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Accreditation Report 2002
Core Campuses: Bloomington and Indianapolis

for the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education
and the Indiana Professional Standards Board


Faculty Vita

Sasha Barab, Ph.D.

Title: Assistant Professor of Education; Associate Director, Center for Research on Learning and Technology
Office: W. W. Wright Education Building, room 2232
Campus: Bloomington
Year of appointment: 1997


Academic Degrees

B.S. American University 1989 Psychology
M.A. University of Connecticut 1994 Education
Ph.D. University of Connecticut 1997 Cognition and Instruction

Certification/Licenses

Special Education Teacher (K-12). State of Connecticut, May 1994.

Professional Experience

1997-present Assistant Professor, Instructional Systems Technology Department, School of Education
1999-present Associate Director, Center for Research on Learning and Technology

Faculty load

50% teaching, 50% research and service

Faculty Teaching

Fall 2001 F401 Computer Endorsement Cohort
Fall 2001 R505 Workshop in Instructional Systems and Technology
Spring 2002 F401 Computer Endorsement Cohort
Spring 2002 R505 Inquiry-Based Teaching Techniques
Spring 2002 R695 ABD Reserch Round Table
Summer 2002 R505 Inquiry-Based Teaching Techniques

Selected Publications

    Barab, S. A., Schatz, S., & Scheckler, R. (in press). Using Activity Theory to Conceptualize Online Community and Using Online Community to Conceptualize Activity Theory. To appear in Mind, Culture, and Activity.

    Barab, S. A., & Luehmann, A. L. (in press). Building sustainable science curriculum: Acknowledging and accommodating local adaptation. To appear in Science Education.

    Barab, S. A., Barnett, M. G., & Squire, K. (in press). Building a community of teachers: Navigating the essential tensions in practice. To appear in The Journal of The Learning Sciences.

    Barab, S. A., MaKinster, J., & Scheckler, R. (in press). Designing system dualities: Characterizing a web-supported teacher professional development community. To appear in Information Society.

    Barab, S. A., & Plucker, J. A. (2002). Smart people or smart contexts? Cognition, ability, and talent development in an age of situated approaches to knowing and learning. Educational Psychologist, 37(3), 165-182.

    Barab, S., MaKinster, J. G., Moore, J., Cunningham, D., & the ILF Design Team. (2001). Designing and building an online community: The struggle to support sociability in the Inquiry Learning Forum. Educational Technology Research and Development, 49(4), 71-96.

    Hay, K. E., & Barab, S. A., (2001). Constructivism in practice: A comparison and contrast between apprenticeship and constructionist learning environments. The Journal of The Learning Sciences, 10(3), 281-322.

    Barab, S. A., Hay, K. E., Barnett, M. G., & Squire, K. (2001). Constructing virtual worlds: Tracing the historical development of learner practices/understandings. Cognition and Instruction, 19(1), 47-94.

    Barab, S. A., & Kirshner, D. (2001). Methodologies for capturing learner practices occurring as part of dynamic learning environments. The Journal of The Learning Sciences, 10(1&2), 5-15.

    Barab, S. A., Hay, K. E., Yamagata-Lynch, L. C. (2001). Constructing networks of activity: An in-situ research methodology. The Journal of The Learning Sciences, 10(1&2), 63-112.

    Barab, S. A., Thomas, M. K., & Merrill, H. (2001). Online learning: From information dissemination to fostering collaboration. Journal of Interactive Learning Research, 12(1), 105-143.

    Barab, S. A., & Hay, K. (2001). Doing science at the elbows of scientists: Issues related to the scientist apprentice camp. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 38(1), 70-102.

    Barab, S. A., Hay, K. E., Barnett, M. G., & Keating, T. (2000). Virtual solar system project: Building understanding through model building. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 37(7), 719-756.

    Barab, S. A., Squire, K., & Dueber, B. (2000). Supporting authenticity through participatory learning. Educational Technology Research and Development, 48(2), 37-62.

Funded Projects

    The Quest Atlantis Project: Building an Online MetaGame to Support Learning. National Science Foundation-SGER, March 2001-December 2002, $88,000. (Principal Investigator)

    Designing Communities of Practice to Support Math, Science, Technology, & Pedagogy Learning. National Science Foundation-CAREER, September 2001-August 2006, $632,047. (Principal Investigator)

    Young Scientist Research Group: Developing a Networked Improvement Community for the Learning Sciences. Center for Innovative Learning Technologies. Dec 2000-June 2001, $10,000. (Principal Investigator, with Co-PI J. Gray).

