Student Collaboration, Inquiry, and Persistence in a STEM High School

By Myra Suzanne Franco and Nimisha H. Patel.

Published by The International Journal of Interdisciplinary Educational Studies

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

This research project evaluated the presence of collaboration, inquiry, and persistence in a STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) high school interdisciplinary unit. The school personnel strive to infuse the school’s five “habits of mind,” collaboration, inquiry, persistence, creativity, and communication, in their everyday pedagogical practice. Although faculty members were comfortable evaluating student creativity and communication, they struggled to evaluate student collaboration, inquiry, and persistence. The research goal was to collect data on the frequency at which students were engaging in these behaviors and the ways by which the project facilitated these behaviors. A mixed-methods approach was utilized to address these questions. Results indicated that collaboration, inquiry, and persistence were observed over the three days. Collaboration was dominant early, giving way to inquiry, while persistence behaviors increased over the three days. Faculty will utilize these results to influence instructional and assessment practices related to similar future projects.

Keywords: Collaboration, Persistence, Inquiry, STEM High School, Habits of Mind, Project Based Learning

The International Journal of Interdisciplinary Educational Studies, Volume 7, Issue 3, pp.23-39. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 210.210KB).

Dr. Myra Suzanne Franco

Assoicate Professor, College of Education and Human Services, Wright State University, Dayton, OH, USA

Dr. Franco is a member of the Leadership Studies Department in the College of Education and Human Services at Wright State University in Dayton, OH. She teaches in the Teacher Leadership Program and provides research and statistics courses for other Master’s degree programs in the college. She is the WSU site lead for partnership with the Ohio Education Research Center, providing collaborative research for the Ohio Department of Education. She provides research and evaluation for the local STEM high school. Prior to joining Wright State University, Dr. Franco taught a variety of math and science courses in a local K12 school district in Ohio.

Dr. Nimisha H. Patel

Associate Professor, College of Education and Human Services, Wright State University, Dayton, Ohio, USA

Dr. Patel is an Associate Professor of Teacher Education at Wright State University with a focus in Educational Psychology. Dr. Patel has been awarded multiple grants related to STEM education and has served as an external evaluator for research projects related to STEM education. Her current research agenda focuses on student engagement and achievement in STEM and non-STEM education programs. Her research also includes the areas of parent involvement and co-teaching practices. Dr. Patel’s teaching focuses on educational psychology, assessment in education, and action research. She also supervises graduate licensure candidates during their internships.