classrooms. The authors go on to say that teachers must be made
knowledgeable about the concepts they will teach so that they can select activities. Research
also supports the use of teacher leaders to help introduce, disseminate, and sustain reform efforts
in their subject matter areas. ―…Because of their teaching background and connections to the
classroom, teacher leaders are an obvious choice for addressing the challenge of going to scale
with reforms in math, science, and technology.‖cxxvi

        Finally, state-supported teacher networks are an extremely useful alternative to
conventional in-service training programs. cxxvii Statewide professional development networks
benefit teachers by connecting them with a variety of resources, providing ongoing support,
expanding their leadership opportunities, and providing services in a cost effective manner.

                                                51
Curriculum

        Reform initiatives in the science curriculum generally begin with the Science for All
Americans statement that the curriculum in science is ―overstuffed and undernourished,‖ that is;
it contains too much information in too little depth. A similar notion is echoed by the TIMSS
findings that the science curriculum of the United States has great breadth of coverage but little
depth. The basic movement is toward the concept that ―more is less.‖ Curriculum reform in
science education requires fewer topics be taught; the topics that are covered are explored in
greater depth.

        Textbooks are generally the foundation for the science curriculum. Textbook curricula
present science content through reading and printed materials with emphasis on vocabulary and
recall of facts.cxxviii This causes students to view science, not as a mode of thought and means of
problem solving, but as a static collection of facts and concepts to be acquired through
memorization. In addition, textbook-based curricula may lead students to view science as more
of a history of what has been discovered about the world around them rather than a process for
solving problems and finding answers. In contrast, hands-on, inquiry-based approaches present
science content as dynamic and science as an on-going process of exploration and discovery
rather than as a finished product to be memorized.cxxix

        A study of middle school textbooks by Project 2061, funded by the Carnegie
Corporation, found that not one of the widely used science textbooks for middle school rated
satisfactory. The study examined how well textbooks for the middle grades can help students
learn key ideas in earth science, life science, and physical science. The study concluded that
these key resources for many classrooms "…cover too many topics and don't develop any of
them well. All texts include many classroom activities that either are irrelevant to learning key
science ideas or don't help students relate what they are doing to the underlying ideas." cxxx

        High-school biology textbooks scored slightly higher than the middle-grades science
texts, though none received a high rating. According to the report, "biology textbooks fail to
make important biology ideas comprehensible and meaningful to students. . . . evidence from the
current study points to serious shortcomings both in content coverage and instructional design."
cxxxi



        The content of the curriculum in the reform movements of the 1990‘s focused on the
concept of scientific literacy including an integration of science, math, and technology. cxxxii
―Science literacy is not an option but a must if the United States is to develop a generation of
well-informed and educated citizenry.‖cxxxiii ―

        The well-educated, confident adult will, in the future, be communicating through
        what, until very recently, was an unimaginable range of means and will be
        network and information rich. By contrast, those who are not well educated, who
        lack access to communication and lack confidence will be excluded from
        countless networks and become information poor.               They will find life
        increasingly difficult as the pace of change quickens and societies become less
        able to fund the welfare systems characteristic of the late 20th century.‖cxxxiv



                                                52
        Other factors must also be taken into account when curriculum is considered. First, no
curriculum can succeed without teachers who are able to effectively present that curriculum to
students. Research found that for many elementary teachers, teaching science is a least favored
part of their jobs. cxxxv Consequently, science is often taught from textbooks and without
enthusiasm. Furthermore, most elementary teachers have little preparation in science content or
pedagogy, and few school districts have the staff development programs to support science
curricula. This finding reinforces the necessity for a strong statewide system of professional
development.

      At the secondary level, high school science teachers face certain problems in
implementing the science curriculum:cxxxvi

          Insufficient funds for equipment and supplies
          Insufficient student problem-solving skills
          Inadequate laboratory facilities
          Poor reading ability on the part of students
          Lack of student interest in science
          Lack of science career role models
          Class sizes that are too large

         In addition, with many schools now moving to block scheduling, restructuring instruction
to fit the new scheduling pattern is an additional challenge being imposed on teachers. A study
by Bateson examined the effect of semester versus year-long courses in science achievement.
This study found that students in semester-long courses did not perform as well on multiple
choice, standardized tests as did students who took year-long courses.cxxxvii

   Instruction

       As early as 1973, science educators agreed that science teaching should be based on the
work of psychologist Jean Piaget.cxxxviii Piaget‘s work into how children develop understanding
of the world has become a foundation for the major reform efforts in science education. His
work demonstrated that learners, whether in elementary school or high school, best approach
new learning through the use of concrete materials and active involvement. Listening is not
enough to generate learning. Watching is not enough to generate understanding. Directly
experiencing new information enhances understanding and understanding enhances permanent
learning.

       The bulk of research into the effectiveness of hands-on science teaching was conducted
in the 1960‘s and 1970‘s. Investigations into hands-on programs such as Science: A Process
Approach, The Science Curriculum Improvement Study, Elementary Science Study, Biological
Science Curriculum Study, PSSC Physics, and many others repeatedly confirmed the efficacy of
hands-on programs over traditional textbook based programs for teaching science. In 1990,
Shymansky, Hedges, and Woodworth reaffirmed the efficiency of such programs through a
resynthesis of the previous research.cxxxix The resynthesis showed that the hands-on curricula of
the 1960‘s and 1970‘s were more effective in enhancing student performance than traditional
textbook series. In addition to significant positive effects on achievement, these hands-on
programs showed positive effects on learning science process skills, in developing
problem-solving abilities, and in developing positive attitudes towards science.


