Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Presentations at the 2014 Annual American Educational Research Association Annual Meeting, Philadelphia PA

The American Educational Research Association (AERA), a national research society, strives to advance knowledge about education, to encourage scholarly inquiry related to education, and to promote the use of research to improve education and serve the public good.
The American Educational Research Association (AERA), founded in 1916, is concerned with improving the educational process by encouraging scholarly inquiry related to education and evaluation and by promoting the dissemination and practical application of research results.  
AERA's more than 25,000 members are faculty, researchers, graduate students, and other distinguished professionals with rich and diverse expertise in education research. They work in a range of settings from universities and other academic institutions to research institutes, federal and state agencies, school systems, testing companies, and nonprofit organizations. Based on their research, they produce and disseminate knowledge, refine methods and measures, and stimulate translation and practical application of research results. 

This year I had 2 presentations at AERA: 

Lucero, M.M., & Petrosino, A.J., (2014, April). A potential resource in eliciting student ideas: Examining the adaptability of a concept inventory for natural selection at the secondary school level. Paper accepted for presentation at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association (AERA), Philadelphia, PA.

Abstract: The Conceptual Inventory of Natural Selection (CINS) is an example of a research-based instrument that assesses conceptual understanding in an area which contains well-documented alternative conceptions. Much of the CINS’s use and original validation has been relegated to undergraduate settings, but the information learned from student responses on the CINS can potentially be a useful resource for teachers at the secondary level as well. Because of its structure, the CINS can have a role in eliciting alternative conceptions and ultimately induce deeper conceptual understanding by having student ideas leveraged during instruction. As a result, its application must be investigated at the secondary level. In a first step towards this goal, the present study further investigated the CINS’s internal properties by having it administered to a group (n=339) of students at a predominantly Latino, economically-disadvantaged high school. Results from a principal components analysis demonstrate inconsistencies between the original and present validations, but they also provide insight into the rationale secondary students may use in answering certain items. Results also reveal how certain CINS items are structured and may be revised for future use.

Lucero, M.M., Delgado, C., & Petrosino, A.J. (2014, April). Measuring science teachers' pedagogical content knowledge for student ideas about natural selection using a concept inventory. Poster accepted for presentation at AERA annual meeting, Philadelphia, PA.

Abstract: Little research exists that explores science teachers’ awareness and knowledge of their students’ ideas on natural selection. Yet, this aspect of a science teacher’s pedagogical content knowledge (PCK) can be a valuable resource when students learn different science concepts, like natural selection. This study reports the development and implementation of a procedure used to measure this area of PCK by investigating how a group of biology teachers went about predicting what their students’ most common natural selection alternative conceptions were through the use of a concept inventory. Findings from implementing such a procedure revealed potential avenues for future inquiry and the value of having a methodological tool that can capture a vital aspect of a teacher’s PCK.