Research ProjectsFaculty and staff members in the College of Education are involved with funded research and development projects valued at more than $16 million each year. Their work examines, for example, issues in teacher and school administrator preparation, curriculum and teaching in content areas such as literacy, mathematics and science, and matters of physical activity across the life span.
This page includes a sampling of current projects. View the complete annual list of active grants for more information.William Schmidt, will continue to analyze data and share findings with schools through 2011.
Teacher Education and Development Study in Mathematics (TEDS-M)Michigan State University faculty members serve as international- and U.S.-level principal investigators for the Teacher Education and Development Study in Mathematics (TEDS-M), a collaborative international effort to study the mathematics preparation of future primary and secondary teachers. Using nationally representative samples from at least 16 countries, TEDS-M aims to tell us how teacher education policies, curricula and opportunities to learn lead to effective knowledge of mathematics for teaching.
Learn more: Charles (Andy) Anderson and his research team are developing learning progressions that lead toward environmental science literacy for students from upper elementary school through college, with the goal of integrating their work into contemporary K-12 curriculum. The project is organized into four strands: carbon, water, bio diversity and citizenship.
Beth Herbel-Eisenmann and Michael Steele, along with Michelle Cirillo of University of Delaware, are using a five-year National Science Foundation grant to design and test a set of professional development materials that will help secondary mathematics teachers engage in productive classroom discourse practices. Exploratorium, a science museum in San Francisco. Suzanne Wilson is co-principal investigator. Barbara Schneider and Ken Frank are collaborating with colleagues at UM to assess two major high school reforms: the Michigan Merit Curriculum and the Michigan Promise Scholarship. The team has a $5.9 million federal grant to study how the policy initiatives have affected student outcomes. Kelly Mix, conducts studies related to children’s conceptual development and learning, particularly how young children develop mathematical concepts.
Longitudinal Validity of Accelerometers in YouthKarin Pfeiffer is co-principal investigator on a National Institutes of Health grant to study the validity of accelerometers – the most widely used tool for collecting objective data on physical activity. By testing the devices with the same children over four years, she and Stewart Trost of Oregon State University are expected to determine how well calculations used to interpret output from accelerometers hold up over time, especially as kids grow. Professor John P. Smith, III found that conceptual deficits in U.S. elementary math curricula have likely contributed to students’ poor understanding of measurement (length, area and volume). The Strengthening Tomorrow's Education in Measurement (STEM) project continues curriculum analysis and supports efforts to put that knowledge to work in improving practice. Partners include curriculum authors, mathematics teacher educators, practicing teachers and fellow researchers. Ann Austin is a co-PI.
Center for Advancing Research and Communication (ARC) in Science, Technology, Engineering and MathematicsARC supports National Science Foundation-funded education research projects in the STEM disciplines by offering technical assistance to investigators and communicating their findings to a larger audience. Michigan State University Professor Barbara Schneider is principal investigator of the center, which is based at the University of Chicago.
Other Notable Projects
- Project ACCELerate
- Diagnostic Question Cluster Research Group (Undergraduate reasoning about biology and geology)
- Center for Curriculum Materials in Science
- GET City (Science learning for urban youth)
- Knowledge of Algebra for Teaching (KAT)
- Launch into Teaching (Support for beginning teachers and instructional coaches)
- The Mathematical Education of Elementary Teachers (ME.ET)
- Problem Based Learning Project for Teachers (A professional development model)
- Virtual History Museum
- Michigan Consortium for Educational Research
- College Ambition Program
- Exploring Younger Children’s Understanding of Heredity
- National Center for Research on Teacher Learning (NCRTL)