Two new reports highlight how a University of Texas at Austin-originated program is improving the STEM education landscape.
UTeach, a 20-year-old teacher-preparation program based in the College of Natural Sciences, supports undergraduates in science and math in becoming certified to lead K-12 classrooms. UTeach is the subject of two recent studies, both of which showed students of UTeach graduates learn more.
Dr. Michael Marder is a professor of physics, the UTeach director and one of the authors of "Math and Science Outcomes for Students of Teachers from Standard and Alternative Pathways in Texas." That paper found that having a UTeach-prepared teacher translates to the equivalent of nine extra months of schooling in both Algebra I and Biology for gifted students, and five extra months of schooling in Biology for economically disadvantaged students.
Another study by the American Institutes for Research looked at student test scores in Texas and found, "Graduates of Texas UTeach programs are more effective compared to other teachers in the state, as measured by their ability to raise student test scores in math and science."
In a blog post, Marder describes the latter study by saying, "The difference was 2-3 months of schooling for UTeach graduates overall in Texas and 4-6 months of schooling for [UT] Austin UTeach graduates, similar to the difference between novice teachers and those with 10 or more years of experience."
The program is generating attention in the press both for the impact on student learning outcomes and its effectiveness in increasing the number of STEM teachers in classrooms.
5 ways to reduce the harrowing STEM teacher shortage | eSchool News
Are UTeach teachers more effective at STEM? | Campus Technology