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Georgia Tech

My Conference Goal:

My goal is to resubmit the proposal that we have submitted in 2021, which is the extension of our work from our funded STEM+C project.

My Project Goal:

CAPACiTY: Preparing Teachers project, a collaborative RPP between educators in these school systems and Georgia Tech, will produce and implement a 14-month-long online professional learning (PL) program for high school teachers interested in implementing the CAPACiTY curricula. The project will assess and accommodate individual teacher needs, scaffold their learning of CS skills and constructivist pedagogy, and provide ongoing, just-in-time coaching through the first year of course implementation. Developing this flexible online PL program is a necessary next step to scaling CAPACiTY beyond the initial partners in the STEM+C project.

Project Working Title:


Project Idea or Description:

CAPACiTY: Preparing Teachers (CAPACiTY-PT), submitted to the National Science Foundation’s Computer Science for All program under the High School Strand (Medium RPP Size class), is a collaborative Research Practice Partnership (RPP) between the Georgia Institute of Technology and Georgia computer science (CS) educators in rural and rural-fringe school systems. The RPP seeks to address an urgent problem of practice - critical gaps in CS pedagogy and content knowledge among Georgia’s CS teachers. Building on the work of our NSF STEM+C project, Culturally Authentic Practice to Advance Computational Thinking in Youth (CAPACiTY), the RPP aims to achieve four major goals: 1) To determine, through a needs assessment, the range of skills necessary for teachers to effectively implement CAPACiTY high school CS courses, 2) To design, build, and implement a 120-hour, 14-month-long online professional learning (PL) experience that will provide CS teachers with the requisite knowledge and skills to successfully implement CAPACiTY, 3) To assess the effect of the CAPACiTY PL program on teachers’ understanding of disciplinary and pedagogical content knowledge, and their ability to teach CS skills and promote student engagement using the CAPACiTY framework, 4) To assess the transferability of CAPACiTY by examining variations in curriculum implementation and contextual factors influencing implementation in different school settings.

How will this idea advance broadening participation in computing?

The broader impacts of CAPACiTY-PT will be both local and national. Locally, over 1000 under-represented high school students will be exposed to the curriculum through 40 teachers during the funded project. Nationally, we will contribute to CS online teacher professional learning education and design and assess a robust professional learning program that could help schools across to nation to increase their CS teacher capacity to offer introductory level CS courses, thereby increasing the number of students in the pipeline to higher-level Advanced Placement (AP) computer science courses.

A resource or asset that would be very valuable to add to my project:

It would be really important to get some feedback from those who were able to scale up their professional development programs for CS teachers.

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