How to Build and Run a Successful Emerging Scholars Program
A 2009 MAA Summer PREP Workshop

Workshop Leaders:
Dave Kung, St. Mary's College of Maryland
Teri Murphy, Northern Kentucky University
Katherine Socha, St. Mary's College of Maryland
Natasha Speer, University of Maine


Workshop Dates:
August 2, 2009 through August 5, 2009
(this workshop is a prelude to MathFest)

2007 workshop

2007 workshop particpants hard at work.

Workshop Description:
Success in college calculus opens the door to mathematics and science majors. However, students from under-represented groups typically do not perform in calculus as well as other students with comparable preparation.

Question: What can you do to level the playing field for your students?

Answer: Start your own Emerging Scholars Program!

Emerging Scholars Programs (ESPs) promote exceptional achievement among under-represented student populations and provide a model that is easily expanded to other introductory science courses, as has been demonstrated at many institutions of higher education.

Developed by Uri Treisman and implemented during the past 30 years at a variety of schools across the US, ESP workshops build student success through collaborative group work on problems more challenging than typical calculus problems. Led by faculty and teaching assistants, a typical ESP workshop focuses on student-driven approaches to difficult worksheet problems, with Socratic questioning forming the primary assistance given by the ESP leaders.

This PREP workshop, now in its second year, will provide you with the tools you need to plan, establish, and run an ESP at your institution. You will learn about successful models from many institutions from liberal arts colleges through research universities. Workshop participants will receive (1) ESP materials including problems and an ESP director's guide, (2) practice developing and leading (simulated) ESP meetings including writing worksheet problems, (3) guidance in developing a plan for an ESP perfect for your institution, (4) ongoing support through an online forum and through follow-up meetings at the Joint Mathematics Meetings and MathFest, and (5) access to a database of thousands of calculus problems appropriate for workshop use.

The final workshop day will be devoted to implementation issues including how to obtain administration buy-in and support. Each participant (or pair of participants) will draft a proposal to his/her home institution for piloting ESP. The full group will discuss each proposal and help each participant (a) revise the proposal and (b) anticipate potential challenges to its implementation.

We strongly encourage participants to come in pairs from the same institution or from neighbor institutions.

What Previous Participants Thought:
Workshop Location and Accomodations:
Information to be announced shortly.

Arrival and Check-in:

Plan to arrive during the late afternoon or evening of Sunday, August 2nd.

Pre-workshop Readings:
In preparation for the workshop, all participants should read two articles about Emerging Scholars Programs and their implementation:
Reading these articles will be vital to making our workshop a productive experience. (And they are better reading than those in-flight magazines!)

Tentative Schedule:

Day 0: Sunday evening
Welcome Dinner
Day 1: Monday, August 3rd
Intro/History of Emerging Scholars (the story of Uri Treisman)
Being an ESP student
Writing ESP problems & worksheets
Facilitating an ESP class
Day 2: Tuesday, August 4th
Directing an ESP
Designing your ESP
Gaining institutional support
Worktime (developing your ESP)
Day 3: Wednesday, August 5th
Assessment and Evaluation of ESPs
Presentation of Plans
Local Resources: [coming soon!]

This page was last updated 03/24/09.