                                               53
        More recent research continues to document the effectiveness of hands-on, inquiry-based
research programs. In a major review of science programs, a report from the Bayer Corporation
concludes, "…research data supports those who prefer using a hands-on, inquiry-based approach
to science education. An activity-based science curriculum exerts a positive impact on student
performance across most measures, especially attitudes and academic achievement." cxl
Research by Chang and Mao finds additional affirmation of the use of hands-on, inquiry-based
science teaching in their 1999 study. In comparing traditional science instruction to
inquiry-based science instruction at the junior high school level, the inquiry group had
significantly higher achievement and significantly more positive attitudes toward science. As
Chang and Mao stated, ―The findings in this study have demonstrated that instruction which
incorporates both inquiry strategies and cooperative learning can lead to improved student
achievement and attitudes towards subject matter.‖cxli The authors recommended that inquiry
instruction be broadly developed and widely used in science classrooms. Similarly, Rainey has
shown that, when equated for per capita income, teacher salary, government support, race, and
parental unemployment, schools who participated regularly in a formal activity-based inquiry
science program produced significantly higher Stanford Achievement Test scores than students
not participating in such a program. In addition, the difference between scores of participating
schools compared with nonparticipating schools continued to increase the longer the schools
remained in the program.cxlii

        The understanding that hands-on, laboratory-based activity is most appropriate for
learners whether at the elementary school, middle school, or high school level has become an
accepted fact. All reform movement documents are based on the assumption that hands-on,
minds-on teaching will form the foundation for science education programs. This view of
science education is particularly well stated in the National Science Education Standards:

       Learning science is something students do, not something that is done to them.
       In learning science, students describe objects and events, ask questions, acquire
       knowledge, construct explanations of natural phenomena, test those explanations
       in many different ways, and communicate their ideas to others. Science teaching
       must involve students in inquiry-oriented investigations in which they interact
       with their teachers and peers.cxliii

       Research in science teaching also focuses on strategies that will help teachers make the
most effective use of hands-on instruction. One of the most researched strategies in science
teaching is the use of cooperative learning. Cooperative learning is a grouping strategy in which
students within the group are given specific tasks to complete. The total group then becomes
responsible for the learning process. Research reveals the following conclusions:

          Comparisons of the use of cooperative groups with lab activities to the use of
           traditional lab approaches show that students in high school biology have
           significantly higher levels of achievement. Research shows that the use of
           heterogeneous grouping along with rewards for group work increases the
           effectiveness of learning.cxliv
          Investigation of two types of grouping patterns within cooperative learning revealed
           different results. When homogeneous grouping procedures were compared to
           heterogeneous grouping procedures, no differences were found in achievement. This
           contradicts the general conception that heterogeneous groupings are more efficacious
           in increasing achievement. However, a difference was found between students in

                                               54
           homogeneous groups versus heterogeneous groups. The difference appeared in the
           affective and social domains. Heterogeneously grouped students became more
           aware of their learning and more positive about their learning.cxlv
          Comparison of cooperative learning to traditional groups showed no differences in
           over-all achievement. However, closer analysis of the data demonstrated that
           students in cooperative groups performed better than traditionally grouped students
           on higher-order tasks that required application of information. cxlvi ―Working
           collaboratively with others not only enhances the understanding of science, it also
           fosters the practice of many of the skills, attitudes, and values that characterize
           science.‖cxlvii
          Investigation of cooperative work on concept-focused tasks showed that learners were
           enabled to overcome their scientific misconceptions. Research also indicates that the
           key to effectiveness of cooperative grouping is in the leadership.cxlviii

        In conclusion, research on cooperative learning supports the use of cooperative groups in
conjunction with hands-on approaches to learning. Such an approach increases achievement,
particularly in application level tasks. In addition, students practice science skills, and become
more positive toward science as a result of cooperative learning.

        In a second area of research, lab experiences were considered. This research studied the
effect of confirmation and open-inquiry labs on student learning. In confirmation labs, students
simply followed directions in order to confirm what was already known. In open inquiry labs,
students developed lab experiences to answer questions. The research showed no differences in
thinking processes between the two groups. Shepardson, in his discussion of results, warns,
―…the nature of student thinking in open-inquiry labs may be disappointing in that simply
providing students with curriculum opportunities, such as open-inquiry labs, is insufficient to
engage all students in thinking. That is, for some students open inquiry labs become no more
than the physical manipulation of materials.‖ cxlix This points to the need for purposeful lab
experiences including interaction with the teacher and with other students.

       The constructivist approach to learning has also received significant attention in the
research. A constructivist approach considers the learner to be instrumental in the learning
process. In this case, the learner does not simply take in information presented by the teacher or
textbook, but rather gathers information and attempts to make sense of that information in light
of past experiences and background knowledge. In constructivist teaching the students learn
new information by relating that knowledge to what they already know. One model for
constructivist teaching is the Conceptual Change Model.cl Lonning investigated the use of the
Conceptual Change Model with and without the use of cooperative learning. cli Students using
cooperative learning in conjunction with conceptual change showed greater achievement gains
than students using only the conceptual change approach. He went on to state that ―a key
characteristic of these models (constructivist approaches) is the importance placed on the
examination of the students‘ personal conceptions. Involving the students in discussions with
peers and the teacher is recognized as one of the major means of achieving this goal.‖ clii
Research has also indicated that the quality of the knowledge constructed by the learner depends
on the individual‘s interest, the individual‘s prior knowledge, and the richness of the learning
environment.cliii

      Attitudes and science self-concept have also been researched in science education.
Simpson states, "Recent research, however, has produced new evidence that the learning of

