Faculty Scholarly Dissemination Grants


Integrating Climate Change for Elementary Pre-Service Teachers: Tales from the Field


Geology Department


College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Date Range



Life Sciences


We will discuss the successes and challenges we have faced in developing and teaching an integrated science course for elementary preservice teachers on global climate change. This inquiry-based, interdisciplinary course is co-taught by a geologist and biologist, focusing on earth science concepts such as natural and anthropogenic influences of climate change and the evidence and impacts of climate change, and life science concepts such as biomes, biodiversity, evolution, ecosystems, and phenology. We explicitly teach nature of science and science process skills throughout the course. Several challenges remain: (1) some students dislike switching between two professors throughout the semester; (2) logistical difficulties result from working with multiple instructors each semester; and (3) students resist quantitative elements of science. Our experience, and data collected, suggests that our approach could be used as a model for institutions interested in applying a collaborative, team-teaching, and integrated approach to science course development for preservice elementary teachers.

Conference Name

National Science Teachers Association

Conference Location

San Antonio, Texas

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