Dr. Ayesha Boyce (Educational Research Methodology) received new funding from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign for the project “BII-Implementation: GEMS: Genomics and eco-evolution of multi-scale symbioses.”
Boyce, with assistance from staff and graduate students from the UNCG School of Education, will serve as the external evaluator and will obtain the necessary University IRB approval. Boyce will use a Values-Engaged, Educative evaluation approach (VEE) (Boyce, 2017; Greene, DeStefano, Burgon, & Hall, 2006). The VEE approach, developed with NSF-EHR support, defines high-quality STEM educational programming as that which effectively incorporates cutting-edge scientific content, strong instructional pedagogy, and sensitivity to diversity and equity issues.
The VEE evaluation approach encourages explicit attention to issues of diversity and equity, and responsiveness to the culture and context of the program. Specifically, the evaluator is called to examine the extent to which an education program is equitable or has equal opportunities for participation, meaningful learning, and accomplishment, particularly for those least well-served in that context. Additionally, this approach seeks to educate stakeholders about their program while also engaging the perspectives, concerns, and values of all legitimate stakeholders, including those traditionally unheard and underrepresented in the evaluation context.