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Full-Text Articles in Education

Effective Science Teachers’ Professional Development: A Multiple-Case Study Of District-Level Science Supervisors’ Perspectives, Chris J. Schaben Dec 2011

Effective Science Teachers’ Professional Development: A Multiple-Case Study Of District-Level Science Supervisors’ Perspectives, Chris J. Schaben

Public Access Theses and Dissertations from the College of Education and Human Sciences

At its heart, science teachers’ professional development is about continual growth and improvement (Yager, 2005). Conducting research to understand what constitutes effective professional development is inherently complex (Hewson, 2007). The imperative to link research on professional development to student achievement (Fishman, Marx, Best, & Tal, 2003) increases complexity of research on the topic. These complexities require multiple research approaches and indicate that all stakeholders could provide insights to identify what constitutes effective professional development. District-level science supervisors’ voices are missing from the data on effective science teachers’ professional development and this provides a potential gap in the literature (Banilower, Heck, & Weiss, 2007; Elmore & Burney, 1999; Shroyer, Miller, Hernandez, & Dunn, 2007).

The purpose of this multiple-case study was to gather information from six district-level science supervisors from six different school districts in six different states to gain a deeper understanding of their insights on what constitutes effective professional development. The empirical data examined in this study resulted from interviews, participant drawings, observations, and document review. The major finding was that the district-level science supervisors mostly confirmed what was known in the field. However, this finding could be used in a variety of ways to support future research; such as providing a potential data source to corroborate self-reported teacher survey data. The findings from this study also identified a few nuances to what is known about effective science teachers’ professional development research. Specifically, a finding suggests that researchers may need to reconceptualize the amount of time before which science teachers’ professional ...


Enriching Science And Math Through Engineering, Adrienne Redmond, Julie Thomas, Karen High, Margaret Scott, Pat Jordan, Jean Dockers Dec 2011

Enriching Science And Math Through Engineering, Adrienne Redmond, Julie Thomas, Karen High, Margaret Scott, Pat Jordan, Jean Dockers

Faculty Publications: Department of Teaching, Learning and Teacher Education

This case study reviewed the collaborative efforts of university engineers, teacher educators, and middle school teachers to advance sixth- and seventh-grade students’ learning through a series of project-based engineering activities. This two-year project enriched regular school curricula by introducing real-world applications of science and mathematics concepts that expanded opportunities for creativity and problem-solving, introduced problem-based learning, and provided after-school programming (for girls only) led by engineering students from the local university. This engineering education initiative showed significant impact on students’ (1) confidence in science and mathematics; (2) effort toward science and mathematics; (3) awareness of engineering; and (4) interest in ...


Obituary: Jerry Ronald Choate, 1943-2009, Elmer J. Finck, Hugh H. Genoways, Justin D. Hoffman, Carleton J. Phillips, Robert J. Baker Dec 2011

Obituary: Jerry Ronald Choate, 1943-2009, Elmer J. Finck, Hugh H. Genoways, Justin D. Hoffman, Carleton J. Phillips, Robert J. Baker

Mammalogy Papers: University of Nebraska State Museum

Jerry Ronald Choate (1943–2009) had just retired as Director of the Sternberg Museum of Natural History and Professor of Biological Sciences, Fort Hays State University, Hays, Kansas, at the time of his death. Jerry served the American Society of Mammalogists in numerous capacities, including Recording Secretary, First Vice President, and most notably as a member and chair of the Board of Trustees.

The hallmark of Jerry’s life was to turn the ordinary into something magnificent. Whether it was his photography that changed an ordinary landscape into a magnificent masterpiece, or his convincing a reluctant graduate student that they ...


Framework For Discipline‐Based Education Research: Dber Meeting Starter “Nugget” : Series Of 6, Leilani Arthurs Oct 2011

Framework For Discipline‐Based Education Research: Dber Meeting Starter “Nugget” : Series Of 6, Leilani Arthurs

DBER Speaker Series

What is Discipline‐Based Education Research (DBER)?

Who Does Discipline‐Based Education Research (DBER)?

