FAQs about the ASRT Program

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Do teachers have to have a pre-existing, established Science Research Program to apply and/or be considered?

Whether a teacher runs an established Science Research Program/Elective/Club or builds science project opportunities into their science curriculum, they are eligible to apply. However, they do have to be an active high school teacher.
 

Applicants will be evaluated by a committee from Regeneron, on the basis of their interest in building and/or growing such a program, readiness and capacity in terms of finances and faculty, as well as their administration’s level of support for this program.

Who should consider applying for the ASRT Program?

Any high school teacher that fits into one of these categories:

  • Currently runs an established Science Research Program (course/elective) as a dedicated course during the school day and has students regularly enter regional science fairs.

  • Currently runs an established Science Research Club or after-school program and has students regularly enter regional science fairs.

  • Currently has students carry out research projects as a part of a core class (Earth Science, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, etc..), and has them regularly enter regional science fairs.  As well as, having a strong interest in, and support for, creating a structured, Science Research Program (elective).

Can teachers apply together?

Yes. Teachers can apply individually or as a small group. As the ASRT Program is very customized for each teacher/school, it is important to keep a group relatively small. If a group is applying, one teacher should take the lead role and fill out the application. However, there will be a part of the application where the lead teacher can explain more about the group.

Will the ASRT sessions be in-person or virtual for summer 2021?

It is the hope that in-person workshops will still be possible with all required safety/distancing protocols. However, if this is not possible, because of restrictions based on COVID-19, then the ASRT program will be done virtually. 

Understanding that “Zoom fatigue” requires shorter sessions, the best model would be having multiple, half-day workshops and then will follow it up with additional Zoom sessions later in the summer or fall.

How many teachers/schools will be selected to receive the free week-long ASRT Program?

For the Regeneron supported weeks of the ASRT Program - 5 teachers that coordinate science research projects and/or run the Science Research Program will be selected as “Finalists”. Each will receive one-week of in-person, consulting sessions customized to help them overcome obstacles and reach their goals.
 

In addition, 4-5 teachers that coordinate science research projects and/or run the Science Research Program will be selected as “Semi-Finalists”. Each will receive 2 days of virtual consulting sessions customized to help them overcome obstacles and reach their goals.

For the ZEISS supported weeks of the ASRT Program - the teachers that coordinate science research projects and/or run the Science Research Program from the Alameda & Contra Costa regions in California as well as those from the Boston, Massachusetts region will be selected as “Finalists”. Each are invited to participate in one-week of in-person, consulting sessions customized to help them overcome obstacles and reach their goals.

Is there any cost for the teacher or school district for the ASRT program?

No. Thanks to funding from Regeneron and ZEISS, there is no cost at all for the teacher or school. The entire week of the ASRT program is free of charge.

What is the typical schedule of the week-long ASRT Program?

For all selected “Finalists”, each workshop would run at or near the high school for four and a half days in the summer.

The dates for the workshop would be based on the preferences of the teacher applying. Options are listed in the application.

The typical schedule is Monday through Thursday from 8:00am-3:00pm and Friday from 8:00am-12:00pm, though there may be flexibility within the schedule.

For all selected “Semi-Finalists”, the virtual workshop days would be discussed between the ASRT Program Director and each recipient.

Are the ASRT Program activities designed exclusively for teachers that have a pre-existing, established Science Research Program?

Each of the sessions and activities can be adapted to suit any style of Science Research Program, Elective, Club or modified to be included within the constraints of a standard science class. However, it is important that teachers have expressed an interest in growing and strengthening their program and/or science research opportunities for students as well as increasing the number of students that participate in regional and national science fairs/competitions.

Is there continued support for the ASRT Program recipients during the school year?

Support is available for all ASRT Program teachers via phone, Zoom and email throughout the school year.

Who runs the ASRT Program?

The program is facilitated by 35-year high school science teacher veteran, founder of the award-winning Science Research Program at Yorktown High School in NY and director/co-founder of the Regeneron-Westchester Science and Engineering Fair (WESEF), Michael Blueglass.

What are the possible dates of the ASRT Program?

For the Regeneron supported weeks of the ASRT Program, the following weeks are available for teachers nationwide:

June 21 - July 25

June 28 – July 2

July 5 - July 9

July 12 - July 16

July 19 - July 23

August 9 – August 13

August 16 - August 20

August 23 - August 27

For the ZEISS supported weeks of the ASRT Program, the following schedule will apply:
June 7- June 11 - week #1 in the Alameda/Contra Costa Region of California. 

