McMicken College of Arts & SciencesUniversity of Cincinnati

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Endorf Wins Grant For Unique Education Program

Since discussing his work in science education on an Internet talk show a few weeks ago, Robert Endorf has added another honor to his resume.

Date: 3/15/2005
By: Billie Dziech
Phone: 513 / 556.1707
Since discussing his work in science education on an Internet talk show a few weeks ago, Robert Endorf has added another honor to his resume. The Ohio Board of Regents recently notified the professor of physics that he is the recipient of two grants, $61,985 for his project entitled “Physical Science by Inquiry Programs for Teachers in Grades K-5” and $90,736 for “Physical Science by Inquiry Programs for Teachers in Grades 5-12.”

The goal of the programs is to improve student achievement and attitudes toward physical science by providing K-12 science teachers high quality, sustained, standards-based professional development. The projects will involve a four-week institute during the summer of 2005 for grades 5-12 teachers and a two-week institute for K-5 teachers. They will take graduate courses covering both scientific content and the process skills needed to teach inquiry-based science. This is an approach using Physics by Inquiry, a curriculum that involves hands-on activities and emphasis on reasoning as opposed to memorization of facts and figures.

In addition to the institute, program instructors will provide support and feedback as they visit classrooms of K-5 teachers during the school year, and an extensive web-based follow-up support system will be available to participants. Teachers may also elect to earn credit by attending three seminars during 2005-06.

The Physical Science by Inquiry Program is a partnership of the physics department in McMicken College, the College of Education, Criminal Justice, and Human Services, the Cincinnati Public School District, the Hamilton County Educational Service Center, and the Southwest Ohio Center for Excellence in Science and Mathematics Education Teachers from local high need school districts, such as Cincinnati Public Schools, are especially encouraged to participate in the programs.

Endorf has led the Physical Science by Inquiry initiative for teachers in grades K-5 since 1998 and the program for teachers of grades 5-12 since 1996. He sees the two endeavors as important highlights of his career: “Working with the teachers in these programs is very satisfying. They’re enthusiastic about learning science through inquiry activities and bringing the new knowledge and teaching methods that they’ve learned back to their classrooms. We are playing an important role in increasing the scientific understanding and attitudes of teachers and their students.”

Potential participants may contact Professor Endorf at Robert.Endorf@UC.edu. They may also find additional information about the programs and an application and at the website http://www.physics.uc.edu/~endorf/phyinq/main.html

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