PhysTEC Project Contacts
Chicago State University
Williams Science Building
Chicago State University
9501 South King Dr.
Chicago, IL 60628-1598
Chicago State University (CSU) is a public, urban, minority-serving institution serving approximate 7000 undergraduate and graduate students on the South Side of Chicago. Because of CSU’s location and environment, support from PhysTEC has the potential to increase the number of students of color entering the science teaching profession and teaching in high-need area schools. CSU was originally established as a normal school before developing into a university. The legacy of its history is still seen in the College of Arts and Sciences’s commitment to undergraduate instruction and the importance of teaching. The Department of Chemistry and Physics has 17 full time faculty members, two of whom primarily conduct research in science education. Faculty in the CSU physics program use the introductory algebra- and calculus-based physics curriculum materials they have been developing as part of the NSF CCLI program, which promote active engagement and group work.
The CSU PhysTEC Program will utilize the existing programs/activities we have created for our current inservice and preserve teachers. These include participation in our (1) Science Van and pedagogical content knowledge (PCK) courses where preservice teachers will have an opportunity to work with inservice teachers; (2) education reform and research efforts in introductory physics and physical science classes; (3) Noyce scholar seminar series in which we bring local and national leaders in science education and science education research; (4) science education journal class in which students read and discuss current and foundational papers; (5) and outreach efforts to the Chicago Public School District (CPS) such as our science fair training and Quarknet programs. Students who decide to pursue secondary science education will also have the opportunity to apply for our Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship and Science Van programs, as well as internships with our external partners, which currently include the Museum of Science and Industry, the Field Museum, Adler Planetarium, and the Southeast Environmental Task Force.
Because many of the pieces for an effective teacher preparation program are currently in place at
Chicago State University, our proposal focuses primarily on recruitment and further integrating
existing components of our preservice and inservice programs. To accomplish this we will
concentrate on re-envisioning our teaching assistant program and creating a new teacher
immersion institute. Our goals include: (1) increasing the number of students in our secondary
education program in physics, (2) increasing the number of students pursuing certification in
science with a designation in physics, (3) creating a stronger connection between our inservice
programs and our preservice programs, (4) providing an early teaching/reflection opportunity
that links inservice and preservice teachers, and (5) providing appropriate research and teaching
opportunities for preservice teachers to develop strong Pedagogical Content Knowledge (PCK).
These goals directly impact the university’s mission to effect change in the local community.
Students who attend the university typically come from the South Side community. By
becoming high school science teachers, they will have the opportunity to go back to their
communities and effect change.