Where and When is Discipline‐Based Education Research (DBER) Done?

How is Discipline‐Based Education Research (DBER) Conducted?

Why is Discipline‐Based Education Research (DBER) Important?


Discipline-Based Education Research (Dber) Group Meeting — Monday, October 24, 2011, Leilani Arthurs Oct 2011

Discipline-Based Education Research (Dber) Group Meeting — Monday, October 24, 2011, Leilani Arthurs

DBER Speaker Series

AGENDA

1. Welcome & Introductions

Name, Dept, research interest, what you hope to gain from participating in DBER Group meetings

2. Purpose & Schedule for remaining part of the semester

a. Alternate times you are available to meet this semester

Please indicate your alternate available times on the bottom of this agenda, and return to Leilani.

b. Volunteers to present their research or facilitate discussion on peer‐reviewed science education research article with relevance to, applications in, or implications for undergraduate science education

Week of Mon. Oct. 31: Dr. Marilyne Stains (CHEM Dept) on “TBA”

Week of Mon. Nov. 7: CHEM Ed ...


An Investigation Of The Relationship Between High School Courses Taken And Graduation From Chadron State College Within Six Years, Ann Krejci Oct 2011

An Investigation Of The Relationship Between High School Courses Taken And Graduation From Chadron State College Within Six Years, Ann Krejci

Educational Administration: Theses, Dissertations, and Student Research

Chadron State College is one of three institutions in Nebraska’s State College System. Because of its mission as an open-enrollment institution, Chadron State College has no academic course requirements for admission, and any student who has completed high school or its equivalent is eligible for enrollment.

The purpose of the study was to find whether or not there was a relationship between the characteristics of a Nebraska student’s high school education and the probability of that student’s graduation from Chadron State College within six years of matriculation.

A sample of 180 high school records were retrieved from ...


Changing Perceptions Of Science In Undergraduate Students: A Mixed Methods Case Study, Cindy S. Larson-Miller Aug 2011

Changing Perceptions Of Science In Undergraduate Students: A Mixed Methods Case Study, Cindy S. Larson-Miller

Theses, Student Research, and Creative Activity: Department of Teaching, Learning and Teacher Education

The purpose of this bounded single-case study was to explore the understanding of the nature and process of science for undergraduate students at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL). The study investigated one professor’s methodology to explicitly teach undergraduate students about the nature and process of science, and documented their understanding and perception of science, both pre- and post-course.

Using a mixed method approach, data were collected to provide a better understanding of teaching the nature and process of science. Three main types of data were analyzed: the process of science (TPOS) assessment; survey questions, and the module curriculum.

Participating ...


Covariant Representations Of C*-Dynamical Systems Involving Compact Groups, Firuz Kamalov Jul 2011

Covariant Representations Of C*-Dynamical Systems Involving Compact Groups, Firuz Kamalov

Dissertations, Theses, and Student Research Papers in Mathematics

Given a C*-dynamical system (A, G, σ) the crossed product C*-algebra A x σG encodes the action of G on A. By the universal property of A x σG there exists a one to one correspondence between the set all covariant representations of the system (A, G, σ) and the set of all *-representations of A x σG. Therefore, the study of representations of A x σG is equivalent to that of covariant representations of (A, G, σ).

We study induced covariant representations of systems involving compact groups. We prove that every irreducible (resp ...


Use Of Cognitive Artifacts In Chemistry Learning, Ilker Yengin Jul 2011

Use Of Cognitive Artifacts In Chemistry Learning, Ilker Yengin

Theses, Student Research, and Creative Activity: Department of Teaching, Learning and Teacher Education

In everyday life, we interact with cognitive artifacts to receive and/or manipulate information so as to alter our thinking processes. CHEM/TEAC 869Q is a distance course that includes extensive explicit instruction in the use of a cognitive artifact. This study investigates issues related to the design of that online artifact. In order to understand design implications and how cognitive artifacts contribute to students’ thinking and learning, a qualitative research methodology was engaged that utilized think aloud sessions. Participants’ described constrained and structured cognitive models while using the artifact. The study also was informed by interviews and researcher's ...


