STEM Education Lab

STEM Education Lab Directors:         

Molly Fisher   &   Jana Bouwma-Gearhart

Practitioner Director: Ashlie Beals  

STEM Lab Grad Asst: Jennifer Ferguson


The Mathematics of NASCAR

This picture is from the summer Professional Development program for high school teachers called “Building SPEED”, led by Dr. Molly Fisher.  This curriculum uses the science and mathematics of NASCAR to encourage more student engagement and learning.



STEM Education Innovation Lab Objectives

  • To develop new contexts, connections, and experiences for thinking about teaching, learning, and researching STEM subject matter and pedagogies in P20 environments.
  • To encourage the co-participation of diverse researchers, educators, and P20 students in envisioning improved STEM education, regionally, nationally, and internationally.
  • To foster the development of a dynamic STEM education learning community within the virtual Second Life platform.
  • To provide a space that inspires think-tank collaborations and novel research endeavors that attract national and international recognition and support.

Proposed Projects

  • Second Life Classroom: In order to give immediate and simultaneous access to all educators engaged in our STEM Ed Innovation Lab, we plan to build a virtual space on the UK Second Life (SL) Island, an Internet-based cyberworld (Linden Research, 2010).
  • Design and Develop Integrated STEM Curriculum: Curriculum projects such as REAL, Building SPEED, Save the Animals, Systems Thinking for Sustainability, and LEAP will all be designed, developed, and integrated.
  • Environmental Education and Social, Global Justice: The lab will support projects already underway, such as Secondary STEM Teacher Preparation Improvement through a Global Environmental Sustainability Perspective, as well as other projects still being developed such as a study on primate ecology in Madagascar that will improve preservice and inservice elementary and middle school teachers’ interest in science.
  • Diversity in STEM Education: Researchers with STEM backgrounds and extensive experience in diversity will be researching equity in the teaching of STEM related topics.
  • Mathematics and Science Teacher Retention: Additional research will be conducted in the retention, stress, and burnout of inservice teachers, especially those in the high needs areas of mathematics and science.
  • Improving Science and Mathematics Education in Elementary and Middle Grades: The lab will support the continual development and improvement of science and mathematics courses for preservice teachers with the addition of professional development programs for inservice teachers.
  • Teaching Professional Development for Practicing and Future Postsecondary STEM: Researchers will utilize Modeling-Based inquiry through participation in STEM practices and develop additional professional development for future and practicing UK STEM faculty.

Contact us:

Newsletter September 2010

The Mathematics of NASCAR

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Updated by Jennifer Ferguson on November 2, 2011 at 2:49 pm

College of Education University of Kentucky College of Education