University of Northern Iowa
I am an Assistant Professor of Earth Science and Science Education at the University of Northern Iowa. My education spans both geology and science education. My background in geology includes an MS thesis in physical volcanology. For my dissertation in science education, I investigated differences in student responses to conceptest questions used in an introductory Earth science course. I have also worked as a project geologist for an international environmental firm, and taught middle school and high school science and math.
Currently I teach an introductory Earth science course for elementary education majors. My research centers on investigating better ways to teach Earth science concepts to pre-service teachers. Current projects include investigating how my course impacts student science teaching self efficacy, and designing inquiry-based lessons for the course.
Sea Floor Magnetism part of Integrate:Workshops:Teaching the Methods of Geoscience:Activities
This earth science activity allows students to simulate the collection of magnetic polarity data across two mid-ocean ridges. Prior to class, the instructor arranges bar magnets in a symmetric pattern to simulate changes in polarity in the sea floor and covers the magnets so students must use a compass to remotely gather the data without directly observing the magnets themselves. Students then graph the data and identify regions of normal and reversed polarity. The data are also plotted onto a profile of each mid-ocean ridge. Finally, students use the data they collected to draw inferences about sea floor spreading at mid-ocean ridges and calculate the average spreading rate for the last 780,000 years.
Temperature Investigations part of Cutting Edge:Early Career:Previous Workshops:Workshop 2010:Teaching Activities
In this guided-inquiry lesson, students investigate three factors that control the temperature of a given location (surface albedo, surface composition, and sun angle).
Inquiry into Earth and Space Science part of Integrate:Workshops:Teaching the Methods of Geoscience:Course
Inquiry into Earth and Space Science is a semester-long content course developed for pre-service elementary teachers that uses inquiry learning to teach concepts related to rocks, minerals, groundwater, stream flow, weather, climate, maps, and astronomy.
Teaching geoscience methods to pre-service elementary teachers part of Integrate:Workshops:Teaching the Methods of Geoscience:Essays
Teaching geoscience methods to pre-service elementary teachers Kyle Gray, Earth Science, University of Northern Iowa For the past three years, I have been teaching at the University of Northern Iowa a ...