Frequently Asked Questions
Normal Operations [or jump to COVID-19 Considerations]
Q: What is the typical TRPP Research Schedule?
A: The TRPP research period includes 80 hours over 6 weeks between June 1 and July 15, plus translation efforts that are required to include at least 2 engagement activities per teacher in the subsequent fall.
Q: What K-12 personnel are eligible to participate in the TRPP?
A: Science teachers who are active, in-service, in good standing, and with permission of supervisor, from Omaha Public Schools (OPS) and who will continue to serve with OPS during the academic year following the research period are eligible to participate.
Q: I teach summer school for OPS. Can I still participate in the TRPP?
A: Yes, you may participate in the TRPP while you teach summer school, provided you can meet all the attendance and other requirements associated with program meetings, journal clubs, and group activities. TRPP group activities meet at or after 1 PM to avoid conflicts with summer school schedules.
Q: I am going on vacation this summer. Can I still participate in the TRPP?
A: Due to the limited timeline, vacations should be scheduled outside the TRPP summer research period when possible. However, brief absences (i.e. 1 journal club) during the research period may be excused if they are disclosed in advance, do not interfere with meeting the overall program requirements, and can be made up for in a manner deemed appropriate by the TRPP Leadership Team.
Q: If selected, will I get paid to be a TRPP Participant?
A: Yes, TRPP teachers receive a stipend of $3,000. Faculty mentors also receive a stipend and a supply fund to support the research.
Q: Do I get to choose the research partner I will work with?
A: Candidates may indicate partner/disciplinary preference(s) in their application/proposal, but it is not required. The TRPP team will consider preferences during the selection process, but cannot guarantee placement with a specific research partner. The team will ultimately establish partnerships based on mutual interests and best fits with the project and overall program goals.
Q: Where does the TRPP research take place?
A: TRPP research is conducted in the labs and/or field sites of the UNO faculty mentors who participate in the Program. The translation of research practices occurs in the K-12 classroom and/or relevant learning environments at the home institutions of the participants (science teachers). All members convene on the UNO campus one time per week during the research period for journal club discussions, focus groups, and other scientific engagement, and networking events.
Q: Why should I join the TRPP?
A: The goal of the TRPP is to enhance science literacy across K-12 instructional environments by providing authentic, hypothesis-driven science research experiences to teachers and, subsequently, their students via the translation of authentic research practices.
Due to the current pandemic, TRPP activities will occur in remote mode for summer 2020, and the research period will be extended into the fall 2020 academic year.
Our current plan for activities under the revised schedule is summarized below:
- Programmatic and teacher-researcher interactions will occur online on a weekly basis at minimum, between June 1-July 15, 2020. These include:
- New teacher orientation (June 1)
- Pre-project focus groups (June 1)
- Journal clubs (Wednesdays at 1 PM between 6/1-7/15)
- Mentor/teacher check-ins
- Literature reviews and/or online training modules (i.e.CITI) if applicable
- Mentors may purchase supplies relevant to the proposed research according to UNO purchasing policies and TRPP supply fund guidelines
- Research pairs may conduct portions of the research that can be completed remotely
- All participants are expected to be paid according to their original contracts
- Research that occurs in labs and/or at field sites will be conducted during the fall semester. Scheduling will be coordinated between the mentor and teacher and may take place outside normal working hours (i.e. after school and/or on weekends). **Pending the approval of the grant funder, we would consider covering the cost of a substitute teacher for a few days per TRPP teacher to enable flexibility for the participating teacher to conduct TRPP research on weekdays during the fall semester at UNO facilities and/or field sites.**
- Teachers will engage their students in research translated from the project/program, with guidance and participation by their UNO mentor and assistance from a NoyceSCIENCE undergraduate learning assistant
- Faculty, teachers, and students will present TRPP research projects in a collective forum near the end of the fall semester
- TRPP members will participate in post-project focus groups and surveys
Q: My proposed study involves human subjects. Can I still proceed?
A: Projects involving human subjects research may require minor to significant modifications to continue with their proposed TRPP research in compliance with evolving restrictions imposed by the Office of the Vice Chancellor for research at UNO. All researchers whose project involves human subjects should refer to UNO’s COVID-19 Research Planning guidelines and communicate with the IRB and TRPP leadership team regarding plans forward.
Clarification added 4/21/2020: TRPP mentors whose projects involve human subjects should devise alternative research activities that can be implemented in cooperation with the teacher partner, exclusively if necessary. These activities should still demonstrate meaningful and authentic science research, with aspects (i.e. authetic research practices) that the teacher can translate to students in their K-12 environment.
Q: Will TRPP researchers meet in person, or virtually, during 2020?
A: Summer group meetings (i.e. orientation, focus groups, journal clubs, etc.) will be exclusively online, likely via Zoom. You may also schedule additional research hours during the summer for virtual planning meetings, tasks, and/or trainings that can be conducted remotely (see examples within the revised schedule description). If/when social distancing measures are lifted, face-to-face TRPP activities will resume. We anticipate fall research hours may be a combination of virtual and in-person meetings, at UNO/field sites and at the teacher’s school when appropriate.
Q: What is the time commitment for TRPP research and engagement in the summer and fall, respectively, according to the revised schedule?
A: The TRPP typically requires a total of 80 hours of engagement. The summer 2020 time commitment includes 6-10 hours minimum for orientation and/or to network with the group during scheduled engagement activities. Additional summer hours may be scheduled between mentors and teachers if 1) the nature of the work enables remote progress which can be documented, and 2) all members of the research pair/team are agreeable to the remote hours proposed. The fall time commitment is estimated to average 50-70 hours, including:
- Data collection and/or analysis at UNO labs or field sites
- Independent research progress by the teacher off-campus
- Active research translation activities in the K-12 environment
- TRPP research symposium and post-project focus groups
Q: What are the research dates and deadlines according to the revised schedule?
A: The 2020 research period will open on Friday, May 1 and continue thru December 15th, 2020. The TRPP Research Symposium will be tentatively scheduled for early December. Final Reports will be due on December 15th, 2020.
Q: When can I start using my TRPP supply funds?
A: The revised budget period for the TRPP 2020 is May 1-November 1, 2020. All supply fund expenditures must be incurred within the budget period of the project. Goods and other tangible property must be received, services must be performed, and travel must be completed (i.e. paid in full and posted in SAP) before November 1, 2020.
*These plans are subject to change as the COVID-19 situation and respective guidance evolves. Please check our website frequently for updates.*