A descriptive study of the partnership between high school students and scientists
Schwalm, Jeffrey Andrew
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This Action Research study investigated the impacts on high school students from participating in a field experience working alongside scientists in a hospital or lab setting. Students applied to participate in either a three-day experience with the pathology department, one-day experience in a frog embryo lab, or a one-day tour of the pathology labs. Primary sources of data were pre and post surveys and interviews that looked at any impacts the experiences may have had. Questions focused on prior lab experiences, motivation for participating, perceived value of lab work, and content understanding. Results showed the overall impacts of the experiences varied based on the design of the experience. Students who participated in the more extensive, three-day partnership were much more positive in their feedback and had a better understanding of the content than the other two experiences. Students primarily applied for the experiences to assist them in finding a career path or because they had an interest in the specific topic. Though feedback varied from student to student, all students responded that they valued the experience and would like to continue participating in authentic field experiences with scientists.