Members of the Center for Technology and School Change attended the American Education Research Association (AERA) 2017 Annual Meeting from April 27 to May 1st in San Antonio, Texas. Three papers by CTSC staff were accepted by AERA, as well as an additional paper: The Randomized Control Trial and the Case for an Integrated Mixed Study: an Exploration of Math for All by Dr. Ellen Meier and Dr. John Hitchcock of Indiana University.


Papers included:

  • Teachers as Designers: Facilitating Pedagogical Change for STEM Learning (Ellen B. Meier, Caron M. Mineo, Jessica Yusaitis Pike, Dawn M. Horton, Seth A. McCall, Rita Sánchez, Alexandra Thomas)

Abstract: This research shares findings from a three-year NSF grant on Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) learning that aimed to develop teachers as designers of authentic STEM learning experiences. Crucial to this effort was the CTSC professional development model that situates the work within local knowledge and develops distributed leadership for sustainable change. Guided by design-based implementation research, the study focused on problems in practice, embraced an iterative design process, developed learning and implementation approaches through systematic inquiry, and built capacity for sustainable school change. This report considers the impact of the grant intervention on teachers’ growing practice in STEM through an analysis of extensive field notes from the prolonged engagement.


  • A Qualitative Perspective on Randomized Control Trial Mixed-Method Approaches (Ellen B, Meier, Dawn M. Horton, Jessica Yusaitis Pike)

Abstract: The Math for All (MFA) qualitative research team presents the perspective that qualitative data, used in conjunction with quantitative data, create a more complete picture of the overall intervention: RCT quantitative data measure impact while qualitative data capture critical explanatory information about the impact. Specifically, qualitative researchers working in the context of RCT studies are able to identify qualitative research themes that inform the overall project and broaden the conceptual understanding of how and why the project works as it does. Thus the RCT mixed method research design increases the depth and the complexity of the study by introducing the perspective of the individuals directly involved in the program.


  • Innovating Instruction: Systemic Transformation at the School Level(Ellen B. Meier, Dawn M. Horton, Seth A. McCall, Jessica Yusaitis Pike, Rita Sánchez, Alexandra Thomas, Caron M. Mineo)

Abstract: This research captures organizational changes made by two schools working with a university-based research and development center on a Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) project. STEM, as a transdisciplinary concept, is a particularly fitting focus for research related to educational change because organizational change, at some level, is required. The project used a professional development model, Innovating Instruction, to support the school-change process. Results indicated that, over a three-year period, teachers made significant changes to their practices with the development of increasingly sophisticated, authentic STEM projects. Organizational changes included dedicating Fridays to STEM work in one school, while the other school reconfigured their staffing structure to create a team of teacher designers focused on STEM work.


These papers was presented at three sessions:

  • STEM Professional Development in Teacher Education: University Partnerships, Teacher Collaboration, and Improved Assessments (4/27, 12-1pm, Grand Hyatt San Antonio, Second Floor, Lone Star Ballroom Salon C)

  • Presentation of a Mixed-Methods Randomized Controlled Trial Design and Lessons Learned (So Far), (4/28, 2:15-3:45pm, Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center, River Level,Room 7B)

  • Learning Across Borders: International Research on Educational Change, (4/29, 10:35-12:05pm, Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center, Meeting Room Level, Room 217A)


More information can be found on the AERA 2017 website.

Congratulations to Dr. Ellen Meier, Dr. Dawn Horton, Seth McCall, Caron Mineo, Dr. Rita Sánchez, Alexandra Thomas, and Jessica Yusaitis Pike for all their work on the papers accepted by AERA!