Amy Krenn was honored with the 2011 Outstanding Major in Biology Award during Honors Day May 17 at North Central College.
Krenn is a graduating senior majoring in biology with a minor in secondary education. At North Central in spring 2011, she participated in a Biology-Chemistry Interdisciplinary Seminar, presenting the paper, "The Effects of an Inquiry Based Saturday Science Program on the Interest Levels and Development of Science Processing Skills in Fourth and Fifth Grade Girls."
The following is the abstract from Krenn's research:
"Research shows that elementary school years are a critical period for students in their formation of motivational beliefs towards science learning and revealing their interest in science (Guvercin et al., 2010). Research similar to this has lead to the question of whether carrying out a Saturday Science program taught by college students interested in science to serve as role models and implementing hands on learning would cause an increase in science interest and processing skills. The purpose of this experiment was to introduce fourth and fifth grade girls to inquiry and exploration activities in order to raise interest in science and to develop their science processing skills. The experiment was run over a course of six consecutive Saturdays. Pre-tests were administered before the start of the program to determine initial interest levels in science process skills. The same test was administered to both groups after the session concluded. Additionally, the same experiment was executed at a different school at the same time in order to look at the affects of demographics on student learning. The results displayed that there was no significant effect of treatment, grade, ethnicity, or school on science interest or development of process skills. Reasons why there was no significant affect could be due to self selection, sample size, and time period."