James A. Shymansky, Ph.D.E. Desmond Lee Endowed Professor in Science Education
Dr. James A. Shymansky is the holder of the E. Desmond Lee Family Professor of Science Education II endowed professorship. He received his BS in Education from Bloomsburg State College, his MS in Physics from Indiana State University and his Ph.D. in Science Education from the Florida State University. Before joining the UM-St. Louis faculty in 1997, he taught for 5 years in elementary, middle and high school in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Indiana and Florida and for 25 years at the University of Iowa.
He continues to direct the "Just ASK Project," a professional development project originally funded by the National Science Foundation in which elementary school teachers from rural school districts in Missouri and Iowa are helping to study the effect of "adapting science kits" (ASK) to teach and reinforce student skills in reading and writing while learning science through hands-on inquiry. The Just ASK project website, opened in January 2013, allows teachers nationally and internationally to share lesson plans and video recordings of ASK lessons. The website has had over 60,000 teacher visits since opening.
His research has focused on factors influencing student performance in inquiry classrooms and on how professional development activities for teachers translate into enhanced student attitudes and achievement. He has authored or co-authored 16 book chapters, 14 textbook series and over 70 research articles. One of his co-authored research articles, The effects of new science curricula on student performance was selected in 2003 as one of most influential publications for the 40th anniversary edition of the Journal of Research in Science Teaching. Dr. Shymansky helped found the International Journal of Science and Mathematics Education, published by Springer Publishing Company of the Netherlands for which he has served as Senior Editor since 2002. He is currently working on a set of online student materials that focus on the Next Generation Science Standards, a program consisting of a web-based, dual language interactive science modules for elementary and middle school children that can be accessed in English, Spanish, Mandarin and Arabic.
His recent publications include: 1). Shymansky, J.A., Wang, T.L., Annetta, L.A., Yore, L.D., & Everett, S.A. (2011). How much professional development is needed to effect positive gains in K-6 students’ achievement on high stakes science tests? International Journal of Science and Mathematics Education, 12(1), 1-19; 2). Shymansky, J.A, Wang, T.L., Annetta, L.A., Yore, L.D., & Everett, S.A. (2013). The impact of a multi-year, multi-school district K-6 professional development programme designed to integrate science inquiry and language arts on students’ high stakes test scores. International Journal of Science Education, 35, 956-979; and 3). Shymansky, J.A., Annetta, L.A., Yore, L.D., Wang, T.L., & Everett, S.A. (2013). The impact of a multi-year systemic reform effort on elementary school students’ achievement in science. School Science and Mathematics, 113(2), 69-79.
355 Marllac Hall
Recent News and Updates
JAMES A. SHYMANSKY
CURRICULUM VITA (Abbreviated)
Education: Bloomsburg State College (B.S. in Physics Education) 1965
Indiana State University (M.S. in Physics) 1969
Florida State University (Ph.D. in Science Education) 1972
Experience: E. Desmond Lee Professor of Science Education, UM-St.Louis, 1998-present
Assistant/Full Professor of Science Education, University of Iowa, 1973-1998
Assistant Professor of Science Education, Florida State University, 1972-1973
Teacher (Grade 5-12, Mathematics and Science), 1965-1970
Publications: 80+ articles; 3 science series; 25 books/chapters/monographs; 250 presentations, seminars and workshops, ~$12M in grants
Shymansky, J.A., Kyle, W.C., & Alport, J. (2003). “The effects of new science curricula on student performance. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, Special 40th Anniversary Edition of most influential publications in the 40 years of journal publication.
Shymansky, J.A., & Kyle, W.C. (1992). Establishing a research agenda: Critical issues of science curriculum reform. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 29(8), 749-778.
Shymansky, J.A. (1994). Assessment alternatives: Finding out what students know and can do [video]. Arlington, VA: Council of Chief State Officers.
Shymansky, J.A., & Dunkhase, J.A. (1994-1998). Science PALs (Parents/Activities/Literature) Project, National Science Foundation (4-year project).
Shymansky, J.A., Yore, L.D., & Anderson, J.O., (2004). “The impact of a school district’s science reform effort on the achievement and attitudes of third and fourth grader students.” Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 41 (8), 772-790.
Shymansky, J.A., Wang, T.L., Annetta, L.A., Yore, L.D., & Everett, S.A. (2011). How much professional development is needed to effect positive gains in K-6 students’ achievement on high stakes science tests? International Journal of Science and Mathematics Education. 12 (1), 1-19.
Recent Related Grant Activity (Principal Investigator)
(1988-1991) “Focus On Children’s Ideas about Science” (US $1M); (1994-1998) “Science Parents, Activities and Literature” (US$1.5M); (2000-2005) “Science Cooperatives” (US5.9M); (2007-2013) “Teacher Helping Teachers Teach Inquiry Science” (US$2.8M)
Selected Special Honors:
2007 Outstanding Science Educator, Association for Science Teacher Education
1995 Excellence in Teaching Award, 1994-1995 – University of Iowa
1987 IERA Award for the Best Report of Findings from a an Education Evaluation Study
1983 Outstanding Research Paper presented to the Southwest Education Research Association
1982 Outstanding Research Paper – National Association for Research in Science Teaching
Selected Professional Service:
President, National Association for Research in Science Teaching, 2004-2007
Senior Editor, International Journal of Science and Mathematics Education, 2001-
Research Coordinator, National Science Teachers Association, 1985-1987.
Past Editor, Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 1979-1984