Seventy-nine in-service teachers completed one of six sections of a grant-funded, graduate-level, summer course entitled, Oceanography, that was offered at four different locations in Virginia between 2005 and 2007. The majority of the teachers enrolled with the objective of obtaining their add-on earth science endorsement through the Virginia Earth Science Collaborative (VESC). Oceanography was designed to integrate the following: 1) the ocean science disciplines of geology, chemistry, physics, and biology; 2) inquiry-based learning strategies, quantitative activities, and technology; and, 3) Virginia Institute of Marine Science (VIMS) field experience with classroom experiences. These design themes were informed by ocean science content standards and science education best practices, and supported the goal that, upon completion of the course, teachers would be confident and competent in their abilities to teach oceanography concepts to grades 6-12 [1-3]. Learning outcomes, instructor feedback, and participant feedback suggest that the VESC’s Oceanography can serve as an instructional model for teacher professional development in oceanography. A collaborative instructional framework (marine educators, master teacher, and university faculty), small class size, and end-of-course field synthesis projects are additional elements that contributed to positive learning outcomes in course sections. The primary challenge in the course was the compressed, two-week time frame of face-to-face instruction.
© Virginia Mathematics and Science Coalition, licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0) (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)
St. John, K.
"Oceanography Professional Development in Virginia Via Collaboration, Field Integration, and Inquiry,"
Journal of Mathematics and Science: Collaborative Explorations: Vol. 10:
1, Article 5.
Available at: https://scholarscompass.vcu.edu/jmsce_vamsc/vol10/iss1/5