WAKE FOREST UNIVERSITY
This Phase I and II application is designed to create and implement programs that better educate students regarding science concepts, the scientific inquiry process, and related careers. The Center of Excellence for Research, Teaching, and Learning (CERTL) at Wake Forest University Health Sciences (WFUHS), in partnership with the Winston-Salem Forsyth County Schools (WS/FCS), SciWorks (science center and environmental park for Forsyth County), and the WFUHS General Clinical Research Center (GCRC), seeks support for a project to address the following objectives: Create inquiry-based lesson plans for elementary, middle, and high school classrooms that engage students in a deeper understanding of the relationship between classroom science, research science, clinical research, and the health of the general public; Provide focused professional development activities for K-12 teachers to effectively deliver inquiry-based lessons to K-12 students that deepen the understanding of the processes of scientific inquiry and its relationship to bench research, clinical research, and the health of the general public. The proposed project, entitled Research, Education, And Linking Science Careers: REAL Science Careers, is designed to achieve the objectives described above through one or more of these specific aims: Professional development for teachers in an inquiry-based methodology, Problem-Based Learning (PBL), designed to increase student understanding of scientific inquiry and to integrate science topics that currently not addressed in the standard course of study; Instructional material development to support inquiry-based lessons plans in the PBL methodology; Assisted classroom implementation of the PBL materials created for this project; Development of exhibits at SciWorks featuring current research on healthy lifestyle choices accompanied by traveling kiosks of each exhibit for schools and community display; An evaluation design to support systematic collection of data regarding the impact of inquiry-based instruction on a) students' knowledge and attitudes about science concepts, scientific inquiry, and the translation of these topics to the overall health of the general public. Phases I and II will serve 150 local teachers and approximately 13,500 students. Phase II will serve an additional 75 teachers and approximately 7,500 students outside of the funded area. Dissemination activities are expected to occur regionally, throughout the state, and nationally as described for this phase.