A range of issues color the STEM debate. They include concerns about the number of US college students pursuing STEM degrees and the caliber of STEM instruction in the classroom.
The Dayton Public Schools and Sinclair Community College are confronting these challenges.
Since 2009, these institutions have collaborated on a National Science Foundation project, the Dayton Urban STEM Teacher Academy, designed to create a model for building STEM teacher capacity in urban school districts. The project goals are to:
- Address the STEM teacher shortage
- Create a talent pipeline for urban school districts
- Indentify and motivate students to pursue STEM teaching
- Incorporate and model STEM teaching best practices
Last fall, we worked with the outstanding core team, consisting of project leader Lalitha Locker, Jane Myung and Carole Dean, to design an informational project poster for the 2011 NSF national conference in Washington, DC.
Many NSF project teams develop posters, but too often they succumb to the temptation to fill every inch of space. The jumble of text, data, images and graphs become overwhelming and counterproductive.
Our team made a conscious decision to avoid this pitfall and keep things simple.
We decided we wanted a crisp, clear overview appropriate for the conference and useful throughout the remainder of the project. We wanted to focus on highlights and key indicators. We wanted to protect white space. We wanted to use photos from STEM Academy sessions and actual classrooms and laboratories.
With these goals in mind, Crossbridge designed the 3-panel display (roughly 20” x 60”) shown below.
(Click to enlarge.)
The added bonus?
This display can be used in a variety of circumstances, from STEM Academy training sessions to general presentations. The content could be captured as a PowerPoint, printed as a handout, adapted as a brochure, and/or produced as an information dissemination piece. It could also be modified and used as an email bulletin or newsletter.
With thought and effective planning, we created a simple, clear solution that fulfills multiple purposes.
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