Introduction to Modeling-Distance Learning

Introduction to Modeling Spring 2018

(** This course is currently full.  If you’d like to be placed on the waiting list, contact Wendy at

Distance Learning (online)

Duration: 15 weeks, January 17-April 25, 2018
Date(s): Wednesdays from 7:00 pm EST till 10:00 pm EST
Instructor: Colleen Megowan-Romanowicz, PhD, AMTA’s first Senior Fellow
Costs: $850 for current AMTA members; $910 with membership renewal applied
Graduate credits: 3 credits from Aurora University for $100 each (total $300) available (course can be taken for professional development credits as well)
Registration: Available on eweblife

What are conceptual models? What is modeling? What is Modeling Instruction—what is it like for teachers? for students? How does it work? Why does it work?  What (if anything) does it have to do with NGSS?

Introduction to Modeling Instruction will take on these questions and more in a 15-week distance learning seminar course that meets 3 hours per week. We will delve into the cognitive underpinnings of Modeling Theory—reading about some of the seminal theories upon which it is based, engage in Modeling discourse and practice discourse management, watch video of Modeling classrooms and make sense of student thinking by watching them whiteboard and listening to them talk with each other. We will look at how Modeling uncovers the spectrum of middle and high school science topics, exploring the storylines from the various disciplines, discussing the fundamental models of each of these disciplines with expert Modelers from physics, chemistry, biology, and middle school science. This is not a Modeling Workshop, but by the end of the course you will have a good grounding in model-based cognition and instruction, and a working knowledge of how Modeling Instruction unfolds in the secondary science classroom.

This session will be hosted by Colleen Megowan-Romanowicz. Colleen was a veteran physics teacher who built a highly successful physics first program in her high school prior to learning  Modeling Instruction at a 1998 Modeling Workshop at UC Davis. She worked with a team that developed Modeling Physics second semester materials in 1999 and later moved to Arizona to pursue her masters and PhD at Arizona State University under the direction of David Hestenes. As a faculty member at ASU she secured NSF funding to build a Masters of Natural Science degree program grounded in Modeling Instruction for middle school science and mathematics teachers, where she mentored over 60 teachers. In 2011 she became AMTA’s first Executive Officer guiding the organization through five years of impressive growth and development. She is currently AMTA’s first Senior Fellow, and continues to lead its research efforts.

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