Journal of Engineering Education

K-12 outreach: Identifying the broader impacts of four outreach projects

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Over the last four years, a series of outreach programs have been offered through the Colorado School of Mines to middle school teachers from eleven school districts in the State of Colorado in the United States. Each of these programs is designed to illustrate through hands-on activities the application of mathematics to science and engineering. Each also has an academic year follow-up such that a faculty member, an expert teacher, or a graduate student assists the teachers in the classroom. An expected outcome of this effort is the improvement of instruction in mathematics and science in the participating middle schools; an unexpected outcome has been the impact of these projects on the culture of the participating schools, both middle schools and university. Based on our assessment efforts, this article describes the qualitative and quantitative outcomes of this sequence of projects on middle school students, teachers, graduate students, professors, and college curriculum.