    The Internet Learning Forum: Fostering and Sustaining Knowledge Networking to Support a Community of Science and Mathematics Teachers. National Science Foundation-Knowledge Distributed Intelligence, September 99-August 02, $1,473,303. (Principal Investigator, with Co-PIs R. Kling, T. Duffy, D. Cunningham, & C. Brown)

    The Quest Atlantis Project: Creating a Sustainable Coalition of Networked Learning Communities. Indiana University, PROFFITT grant. Dec 2000-Dec 2001, $15,000. (Principal Investigator).

    Online Collaborative Tools for K-12 Teachers and Students: Building Inquiry-Based Communities of Practice. ActiveInk Interactive Network, May 00-Sept 01, $50,000. (Principal Investigator)

    Building Connections Through Virtual Worlds. Indiana University-Informational Communications High Performance Network Applications Fund, September 99-June 00, $20,000. (Principal Investigator)

    Strengthening An Infrastructure In Support Of Research On The Linkage Of Learning Theory, Pedagogy, And Technology. Indiana University-RUGS Research & Equipment Fund, August 1998-August 1999, $50,000. (Principal Investigator, with CO-PIs T. Duffy, C. Bonk, D. Cunningham, & T. Keating)

    Digital Weather Station Project. Center for Innovative Learning Technologies-Seed Grant, June 1998-June 1999, $8,000. (CO-Principal Investigator with K. Hay).

    Center for Research on Learning and Technology. Indiana University-School of Education, August 1998-August 2000, $140,000. (CO-Principal Investigator with T. Duffy, D. Cunningham, C. Bonk, T. Keating, & T. Frick)

    Virtual Reality Solar System Project. Center for Innovative Learning Technologies-Seed Grant, May 1998-June 1999, $7,500. (CO-Principal Investigator with K. Hay)

    Building Worlds: Tools for Interdisciplinary, Virtual Practice. Indiana University-InterCampus Research Fund, June 1998-Dec 1998, $7,500. (CO-Principal Investigator with K. Hay)

    Professional Development in the 21st Century. Indiana University-Continuing Studies, June 1998-December 1998, $4,650. (Principal Investigator)

    Constructing Knowledge and Virtual Worlds,. Indiana University-Proffitt Educational Research Fund, December 1997-December 1998, $11,980. (CO-Principal Investigator with K. Hay)

    Learning with Generative Hypertext. Spencer Foundation-Small Grants Program, July 1995-January 1997, $11, 950. (Co-Principal Investigator with M. Young)

Conference Presentations

    Barab, S. A., Scheckler, R. & MaKinster, J. (2001, April). Designing System Dualities: Building Online Community. Presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, Seattle, WA.

    Barab, S. A., & Schatz, S. (2001, April). Using Activity Theory to Conceptualize Online Community and Using Online Community to Conceptualize Activity Theory. Presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, Seattle, WA.

    Squire K., MaKinster J., Barnett, M., & Barab S. A. (2001, April). Paper presented as part of the Building Sustainable Science Curriculum: Acknowledging and Accommodating Local Adaptation Symposium at the annual meeting of the American Education Research Association, Seattle, WA.

    Barab, S., Kelly, C., Barnett, M., Squire, K., & MaKinster, J. (2001, April). Paper presented as part of the Using Online Modeling Tools to Support Knowing-in-the-Making Symposium at the annual meeting of the National Association for Research in Science Teaching, St. Louis, MO.

    Barab, S. A., & Hay, K. (2000, April). Doing Science at the Elbows of Scientists: Issues Related to the Scientist Apprentice Camp. Presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, New Orleans, LA.

    Barab, S. A., Moore, J. A., Cunningham, D., & the ILF Design Team (2000, April). The Internet Learning Forum: Fostering And Sustaining Knowledge Networking To Support and Research A Community Of Science And Mathematics Teachers. Presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, New Orleans, LA.

    Barab, S. A., Barnett, M., Yamagata-Lynch, L., Squire, K., Keating, T. (1999, May). Using activity theory to understand the contradictions characterizing a technology-rich introductory astronomy course. Presented at the 1999 Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association, Montreal, CA.

    Barab, S. A., Hay, K. E., & Barnett, M. G., (1999, April). A Vision for Learning Astronomy. Presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, Montreal, CA.

    Barab, S. A., Squire, K., & Dueber, B. (1999, May). Supporting Authenticity through Participatory Learning. Presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, San Diego, CA.

    Keating, T., Barnett. M., & Barab, S. A. (1999). Student Learning Through Building Virtual Models. Presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association, Montreal, CA.

    Barab, S. A. (1999, May). Chair of session on Researching Cognition in Situ: Toward a Consensus on Assumptions and Methods. Presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, San Diego, CA.

    Barab, S. A., Hay, K. E., Barnett, M. G., & Squire, K. (1998, May). Constructing Knowledge and Virtual Worlds: Knowledge Diffusion in Future Camp 97. Presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, San Diego, CA.