                                               55
science is influenced by the way students feel toward science."cliv The TIMSS data showed a
decrease in achievement among American students from fourth to eighth grade and from eighth
grade to twelfth grade. The work of Dimitrov showed a similar decrease in attitude towards
science from fifth grade to seventh grade to tenth grade.clv Simpson considered attitudes at the
early childhood, middle school, and high school levels. His work showed, first, that self-concept,
motivation, and science anxiety are important indicators of science achievement. Furthermore,
he determined that self-concept significantly influenced achievement. Interest and achievement
are influenced beginning in early childhood years by experiences with science. Lifelong interest
in science and commitment to science learning is influenced by the experiences of elementary
school children both with their families and in the schools. At the middle school level students
were found to enjoy science when they experienced a reasonable level of success. And at the
high school level, Simpson‘s work showed that attitude towards science and science self-concept
influenced the selection of eleventh and twelfth grade science courses by tenth graders.
Greenfield concludes, "…programs emphasizing hands-on discovery-oriented science can have
positive academic and affective impacts on teachers . . . and their students."clvi

        Research shows a variety of specific teaching strategies are successful in science
education. The use of the learning cycle strategy showed that the learning cycle allowed for
greater involvement in the learning process, resulted in more enjoyable and stimulating classes,
developed a more thorough understanding of science concepts, and resulted in greater critical
thinking on the part of students.clvii Other research has demonstrated that concept mapping was a
more effective strategy than traditional expository teaching in enhancing achievement in
biology.clviii Research conducted by Willerman and MacHarg showed that using concept maps
prior to laboratory investigations resulted in significant differences in achievement over students
who did not receive concept maps. Stavy showed that teaching by analogy could be an effective
tool in science, particularly when analogies were built on correct preconceptions of students. clix
Finally, Ayer and Milson demonstrated that providing middle school students with study skills
such as note taking and underlining did not affect achievement.clx

        Such factors as home achievement, gender, and ethnicity have also been considered in the
research. For tenth graders, a significant relationship exists between a student‘s home and
school environment in science achievement.clxi A study of fifth grade students looked at gender
and ethnicity. This study found that ethnicity had no effect on science achievement, gender
made no difference on achievement in low and middle ability groups, and that high ability boys
did better than girls on open-ended physical science questions but not in other areas.clxii Finally,
in looking at students with disabilities, research showed that for students with disabilities,
activity-oriented curricula offer fewer difficulties.clxiii However, the authors caution that schools
adopting a content-based approach to science education needed to provide a variety of support
materials for special education students including study skills, peer mentoring, audio/video tapes,
cooperative learning, and inquiry-based instruction.

        A study by Spector and Gibson asked middle school students what they perceived to be
helpful in learning science.clxiv The students listed the following characteristics:

          Experiencing situations about which they were learning
          Having live presentations by professional experts
          Doing hands-on activities
          Using inductive reasoning to generate new knowledge
          Being active learners

                                                56
          Exploring interdisciplinary approaches to problem solving
          Having adult mentors
          Interacting with peers and adults
          Trusting the individuals in the learning environment.
          Experiencing self-reliance.

       The list developed by these middle school students reflects both the research and the
contentions of reform movements. Research indicates hands-on, active-learning in cooperative
groups, coupled with interaction with peers and adults in a trusting environment, tends to be
highly effective in improving science achievement. It is also perceived as most effective by
students.


   Resources

       The 1993 National Survey of Science and Mathematics Education found that instructional
resources were cited as the most serious problem affecting instruction. Mathematics and
science department heads reported lack of funds to purchase equipment and supplies, lack of
materials for individualized instruction, inadequate access to computers, and lack of appropriate
computer software as highly problematic to quality mathematics and science education. clxv
Similar concerns were reported by the Alabama Mathematics, Science, and Technology Initiative
survey.clxvi

        The concerns and limitations of a textbook dominated curricula have been previously
mentioned. Yet, in many classrooms the textbook is the only physical resource that students
experience in science. If science education is to move from a textbook and worksheet driven
curriculum to the hands-on, inquiry-based reform that is called for by the major reform
movements, then providing appropriate resources must become a critical component of any plan
for improvement.clxvii As indicated in the National Science Education Standards, "An effective
science learning environment requires a broad range of basic science materials, as well as
specific tools for particular topics and learning experiences."clxviii

        One of the greatest problems facing a hands-on, inquiry-based science program is simply
supplying the needed resources at the appropriate time. Teachers must have the forethought to
order materials in the correct quantities well in advance of their use by the students. When
materials must be processed on school purchase orders, the teacher may be required to place
orders months before the materials will actually be used. Storage of supplies and equipment
also becomes an issue. Once a class has performed the activity, consumable materials must be
replenished for future classes. Even when funding is not a problem, many teachers simply do
not have time, skills, or motivation to manage the ordering and refurbishment of materials that
are required for a hands-on, inquiry based science program. To address this need, the National
Science Education Standards suggest that,"…an effective infrastructure for materials support be
a part of any science program. School systems need to develop mechanisms to identify
exemplary materials, store and maintain them, and make them available to teachers in a timely
fashion. Providing an appropriate infrastructure frees teachers' time for more appropriate tasks
and assures the necessary materials are available when needed."clxix

       Expecting teachers to gather all of the materials needed for hands-on activities has proven
to be neither realistic nor efficient. The National Science Resource Center has concluded that

                                               57
the most efficient and cost-effective way to provide teachers with the supplies needed is through
the creation of science materials support centers. clxx, clxxi, clxxii Moreno calls attention to the
importance of material and supply refurbishment centers to support science programs as follows:

