Advanced Technological Education .

Welcome to the ATE Central Connection! Published the first Tuesday of each month, the ATE Central Connection is meant to disseminate information to and about ATE centers and projects, providing you with up-to-date ATE news, events, reminders, as well as highlighting new centers, projects, and resources. In addition, we will also highlight an educational topic with complementary resources found within ATE Central to help illustrate how ATE resources can be used in the classroom.

We want the ATE Central Connection to be a valuable tool; please e-mail with any suggestions about how to make the ATE Central Connection more useful for you or to suggest any information you would like to see in an upcoming issue.

In This Issue

Featured Resources: Information and Security Technologies

From Necessary Skills Now Network: Integrating Employability Skills Development into Technician Education Across STEM Disciplines:

Cybersecurity Modules

These modules were published by the Center for Occupational Research and Development (U.S.) as part of the Necessary Skills Now (NSN) Network. NSN aims to support integrated instruction in technical schools around employability in the cybersecurity and advanced manufacturing fields. The modules on this webpage feature lesson plans that address various topics within cybersecurity and include the following: Product Analysis, Incident Response, Developing a Security Awareness Campaign, Security Policies, and Physical Security. Each module includes links to a project overview page and associated files for download. Each Project Overview page details the module's purpose, key terms and major topics covered, necessary equipment and/or materials, as well as estimated time required. Users must create an account to download any materials.

From CyberWatch West:

CyberWatch West: Health IT Privacy and Security

This course, created by CyberWatch West, consists of weekly lectures, labs, and online sessions with an emphasis on healthcare computer security. Topics include identifying threats and points of vulnerability in healthcare information technology (HIT) systems; access control and its relation to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPPAA); security related to patient data; workflow challenges; healthcare regulations that impact data security; and preparing for various security attacks. A link to download course materials is available.

From National Convergence Technology Center (CTC):

CAE2Y Webinar Presentation

This slide deck, provided by the National Convergence Technology Center (CTC), was part of a special webinar presentation by Kyle Jones from Sinclair Community College. Sinclair is a member school of the CTC's Convergence College Network (CCN) community of practice. These slides discuss how a program can begin the process of applying for certification as a Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education (CAE-DC), including a look at essential resources, CAE-DC program criteria, the first steps to beginning the certification process by mapping courses to Knowledge Units (KUs), and the benefits of becoming CAE-DC certified.

Community Connection

Report from the Community College Research Center: Developmental Mathematics Instruction

As ATE Community members are well aware, a strong mathematics foundation is crucial for many applied-STEM students. However, this research suggests that "typical teaching approaches emphasize memorization, often at the expense of the kinds of conceptual understanding that prepare students for college-level mathematics and the numeracy demands of the workforce." A new study from the Community College Research Center offers insights into how to remedy this issue by exploring the case of CUNY Start, a "pre-matriculation developmental education program" from City University of New York (CUNY).

The program has attempted to redesign the way foundational mathematics are taught, with iterations at 10 CUNY colleges. Begun in 2009, it continues to expand, and helped educate 1,659 students in 2018. CUNY Start offers "about 11 hours of instructional time per week," as well as providing embedded tutors to those students who need additional support. The program is also staffed with advisors, who present weekly seminars on skills and resources to aid participants in successfully matriculating through college. Students can meet one-on-one with advisors for additional support.

The large takeaways from this report of which educators and administrators may wish to be apprised include:

  1. CUNY Start emphasizes selecting "highly detailed curricular document[s]" as primary texts.
  2. Focusing on "real-world contexts and number relationships" as a beginning point provides more value to students than drilling mathematics rules and procedures.
  3. Facilitating student discussion, question asking, and active engagement with material promotes learning.
  4. Instructors should track students' "organizational and study skills."

These data are based on interviews conducted by the researchers, a survey of instructors, and classroom observations, as well as examination of curricular tools. Read the full report to learn more.

ATE Success Tips: Social Media

Five-Minute Social Media: Setting Effective Goals

Often you only have five minutes left at the end of a busy work day. It may not seem like enough time to build your social media presence, but with a little direction you can take action when you have a free minute. The key to an efficient social strategy is setting Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound (SMART) goals.

Establishing a set schedule is the first step to making the most of the time you do have. Aims should have a deadline by which they must bear fruit. In order to meet those deadlines, you will want to factor in an understanding of your availability and resources, then set aside time to make progress. Scheduling will also help ensure that your goals are measurable, progress that you can tangibly see when you have a chance to look.

To determine what aims are relevant to your organization, begin by checking in on the current state of affairs. This can be as simple as using the analytics or insights tools offered by social platforms like Twitter and Facebook to identify areas where your content is performing well and areas where you'd like to see growth. Taking five minutes every week or so to check in with your organization's social media progress will allow you to identify whether or not your efforts are time well spent and adjust accordingly.