    Barab, S. A., Cherkes-Julkowski, M., Swenson, R., Garrett. S., & Shaw, R. E. (1998, May). Principles of self-organization: Ecologizing the learner-facilitator system. Presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, San Diego, CA.

    Barab, S. A., & Young, M. F. (1998, May). Examining the Products and Process of Learning from Linear, Navigational, and Generative Computerized Texts: Differences Between Problem Solving and Reading Comprehension Goals. Presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, San Diego, CA.

    Hay, K. E. & Barab, S. A. (1998, May). Building Worlds: Tools of Virtual Practice. Presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, San Diego, CA.

    Hay, K. E. & Barab, S. A. (1998, May). Electronic Performance Support System: Supporting Science Apprenticeships. Presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, San Diego, CA.

Research Areas

    My research interests are in building communities of learning and in small group learning in technology-based, student-directed, learning environments using a situativity lens.

    My research has focused on establishing rich learning environments, frequently with the aid of technology, that are both engaging and complex, potentially assisting students in learning the "whats" in a manner that provides insights into the "whys." Much of this work builds on current literature regarding situated cognition and focuses on the use of multimedia as one practical means of connecting classroom knowledge to its functional and social context. In addition to this design focus, my research focuses on developing research methods for capturing cognition in situ within the context of intentional learning environments. In capturing cognition in situ, I found that it has become necessary to develop an account of the broader context through which knowing/doing has meaning. It is this latter realization that led me to my additional current research focus on communities of practice.

Service/Outreach Projects

    VOLUNTEER, August 2001 - present, Boys & Girls Club, Bloomington, IN. The Boys and Girls Club of Bloomington is a part of national guidance organization which fosters the physical, intellectual, emotional and social growth of boys and girls ages six to eighteen with a special concern for those most in need of service. It serves on average 100 students a day. Specific duties include establishing a program for, and organizing volunteers to work in, the computer laboratory.

    CRITICAL FRIEND, January 2000 - present, Children’s Museum of Indianapolis, Indianapolis, IN. the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis serves over 1.2 million visitors annually, including thousands of inner-city children each month. It actively works to involve children in the planning, development and design of museum programs and exhibits—to truly be a museum of and with children as well as for children. Duties include offering critical feedback on museum activities as well as supporting the development of various university-museum collaborations.

    CURRICULUM CONSULTANT, January 2001-present, Lafayette School District, Lafayette, IN. Worked with middle- and high-school mathematics teachers to develop inquiry-based lessons that integrated technology. Responsible for in-service workshops, assisting in the teaching of the units, and facilitating the sharing of lessons and activities.

    COMMITTEE MEMBER, September 1998-present, Research & Development Awards Committee, Bloomington, IN. Committee focused on reviewing PROFFITT grant submissions and distributing funds to School of Education Faculty. Duties include reading 20-25 grants per year, and attending meetings to determine how to distribute funds.

    COMMITTEE MEMBER, September 1998-present, Kemp and Larson Awards Committee, Bloomington, IN. Committee focused on reviewing Kemp and Larsen grant submissions and distributing funds to Instructional Systems Technology faculty and graduate students. Duties include reading 20-25 grants per year, and determining how to distribute funds. Also created a Website for the project.

    STUDENT-TEACHER SUPERVISOR, September 1998-present, Computer Endorsement Program, Bloomington, IN. Responsible for the placement and supervision of student teachers at local k-12 schools. Also responsible for writing up reflections after observing teaching.

    EXPERT WITNESS, June 2001, Web-Based Education Commission; Atlanta, GA. Special commission developed by President Clinton to investigate the potential of the Internet to support learning, and to direct the next year of congressional spending priorities. I presented an official testimony to congress as part of a 12 person panel.

    ASSOCIATE EDITOR, February 2001-present, The Journal of the Learning Sciences; Erlbaum. As Special Issues Editor I have the responsibility of putting together special issues, including selecting interesting topics, assembling reviewers, and making final editorial decisions regarding which articles are accepted and need further revision.

    PANEL REVIEW MEMBER, November 2001-present, National Science Foundation; Arlington, VA. I have participated as part of multiple NSF panels to review NSF grants. Responsibilities included reviewing grants and then meeting in VA as part of a panel to determine funding priorities.

    JOURNAL REVIEWER, September 1997-present. Journal of Research on Science Teaching; The Journal of the Learning Sciences; Educational Technology Research & Development; Instructional Science; Mind, Culture & Activity.

    EDITORIAL BOARD MEMBER, September 2000 – present. Journal of Research on Science Teaching Educational Technology Research & Development;

    GUEST LECTURER, August 1999, Peace Conference, Bloomington, IN. Responsible for facilitating a hands-on workshop on Peace and the Internet.

More information is available on the Web for Sasha Barab at: http://inkido.indiana.edu/barab/


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