Research Experiences for Teachers
ERCs also involve precollege teachers through workshops and laboratory experiences to inform them about engineering research and design challenges. These teachers are then able to incorporate engineering concepts in their classroom lessons to stimulate students’ awareness of engineering as a field of endeavor and a possible career choice. In 2012, the ERCs directly impacted over 3,600 precollege teachers. A major vehicle for this involvement is the ERC’s own Research Experiences for Teachers (RET) Program, which brings teachers to ERCs in the summer for up to 10 weeks of hands-on immersion in the work of that ERC. These teachers return to their classrooms with increased understanding of engineering and new course material to add to their science and engineering course materials.