Research Committee, July 2014

Research Committee, July 2014

Co-Chairs Maria Varelas and Jomo Mutegi
Co-Chairs Maria Varelas and Jomo Mutegi

Pre-Conference Workshops at the 2014 Meeting

At the 2014 NARST international conference, the Research Committee sponsored 4 very strong pre-conference workshops. These 4 were selected from 13 applications. The preconference workshops were well-attended. Estimated total attendance across all 4 workshops exceeded 120 participants. Proposal submissions for the 2015 NARST International Conference are due August 31, 2014. The call for proposals will be sent to the members on July 1, 2014. We encourage your submissions!

Sandra K. Abell Institute for Doctoral Students

One of the highlights of this past year’s NARST conference was the Sandra K. Abell Scholar Poster Session. The poster session featured 23 posters of doctoral students who took part in the 3rd biennial Sandra K. Abell Institute for Doctoral Students (SKAIDS). The third Abell Institute, held in Washington DC in July 2013 was organized by Julie Luft and Angela Calabrese Barton. Thanks to Julie and Angie for serving as organizers of this great event! Kudos to the 2013 SKAIDS participants! Below are their 2014 NARST presentations along with photos showing them in action during the poster session.

  • Preetha Menon, University of California, Santa Cruz

Supporting ELL’s Science Learning Through Multimodal Formative Assessment: Principles, Practices, and Possibilities

  • Dante Cisterna, Michigan State University

Teachers’ Practices about Chemical Reactions: Enacting Classroom Formative Assessment

  • Dilek Ozalp, University of South Florida

Science Teachers’ Understandings of Science Practices Before and after the Participation in an Environmental Engineering Research Experiences for Teachers (RET) Program

  • Amanda Knight, Boston College

Students’ Abilities to Critique Scientific Arguments Based on the Forms of Justification

  • Somnath Sinha, University of Missouri

Identity Development of Science Teacher Leaders

  • Peggy Ward, University of Arkansas

Exploring Students’ Perceptions of Teaching Episodes and the Subsequent Comparison to the Teachers’ Expressed Intents

  • Phyllis Haugabook Pennock, Western Michigan University

African-American Girls and Scientific Argumentation: Lived Experiences, Intersecting Identities and Their Roles in Constructing and Evaluating Claims

  • Samantha L. Strachan, Morgan State University-Baltimore

Teaching to Their Cultures? Exploring the Connection between Four Science Teachers’ Instructional Practices and Their Beliefs about Teaching African American Children

  • Tess Hegedus, The University Of North Carolina, Greensboro

The Cultural Production of Creativity in Elementary Engineering Education

  • Alison Riley Miller, Teachers College, Columbia University

Examining the Relationship between Physical Models and Students’ Science Practices

  • Laura Zangori, University Of Iowa

Elementary Students’ Formulation of Explanations about the Water Cycle

  • Heather A. Pacheco Arizona State University

Understanding Roles of Assistive Technologies in Choice and Participation of Professionals with Disabilities in STEM Fields

  • Shannon L. Dubois, The University of Georgia

The Global to Local Continuum: A Cross-National Comparative Study of Beginning Science Teachers’ Cycle of Instruction in South Africa and the United States

  • Jiwon Kim, Michigan State University

Culturally Relevant Formative Assessment Practices in a Physics Classroom

  • Helen Douglass, University of Colorado Denver

Making the Invisible Visible, a Pilot Case Study of Women in STEM

  • Betul Ekiz, Middle East Technical University, Turkey

Experienced Chemistry Teachers’ Orientations to Teaching Science as Interrelated Sets of Beliefs

  • Elif Selcan Kutucu, Middle East Technical University, Turkey

Investigating the Interaction between Pre-Service Chemistry Teachers’ Content Knowledge and Pedagogical Content Knowledge

  • Teresa Macdonald, University of Kansas Natural History Museum

Communicating Phylogeny: Evolutionary Tree Design

  • Gabriel Menezes Viana, Federal University of Minas Gerais (UFMG), Belo Horizonte, MG. Brazil

The Construction of Views of Theory-Practice Relationships in an Undergraduate Science Education Program.

  • Brooke A. Whitworth, University of Virginia

Understanding the Critical Role of a District Science Coordinator

  • Bahadir Namdar, The University of Georgia

Knowledge Organization with Multiple External Representations in Computer Supported Collaborative Learning Environment for Arguing on Socio-Scientific Issues

  • Nena Bloom, Northern Arizona University

Building Home-School Connections: Beginning Science Teachers’ Practices for Communicating With Families

  • Elizabeth Hufnagel, The Pennsylvania State University
    Emotions and How They Emerge in A Climate Change Course for Prospective Elementary Education Students

The Research Committee is also encouraging submission of proposals for the 2015 SKAIDS which will be the fourth biennial Institute. As amply demonstrated, SKAIDS provides NARST with a great vehicle for nurturing new researchers as they are becoming part of the science education research community. In addition to organizers for the fourth Abell Institute, there is also a need for NARST members to serve as mentors. Proposals will be due August 31, 2014, and the call for proposals will be sent out on July 1, 2014.

