Trail of Time
On the Trail of Time at the Grand Canyon. Photo by Steve Semken.

Workshop: Teaching About Time

February 26-28, 2012
Arizona State University

Note: This workshop has already taken place. See the workshop program for links to presentations, discussions, and other material from the workshop, and the workshop synthesis for a summary of key ideas.

Time and temporal concepts are critically important in a wide range of disciplines, from geoscience and other natural sciences to history and archeology. Students struggle with rates and scales of processes that are beyond their personal experiences, with the complex interactions of slow processes over long time scales, and with the enormous numbers involved in Deep Time. A sophisticated understanding of these temporal concepts is an essential foundation for unraveling the complex histories of the Universe, solar system, and Earth; of species; and of civilizations. It is also key for contextualizing the natural and anthropogenic changes occurring on our planet today.

Join us for a workshop that will bring together faculty teaching about time with researchers studying temporal learning to

  1. Understand current best practice in teaching about time,
  2. Bring forward ideas from education and cognitive psychology that can inform improved practice, and
  3. Work together in ways that support improved teaching about time.


Erica Crespi, School of Biological Sciences, Washington State University
Cathy Manduca, Science Education Resource Center, Carleton College
Carol Ormand, Science Education Resource Center, Carleton College
Steve Semken, School of Earth and Space Exploration, Arizona State University

This workshop is part of the On the Cutting Edge professional development program for geoscience faculty, sponsored by the National Association of Geoscience Teachers with funding provided by a grant from the National Science Foundation Division of Undergraduate Education .

This workshop is one of the On the Cutting Edge merging Theme Workshops, which are designed to move critical ideas and concepts into the mainstream of geoscience education. Previous emerging theme workshops have included Developing Student Understanding of Complex Systems, the Role of Metacognition in Teaching Geoscience, and Teaching about the Early Earth.

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