About the Project

The University of Minnesota’s STEM Education Center, Purdue University's INSPIRE Research Institute for Pre-College Engineering, St. Paul Public Schools, and collaborators have received an $8 million, five-year grant from the National Science Foundation to increase science and math learning through engineering for students in fourth through eighth grades.  The center will lead the Engineering to Transform the Education of Analysis, Measurement, & Science (EngrTEAMS) project. EngrTEAMS is an engineering, design-based approach to teacher professional development that will help teachers design curricular units for science topic areas within the Minnesota State Academic Science Standards, and with mapping to the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). During each year of the project, up to 50 teachers will be selected by their school districts to participate as EngrTEAMS Fellows. The project will include summer professional development and curriculum writing workshops, paired with coaching, to allow each teacher to design an engineering curricular unit focused on science concepts, meaningful data analysis and measurement. Each unit will go through an extensive design research cycle to ensure its quality and then will be published in print or online for use across the United States and beyond.

Project Partners

The EngrTEAMS project involves the University of Minnesota’s STEM Education Center as the Lead Partner. Core Partners are Purdue University, the Center for Compact and Efficient Fluid Power (CCEFP), and St. Paul Public Schools. Supporting Partners are North St. Paul-Maplewood-Oakdale and South Washington County school districts, the University of Minnesota Youth & Community Programs, the Metropolitan Cooperative Service Unit (MetroECSU), and the Grants and Research Office (GRO) of Intermediate Districts 287 and Northeast Metro 916. The independent evaluator is the Center for Applied Research and Educational Improvement (CAREI).


EngrTEAMS Teacher Fellow

Teachers who are accepted as an EngrTEAMS Fellows agree to: (1) Participate in a pre-workshop interview and classroom observation (2) Attend two (four day) weeks of content training in June, (3)Attend a four-day curriculum writing workshop in July, (4) Develop an engineering unit based on MN Science Standards, and conduct a preliminary (five hour) pilot inlate July or early August, (5) Refine the curriculum unit and implement it with their students during the school year,  (6) Participate in research and data collection, and (7) Submit the final curriculum unit to be published in print and/or online.

EngrTEAMS Fellows will collaborate with researchers to provide data for four research studies conducted to assess the impact of using engineering design as pedagogy. The first research study will investigate student achievement in mathematics and science, the second study will focus on students’ critical thinking and justification skills, the third study will focus on the effects of coaching on teachers’ classroom practices and beliefs about STEM integration, and the fourth study is a design study for the curricular materials that will be developed by the Fellows.

EngrTEAMS Coach

The work of each EngrTEAMS Fellow will be supported by a coach who will be an active member of your curriculum team in the following two capacities: 
  • Assist the Fellows to refine teaching practice and implement high quality integrated STEM pedagogy in the classroom. Coaching will begin during summer training and continue throughout the school year. Fellows will be supported by coaches individually (scheduled by Fellow and Coach) as well as in group settings (4 meetings/year), to develop implementation strategies and work on changes for their curricula.
  • Guide the Fellow in completion of a comprehensive unit of teacher-tested, standards-based engineering content for grades 4-8 teachers. Researchers will ensure that curricula will be developmentally appropriate both in content and pedagogy and meet all requirements for publication.
Teacher fellows will meet their coach during the summer institute and work with them throughout the academic year to complete project requirements