Education / training

  • STEM educationNew, updated resource on STEM education, workforce

    It just became a lot easier for educators, students, parents, policymakers and business leaders to learn more about national trends in education and jobs in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). The National Science Board (NSB) last month released an interactive, online resource featuring new and updated data and graphics about STEM education and workforce in the United States and providing facts on topics such as student proficiency, college degrees in STEM fields, and jobs in science-related occupations.

  • School shootingSchools review lockdown protocols for active shooter scenarios

    Schools across the country are reviewing their lockdown protocols for active shooter scenarios. In Santa Fe, New Mexico, Ortiz Middle School is encouraging educators to not only gather students within their care to safety, but if necessary to fight off an attacker if the situation permits. On 9 October, school principal Steve Baca ordered a lockdown after a security guard discovered a gun in a student’s backpack. Immediately, English teacher Alexandra Robertson locked students in her classroom, got them to help barricade the door, and she was prepared to use any object including books and chairs to fed off anyone who might try to enter the classroom.

  • IslamTensions over Islam find their way to U.S. campuses

    University of Central Florida(UCF) professor Dr. Jonathan Matusitz is facing backlash from some groups which claim that his class on terrorism and communication is based on a biased view and a hatred of Islam. Students at the University of California-Berkeleybegan to protest the university’s selection of television personality Bill Maher as the mid-year commencement speaker on 20 December, describing his comments on Islam as racist, divisive, and offensive to many students. UCF says it stands behind Matusitz, and UC-Berkeley says Maher’s invitation stands.

  • EducationRose State College launches new Homeland Security Institute

    Rose State College in Oklahoma has announced the establishment of a Homeland Security Institute. The Institute, the first educational program of its kind in Oklahoma, will provide education and training in domestic and foreign terrorism prevention, emergency command procedures, and management of natural and manmade disasters. The counterterrorism educational phase will begin January 2015 with the launching of four online classes.

  • CybersecurityNew cyber initiative to put Israel’s Beer-Sheva region on the world’s cyber map

    Ben-Gurion University of the Negev is a central component of the new CyberSpark initiative, an ecosystem with all the components which will allow it to attain a position of global leadership in the cyber field. The CyberSpark initiative is the only complex of its type in the world – a government-academic-industry partnership which includes Fortune 500 companies and cyber-incubators, academic researchers and educational facilities, as well as national government and security agencies. The CyberSpark Industry Initiative will serve as a coordinating body for joint cyber industry activities with government agencies, the Israel Defense Force (IDF), and academia.

  • STEM educationProject gets community college students on the STEM path

    The National Science Foundation (NSF) is supporting a program — currently involving thirty-two schools, soon to be thirty-even — to bring undergraduate research into the science curricula of community colleges. The Community College Undergraduate Research Initiative (CCURI) “is the first large scale effort working to integrate undergraduate research at community colleges, institutions that serve as the entryway into higher education for many students, particularly first generation college students and students underrepresented in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) disciplines,” says the NSF’s V. Celeste Carter.

  • Visa controlU.S. student visa program fails to monitor participating schools: Lawmaker

    The number of student visa holders in U.S. colleges grew from 110,000 in 2001 to 524,000 in 2012. Today, more than 9,000 schools in the United States participate in the student visa enrollment program. The list includes reputable universities, but it also includes trade schools such as massage and beauty schools. Senator Charles Grassley (R-Iowa) has introduced legislation to better monitor schools which attract foreign applicants. “It’s time to close the loopholes and clamp down on schools that have a poor track record with regard to foreign students,” Grassley said.

  • STEM educationKickstarter-funded video game teaches kids how to code

    Computer scientists have successfully funded on Kickstarter a new and improved version of CodeSpells, a first-person player game they developed that teaches players how to code. The game’s previous iteration has been in use in dozens of schools throughout the world for more than a year. The researchers have been using the game as a platform to learn about the best ways to teach children how to code.

  • Visa controlDHS lost track of thousands of foreign students in U.S.

    The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has lost tabs on more than 6,000 foreign students who had entered the United States on student visas which have since expired — effectively vanishing without a trace. One of the major problems relating to student visas is the fact that the U.S. government continues to grant schools the power to accept overseas applications even if the schools have not been accredited by the state and have little academic and administrative oversight.

  • STEM educationMalawi app teaches U.K. school children eighteen months of math in six weeks

    Psychologists have found that an app designed to boost the education of children in Malawi has also proved to be a highly effective learning tool for U.K. primary schoolchildren. The study has found that in just six weeks of using the math app on personal tablets in the classroom, children made as much progress as would be expected in twelve to eighteen months of class teaching.

  • CybersecurityWinners announced in U.S. Cyber Challenge Western regional competition

    Angela Rey, Lee Christensen, and Vincent Venem were on the winning team for the 2014 U.S. Cyber Challenge (USCC) Western Regional “Capture the Flag” competition. The seventy participants were selected based in part on their scores from Cyber Quests, an online competition offered through the USCC in April that drew more than 1,600 participants from almost 700 schools nationwide.

  • STEM education“Active Physics” incorporates active-learning techniques while still being taught to large classes

    Large lecture courses notoriously discourage students from going into the sciences, but an innovative physics course helps to prevent this first-year slide. “Active Physics” incorporates active-learning techniques, but still is taught to large classes. Active Physics consistently outperformed traditional lecture courses in conceptual learning and in attitudes toward learning and problem solving.

  • CybersecurityTraining cyber security specialists for U.S. critical cyber infrastructure

    Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory is joining Bechtel BNI and Los Alamos National Laboratory to train a new class of cyber defense professionals to protect the U.S. critical digital infrastructure. The Bechtel-Lawrence Livermore-Los Alamos Cyber Career Development Program is designed to allow the national labs to recruit and rapidly develop cyber security specialists who can guide research at their respective institutions and create solutions that meet the cyber defense needs of private industry. About 80 percent of the nation’s critical digital infrastructure and assets are owned and operated by private industry.

  • STEM educationHelping grow the next generation of scientists

    Scientists, uniformed service members, and the DTRA’s Chemical/Biological Technologies Department (CB) leadership worked hard to make this year’s Joint Science and Technology Institute (JSTI), a summer program for high school-aged students, designed to increase awareness and interest in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) academics, a success.

  • STEM educationCreating sustainable university and college STEM programs

    A new study has identified two factors that characterize sustainable university and college programs designed to increase the production of highly qualified physics teachers. Specifically, one or more faculty members who choose to champion physics teacher education in combination with institutional motivation and commitment can ensure that such initiatives remain viable. Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) teacher shortages are especially acute in physics, and the study points the way for institutions seeking to increase the number of STEM graduates prepared to teach.