       Much more desirable is centralized management of science materials by schools
       or districts. Some localities with well-established science programs for grades
       K-8 provide teachers with kits containing all of the science materials necessary
       for a 3-9 week unit….science centers are also responsible for refurbishing used
       kits so they may be distributed and reused several times during each school year
       (Lapp 1980). Centralized management and distribution of supplies help to
       ensure that all students have equally rich science experiences. clxxiii

        Lack of appropriate supplies and equipment for science classes is a significant problem
that limits the quality of students' hands-on experiences throughout grades K-12. The problem
is most notable in elementary schools, where, in some cases, teachers and students do not have
access to even the most rudimentary tools and materials necessary for teaching and learning
science. Research indicates that resources to support hands-on science must extend from
elementary school through high school if the benefits of inquiry-based instruction are to be fully
realized. clxxiv The National Science Foundation has financed the development of resource kits
that allow elementary and middle school teachers to easily provide their students with quality,
hands-on, inquiry-based science instruction. The resource kits, designed by leading science
educators, support the National Education Science Standards and have received extensive field
testing for effectiveness.      Numerous studies demonstrate the positive impact of the
activity-based resource kits on student performance. clxxv

         The National Science Education Standards also address the need for adequate space and
facilities for hands-on science investigations.

       There must be space for students to work together in groups, to engage safely in
       investigation with materials, and to display both work in progress and finished
       work. There also must be space for safe and convenient storage of materials
       needed for science. At the lower grade levels, schools do not need separate
       rooms for laboratories . . . . at the upper grade levels, laboratories become critical
       to provide the space, facilities, and equipment needed for inquiry and to assure
       that the teacher and students can conduct investigations without risk. All spaces
       where students do inquiry must meet appropriate safety regulations. clxxvi

        Technological resources can and should play a valuable role in inquiry based science
instruction. As Stager indicates, "The continuous miniaturization of electronic components and
the drop in the cost of computing is making the microcomputer-based labs both cost-effective
and more portable. . . . Now the student scientist, with lab instruments and digital lab assistant
software, may go out into the real world and collect real data where it exists, not merely in
textbooks." clxxvii

        Efforts to change the way science is taught in schools often focus on a single-shot effort
to place equipment, materials, and technology in the classroom. Key issues necessary for the
effective use of the resources often go unaddressed and lead to the ineffective and inappropriate
use of resources, or to the resources not being used at all. Issues that must be addressed when
providing science resources include the following: clxxviii

                                                58
              Properly relating the resources to the curriculum
              Adequately training teachers in the use of the resources, including related science
               content and teaching strategies
              Effectively supporting the implementation of the curriculum and resources
              Systematically resupplying materials and equipment as needed


         Assessment

       The fact that one entire chapter from the National Science Education Standards is
devoted to assessment helps draw attention to the importance that assessment must play in any
educational plan. The chapter provides specific standards that are to serve as guides for
developing assessment tasks, practices, and policies. The assessment standards are as follows:
clxxix



              Assessments must be consistent with the decisions they are designed to inform.
              Achievement and opportunity to learn science must be addressed.
              The technical quality of the data collected is well matched to the decisions and
               actions taken on the basis of their interpretation.
              Assessment practices must be fair.
              The inferences made from assessments about student achievement and opportunity to
               learn must be sound.

        Hein and Price have defined assessment as "using any possible means to make
judgements about what students have learned." clxxx Assessment should provide teachers and
the students with information about the students' skills, knowledge, and understanding.
Traditionally, learning in science classes has been measured by using paper and pencil tests.
Yet such tests have increasingly come under criticism for not adequately judging students'
higher-order thinking skills or their ability to apply content knowledge. clxxxi, clxxxii In addition,
problems occur when science programs do not match the mandated examinations. Teachers
may feel compelled to "teach the test" at the expense of implementing the official science
program. Moreno states that "this situation should change gradually as individual states and
school districts continue to align their guidelines with NRC Standards and generate
corresponding standardized tests."clxxxiii

         Still, standardized testing programs can provide valuable data to teachers. Without such
data, teachers would never know how their students' achievement compares with that of other
students across the state, nation, or world. As Domain points out, "Standardized tests give me a
window to the reality beyond my classroom, beyond my own measure of how things ought to
be." clxxxiv

        Aware of the limitations of conventional tests, many educators now encourage the use of
alternative and authentic forms of assessment in the classroom. Students may be asked to solve
a real life problem, perform an experiment, or prepare a presentation on a topic. Such
evaluation reflects the inquiry, process-oriented and collaborative nature of science by having
students "work together or separately, using equipment, materials, and procedures that they
would use in good, hands-on science instruction." clxxxv       A limitation of these types of


                                                 59
assessments is the difficulty in using them to project student performance or correlating them
from one task to another.

        Research shows that factors in the classroom assessment environment such as frequency
and format can affect student achievement. Brookhart found that the frequency of assessment,
written reports, science projects, and graded homework had positive effects on student
achievement. This supports the view that active learning, student construction, curiosity and
motivation, and self-evaluation lead students to achieve at significantly higher levels. clxxxvi
While multiple-choice tests continue to play a major role in assessment, it is important that
teachers be knowledgeable of other forms of assessment that fit well with desired student
outcomes in science. Portfolios, observations, performance tests, student interviews, journals,
projects, surveys, and self-assessments are all valuable ways of gaining insight into what
students know and can do.clxxxvii The challenge of the teacher is to match the most appropriate
assessment to the desired goal or outcome.

