Dr. Tom McConnell
Dr. Tom McConnell
<b>Department: </b>Biology<br><b>Research Area: </b>Science Education

Department: Biology

Research Focus: I am seeking up to 2-3 students in the next academic year to help create a short video and a learning activity for elementary/middle school students related to a biology research project taking place at Ball State.

Potential Student Project(s):  Student researchers will help plan, record, edit and publish a short video about a team of researchers studying learning in fish embryos.The team will also create a learning activity to publish online, and help test it out with some local students.

Attributes/skills/background sought in undergraduate: Interest in science education, communication skills, and creativity in developing ideas. Ability to learn some online tools for creating interactive games is helpful. Commitment to completing the task and work with teammates from other disciplines is a plus!

Mentoring Plan: The student researcher will work 5 h/week on the project including 1h of 1-on-1 interaction with me.  My plan is to work with the students on this team to help plan some learning activities, then meet with researchers in an Animal Behavior research lab. We will work together to videotape interviews with the researchers, and produce a short video that will be published on a project website.

We will also work with some online tools to develop and publish an online learning module in which students practice observing fish embryos, recording data, looking for patterns in behaviors, and make their own inferences. The students we test this activity with are in a Junior Scientists program at a local school. In short, we want children to practice BEING the scientist to spark an interest in science careers.

Most of our work will take place in the Foundational Science Building, with some work being done online. We also plan to share our activities at a science teaching conference.

Contact: 765-285-8840, FB119