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Program Structure

Sponsored by the National Science Foundation (NSF)

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and the Department of Defense (DoD)

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What is RET?

This Research Experiences for Teachers (RET) Site on cyber-enabled technologies provides opportunities for science, math, and technology teachers to work with faculty at Florida International University's School of Computing and Information Sciences. The program is an intensive, six (6) week program where teachers participate in technical and educational research as part of a research community.

Why RET at FIU?

Under the coherent theme of cyber-enabled technologies, the proposed site offers an effective research experience for teachers on state-of-the-art, high-quality research in fields such as social networks, cloud computing, privacy, and security. The new activities implemented in the schools during the academic year are expected to provide important insights for developing computational-thinking competencies in schools to prepare students to join the 21st Century workforce. The program targets teachers from the Miami-Dade County Public School (M-DCPS) and Broward County Public School systems. Projects are assigned based upon teacher’s interests, faculty and graduate students' availability, and what they can take back to their classroom.

A typical day begins at 8:00 AM and runs through 4:30 PM, with classes in research methodology, Python programming, HTML, etc., in the mornings, followed by independent research time in the afternoons where teachers will be working on their selected research project. Teachers will be interacting with our faculty and graduate students daily to conduct cutting-edge research. Friday afternoons, teachers meet to discuss the results of their weekly research efforts together with all of our participating faculty, graduate students, and mentors.

Success in the program requires a full-time commitment to the six-week program. The results, however, are well worth the effort, as teachers will come away with a much greater appreciation for advanced research, how to integrate their results into the classroom, and a variety of new tools that will help make them successful in their classroom during the academic year.

Why Apply?

There are various reasons to apply to the RET program at FIU:

  • You will be paid $6,300 for 6 weeks for doing some cutting-edge research (paid in either 2 or 3 installments during the program)
  • You may receive appropriate professional educational credits from M-DCPS
  • You will work on cutting-edge research in the area of cyber-enabled technologies, including sensors, sensor data cleaning for better collection and analysis of all types of data, social media, location-based privacy of cellular phones and networks, sensors in environmental engineering, agriculture, environmental tracking for chemical changes, and the use of autonomous underwater systems to navigate in rivers, coastlines and lakes
  • You will build long term collaborative partnerships with the research community
  • You will grow your knowledge of cyber-enabled technologies
  • You will increase your technology competency through research and professional development programs
  • You will receive assistance in developing class curricular using your experience
  • You will receive a collegial partnership experience with faculty and peers

Nature of Activities for Teachers

  • Develop innovative, standards-compliant curriculum modules
  • Participate in a number of professional development activities
  • Become active learners as members of a research community
  • Attend workshops and seminars:
    • Heuristics in picking up specific research skills
    • Technical and professional seminars
    • Weekly invited talks on emerging research
    • Faculty and peer mentoring

Required Deliverables

  • Research topic selection
  • PowerPoint presentations of research progress
  • Final scientific research poster of the research
  • Final presentation of the research at our end of program
  • Draft peer-reviewed journal article for one scientific journal
  • A lesson plan that incorporates the research into their specific classroom teaching program

Additional Program Details

  • No prior scientific research experience is necessary
  • Women and minorities are highly encouraged to apply
  • We welcome pre-service and in-service teachers
  • We are eager to support teachers in their professional development

Eligibility for Application

  • U.S. citizens and U.S. permanent residents only
  • Teachers whose schools are within commuting distance to Florida International University


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