Research Experience for Teachers
MIRTHE conducts a Research Experience for Teachers (RET) program that is synergistic with its REU program, and provides high school teachers with a top-level research and educational experience with characteristic features. The program:
- Leads teachers to independent, interdisciplinary, original research with high potential for benefits for society;
- Supports the development of tangible teaching material for the classroom, for science and science fair projects;
- Fosters MIRTHE-wide interaction between teachers, faculty, (REU) students, and education specialists;
- Builds lasting relationships between teachers and faculty that translate into year-round joint activities;
- Provides follow-up activities during the year to transfer engineering research knowledge into the classrooms;
- Is diverse in nature, and supports underrepresented minorities and inner city schools;
- Supports the teachers’ professional development; and
- Introduces teachers to interactions with industry, government, and non-profit groups.
RET Participants will closely interact on a daily basis with the members of the research groups they join, and they will be in almost daily contact with their faculty mentors and other summer research program participants.
The program has a minimum stay of 6 weeks and a tentative maximum duration of 10 weeks. Furthermore, the teachers will be invited to join in activities offered through the concurrently conducted MIRTHE REU program. The following is a representative timetable for an 8 week program:
Week 1: Web-conference: Introductory lecture and discussion on MIRTHE; meeting on being a “good lab citizen” and on “data taking and recording – lab books.”
Week 2: Web-conference: symposium on components (lasers, detectors) and design of trace-gas sensor systems; meeting on “conducting literature searches and finding supporting materials.”
Week 3: Web-conference: Symposium on Sensing Applications in Environment, Homeland Security, and Health; meeting on “presenting and discussing research results.”
Week 4: Web-conference: short research presentations to other RET and all MIRTHE REU participants, includes update on teaching materials being developed.
Week 5: Lectures and discussions on research ethics, with local REU programs.
Week 6: Web-conference: lecture and discussion on science policy.
Week 7: Planning for year-round follow-up activities.
Week 8: Participation in MIRTHE’s Summer Symposium, presentation of research results and teaching materials; meeting with the entire MIRTHE community.