Extensiveness And Perceptions Of Lecture Demonstrations In The High School Chemistry Classroom, Daniel S. Price Jun 2011

Extensiveness And Perceptions Of Lecture Demonstrations In The High School Chemistry Classroom, Daniel S. Price

Theses, Student Research, and Creative Activity: Department of Teaching, Learning and Teacher Education

While lecture demonstrations have been conducted in chemistry classrooms for hundreds of years, little research exists to document the frequency with which such demonstrations are employed or their effect on learners’ motivation and performance. A mixed-methods research study was performed, using quantitative and qualitative survey data, along with qualitative data from follow-up interviews and structured correspondence, to determine the extent to which lecture demonstrations are used in high school chemistry instruction, and the perceived effects of viewing such demonstrations on students’ performance on course assignments and on motivation to excel in current and future chemistry courses. Fifty-two randomly selected chemistry ...


Impact Of Student Motivation In Online Learning Activities, Amy Lathrop May 2011

Impact Of Student Motivation In Online Learning Activities, Amy Lathrop

Theses, Dissertations, and Student Research in Agronomy and Horticulture

With the prevalence of online learning in education for both distance and campus-based students, it is critical to determine how to design electronic learning materials that tailor to student motivation and facilitate learning. Students were asked to complete an online plant breeding activity, motivation survey and an online learning quiz related to the activity. The control group of students was those who elected not to complete the activity, while the experimental group of students chose to complete the activity. Motivation scores were compared between control and experiment groups, courses, and gender using independent sample t-tests. Pearson correlations were also used ...


On Morrey Spaces In The Calculus Of Variations, Kyle Fey May 2011

On Morrey Spaces In The Calculus Of Variations, Kyle Fey

Dissertations, Theses, and Student Research Papers in Mathematics

We prove some global Morrey regularity results for almost minimizers of functionals of the form u → ∫Ω f(x, u, ∇u)dx. This regularity is valid up to the boundary, provided the boundary data are sufficiently regular. The main assumption on f is that for each x and u, the function f(x, u, ·) behaves asymptotically like the function h(|·|)α(x), where h is an N-function.

Following this, we provide a characterization of the class of Young measures that can be generated by a sequence of functions {fj} uniformly bounded in the Morrey space Lp, λ ...


Hilbert-Samuel And Hilbert-Kunz Functions Of Zero-Dimensional Ideals, Lori A. Mcdonnell May 2011

Hilbert-Samuel And Hilbert-Kunz Functions Of Zero-Dimensional Ideals, Lori A. Mcdonnell

Dissertations, Theses, and Student Research Papers in Mathematics

The Hilbert-Samuel function measures the length of powers of a zero-dimensional ideal in a local ring. Samuel showed that over a local ring these lengths agree with a polynomial, called the Hilbert-Samuel polynomial, for sufficiently large powers of the ideal. We examine the coefficients of this polynomial in the case the ideal is generated by a system of parameters, focusing much of our attention on the second Hilbert coefficient. We also consider the Hilbert-Kunz function, which measures the length of Frobenius powers of an ideal in a ring of positive characteristic. In particular, we examine a conjecture of Watanabe and ...


Global Well-Posedness For A Nonlinear Wave Equation With P-Laplacian Damping, Zahava Wilstein May 2011

Global Well-Posedness For A Nonlinear Wave Equation With P-Laplacian Damping, Zahava Wilstein

Dissertations, Theses, and Student Research Papers in Mathematics

This dissertation deals with the global well-posedness of the nonlinear wave equation
utt − Δu − Δput = f (u) in Ω × (0,T),
{u(0), ut(0)} = {u0,u1} ∈ H10 (Ω) × L 2 (Ω),
u = 0 on Γ × (0, T ),
in a bounded domain Ω ⊂ ℜ n with Dirichlét boundary conditions. The nonlinearities f (u) acts as a strong source, which is allowed to have, in some cases, a super-supercritical exponent. Under suitable restrictions on the parameters and with careful analysis involving the theory of monotone operators, we prove the existence and ...