      When planning for assessment, it is important that the purpose of the activity be clear.
Assessment activities should serve the following six purposes:

          Assessment should help guide instruction to make teaching more effective. To do
           this, it must establish what students already know and what is being learned by
           students from the instruction that they receive. clxxxviii
          Assessment should help clarify what should be learned by students.
          Assessment should document students' progress at the end of an extended period of
           instruction.
          Assessment should monitor the outcomes of instruction, including the competencies
           and achievements in the subject.
          Assessment should provide a basis for formulating approaches to improve instruction,
           especially when combined with other information.
          Assessment should guide how resources might be used differently or augmented to
           improve education.

        A report from the National Center for Improving Science Education identifies key
practices for quality assessment in science. Exemplary assessment practices in science must
address the following: clxxxix

          Assessments should model exemplary instruction in that the evaluation exercises are
           indistinguishable from good instructional practices.
          Assessments should allow students to demonstrate their proficiency in laboratory
           activities and scientific thinking by requiring hands-on tasks.
          Assessments should investigate both knowledge of subject matter and depth of
           understanding.
          Assessments should examine both the final answer and the process or approach used
           to obtain the answer.
          Assessments should include a research or design component.
          Assessments used should extend beyond written reports about experiments and
           answers to test questions to speeches, models, drawings, group presentations, and
           displays.



                                              60
   Assessments should monitor the student's proficiency in management skills by
    encouraging opportunities for group work designed around tasks too complex for
    students to accomplish individually.
   Assessments should extend beyond student outcomes to include school context and
    science programs when used to evaluate and make improvements in science
    education.




                                     61
                                           TECHNOLOGY

Professional Development

        Technology has dramatically penetrated every area of society and every aspect of our
social and cultural lives. Technology has changed the very nature of our work. Although
schools are embedded in our culture and reflect its values, the technological changes that have
swept through society have left the educational system largely unchanged. In the course of 20
years, a dramatic gap has opened between the process of teaching and learning in schools and the
ways of obtaining knowledge in society at large. This gap has been made obvious by the fact
that the process of teaching has not changed substantially, even in the past 100 years.cxc, cxci

        A well-qualified teacher who is willing to use technological tools for the purpose of
helping students master established educational goals is the key to success for computer
technology. Continued investments in hardware will be worthless without investing in teacher
skills.

       The AMSTI Committee commissioned the State Department of Education to perform an
extensive survey of mathematics and science educators from across the state. This survey is the
most comprehensive research on mathematics, science, and technology education ever performed
in the state. Results from the survey indicate that access to technology and assistance with
technology integration were the greatest needs of Alabama mathematics and science teachers.cxcii

       When asked to indicate their four greatest needs, both mathematics (56 percent) and
science teachers (54 percent) most frequently listed incorporating technology into the classroom.
In addition, 37 percent of mathematics teachers and 40 percent of science teachers listed
accessing technology as one of their greatest needs.

        Only 5 percent of mathematics and 3 percent of science classrooms are equipped with
five or more computers. Forty-nine percent of mathematics and 48 percent of science teachers
have only a single computer in their classrooms. Over 13 percent of mathematics and 12 percent
of science teachers report not having a computer in their classrooms. Approximately 55 percent
of the mathematics and science classrooms currently have Internet access.

        In terms of peripheral devices, 67 percent of both mathematics and science teachers
indicate they have a printer in their classrooms. However, less than 5 percent of teachers report
using other peripheral devices such as probes, sensors, scanners, or touch screens. An exception
is the 15 percent of high school science teachers who indicate they use probeware with their
students. Probeware is apparently used in science classes only at the high school level.

       Students use technology on a daily or weekly basis in 44 percent of mathematics classes
and in 39 percent of science classes. Thirty-seven percent of mathematics teachers and 36
percent of science teachers rarely or never have their classes use technology.

       Of those that have computers in their classrooms, over 50 percent of mathematics and
science teachers indicate they are used for gradebook record keeping and teacher writing. In
terms of computer usage by students, activities in mathematics classes that show the greatest
percentages are remediation (36 percent), games (30 percent), and practice (28 percent). In
                                               62
science classes computers are mainly used for student writing (30 percent), remediation (26
percent), and student on-line research (26 percent).cxciii

       A national poll of 1,407 teachers conducted in 1999 for Education Week asked teachers three
questions. The questions and tabulated results reveal a noteworthy trend: cxciv

           1. Including this year, for how many years have you been using computer technology in
              your classroom lessons?
                  Have not started yet                      18%
                  One year                                  14%
                  Two years                                 16%
                  Three to five years                       29%
                  More than five years                      23%

           2. About how many hours of basic technology skills training did you receive in the
              last 12 months?
                  None                                27%
                  1 – 5 hours                         31%
                  6-10 hours                          17%
                  11 – 20 hours                       11%
                  More than 20 hours                  14%

           3. About how many hours of training did you receive on integrating technology into
              the curriculum within the last 12 months?

                   None                                     36%
                   1 – 5 hours                              36%
                   6 – 10 hours                             14%
                   11 – 20 hours                            7%
                   More than 20 hours                       8%


        Many state, regional, and federal organizations are realizing that increased funding for
teacher training and tougher standards for technology competency are needed if computers are to
become a standard part of mathematics and science instruction. Virginia and North Carolina
have developed successful professional development programs for their teachers in technology
integration. Virginia established teacher competency standards in technology, although they are
not related to re-certification. cxcv North Carolina adopted ―Technology Competencies for
Educators‖ as part of their School Technology Users Task Force Report in 1995.