Finally, remember that your goals must be achievable. If your initial aims turn out to be a bit too much, it's okay to and make changes; just keep moving forward. For additional guidance in formulating effective social media goals, check out ATE Central's Planning Guide.

Did You Know?

The annual median income of STEM associate degree holders is $60,000, or $13,000 more than individuals with bachelor's degrees in humanities. Read more about these statistics here.

Select STEM Education Resources

A few online STEM resources from outside of ATE, that you may find of interest:

It's Okay to Be Smart

Readers looking for some educational entertainment might find the YouTube series It's Okay to Be Smart to be just the thing. Launched by PBS Digital Studios in 2013, this web series is enthusiastically hosted by Joe Hanson, a molecular biologist by training with a doctorate from the University of Texas at Austin. Here, viewers will find dozens of fun and upbeat videos exploring all manner of curiosities and scientific topics, such as why cereal tends to either clump together or stick to the edges in your cereal bowl, whether it's true that everyone has a doppelganger, and how fire ants became so widespread in the southern United States. The channel's main page is helpfully organized into numerous categories. While biology-related topics are heavily represented, visitors will also find videos on physics, earth science, and astronomy. Episodes are typically between 5 and 12 minutes in length, making them suitable for classroom use, and the videos' descriptions frequently include a bibliography of sources or links to additional information.

Underground Mathematics

Underground Mathematics is a UK-based resource for mathematics instructors. Although this website is especially designed to help prepare students for their A-Level exams, it also hosts resources that will be of use to anyone around the globe who teaches algebra, geometry, trigonometry, or calculus. Created by a team of math educators and scholars at the University of Cambridge, Underground Mathematics gets its name from its organizational design: math subfields are mapped in the manner of the London tube system, emphasizing the links between different fields of mathematics. Instructors (or students) can explore a variety of stations, such as Quadratics or Polynomials & Rational Functions. Each station contains numerous resources, including worksheets, class activities, and practice problems (usefully designed so as to be easily projected in front of a classroom). By creating a free account, instructors can bookmark resources of interest and participate in educator discussion forums. While some parts of this new site are still under construction, a variety of assignments and activities are available that promote higher order thinking in the math classroom.

NOAA: Sea Earth Atmosphere: Educational Resources

These educational resources from the National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the National Ocean Service (NOS), and the United States Department of Commerce will be a welcome find for educators teaching earth sciences to elementary school students. Here readers will find visualizations, videos, interactive games, lessons, posters, presentations, and audio archives on a broad range of ocean related topics. Educators may like to scout the site by grade level or by media type. The Lessons section is especially robust, with over 100 professionally structured lessons on such topics such as Aquatic Food Chains, Climate Change, Coral Reef Habitat, Island Formations, Humpback Whales, Ocean Geography and Geology, and many more. Each lesson features a descriptive introduction that outlines the approach and learning goals, clarity about the targeted age group, reference to National Standards and Hawaii State Standards, and in-depth descriptions of learning activities. For teachers introducing students to the life of the ocean, this website will not disappoint.

Do you have some great STEM resources you'd like to share with ATE Central? Email us with your ideas at

ATE Events

Upcoming Events
Mfg AWS SENSE High School Teacher Welding Workshop Monroe, MI
Eng Underwater Robotics & Engineering Design: The TriggerFish ROV Newport, OR
Eng Fundamentals of Photonics Workshop Ottumwa, IA
Gen STEAM Summer Camp Warren, MI
Eng CAR Management Briefing Seminar Acme, MI
Ag/Env Delaware STEM Educator Energy Institute Dover, DE
Nano NPDP Hands-On-Site Workshop Williamsville, NY
Info NGTC Workshops: ArcGIS with Ann Johnson and Nicole Ernst Eugene, OR
Info ISACA Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA) Online
Info Governance, Risk Management, & Compliance Online
Ag/Env Washington STEM Educator Solar Institute Shoreline, WA
Info Basic Electricity for IoT Online
Eng Autonomous Vehicles Detroit Program Novi, MI
Gen Evaluation: The Secret Sauce in Your ATE Proposal Online
Gen How to Manage Student Behavior Without Really Trying Freeport, IL
Eng The Battery Show Novi, MI
Gen AACC Regional Pathways Workshops: Pathways 101 - Western Region – Denver Denver, CO
Gen Ignite, Inspire, and Innovate: Integrating Innovation Into Today’s College Courses Carlsbad, NM
Gen Utah STEM Fest Sandy, UT
Info GeoFest 2019 Rochester, NY
Gen 26th National ATE Principal Investigators’ Conference Washington, DC
Eng The Future State of the Automotive Industry Auburn Hills, MI
Gen Teaching Critical Thinking Fairmont, WV

For more events, please visit the ATE Central Events page or, if you have any upcoming events that you would like posted on ATE Central or in the ATE Central Connection, please submit them online.

