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PROJECT ATOMS: Accomplished Elementary Teachers of Mathematics and Science

Project Team:  

Sponsor: National Science Foundation

Project Total: $3,116,758


Project ATOMS addresses the critical need for longitudinal research on the impact of teacher education.  The team is evaluating NC State’s STEM-focused elementary teacher preparation program.  The findings have the potential to redefine how we prepare prospective educators to teach mathematics and science to young children.

Through a mixed methods study using multi-level modeling and qualitative techniques, the project illustrates teachers’ development through their preparation program and into teaching, and the relative effects of teachers’ content knowledge, pedagogical content knowledge, self-efficacy, instructional performance and teacher education program features on the class- and student-level STEM learning of K-5 students.  This knowledge has the potential to transform the ways in which teachers are prepared to teach STEM content, to produce a model of teacher development that is based on longitudinal study and allows for the possible adoption of the ATOMS model by other teacher education programs across the nation, and to affect instructional practices in K-5 settings.