Yellow Pages |   News Updates |   Local Jobs |   Events Calendar |   Movie Times | Recycling
Rocklin and Roseville Today Local Events
contact add event advertise 

Development Program for High School and College Faculty



faculty.jpg

Rocklin, CA -- In response to the growing demand for graduates with critical thinking skills, the Sierra College STEM Collaborative established an innovative professional development program -- Applied Critical Thinking for Advanced Technological Education (ACTivATE)

In June, faculty from Northwestern Searle Center for Advancing Learning and Teaching trained 12 Sierra College and high school faculty to develop curriculum that incorporates applied critical thinking. Through a National Science Foundation (NSF) grant, Enhancing Critical Thinking in STEM Disciplines: A Faculty Development Model, the Searle Center designed, piloted and studied a Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) faculty development program focused on improving higher order learning outcomes of STEM students.

On many levels, Sierra College's approach is groundbreaking according to Denise Drane, Associate Director, Searle Center for Advancing Learning and Teaching, Northwestern University. "Applied critical thinking has rarely been addressed in faculty development programs at the high school level," said Drane. "And students are rarely asked to demonstrate a deeper understanding of critical thinking in an applied setting. In addition, the relationships that Sierra College and high school instructors have with employers are uncommon in education." 

Through the Sierra College workforce development programs, the need for critical thinking was uncovered, explained Carol Pepper-Kittredge, Director, Center for Applied Competitive Technologies (CACT). "The strong ties that Sierra College has with employers will lead to the incorporation of current, workplace applications into critical thinking lessons. Faculty will be able to use real examples from local businesses," said Pepper-Kittredge, who manages the Sierra College STEM Collaborative. 

For the next nine months, the ACTivATE project will support participants as they develop new approaches to overtly teach applied critical thinking in their classrooms.  Instructors will also develop and pilot test hands-on demonstrations to assess students' understanding and align with the new Common Core State Standards. 

"ACTivATE coaches will offer one-on-one support to faculty throughout the project," said Pepper-Kittredge. The Sierra College STEM Collaborative will hold two additional ACTivATE professional development sessions for participants in 2013-14. Findings and applied critical thinking lessons will be published at the conclusion of the project.

A pioneering aspect of the ACTivATE project is that it includes a mix of math, English and Career Technical Education (i.e. welding, media, pre-engineering and Mechatronics) instructors at the high school and college levels, sharing ideas to create lessons that stimulate deeper learning.

 "Those who teach technical education courses seem more in-tune with critical thinking because so much trouble shooting is already part of what they teach," said Drane. "During training, the instructors demonstrated an eagerness to share ideas, challenges and feedback across their disciplines and institutions."

Drane explained that teaching critical thinking skills has been focused primarily at the college level and incorporated almost exclusively into theoretical courses. "Critical thinking should be developed across all disciplines and stages of education to better prepare students for college and careers," said Drane.  

Sierra College STEM Collaborative

The Sierra STEM Collaborative is funded by California Community College Chancellor's Office, to create a pipeline of students interested in technical careers. Students can pursue Welding, Mechatronics, Engineering, Energy Technology and Drafting & Engineering Support at Sierra College http://www.sierracollege.edu/. For information about the ACTivATE professional development project, go to www.appliedcriticalthinking.com  or contact Carol Pepper-Kittredge, Sierra College at (916) 660-7801.





Placer County News Headlines

6 Arrested in Marijuana and Cockfighting BustDuring the execution of the search warrant on 28th Street and Angus Way, Deputies discovered a large scale Marijuana grow of approximately 950 plants and 200 pounds of processed marijuana

Roseville Crime Report Digest Update (7.7.15)Roseville weekly crime report digest update for July 7, 2015.

Sports Complex in Roseville Seeks Operations DirectorPlacer County, CA - Placer Valley Sports Complex, Inc. has started a nationwide search to hire a Director of Sports Complex Operations

Placer County Camping Ban Begins August 6thThe Placer County Board of Supervisors took final action today to adopt an ordinance that will prohibit camping on most county-owned properties beginning Aug. 6.

Lake Francis: Family Friendly GetawayIf a little R&R is on your mind, look no further than the tiny, but enjoyable Lake Francis Resort tucked away in the quiet community of Dobbins, CA.

Rocklin Crime Report Digest Update (7-6-15)Rocklin, CA - Weekly crime report summary and digest update in Rocklin, CA.

Roseville Gas Prices: Find the Best DealsRoseville, CA - Finding the best deals on gas in Roseville is always one click away.

Free Spay and Neuter for all Placer County CatsRoseville, CA -With the arrival of hot summer weather, an increasing number of homeless kittens are arriving at area animal shelters

2016 Acura MDX retains luxury appeal2016 Acura MDX: Now in its seventh year of production by Honda's luxury division, the Acura MDX is one of many midsize luxury crossover sport utility vehicles

50 Days of the Grateful Dead: Estimated Prophet / Terrapin StationTonight in Chicago, the final show of Fare Thee Well, a celebration of 50 years of Grateful Dead's music takes place at Soldier Field

Smart Choice: Don't Drink and Drive Californians love to celebrate the Fourth of July with family, friends, food, and fireworks. All too often these celebrations and festivities turn tragic when someone decides

Quick Tips on Beating the HeatPlacer County public health officials are urging residents to take common-sense precautions so they and their families stay safe during this week's ongoing heat wave


NEWS: In Case You Missed It