discoverconferences
SPEAKERS/MICHAEL BENNETT
Michael Bennett

Michael Bennett

University of Colorado

Michael's lectures

lecture cover

Michael Bennett · PERC Summer Meeting 2020

Toward a Comprehensive Characterization of Pedagogy in Informal Physics Learning Spaces

University outreach efforts are typically undertaken by students, who are often familiar with formal pedagogical methods; there is comparatively little systematic study, however, of the techniques they employ in informal spaces. A 2016 study took a critical step toward addressing this discrepancy, observing volunteer pedagogy in an outreach program and developing a modes of pedagogy framework for characterizing their techniques. In this work, we extend that model, attending more nearly to the factors that influence volunteers' choice of pedagogy in a CU Boulder-based physics outreach program. In addition to corroborating the findings of the 2016 work, we find that instructors may blend traits and techniques from multiple modes simultaneously and that their large-scale objectives can affect their implementation of the modes as well. We thus construct a more comprehensive framework that more readily lends itself to the task of equipping volunteer instructors to teach effectively in informal settings.

lecture cover

Michael Bennett · SM 20

A New Model for Public Engagement Partnerships With High Schools

lecture cover

Michael Bennett · SM 20

A Refined Model for Characterizing Pedagogy in Informal Learning Environments

Compared to pedagogy in formal settings, comparatively little work has been done investigating techniques of pedagogy in informal learning environments. A 2016 study 1 addressed this issue, developing an observation-based model characterizing the pedagogical modes of volunteer instructors in an afterschool informal education program. Following the methodology of that study, we have observed and analyzed instructor pedagogy in a University of Colorado Boulder-based informal physics education program. The result is a model that both corroborates and expands upon the results of the 2016 study, more clearly accounting, e.g., for instructors’ varying objectives in the informal learning environment. We will describe study methodology and results, discuss the expanded model, and address application of the model in other informal learning environments.