This award provides funding for a three year continuing award for a Research Experiences for Teachers (RET) in Engineering and Computer Science Site Program at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) entitled, RET in Engineering and Computer Science Site-Chicago Science Teacher Research (CSTR) Program, under the direction of Dr. Andreas A. Linninger. This is a renewal of a successful 3 year RET Site program.
The CSTR program is an initiative by the faculty of three UIC Colleges, Engineering, Education and Liberal Arts and Sciences, in a strategic partnership with the Chicago Public School authorities and industrial interest groups to engage a total of 39 in-service teachers, 13 per year for 3 years, in emerging technologies and cutting edge research in the areas of life sciences, nanotechnology, bioengineering and biomedical engineering. The program will improve the mathematics and science performance of elementary, middle and high-school students through better trained teachers and bridge the gap between experience in pre-college classrooms and cutting-edge university science and technology.
The long-term objectives of the CSTR program are to advance math and science skills taught in Chicago area schools through the following three-tiered approach:
1) Nurture a science education coalition engaging K-12 teachers with university faculty mentors. 2) Conduct a seven-week summer apprenticeship for in-service teachers using a learning-by-doing approach at experimental facilities at UIC, including formal graduate education combined with an all year around follow-up program for the development of discovery-based experiments, lectures, and conferences. 3) Integrate the RET program with a concurrent undergraduate research site (REU) on novel materials and processes in bioengineering and a high-school student mentoring program.