TERC Presents: AAAS 2008

February 13, 2008

TERC researchers are giving presentations and hosting the following workshops at the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Annual Meeting in Boston.


Friday, February 15: 8:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
Mental Models and Culturally-Based Science Education

Within session: Power in Its Place: Science in Tribal Education

Douglas L. Medin (Northwestern University), Megan Bang (TERC)

Abstract: The implicit and explicit worldviews-mental models-reflected in discourse and practices among urban and rural Native-Americans and rural European-Americans are contrasted with implicit and explicit worldviews and mental models reflected in science education practices. We consider the implications of these results for culturally-based/community-place-based science education. The cultural conflagrations derived from opposing worldviews are especially poignant regarding environmental knowledge.


Friday, February 15: 1:45 p.m. - 3:15 p.m. 
Inside the Double Bind: Women of Color in STEM

Moderator: Mia Ong (TERC)

Presentation:Navigating Tensions in Raced and Cultured Dimensions of Learning

Authors: Megan Bang (TERC), Carol Wright, (TERC)

Abstract: This presentation will begin to explore the ways in which students perceive, experience, and make sense of what we are calling oppositional dichotomies. Oppositional dichotomies are basic analytic tools for thinking, explanation, and argumentation that we contend shape educational thought and learning environments in significant ways for student learning and engagement. These dichotomies are laden with issues of race, culture, language, gender, and class. This presentation will first explore what we mean by oppositional dichotomies and the various grain sizes and locations (i.e. theoretical, empirical, day-to-day, aggregate, individual) we see them operating on. Then, we will reflect on how these dichotomies may be functioning in the teaching and learning of students who have traditionally underperformed by considering the ways in which students are required to navigate issues of identity across and within multiple contexts.

Saturday, February 16: 1:45 p.m. - 3:15 p.m.
Blogs, Boards, and Bonding: Using Electronic Communities To Support Women in Science

Discussant: Mia Ong (TERC)

Abstract: Online social networking sites have become ways people connect around shared interests and experiences. They also are an opportunity for people with limited physical access to peers and allies to connect to a supportive network to share lessons learned, best practices, and other techniques for professional advancement, and they can be an invaluable resource for women in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Frequently, women in these fields find themselves alone in academic departments and at professional events, and it is often difficult for them to find a path into the "old boys' network." Online resources such as blogs, action boards, and electronic mentoring can provide this missing link, combining social and professional interaction for people with similar experiences or challenges who might not otherwise have access to each other as a resource. The speakers, each an expert in their area of electronic communities, examine forms of electronic communities that provide opportunities to connect women in science across the globe. By reviewing the evolution of blogs by and for women in science, the development of action boards, and the use of Web sites to promote communication and information exchange internationally, this session explores Web resources and ways for women and men to support each other electronically. Discussants focus on ways electronic communities can better attract and support women scientists of color and how programs on gender and science can better use electronic communities.