College of Education

Impact on Science Education

Home Teacher Education Opportunities Research Our Projects


Below is a list of projects that Impact SciEd has collaborated on to develop and carry out. More information and resources from each of these projects is coming soon.

orange bar

Active Projects

These are the projects we are actively developing. Let us know if you have feedback or are interested in collaborating or piloting curriculum materials for these projects.

orange bar

Completed Projects

All the materials and resources created through these projects are publicly available and free to use, although we are no longer updating them. Please let us know if you have questions or trouble accessing materials.

Arctic Paleoecology Workshop

This series of teacher workshops (2014 to 2017) allowed junior high and high school teachers to interact with nationally and internationally acclaimed ecologists doing cutting-edge research at the University of Illinois. The workshops included scientific presentations, discussions, and original lesson plans to help teachers incorporate ecosystem science and paleoecological concepts into their classrooms. Topics included climate change, current research, and “real data.

The goals of this project were to provide an introduction to core concepts related to climate change, ecosystems, and paleoecology; develop a framework for engaging students in critical thinking about ecology; provide curriculum materials and lesson plans for teachers; and build bridges between educators, scientists, and students.

Dr. Barbara Hug at the College of Education partnered with members of Dr. Feng Sheng Hu's lab, Dr. Katy Heath's lab and Dr. Jonathan Greenberg's lab at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign to develop curriculum and plan workshops. Funding was provided by the National Science Foundation through Award No. PLR1418339.

Ecosystem Ecology Workshop

These workshop (2009–2012) was a collaborative effort with ecology and climate change scientists at UIUC and created curriculum materials and a series of professional development workshops for high school teachers to incorporate cutting-edge climate research into their classrooms.

Genomics for™ Teachers

This was a summer workshop series offered through the Institute for Genomic Biology to disseminate curriculum based on genetic and genomic research conducted at UIUC.

Project NEURON

This project (2009 to 2016) incorporated research on neuroscience and biology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign into curriculum materials and professional development opportunities for high school teachers.

BrainCASE: The Golden Hour (2011–2012) was an extension of Project NEURON focused on creating a computer game that teaches neuroscience content within the context of traumatic brain injury and introduces students to the scientific practice of argumentation through the Claim, Evidence, Reasoning (CER) framework.

FIND Orphy (2012–2013) was a collaborative outreach program between Project NEURON and the Orpheum Children's Science Museum in Champaign, Illinois. In the summers of 2012 and 2013, Project NEURON hosted weekend science activities throughout the year and a one-week summer camp for elementary students at the Orpheum.

Neuroscience Day (March 2013) was a collaborative event coordinated by two NIH-SEPA funded projects: Project NEURON and Building Bridges (from the University of Nebraska Medical Center and the Great Plains Area Tribal Chairmen’s Health Board). Neuroscience Day brought two days of neuroscience activities to middle and high school students in Nebraska and South Dakota. As a result of the event, a series of outreach activities with an accompanying student activity book are available online for public use.

ECO [Prototype] (2014)

This was a multiplayer game that teaches secondary school students collaboration skills, ecology, and natural resource management while they engage in scientific practices and build their society in a dynamic online world.

Workshop in Evolutionary Biology (2012)

This summer workshop led by UIUC evolutionary biologists for teachers to learn more about evolution and how to address common student questions and misconceptions about evolution in the classroom.