        Legislators at the federal and state levels are insisting that new technology programs
include a staff development requirement. Teachers need abundant professional development to
use technology effectively in order to promote high levels of learning for all students. The
technology must be integrated into a standards-based instructional program. A recent study
estimated that only 5percent of a typical school district‘s budget for technology is actually spent
on staff instruction. The National Staff Development Council recommends that 30 percent of
monies allocated for technology should be used for professional development.cxcvi



                                                63
         The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) elementary and middle
school standards that relate to professional growth require that all professional employees ―earn
at least six (6) semester hours of college credit or the equivalency during each five (5) year
period.‖ In 1997, the State Board of Education adopted the Alabama Technology Plan for K12
Education. The plan recommended a minimum of eight (8) hours of training in technology each
year. cxcvii This training has focused, to a large degree, on the use of technology to perform
administrative tasks. To impact student learning, training should emphasize the integration of
technology into the mathematics and science curricula.

       Bringing the existing teaching force up to speed is a massive task that will require
extensive professional development over many years. This problem will be greatly exacerbated if
the teachers entering the profession have not been adequately prepared to use information
technologies. In 1998, the Milken Exchange on Educational Technology set out to establish
baseline data on the status of technology use in teacher-training programs in the United States.
The report found that, in general, teacher-training programs do not provide future teachers with
the kinds of experiences necessary to prepare them to use technology effectively in their
classrooms.

        The U. S. Office of Technology Assessment has identified technology skill stages for
teachers. Teachers need at least 30 hours of training in order to adopt technology.             A
minimum of 45 hours plus 3 months experience is required for the teacher to adapt technology.
Adaptation is defined as moving from basic use to discovery of potential in a variety of
applications. In order for teachers to enter the appropriation stage, a minimum of 60 hours
training and two years of experience are required. In this stage, the teacher has mastery over the
technology and can use it to accomplish a variety of instructional and classroom management
goals. To reach the highest skill stage, invention, the teacher must participate in 80 or more
hours of training and have 4 – 5 years of experience. At this level, the teacher must actively
develop entirely new learning techniques that utilize technology as a flexible tool.cxcviii

What should teachers know to be successful in technology integration?

        The National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) now includes in
its accreditation review process for all teacher preparation programs a set of national standards
for educational technology. The standards were developed by the International Society for
Technology in Education (ISTE). The standards recommend that every teacher acquire a set of
foundational skills and concepts related to technology, regardless of the teacher‘s area of
specialization. These include the following skills:cxcix

          Operate school computers to access and use the basic software available (access/open
           applications, create/save/retrieve documents, etc.).
          Evaluate, use, and relate Information Technology tools for instruction (i.e. to instruct
           large or small groups or individuals).
          Apply current instructional principles, research, and appropriate assessment practices
           to the use of information technologies.
          Evaluate educational software.
          Use computers for problem-solving data collection (spreadsheet, database, etc.).
          Send and receive electronic mail.
          Create effective, computer based presentations (slideshows, overheads, etc.).
          Access and search the Internet for personal/professional resources.

                                               64
          Integrate Information Technology tools into student learning activities across the
           curriculum.
          Use information technologies to facilitate student-centered learning.
          Create multimedia documents to support instruction.
          Create hypertext documents to support instruction.
          Demonstrate knowledge/modeling of ethical and equity issues related to technology
           (i.e. observing copyright, privacy, personal safety, etc.).
          Demonstrate knowledge of current resources related to educational technology.
          Use computer-based technology to access information and for personal/professional
           productivity (CD-ROMs, record keeping/reporting on student progress, etc.).

         Even today, despite the importance of technology, computer training does not hold a
prominent place in the preparation experiences of teachers in some colleges of education.
According to Cheryl Williams, director of Education Technology Programs at the National
School Boards Association, there are several reasons why colleges of education have not
integrated technology into their courses. First, many teacher education programs lack the
hardware and software necessary to incorporate technology into the teacher agenda. Second, in
many instances, the education faculties have not been provided the training they need to use
technology effectively. Third, a majority of teacher education departments have not been able
to invest in the technical support required to maintain a high-quality technology program. And
finally, some higher education faculties have little understanding of the changes technology is
bringing to K – 12 classrooms, and they have not adjusted their own teaching methodologies to
reflect these changes.cc

         NCATE has also been encouraged to require that technology be fully integrated across
entire teacher preparation programs. Failure to prepare teacher education graduates to use
technology effectively and wisely will cause billions of dollars invested in education technology
initiatives to go to waste.cci

       Professional development for technology use should include essential components that
research has found to be important. These components include the following: ccii

          a connection to student learning
          hands-on technology use
          a variety of learning experiences
          curriculum-specific applications
          new roles for teachers
          collegial learning
          active participation of teachers
          ongoing process
          sufficient time
          technical assistance and support
          administrative support
          adequate resources
          continuous funding
          built-in evaluation

       Whether technology should be used in schools is no longer the issue in education.
Instead, the current emphasis is ensuring that technology is used effectively to create new

                                               65
opportunities for learning and to promote student achievement. This requires the assistance of
educators who integrate technology into the curriculum, align it with state and national
standards, and use it for engaging learning projects. Therefore, professional development for
teachers becomes the key issue in using technology to improve the quality of learning in the
classroom.

        Lack of professional development for technology use is one of the most serious obstacles
to fully integrating technology into the curriculum.cciii Traditional sit-and-get training sessions
or one-time-only workshops have not been effective in making teachers comfortable with using
technology or adept at integrating it into their lesson plans. Instead, a well-planned, ongoing
professional development program that is tied to the school's curriculum goals, designed with
built-in evaluation, and sustained by adequate financial and staff support is essential if teachers
are to use technology appropriately to promote learning for all students in the classroom.