The focus for this first session, will be mainly on those that are just starting a Science Research Program/Elective/Club and/or just starting to get students involved in carrying out projects and participating in science fairs.

June 14 – 18 - week #2 in the Alameda/Contra Costa Region of California. 
Focus will be mainly  those that have a fair amount of experience with running a Science Research Program/Elective/Club and/or regularly have students carry out projects and participate in science fairs.

August 9-13 - in the Boston, Massachusetts region. 
This ASRT Program will be open to all high school teachers involved in having their students carry out science research projects and participate in science fairs including any 
high school teacher that :

  • currently runs an established Science Research Program (course/elective) as a dedicated course during the school day and has students regularly enter regional science fairs.

  • currently runs an established Science Research Club or after-school program and has students regularly enter regional science fairs.

  • currently has students carry out research projects as a part of a core class (Earth Science, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, etc..), and has them regularly enter regional science fairs.  As well as, having a strong interest in, and support for, creating a structured, Science Research Program (elective).

How is the ASRT Program customized for each school?

Previous to the ASRT workshops, we review the current status and short-term and long-term goals with each teacher including the following questions:

  • During a TYPICAL YEAR which of the following describes you the best.

  • I currently run an established Science Research Program (course/elective) as a dedicated course during the school day and has students regularly enter regional science fairs.

  • I am in charge of an established Science Research Club or after-school program and I have students regularly enter regional science fairs.

  • I have my students carry out research projects as a part of a core class (Earth Science, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, etc..), and I have them regularly enter regional science fairs.  I also have a strong interest in, and support for, creating a structured, Science Research Program (elective).

  • What is the level of support for the science research projects/program from the faculty/guidance/administration/parent community? 

  • What are your overall goals regarding the science research projects/program (for the upcoming school year and in the near future)?

  • What have been the obstacles towards accomplishing those goals?

  • How many students are typically involved in carrying out science research projects and what is the grade level breakdown (how many 9th, 10th, 11th and 12th graders)?

  • Which science fairs/competitions are mandatory? optional? for which grade levels?

With this information, and further pre-workshop conversations, the ASRT Program can be customized to help each teacher address their specific goals and overcome any obstacles.

What are some of the topics that are covered during the ASRT Program?

Please note that the following are just sample topics. Additional topics and the amount of time spent on each are customized according to the type of in-class, science research project activities or Science Research Program/Club at each school.

  • How to help students select a project topic that is both interesting and meaningful for them yet achievable given a variety of constraints (possibility of finding a mentor, time needed to carry out a related project, expenses involved in and distance needed to travel to do the research, etc..).

  • How to improve the “pool” of scientific mentors that can help to guide students through their project, in person or virtually.

  • How to “Think outside of the box” for project and mentor possibilities.

  • Planning a yearly timeline for all of the different grades involved in the program.

  • Creating activities that will help students find and understand basic information on their research topic of interest such as from instructional videos, general articles, topic related guides.

  • Creating activities that will help students find and understand advanced information on their research topic of interest such as from professional, “Journal” articles.

  • Creating activities that will help students with learning basic research skills in their chosen area of research.

  • Creating strategies for running a multi-curricular, multi-age, multi-stage classroom, where each student may be carrying out a project on a different topic.

  • Strategies for creating professional level, hopefully award winning, poster and PowerPoint/Google Slides presentations for Science Research competitions.

  • Strategies for writing award winning, science research papers to enter into local and national competitions and increasing chances of success in science research competitions.

  • Reviewing all rules, regulations and deadlines regarding the different science fairs and competitions.

  • How to increase support for the science research projects or Science Research Program/Club with the parents and/or community through outreach activities.

  • How to increase publicity for the science research opportunities or Science Research Program in the early stages and whenever a student is recognized with an award.

  • Review of the classroom set up and the equipment available/needed.

  • How to increase the number of students involved in carrying out science research projects or joining a Science Research Program/Club.

  • How to blend the goals of your science research projects or Science Research Program/Club with the guidelines of the A.P. Capstone Program or I.B. Program.

  • Potential options for offering college credit for the students involved in an established Science Research Program.