Homology Of Artinian Modules Over Commutative Noetherian Rings, Micah J. Leamer May 2011

Homology Of Artinian Modules Over Commutative Noetherian Rings, Micah J. Leamer

Dissertations, Theses, and Student Research Papers in Mathematics

This work is primarily concerned with the study of artinian modules over commutative noetherian rings.

We start by showing that many of the properties of noetherian modules that make homological methods work seamlessly have analogous properties for artinian modules. We prove many of these properties using Matlis duality and a recent characterization of Matlis reflexive modules. Since Matlis reflexive modules are extensions of noetherian and artinian modules many of the properties that hold for artinian and noetherian modules naturally follow for Matlis reflexive modules and more generally for mini-max modules.

In the last chapter we prove that if the Betti ...


Groups And Semigroups Generated By Automata, David Mccune May 2011

Groups And Semigroups Generated By Automata, David Mccune

Dissertations, Theses, and Student Research Papers in Mathematics

In this dissertation we classify the metabelian groups arising from a restricted class of invertible synchronous automata over a binary alphabet. We give faithful, self-similar actions of Heisenberg groups and upper triangular matrix groups. We introduce a new class of semigroups given by a restricted class of asynchronous automata. We call these semigroups ``expanding automaton semigroups''. We show that this class strictly contains the class of automaton semigroups, and we show that the class of asynchronous automaton semigroups strictly contains the class of expanding automaton semigroups. We demonstrate that undecidability arises in the actions of expanding automaton semigroups and semigroups ...


On A Family Of Generalized Wiener Spaces And Applications, Ian Pierce May 2011

On A Family Of Generalized Wiener Spaces And Applications, Ian Pierce

Dissertations, Theses, and Student Research Papers in Mathematics

We investigate the structure and properties of a variety of generalized Wiener spaces. Our main focus is on Wiener-type measures on spaces of continuous functions; our generalizations include an extension to multiple parameters, and a method of adjusting the distribution and covariance structure of the measure on the underlying function space.

In the second chapter, we consider single-parameter function spaces and extend a fundamental integration formula of Paley, Wiener, and Zygmund for an important class of functionals on this space. In the third chapter, we discuss measures on very general function spaces and introduce the specific example of a generalized ...


Packings And Realizations Of Degree Sequences With Specified Substructures, Tyler Seacrest Apr 2011

Packings And Realizations Of Degree Sequences With Specified Substructures, Tyler Seacrest

Dissertations, Theses, and Student Research Papers in Mathematics

This dissertation focuses on the intersection of two classical and fundamental areas in graph theory: graph packing and degree sequences. The question of packing degree sequences lies naturally in this intersection, asking when degree sequences have edge-disjoint realizations on the same vertex set. The most significant result in this area is Kundu's k-Factor Theorem, which characterizes when a degree sequence packs with a constant sequence. We prove a series of results in this spirit, and we particularly search for realizations of degree sequences with edge-disjoint 1-factors.

Perhaps the most fundamental result in degree sequence theory is the Erdos-Gallai Theorem ...


Extremal Trees And Reconstruction, Andrew Ray Apr 2011

Extremal Trees And Reconstruction, Andrew Ray

Dissertations, Theses, and Student Research Papers in Mathematics

Problems in two areas of graph theory will be considered.

First, I will consider extremal problems for trees. In these questions we examine the trees that maximize or minimize various invariants. For instance the number of independent sets, the number of matchings, the number of subtrees, the sum of pairwise distances, the spectral radius, and the number of homomorphisms to a fixed graph. I have two general approaches to these problems. To find the extremal trees in the collection of trees on n vertices with a fixed degree bound I use the certificate method. The certificate is a branch invariant ...


