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VISIT: Virtual Immersion in Science Inquiry for Teachers Project
(NSF 991792, 2000 - 2004, $1,200,000)
This is an Online Collaboratory for secondary school science teachers to participate in ongoing scientific investigations of contemporary problems in their localities through applying spatial analysis technologies (GIS). The project innovatively uses geospatial technology and data analysis as instructional tools to assist science learning. VISIT conducted seven types of activities during the grant period. These included organizational development, development of investigations and learning materials, recruiting, workshops, online Collaboratory development and operations, formative evaluation, and dissemination/institutionalization. The project covers a wide range of subject areas, including math, environmental science, biology, chemistry, earth science, information technology, social science, geography, and history. The project attracted a large number of participants. Approximately 705 teachers and staff registered in the VISIT Collaboratory during the project's four years. Among them teacher leader/staff accounts are 55 and participating teacher accounts are 650. Among those figures there are 477 active accounts, including 50 active teacher leaders and project staff accounts and 427 active teacher accounts. Moreover, 596 teachers participated in the VISIT workshops during the period from Summer 2000 to Summer 2003. Around 140 teachers attended one-day to five-days GIS basic skill training workshops and summer institutes. Among the workshop attendees, 166 of them registered to VISIT Collaboratory and 27 of them received a sum of 81 EMU graduate credits. Altogether 118 teachers got a total of 330 free graduate credits from the VISIT project. Overall, the VISIT project served more than 1,200 teachers.
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