Earth: Inside and Out

Evaluation

Inverness Research Inc. is a national, independent educational research organization that assessed the Seminars on Science program over an eight year period. Their evaluation reveals that educators achieve a deeper understanding on science through these courses, mastering significant new material, gaining a better sense of how science is conducted, and aquired valuable classroom materials. Here are some highlights of the course evaluation for this course.

Course Experience

Participants report that this course has benefited them personally and professionally, and that their students also profit.

"It was hard and challenging and I was constantly working. I don't think I have ever had anything that stretched my mind so much, but I became a real participant in the conversation, as fully as anyone else. I learned so much in such a short time—from absolutely zero to being a competent part of a professional community of learners about Earth." —private pre-school teacher

Content and Resources

Of 125 participants in 21 states who completed follow-up surveys, 78% used what they learned to create a unit for their students.

"At the base of it, the SoS course increased my content understanding and made me better at leading discussions with my students. Part of it was the material and how it was organized and the online discussions. When you listen to the questions that the other students ask, it broadens the way you think." —high school Earth science teacher

Interaction and Instruction

65% of participants gained a deeper insight into the work of scientists as a result of this course.

"The scientist was very good at responding to comments and asking students what they were thinking. She increased the depth of the conversations. When I learned most was when I was thinking about things she said, and asking questions about her responses to my comments. Having a scientist there definitely elevated the discussions." —high school chemistry teacher

Further Reading

You can explore the complete evaluation results from Inverness Research Inc. by downloading these reports (PDF):

Inverness Research Inc. is based in Inverness, CA and provides insight into the design, quality and effectiveness of educational improvement initiatives.