MISO is a North Carolina State University campus-wide project funded by the National Science Foundation, under Grant No. DRL 1038154. This project seeks to determine the collective STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) impact of the university through its pre-college outreach and extension programs.
The MISO project has several goals and objectives. The MISO project team works to creatively integrate NC State’s longitudinal student and staff databases with an innovative approach to evaluation across NC State’s K-12 STEM education outreach programs, particularly those funded by NSF. A critical part of this project is the longitudinal assessment of participant outcomes through development and collection of common STEM Outreach Evaluation Protocols and indicators of success. The project will define valid survey methods and measurable outcomes for both teachers and students involved in STEM outreach that can also be utilized, duplicated and shared in the future by any STEM outreach project.
More information about the S-STEM and T-STEM survey instruments can be found on their individual pages. Non-NC State researchers and evaluators can request copies of the instruments by clicking on the Instrument Request Form link and choosing the appropriate instruments. NC State K12 Outreach Providers should visit the NCSU Partners page of the MISO website for further information about survey use and the implementation process. Please feel free to contact the Project Coordinator with any questions.
The vision for MISO is an integrated institutional structure that will allow pre-college programs to think and act strategically to meet the following goals:
1. Provide an innovative network of support and communications among land grant university-based outreach project directors and educational evaluation experts, creating a learning community to promote sharing of best practices and innovation that will deepen the impact of NC State’s pre-college STEM programs on students’ future academic and career choices.
2. Develop and demonstrate a system of data-driven planning and analysis guided by best practices to facilitate longitudinal assessment of participant outcomes through development of a common STEM Outreach Evaluation Protocol as well as a database integrating records of NC State K-12 outreach participants with NC Department of Public Instruction records and university enrollment.
3. Use the longitudinal assessment of outreach participant outcomes with in the university-wide outreach learning community to support more seamless transitions across critical educational junctures.
4. Broaden participation among underrepresented groups in pre-college STEM outreach activities through integrated recruitment and support strategies.
This proposal supports the formation of a collaborative learning community, bringing together STEM outreach providers and leaders, NC State’s student recruitment and enrollment management leadership, and experts in educational research and evaluation to collectively analyze and revise current outreach practices around robust data analytics. The MISO project is specifically aimed at evaluating students and teachers involved in STEM education outreach programs in an effective, longitudinal manner.
To ensure that the results obtained are valid and robust, proper methodology will be used to gather information from project participants, and for the development of a common STEM Outreach Evaluation Protocol. The new data-driven assessment tools will be used for MISO project research, and will be available to any STEM outreach campus program. In this way, any STEM outreach project affiliated with NCSU, big or small, will have access to a valid tool in order to evaluate the impact of their project, as well as MISO research results. Projects will work collaboratively during twice yearly workshop, providing a venue for opportunities for communication and the sharing of evaluation theories, issues, approaches, and practices in extension and informal education.
In the latter part of the MISO project, results and evaluation methods will be shared with other institutions in the University of North Carolina system, therefore giving them the ability to evaluate their own STEM impact through outreach and extension programs via our replicable model.