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If you have developed an Earth Science education product under NASA sponsorship or by using NASA content and expertise, your product may qualify for distribution by NASA through the Earth Science Education Catalog, the Digital Library for Earth System Education (DLESE), and through national educator workshops. For details please visit:


Announcement of Opportunity

Teacher Professional Contiuum (TPC) Mission and Project Categories

The principal mission of the TPC program is to promote quality STM teaching. This mission rests on a triadic foundation: (1) the production of resources, (2) the development of infrastructure, and (3) the advancement of knowledge. To fulfill its mission, the TPC program set the following goals:

  • To improve the quality and coherence of the learning experiences that prepare and enhance STM teachers;
  • To develop innovative curricula, materials, tools, ideas, and information resources that prepare and support STM teachers and administrators;
  • To research, develop, and identify models, organizational structures, and systems that support the teacher professional continuum;
  • To use scientifically-based studies to research teacher learning throughout the teacher professional continuum and its impact on teaching practice;
  • To advance the knowledge base on the preparation, enhancement, and retention of STM teachers, and on the strategies that strengthen and diversify the STM teaching profession; and
  • To disseminate this knowledge and research, as well as innovative models and resources, to a national audience.

To improve the quality of STM teaching in particular, and to strengthen the STM teaching profession in general, it is important to develop (1) a coherent continuum of professional experiences that not only enables STM teachers to grow in their profession but also contributes to the knowledge base on STM teaching (National Research Council, 2000), and (2) the resources, environments, and infrastructure to recruit, prepare, support, enhance, and sustain STM teachers throughout the professional continuum. The TPC program will invest in sound research studies as well as in the research and development of models and strategies that address these critical needs. The entire TPC effort cannot be undertaken without the participation of teachers, administrators, schools, and districts. It is expected that teachers (at every phase of the continuum) and administrators be actively engaged in, and make significant contributions to the TPC program.

In order to accomplish its goals, the TPC program encourages the submission of proposals for projects that fall within one of the following four categories: see the url for more details


GK-12 Program

The National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Teaching Fellows in K-12 Education (GK-12) program recognizes that graduates of higher education programs in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) can contribute to the national effort to address the challenging issues in K-12 education across a broad spectrum of schools and educational levels. In particular, STEM graduate students can partner with K-12 teachers to work towards improving the content of science and mathematics taught in their classes. While the focus of this initiative is on graduate students serving as resources for K-12 education, advanced undergraduate STEM majors may be included as appropriate to further the goals of individual projects. NSF anticipates that the GK-12 experience will benefit both the graduate and undergraduate Fellows in their chosen STEM professions as well as provide a basis for them to contribute toward the improvement of the nation's educational enterprise.

The purpose of GK-12 is to enable institutions to experiment with and then make a permanent part of their institutional graduate opportunities a program that features:

  • opportunities for K-12 students to increase their STEM content knowledge and skills, and to work with STEM professional role models with whom they can relate;
  • strong and enduring partnerships with schools and school systems;
  • opportunities for STEM graduate students and upper division undergraduates to learn new teaching methods within their discipline and to improve their communication skills; and,
  • opportunities for K-12 teachers to serve as mentors to STEM graduates and upper division undergraduates and, in the process, become more knowledgeable about STEM content and concepts and more confident in their skills within STEM.

The Foundation offers two tracks within the GK-12 program: Track 1 (Initial Track) for Principal Investigators in departments that have not previously been awarded a GK-12 project and Track 2 (Follow-on Track) for Principal Investigators in departments or institutions who currently or in the past have been awarded a GK-12 project and are now poised to sustain GK-12 activities as a permanent feature of their STEM graduate education programs and to disseminate models for the nation. Awards within each track are each one-time awards with no potential for renewals within that track. Approximately $17.2 million is expected to be available to support approximately 15 Track 1 awards and 15 Track 2 awards. Track 1 awards are expected to be in the range of $300,000 to $660,000 per year for up to three years. Track 2 awards are expected to be for a total of up to 5 years with decreasing amounts each year as the institutional support increases; the amount in any one year not to exceed $500,000 and a total for the award not to exceed $2 million.

For more information see the URL


Advanced Technological Education (ATE)


Jointly managed by the Division of Undergraduate Education (DUE) and the Division of Elementary, Secondary, and Informal Education (ESIE), the ATE program promotes improvement in technological education at the undergraduate and secondary school levels by supporting curriculum development; the preparation and professional development of college faculty and secondary school teachers; internships and field experiences for faculty, teachers, and students; and other activities. With an emphasis on two-year colleges, the program focuses on the education of technicians for the high-technology fields that drive our nation's economy. The program also promotes articulation between programs at two-year colleges and four-year colleges and universities--in particular, articulation between two-year and four-year programs for prospective teachers (with a focus on activities and disciplines that have a strong technological foundation) and between two-year and four-year programs in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (also with a focus on disciplines that have a strong technological foundation). In addition, the program invites proposals focusing on research relating to technician education.


Preliminary proposals (optional except for LSMD and LSTP): April 21, 2004
Formal proposals: October 8, 2004 Program Solicitation
NSF 04-541: Advanced Technological Education (ATE)--Program Solicitation

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