2014-2015 GK-12 Teaching Assistant and Fellowship Positions
The Cascades to Coast GK-12 Graduate Program is supported by funding from the National Science Foundation. The project is a partnership between Portland State University's School of the Environment (SOE) and three Oregon school districts toward the goal of enhancing middle, high school and graduate STEM education around the theme of environmental sustainability. The project supports fifty GK-12 positions for doctoral graduate students to work directly with teachers to engage over 1500 sixth through ninth grade students in inquiry and field studies designed to increase understanding of key concepts in the physical and biological sciences and environmental sustainability. One of the main goals of the project is to provide doctoral fellows with an opportunity to improve their teaching skills and communication of science in general public settings, e.g. high school or middle school classrooms, science museum, etc. Project activities include a summer training institute, the development of a required year long graduate seminar "Public Communication, Education and Careers", teacher professional development workshops, and end-of-year student poster conference.
Candidates are eligible for up to two years of funding. During the first year, doctoral students will receive a teaching assistant position within the School of the Environment. For the second year, eligible graduate students will advance to Cascades to Coast GK-12 fellowship positions. Applicants must be citizens, nationals or permanent residents of the United States. Foreign students who hold student visas are not eligible. All candidates must be enrolled in or applying to PSU's School of the Environment docotral program and pursuing environmental sustainability research in geology, chemistry, physical geography, biology and physics. Position descriptions are below.
GK-12 Teaching Assistant Position:
The Cascades to Coast GK-12 TA positions will provide tuition remission and a $15,000 nine-month stipend for one year. TA's must be citizens, nationals or permanent residents of the United States. Foreign students who hold student visas are not eligible. Applicants should be applying to or enrolled in a doctoral program within the School of the Environment. Teaching assistants in the GK-12 program will help teach undergraduate science courses in the School of the Environment for two years and then, upon successful completion of the assistantship, become eligible for an additional one-year GK-12 fellowship.
Desired Characteristics of a GK-12 Teaching assistant:
- Enrolled in or planning to apply to a doctoral program in PSU's School of the Environment
- Pursuing a career in environmental research
- Commitment to innovative teaching practices and curriculum development
All GK-12 TA Applicants must agree to the following:
- Applicants must be accepted to or currently enrolled in a graduate program and in good academic standing.
- Applicants must be currently enrolled or planning to enroll in a doctoral program in the School of the Environment.
- Applicant must be planning to apply for the doctoral fellowship position upon successful completion of the Teaching assistant position.
- Applicants must attend all GK-12 conferences and professional development.
GK-12 Doctoral Fellowship Position:
The Cascades to Coast GK-12 Program Fellowship positions will provide tuition remission, up to $3000 for research equipment or travel, and a $30,000 twelve-month stipend for up to two years. Fellows must be citizens, nationals or permanent residents of the United States. Foreign students who hold student visas are not eligible. Applicants must be enrolled in a doctoral program within the School of the Environment, or working with a doctoral advisor affiliated with the School of the Environment and be close to taking or have passed their comprehensive exams. Fellows will spend 10 - 15 hours per week working with a 6-9th grade teacher to adapt their doctoral research to grade-appropriate inquiry-based activities and lead classroom activities and field studies.
Required Characteristics of a GK-12 Fellow:
- Enrolled in a doctoral program in PSU's School of the Environment or being advised by a primary faculty advisor affiliated with the School of the Environment
- Pursuing a career in research related to environmental sustainability
- Fellow's primary advisor will participate in inquiry-based curriculum development with Fellow and understands Fellow's obligations to GK-12 program.
Desired Characteristics of a GK-12 Fellow:
- Passed comprehensive exams.
- Experience with or dedication to working with diverse audiences.
- Interested in innovative teaching practices and curriculum development.
GK12 Fellowship Applicants must agree to the following:
- Attend a two-week summer workshop, Two full-day professional development days, two after-school meetings and a full-day end-of-year conference.
- Enroll in the seminar "Public Communication, Education and Careers".
- Spend 10 -15 hours per week working with teacher partner to develop curriculum, teach, and lead field trips.
- Attend a monthly Fellows Meeting.