Exploring Water Data with High School Students in Flint
Researchers from Eastern Michigan University will work with students from Flint, MI to engage in the exploration and analysis of water data from their communities. This project will expose high school students, often from backgrounds underrepresented in the science disciplines, to place-based and project-based learning opportunities in the field of data science. Researchers will analyze how these learning experiences impact students' computational thinking and interest in S.T.E.M. careers.
This project allows high school students to provide for their community thoughtful analysis regarding the ecology, health, and safety of the water. Inherent in this endeavor, it will provide students with additional learning opportunities in science and technology. This project will assess the Data Club (a type of extended Datathon) as a learning tool to determine how it impacts career interests and computational thinking skills of students who are often underrepresented in S.T.E.M. careers. Researchers will also work with students, teachers, and graduate assistants to develop public learning modules to help other schools get involved with real-world data science focused learning opportunities.
This funding will allow us to carry out the critical stages of the project through the funding of research assistants and incentives for participants. It will allow us to start a Data Club with high school students and perform pre- and post-assessment of student learning experiences in the club. It will provide a stipend to a teacher at a rate that is equivalent to payment for an extracurricular club sponsor. We will provide stipends to two additional research assistants from Eastern Michigan University to assist the high school students with complex analytical methods. Pre-service teachers as research assistants will help with the creation of public learning modules, enabling schools elsewhere to engage in this type of project. Students will present their research in a symposium-style presentation at the end of the project period.