Starting Review of Current Strand Structure

The Research Committee has received surveys on the current strand structure from approximately 200 NARST members. Over the next few months the committee will be working to summarize suggestions made by the membership with the end goal being a re-evaluation of our strand structure.

NARST Sponsored Sessions at NSTA

As part of our ongoing relationship with the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA), NARST members are invited to present at NARST-sponsored sessions at the regional and national NSTA conferences. NARST-sponsored sessions feature 2 hours of programming at each of the 3 regional conferences and 10 hours of programming at the national conference. Below are the presentation titles and names of presenters for each of the three regional conferences in the last few months of 2013, as well as the national conference held in Boston, MA, in April 2014. We give a special thanks to all the presenters.

2013 Area Conference in Portland, OR (October 24-26)

  • Primary Presenter: Ellen Osmundson

Impact of an Embedded Assessment System on Elementary Teaching and Learning

  • Primary Presenter: Maria Ruiz-Primo

Looking at Quality of Instruction and Students’ Performance: Where Do the Teachers’ Questions Come From?

2013 Area Conference in Charlotte, NC (November 7-9)

  • Primary Presenter: Kathy L. Malone

Comparison of the Knowledge Structures and Problem Solving ability of Advanced Placement Physics Students in a Traditional Course and a Modeling Instruction Course – An Exploration

  • Primary Presenter: Kate Popejoy

Increasing Student Performance in Large Lecture STEM Courses: A Team Approach to Successful Learning

2013 Area Conference in Denver, CO (December 12-14)

  • Primary Presenter: Meena Balgopal

Writing About Socio-scientific Issues in Middle School to Increase Decision-making Skills

  • Primary Presenter: Wendy Ruchti

Use of Guided, Evidence- and Standards-Based Reflection in Elementary Science Methods.

2014 NSTA National Conference in Boston

  • Primary Presenter: Katie Van Horne
    Exploring Next Generation Curriculum Models Implementing the Vision in the NRC Framework and NGSS.
  • Primary Presenter: Jennifer Ceven McNally

Continuous Learning through Classroom Observation Cycles

  • Primary presenter: Ann E. Rivet

Exploring Student Reasoning Around Models in Earth Science

  • Primary presenter: Carol Rees

A Game-like Approach to STEM Curriculum Based on Learning Principles in Videogames

  • Primary presenter: Erin A. Hashimoto-Martell

Taking Science Beyond the Classroom: Making Science Participatory, Social, and Local for Students

  • Primary presenter: Deborah Smith

Young Children’s Understandings of Earth’s Surface Features and Changes

  • Primary Presenter: Joseph Johnson

Creating School Scientific Communities among Urban Refugee ELL Populations

  • Primary Presenter: Ibrahim Delen

Zydeco: A New Mobile Application to Support Claim-Evidence-Reasoning Model.

  • Primary presenter: Sharon Dotge

Establishing Trust via Lesson Study

  • Primary Presenter: Leslie Jones

There is Much More to Teaching Evolution than Just Presenting the Biological Science

Presenters at NARST-sponsored NSTA sessions are especially encouraged to consider authoring an article in one of NSTA’s journals based on their research.

Presenters of NARST-sponsored sessions for the 2014 area and 2015 national NSTA conferences have been selected and notified. At the 2014 NARST annual meeting, Deborah Hanuscin, NARST Liaison to NSTA, met with several of these presenters to discuss how to translate NARST presentations for NSTA audiences.

  • Anyone interested in being considered for the next round of NARST-sponsored NSTA sessions would need to indicate as much during the NARST 15 proposal submission. The submission should include a modified abstract for the NSTA presentation.

Research Committee Membership


  • Maria Varelas, University of Illinois at Chicago;
  • Jomo W. Mutegi, Indiana University, IUPUI


  • Joy Barnes-Johnson, Temple University
  • Hye-Eun Chu, Nanyang Technological University
  • Jessica Thompson, University of Washington
  • Sarah Haines, Towson University
  • Irene Neumann, Leibniz-Institute for Science and Mathematics Education (IPN)
  • Irasema Ortega, University of Alaska Anchorage
  • Laura Zangori, University of Nebraska-Lincoln
  • Tamara Moore, Purdue University
  • Femi Otulaja, University of Witwatersrand
  • Renee Schwartz, Western Michigan University
  • Deborah Hanuscin, University of Missouri (Ex-officio)
  • John Tillotson, Syracuse University (Ex-officio)
  • Susan Kowalski, BSCS