Link between HPC in high school and academic performance

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I just saw this tweet from NCSA’s Bill Bell

Highschoolers whose teachers use supercomputing in class show “significant gains in chemistry knowledge.” #hpc

The link is to a paper documenting some of the experiences of the Institute for Chemistry Literacy through Computational Science, an NSF-funded project led by UIUC and NCSA. From the abstract

After one year of implementation, the Institute for Chemistry Literacy through Computational Science…experienced statistically significant gains in chemistry content knowledge among students of the rural high school teachers participating in its intensive, year-round professional development course, compared to a control group. The project utilizes a two-cohort, delayed-treatment, random control trial, quasi-experimental research design with the second cohort entering treatment one year following the first. The three-year treatment includes intensive two-week summer institutes, occasional school year workshops and year-round, on-line collaborative lesson development, resource sharing, and expert support. The means of student pre-test scores for Cohort I (n=963) and Cohort II (n=862) teachers were not significantly different. The mean gain (difference between pre-test and post-test scores) after seven months in the classroom for Cohort I was 9.8 percentage points, compared to 6.7 percentage points for Cohort II.

Real science showing real results, not just hype. Thanks for the tweet, Bill.