To add a continuously-updated list of ATE and STEM education events to your website, use the ATE Event Widget.

News & Reminders

ATE Talent Development Opportunity

Mentor-Connect is looking for a few experienced ATE program participants who want to give back to the ATE community by serving as mentors to faculty teams while they prepare ATE grant proposals.

The Mentor Fellows internship program prepares individuals who have worked within the ATE community to become Mentor-Connect mentors. With guidance from Mentor-Connect staff members and experienced Mentor-Connect mentors, Mentor Fellows develop the skills they need to guide new-to-ATE college faculty in the preparation of competitive ATE grant proposals.

The Mentor Fellows internship program is part of the far-reaching effort of the Mentor-Connect: Leadership Development and Outreach for ATE-2 project (DUE #1501183) to involve more members of the ATE community in the development of new talent to carry on the important work of preparing technicians for advanced technology workplaces.

Applicants to the Mentor Fellows program should have experience writing or significantly contributing to a minimum of two successful ATE proposals and at least three-to-five years of involvement with an ATE center and/or project(s). Internships last approximately one year, and include a stipend and reimbursement of travel expenses.

More information and the Mentor Fellows application are here.

ATE PI Conference Deadline: Session Proposals

This year's ATE PI Conference is fast approaching! This year's theme is Innovation and Impact: ATE for the Future, centering on "the significant role that ATE projects and centers play in creating and implementing successful and impactful career pathways resulting in a highly skilled U.S. workforce."

In this vein, conference organizers are accepting session proposals demonstrating "how the ATE community has successfully broadened impact through partnerships and collaboration with key stakeholders." These proposals can be formatted in several ways, including as a forum, demonstration, discussion session, breakfast roundtable, high impact practice workshop, or synergy meeting.

Any of the following criteria may also be addressed: evidence-based project or center impact in one of the six session track topic areas, focus on multi-discipline-relevant learning experiences and strategies, interactive learning activities with take-away resources, or collaborative efforts among multiple ATE centers or projects.

Those interested in submitting session proposals before the August 23 deadline can do so here.

ATE PI Conference Deadline: Showcase Displays

The showcase sessions are a highlight of the PI conference, with opportunities for projects and centers to share and display their work and learn about what others in the community are doing. It's also a great opportunity to connect with NSF program officers.

This year, showcases will take place in two sessions, the first on Wednesday, October 23, and the second on Thursday October 24. When reserving their slot, participants can select their preferred session. Showcase booths will be available on a first-come, first-served basis.

First-time ATE grantees will share a booth with other new grantees and are asked to prepare a poster and/or one-page handout for display and sharing purposes. Other ATE projects and centers, whose funding is not new as of the FY19, will each be assigned their own booth. Booths will have electrical access and non-new grantees can also request a flat screen monitor.

All projects and centers are required to have a display at the showcase sessions, so don't forget to fill out your showcase submission before the September 19th deadline!

New Student Success Story Videos in the Works

As part of ATE Central's most recent funding we are looking to create a second round of our Student Success Story videos. There will be fifteen new videos in this series and we are actively looking for a diverse set of ATE students with engaging stories and successes to feature.

Do you have a student who you think might fit the bill? Fill out this short survey to tell us about them! Vox Television will be producing these new videos for the community; production will begin in late fall and continue over the next two years.

We look forward to working with you on this exciting project and featuring these and other videos from the whole community on the ATE Central portal. Please don't hesitate to reach out with any questions about the video series or our other tools and services.

Webinar Recording: Designing for Accessibility with POUR

Hone your accessibility expertise with this webinar designed to assist in developing classroom materials that meet the core principles accessibility.

The hour-and-a-half program presented by the NSF- ATE-funded AccessATE project and the National AEM Center at CAST uses revision of a course syllabus as a context to explore how accessibility guidelines can be "distilled into four core principles, as captured by the acronym POUR (Perceivable, Operable, Understandable and Robust), that define four qualities of an accessible user experience." Then the webinar offers practical, applied techniques educators can implement right away. Instructors can build upon their higher-level understanding of the POUR core qualities to ensure their classroom materials "are accessible and work for all learners from the start, by design."

For more insight into making your classroom documents accessible, view the webinar slides or watch the recording.

Would you like copies of the ATE Impacts book?

Book orders and general inquiries about ATE Impacts 2018-2019: Twenty-Five Years of Advancing Technician Education can be emailed to

Archiving your deliverables with ATE Central is now easier than ever!

Upload your curriculum, professional development materials, or other deliverables created with ATE funding directly to the ATE Central resource portal via the new archive submission form.

Can CWIS software help support your project goals?

CWIS is open source software, created with NSF funding, that can help your project or center showcase resources online. It's free and very easy to use. The latest version (CWIS 4.1.1) was released on and is available for download on the Scout site. Please email if you have any questions or would like a quick tour of its features!

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