Initial Publication Date: May 13, 2019

GeoFORCE Texas 12th Grade Summer Academy: 2018 and 2019 Field Program


The Summer Academy is an immersive, weeklong program for rising 12th grade GeoFORCE Texas GeoFORCE Texas and STEMFORCE students. It is set in Austin with field excursions to the Texas Hill Country and Llano Uplift, and visits to labs in UT Austin's Jackson School of Geoscience.

Curriculum follows the STAR Legacy Cycle STAR Legacy Cycle model in which specific challenges drive learning as a collaborative experience. Each challenge contains a set of goals, and through active achievement of those goals, learners acquire knowledge and skills. Learners practice tasks that are real and adopt the practices of discipline experts (cognitive apprenticeship). Within the challenge there are stages, or categories of activities, through which learners progress. At any time, learners may look ahead to see what's next, or go back to review information or revise work based on new learning.

A team of geoscience content and education experts (Education Coaches), and graduate and undergraduate students (Education-Coaches-in Training) facilitate learning. Instructors are mentors and coaches—observing learners in action, providing feedback, and identifying and correcting misconceptions. They supports peer-peer mentoring interactions.

GeoFORCE students are from minority-serving Texas high schools in Houston and Southwest Texas. They remain in GeoFORCE for four years and new regional cohorts of learners are added every year. GeoFORCE earned a Presidential Award for STEM Mentoring in 2013.

Instructor and Staff Resources

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