Evaluation Of An After School Science Enrichment Program For Elementary School Students
Date of Graduation
Master of Science in Materials Science
Physics, Astronomy, and Materials Science
Materials Science and Engineering
Two hundred and forty-two students in grades two through five attended eight to ten hours of after school science enrichment classes over a course of seven to eight weeks. These classes were offered free of charge at the Discovery Center of Springfield, an interactive science museum in Springfield, Missouri. One assessment conducted at the Center through an electronic audience response system showed mean content knowledge gain of 33%. This assessment was designed to elicit common misconceptions about the physical world and focused on the specific topics students had studied. In another pre- and post-test series at the Center, students were given two minutes to list words they associated with science. This part of the study showed a 25% increase in responses showing a broad and detailed definition of science as a discipline. However, students' science grades and attendance at school showed no significant changes. Overall, this study showed that significant improvements can be made in elementary school students' science performance with a minimal investment in after school science enrichment programs.
© Jonathan Shearer
Shearer, Jonathan, "Evaluation Of An After School Science Enrichment Program For Elementary School Students" (2002). MSU Graduate Theses. 1568.