Curriculum and Instruction

        Educational reform calls for shifting away from the traditional method of organizing
instruction in lecture format or practicing skills in specific academic disciplines toward an
emphasis on engaging students in long-term, meaningful projects.cciv Computer technology is
changing schools in ways different from previous reform fads because of three significant
reasons: ccv

           Children are becoming a driving force for educational change instead of being its
            passive recipients.
           Computers are learner‘s technology, not teacher‘s technology such as televisions and
            filmstrip projectors.
           Powerful advanced ideas can become elementary without losing their power.

        Standards for Technological Literacy: Content for the Study of Technology was released
in April, 2000. This book incorporates the International Society for Technology in Education
(ISTE) Standards into various core subjects from kindergarten through twelfth grade. The twenty
ISTE standards, with benchmarks at different levels, specify what students should know about
the history, design, effects, and use of technologies. Incorporating the ISTE Standards into the
Alabama mathematics and science courses of study would encourage the implementation of
technology into these core subjects.

        ―School subjects such as mathematics and science do not always have or allow time for
exploration and development. Technology education is a conduit for this discovery and
exposure, and it provides an opportunity for interaction and deeper development of related areas
of study.‖ccvi The power of technology as it relates to other school subjects and how it helps
students build their educational understanding through problem solving is well documented in
projects that promote the integration of technology education with mathematics and science.ccvii


Resources

       Research shows that the once popular goal of one computer in every classroom is just the
beginning, not the end, of a classroom‘s technology needs. In today‘s classrooms, technology
                                                66
must be viewed as a basic resource for teaching and learning, and that means more than one
computer per class. It also means more than just a computer. The television, telephone, and
computer industries are rapidly merging, and as they do, they are turning yesterday‘s science
fiction into today‘s reality.

       What technology should each classroom target for integration? While there is no correct
answer, every classroom needs enough technology to accomplish the following:ccviii

          Support individual, small group, and whole-class learning activities
          Connect to information sources outside the classroom (i.e., Internet, network, and
           telecommunications access)
          Access CD-ROM and laser videodisc sources
          Display the output from both computer and video sources on a large screen
          Provide software to support adequately teaching the subject

       This minimum requirement is necessary in colleges of education, as well as K – 12
classrooms.

         Technology needs of teachers extend beyond the purchase of hardware and software. A
competent technical staff is also required to ensure the integration of technology into the
classroom. ―Providing sufficient technical staff to set up, maintain, enhance, and repair the
computers remains a constant challenge for most schools. International Data Corporation reports
that ‗per student, schools exhibit extremely low levels of technical support or roughly one
support person for every 500 students. In the business environment, the ratio is typically 1 to
50.‘‖ccix The CEO Forum School Technology and Readiness report, >From Pillars to Progress,
published in 1997 notes that while ―technology is being leveraged in the classroom, lack of
on-site technical support…may discourage teachers from using technology to its fullest
potential.‖ ccx

        In the past decade, Alabama schools have steadily increased the number of computers
and decreased their ratios of students per computer. It seems reasonable to request capable
tech-support to maintain the expensive equipment in each school. The University of Rhode
Island and Tech Corps evaluated Rhode Island's programs in mathematics, science and
technology using instruments developed by the National Center for Public Education and Social
Policy at the University of Rhode Island. The project found that: 1) even in a small state,
complete and lasting coordination is difficult to achieve; 2) teachers need real contexts and
projects before they will adopt technological applications and new instructional techniques; and
3) ongoing technical support for frameworks, standards, and technology use is integral to the
success of a project.

Effective Integration

        Effective technology integration is attained through the development of technology skills
that can be applied directly and immediately in teachers‘ classrooms and the development of
strategies for using technology as a teaching and learning tool.           Through technology
integration, instruction becomes motivating, timely, and relevant learning that is case-based,
active, and collaborative. Teachers must model innovative approaches and practice using tools
that maximize student-to-student interaction and reduce the administrative workload.
Integration will improve student learning and increase the number of students served. Access to

                                               67
a national on-line learning community and contact with other teachers - motivating and
facilitating teacher implementation of newly acquired skills - is also an essential component of
integration.

Assessment

         Educators agree that various forms of assessment should be used to check student
understanding. Computers can provide instant analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of
individual students, whole classes, and entire schools and districts, while teachers and
administrators must wait weeks and sometimes months to see how students perform on paper
tests.ccxi ―A big draw of computer-based exams is they are more adaptive than paper-and-pencil
tests.‖ ccxii Some test formats incorporate adaptive branching. Adaptive tests are personalized
for each individual being tested. As a test-taker answers questions correctly, the computer
makes the questions a little bit harder. If the person starts answering incorrectly, the level of
difficulty drops. The Northwest Evaluation Association (NWEA) has designed a computerized
adaptive testing program that school districts can tailor to their local or state standards.

       If technology standards are incorporated into mathematics and science courses of study,
students will be using technology more in classrooms. Teachers must then extend the use of
technology into the area of assessment.             Students will be able to participate in
performance-based evaluations through the use of technology. Students will grasp the true
meaning of technology and its benefit in their daily lives.