Annihilators Of Local Cohomology Modules, Laura Lynch Apr 2011

Annihilators Of Local Cohomology Modules, Laura Lynch

Dissertations, Theses, and Student Research Papers in Mathematics

In many important theorems in the homological theory of commutative local rings, an essential ingredient in the proof is to consider the annihilators of local cohomology modules. We examine these annihilators at various cohomological degrees, in particular at the cohomological dimension and at the height or the grade of the defining ideal. We also investigate the dimension of these annihilators at various degrees and we refine our results by specializing to particular types of rings, for example, Cohen Macaulay rings, unique factorization domains, and rings of small dimension.

Adviser: Thomas Marley


The Theory Of Discrete Fractional Calculus: Development And Application, Michael T. Holm Apr 2011

The Theory Of Discrete Fractional Calculus: Development And Application, Michael T. Holm

Dissertations, Theses, and Student Research Papers in Mathematics

The author's purpose in this dissertation is to introduce, develop and apply the tools of discrete fractional calculus to the arena of fractional difference equations. To this end, we develop the Fractional Composition Rules and the Fractional Laplace Transform Method to solve a linear, fractional initial value problem in Chapters 2 and 3. We then apply fixed point strategies of Krasnosel'skii and Banach to study a nonlinear, fractional boundary value problem in Chapter 4.

Adviser: Lynn Erbe and Allan Peterson


Formalizing Categorical And Algebraic Constructions In Operator Theory, William Benjamin Grilliette Mar 2011

Formalizing Categorical And Algebraic Constructions In Operator Theory, William Benjamin Grilliette

Dissertations, Theses, and Student Research Papers in Mathematics

In this work, I offer an alternative presentation theory for C*-algebras with applicability to various other normed structures. Specifically, the set of generators is equipped with a nonnegative-valued function which ensures existence of a C*-algebra for the presentation. This modification allows clear definitions of a "relation" for generators of a C*-algebra and utilization of classical algebraic tools, such as Tietze transformations.


Children's Voices: Students' Attitudes About Routine And Nonroutine Mathematics, Deborah E. Seacrest Mar 2011

Children's Voices: Students' Attitudes About Routine And Nonroutine Mathematics, Deborah E. Seacrest

Theses, Student Research, and Creative Activity: Department of Teaching, Learning and Teacher Education

This dissertation is a case study focused on the question, "What are students' attitudes toward school mathematics and toward nonroutine math problems and mathematical games?" It addresses the definitions of some of those terms and then moves on to a literature review that suggests that some change in the curriculum may be needed. In an attempt to begin determining whether nonroutine problems and mathematical games could help, students in two different types of classes were introduced to such problems and games. Their attitudes were assessed using a variety of methods, including observation, interview, and journal writing.

The games and problems ...


A Mixed Methods Study Of How The Transition Process Impacts The Autonomy Of Pre-Service Secondary Mathematics Teachers, Linda Kasal Fusco Jan 2011

A Mixed Methods Study Of How The Transition Process Impacts The Autonomy Of Pre-Service Secondary Mathematics Teachers, Linda Kasal Fusco

Educational Administration: Theses, Dissertations, and Student Research

This mixed methods study sought to identify the impact that transition into the practice of teaching had on the autonomy of pre-service secondary teachers of Mathematics. It was based on the belief that a Mathematics teacher’s autonomy depended on: beliefs about Mathematics and how it was learned, reflections on the teaching practice, and social constraints of a secondary school culture. Data was collected between January 2009 and March 2010. In Phase I (Quantitative) the participants (N = 30), selected from ten State University of New York teacher preparation colleges and universities, completed five instruments to quantify the three factors of ...


On The Betti Number Of Differential Modules, Justin Devries Jan 2011

On The Betti Number Of Differential Modules, Justin Devries

Dissertations, Theses, and Student Research Papers in Mathematics

Let R = k[x1, ..., xn] with k a field. A multi-graded differential R-module is a multi-graded R-module D with an endomorphism d such that d2 = 0. This dissertation establishes a lower bound on the rank of such a differential module when the underlying R-module is free. We define the Betti number of a differential module and use it to show that when the homology ker d/im d of D is non-zero and finite dimensional over k then there is an inequality rankR D ≥ 2n. This relates to a problem of Buchsbaum ...