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Welcome to the homepage for the I-ACT Fellows Program. Our overall goals are to support students and teachers in deep scientific inquiry with problem-based learning (PBL). Leveraging a variety of technology tools — specifically, a video game-based platform for students and associated intelligent assistants for teachers — can help with this, but only if designed well, with teachers’ needs, goals, and professional expertise in mind.

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You are invited to apply to be a part of the inaugural class of I-ACT Fellows Program, which will include 16 teachers from North Carolina and Indiana.

We invite teachers to partner with us in the Intelligent Augmented Cognition for Teaching (I-ACT) project. I-ACT is designed to resource and equip teachers with classroom facilitation and orchestration tools to support game-based learning about ecosystems (aligning with Indiana and North Carolina middle grade science standards and Next Generation Science Standards) through a problem-based learning model.

Selected Fellows Will Receive

  • $1250 in compensation for their participation in the project after implementation
  • Documentation for Professional Growth Points and Continuing Education Units
  • Access to EcoJourneys, the dynamic support tools, and a full curricular guide
  • Robust professional development opportunities around collaborative problem-based learning, including 1 day long virtual webinar (cost of substitute teachers will be covered
  • Dedicated technical support, instructional coaching, and a professional learning community that includes our team of expert consultants and other I-ACT Fellows

Teacher Eligibility

Any teacher is eligible to become a I-ACT Fellow if they:

    – Teach in North Carolina or Indiana

    – Will teach a middle school science course

    – That covers ecosystems topics

    – During the 2023-2024 academic year

Although prior experience with PBL in ecosystems education is not necessary, interest in learning more is desired

What Participation Entails

  • Teaching the Crystal IslandEcoJourneys unit (9-10 days of instructional time) during the 2023-2024 academic year
  • Attending a one day fully virtual teacher professional session on October 6 (cost of substitute teachers will be covered). Topics are around Ecosystems, Problem-Based Learning, and Collaborative Learning
  • The session will include opportunities to:
    • Play Crystal IslandEcoJourneys
    • Learn how to use the dynamic technology-informed facilitation tools
    • Engage with the curriculum
    • Bring your own professional expertise to the table to provide the team with feedback that will guide the development of technology-informed facilitation tools and curriculum. 
    • Meet other I-ACT Fellows to form a professional learning community around scientific problem-based learning pedagogy
  • Facilitating classroom research activity during the unit (e.g., participating in observations, interviews, assessments, and classroom video recording)

Requested Application Materials

To apply, simply fill out this APPLICATION FORM by September 22, 2023.

Notification of acceptance to the I-ACT Fellows Program will be by September 29, 2023.

The application will ask for the following questions:

  • Personal and school contact information
  • Years of classroom teaching experience
  • What teaching license(s)/certification(s) do you currently hold?
  • Grade(s) and class(es) you anticipate teaching about ecosystems in the school year 2023-2024.
  • Anticipated total number of students in this class(es) for 2023-2024
  • Describe a typical inquiry-based lesson or activity in your classroom? (~100 words)
  • Describe a time you were especially enthusiastic about your students’ learning of science? (~200 words)
  • As part of the I-ACT Fellows professional learning community, what do you anticipate your peers can learn from you? (~200 words)
  • What motivates you to become an I-ACT fellow (~200 words)?

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