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An Adventure of the American Mind: Joining Educators and Students With Library of Congress Resources

Evaluation Reports

The Adventure of the American Mind program undergoes continuous evaluation. The evaluation process takes the form of both internal or self evaluation, and external or objective evaluation. Each AAM Partner is constantly evaluating their implementation of the program and modifying their approach based on student feedback and objective measures of student performance such as tests and assignments. These experiences and lessons learned are reported twice monthly in the ERC Newsletter.

Internal Evaluations

The Semi-Annual Report

Introduction and Report

Twice a year the AAM administrative office conducts an in-depth survey and publishes their findings. This report contains a summation of all earlier editions, so the reader need only read the current report to gain insight into the program's history.

The current AAM Report was published on February 1, 2004.

The next report will be published August 1, 2004.

The AAM Book

A book documenting the first four years of the AAM program is currently being researched and written by Dr. Jim Brown of Mars Hill College and will be co-edited by Dr. Chris Dennen, National AAM Program Director. This will be a narrative "how to" manual for the AAM program to date. This manual will provide valuable theories, methods, and tools for individuals interested in designing and redesigning a technology instructional infrastructure for pre-service and in-service educators. The book will include:

  • a history of the project
  • a description of the program strategies and outcomes
  • a description of the graduate and undergraduate programs
  • a description of the workshops and projects
  • summary of teaching and presentation methods and their strengths and weaknesses
  • recommended curriculum
  • recommended implementation strategies
  • references
  • appendix

This book will be available electronically, at no cost, through the AAM Web site. Publication date: May 2004

External Evaluations

2003 Independent Assessment
Publication date: April 2004

Executive Summary & Assessment

This study is a summative evaluation of the first four years of the AAM program. The assessment was conducted by the Education Development Center for Children and Technology (EDC) located in New York City.

The goals of this evaluation are three-fold:

First, to describe key outcomes of the four-year AAM program in terms of the program's impact on participating teachers and students. The EDC investigated the impact on teachers along four dimensions:

  1. their use of primary sources in teaching
  2. their use of technology in teaching
  3. their use of inquiry-based pedagogies in lesson planning
  4. their participation in networks of professional growth.

They also investigated the program's impact on students in terms of their ability to find and actively read and interpret digitized primary documents.

Second, the evaluation describes differences in instructional approaches between the participating colleges and universities, known as Partners, to determine which instructional approaches are associated with more successful teacher outcomes as described above.

Third, the evaluation offers portraits of the different kinds of teacher and student learners who have experienced the AAM project, as a way of making tangible the impact that the program has had for individuals and groups.

An Adventure of the American Mind is a Library of Congress funded program, administered through the ERC.
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