                                               68
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                                                  Endnotes
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Montgomery, Alabama, 1999. Teaching and Student Achievement, (1999)
        ii
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        iii
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        iv
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        v
        Third International Mathematics and Science Study, Office of Educational Research and
Improvement, U. S. Department of Education, June 1997.
        vi
            Linking the National Assessment of Educational progress (NAEP) and the Third International
 Mathematics and Science Study (TIMMS): Eighth-Grade Results. National Center for Education
Statistics, Research and Development Report, July 1998.
        vii
           William H. Schmidt, and C. C. McKnight, ―What Can We Really Learn from TIMSS?‖
Science Vol.. 282, 1999.
        viii
               William H. Schmidt, TIMMS United States National Research Center, Report No. 8, April
1998.
        ix
          M. Coeyman, ―Lessons From Abroad: Plan Better and Delve Deeper,‖ Christian Science
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        x
            William H. Schmidt, TIMMS United States National Research Center, Report No. 8, April 1998.
        xi
            The Proficient achievement level represents solid academic performance for each grade
assessed. Students reaching this level have demonstrated competency over challenging subject matter,
including subject-matter knowledge, application of such knowledge to real-world situations, and analytical
skills appropriate to the subject matter.
        xii
           NAEP 1996 Science State Report for Alabama, U. S. Department of Education Office of
Educational Research and Improvement, Washington, D. C., September 1997, p. 1.
        xiii
          R. K. Blank, and D. Langesen, State Indicators of Science and Mathematics Education: 1999,
Council of Chief State School Officers, 1999.
        xiv
           NAEP 1996 Mathematics State Report for Alabama, U. S. Department of Education Office of
Educational Research and Improvement, Washington, D. C., September 1997, p. 4
        .
        xv
           NAEP 1996 Science State Report for Alabama, U. S. Department of Education Office of
Educational Research and Improvement, Washington, D. C., September 1997, p. 1.
        xvi
               Science teachers include biology, chemistry, physics, and earth science only.




                                                       91
        xvii
           R. K. Blank, and D. Langesen, State Indicators of Science and Mathematics Education:
1999, Council of Chief State School Officers, 1999.
        xviii
             NAEP 1996 Mathematics State Report for Alabama, U. S. Department of Education Office of
Educational Research and Improvement, Washington, D. C., September 1997, p. 126.
.
        xix
            NAEP 1996 Mathematics State Report for Alabama, U. S. Department of Education Office of
Educational Research and Improvement, Washington, D. C., September 1997, p. 53.
.
        xx
            R. K. Blank, and D. Langesen, State Indicators of Science and Mathematics Education: 1999,
Council of Chief State School Officers, 1999, pp. 30 and 36.
        xxi
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1999, Council of Chief State School Officers, 1999, pp. 54-55.
        xxii
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1999, Council of Chief State School Officers, 1999, p. 57.
        xxiii
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Educational Research and Improvement, Washington, D. C., September 1997, p. 44.
        xxiv
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        xxv
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of Education, 1995.
        xxvi
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Educational Research and Improvement, Washington, D. C., September 1997, p. 135.
        xxvii
            NAEP 1996 Mathematics State Report for Alabama, U. S. Department of Education Office of
Educational Research and Improvement, Washington, D. C., September 1997, p. 137.
        xxviii
             NAEP 1996 Science State Report for Alabama, U. S. Department of Education Office of
Educational Research and Improvement, Washington, D. C., September 1997, p. 60.
        xxix
                 Third International Study of Science and Mathematics Education, press release November
20, 1996.
        xxx
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Science, Oxford university Press, Inc., New York, 1990, p. xvi.
        xxxi
           Principles and Standards for School Mathematics, National Council of Teachers of
Mathematics, Inc., Reston, VA, 2000, p. 1.
        xxxii
             Principles and Standards for School Mathematics, National Council of Teachers of
Mathematics, Inc., Reston, VA, 2000, p. 6.
        xxxiii
              Principles and Standards for School Mathematics, National Council of Teachers of
Mathematics, Inc., Reston, VA, 2000, p. 11.
        xxxiv
            Principles and Standards for School Mathematics, National Council of Teachers of
Mathematics, Inc., Reston, VA, 2000, pp. 29-30.




                                                     92
        xxxv
             Principles and Standards for School Mathematics – An Overview, National Council of
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        xxxvi
              Principles and Standards for School Mathematics, National Council of Teachers of
Mathematics, Inc., Reston, VA, 2000, p. 30.
        xxxvii
              Principles and Standards for School Mathematics, National Council of Teachers of
Mathematics, Inc., Reston, VA, 2000, p. 7.
        xxxviii
              Principles and Standards for School Mathematics, National Council of Teachers of
Mathematics, Inc., Reston, VA, 2000, p. 8.
        xxxix
              Principles and Standards for School Mathematics, National Council of Teachers of
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        xl
               National Science Education Standards, National Academy Press, Washington, D.C., pp. 1-255.
        xli
          National Educational Technology Standards for Students: Connecting Curriculum and
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        xlii
          Secretary's Commission on Achieving Necessary Skills. 1991. What work requires of schools:
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        xliii
             Alabama Course of Study: Mathematics, Alabama State Department of Education, Bulletin
1997, No. 4, pp. 1, 117.
        xliv
             Alabama Course of Study: Mathematics, Alabama State Department of Education, Bulletin
1997, No. 4, p. 1.
        xlv
           Alabama Course of Study: Mathematics, Alabama State Department of Education, Bulletin
1997, No. 4, p. 1.
        xlvi
            Alabama Course of Study: Mathematics, Alabama State Department of Education, Bulletin
1997, No. 4, pp. 7-8.
        xlvii
                 Alabama Course of Study: Science, Alabama State Department of Education, 1995, page 1.
        xlviii
            Survey Analysis Report: Alabama Math, Science, and Technology Initiative, Alabama State
Department of Education, 2000.
        xlix
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Teaching and Student Achievement, A+ Education Foundation, Montgomery, AL, 1999.
        l
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        li
           Lucy Carpenter Snead, ―Professional Development for Middle School Mathematics Teachers to
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1998, p. 287.




                                                      93
        lii
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        liii
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        liv
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        lv
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        lvi
           Liping Ma, Knowing and Teaching Elementary Mathematics, Lawrence Erlbaum Associates,
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