Visualize better math and science
- By Brian Robinson
- Oct 07, 2002
National Center for Supercomputing Applications
The National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) and East Carolina
University are partners in a program that will use advanced visualization
technologies to improve math and science education in rural middle and high
The program, Rural Educators using Visualization to Inspire Teacher
Advancement and Learning to Improve Science and Mathematics Education, or
REVITALISE, is funded in part by the National Science Foundation. Several
four-person teams of educators will be chosen to participate in the program,
which is free to the teachers, schools and schools districts that participate
in the program.
must be submitted by Oct. 15 to be assured of consideration.
The selected teams will take part in two workshops and a two-week annual
summer institute where they will learn how to best communicate over the
Internet and be introduced to the concept of visualization. According to
REVITALISE, visualization is "the process of presenting data in a form that
allows rapid understanding of relationships and findings that are not readily
evident from raw data."
Teams will learn how to use these tools in a classroom setting and will
collaborate to develop a curriculum and instructional content that can be
published on the Web.
"We want to use the program both to try and excite kids about math and
science, and also to foster a community of teachers who can work together
on ways to educate kids," said Scott Lothrop, project manager for education,
outreach and training at NCSA, and who is the coordinator for the REVITALISE
program in Illinois, where NCSA is located.
The assumption is that each school will have at least have computer
and Internet access in the classroom, he said, but otherwise the program
will supply the visualization and modeling tools as well as $65-a-day stipends
the teachers can use as they wish.
Program officials hope that REVITALISE, which at first will link teachers
in Illinois and North Carolina, will be the basis for a much broader national
program in the future, Lothrop said.
The program will run for four years and host two sets of teacher teams
for two years each. The first workshop is set to start Dec. 7.
Robinson is a freelance journalist based in Portland, Ore. He can be
reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Brian Robinson is a freelance writer based in Portland, Ore.