Dr Isha DeCoito

Assistant Professor

Profile

Prior to joining the Faculty of Education at Western University I was an educator at universities in Canada and the United States, including OISE/UT, York University, and Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan. I have taught in teacher education programs, as well as in the Faculty of Arts and Science at the University of Toronto. I am the 2014 recipient of the President’s University-Wide Teaching Award at York University.  Currently, I teach in the Graduate program and I am a STEM educator and Coordinator of the STEM Specialty Focus in Teacher Education at Western University. I am also working with the Centre for Planetary Science and Space Exploration to develop a new professional Masters program.

To date, I have been involved as principal investigator on over 16 projects in STEM education in various contexts, including medical programs, Aboriginal reservations, teacher education programs, and schools. My focus has been on stakeholder/relationship management and communication, and research on measurable outcomes and impact, especially in terms of creating new and better opportunities for students. My research foci also include games based learning, simulations, and incorporating the T-PACK framework in STEM education.

I am an elected member of the International History, Philosophy and Science Teaching Group, a past Environmental Education Program Committee Coordinator for the National Association for Research in Science Teaching (NARST), and a Guest Editor for a special issue of The Canadian Journal of Science, Mathematics and Technology Education dedicated to STEM education.

Expertise Areas

Research

Current and Recent Funded Research

2016 Isha DeCoito (PI) and Lisa Briona (Co-PI), “Catch the bus!” – Exploring a web-based gamified application to facilitate learning commuting skills for the intellectually disabled. The C. Kingsley Allison Research Award.

2016  Gordon Ozinski (PI) and Isha DeCoito (Collaborator),Professional Masters in Space Studies, Centre for Planetary Science and Exploration at Western University. eCampus Ontario.

2016   Isha DeCoito (PI) – Social Science and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Knowledge Synthesis Grant – The digital gap: Access, innovation, and impact in Aboriginal communities.

2016  Isha DeCoito (PI) – Mathematics of Information Technology and Complex Systems (MITACS) Accelerate – Facilitating STEM pathways: Addressing engagement, future course selection and STEM career choices.

2015   Isha DeCoito (PI) – SSHRC Knowledge Synthesis Grant - Focusing on science, technology, engineering, mathematics (STEM) initiatives in K-12 education in Canada.

2015  Isha DeCoito (PI) – VP Research, Western University– 4A Ranking, IDG – Investigating the impact of an outreach program on students’ future course selection and science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) career choices.

2015 Isha DeCoito (PI) – SSHRB Seed Grant, Western University - Investigating the impact of an outreach program on students’ future course selection and science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) career choices.

2014, 2015 Isha DeCoito (PI) –Faculty Research Development Grant, Western University - Exploring the development of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) projects in teacher education.

2014, 2015, 2016  Isha DeCoito (PI) –Internal Research Grant, Western University  -Teaching and learning science, mathematics, and technology in a refugee context.

Recent Publications

Books

DeCoito, I. (forthcoming). Linking Theory and Practice in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Education. The Netherlands: Sense Publishers.

Chapters In Edited Books

DeCoito, I. (in press). Urban agricultural experiences: Focusing on 21st century learning skills and integrating science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education. In M. Barnett, A. Patchen, L. Esters, and N. Kloboch (Eds.), Urban Agriculture and STEM Learning. Springer.

DeCoito, I. (in press). The use of digital technologies to enhance learners’ conceptions of the nature of science. In W. F. McComas (Ed.), The Nature of Science in Science Education: Rationales and Strategies. Springer.

DeCoito, I. (2017). Addressing digital competencies, curriculum development, and instructional design in science teacher education. Encyclopedia of Information Science and Technology (pp. 1-12). Hershey, PA: IGI Global.

DeCoito, I., & Richardson, T. (2017). Beyond Angry Birds™: Using web-based tools to engage learners and promote inquiry in STEM learning. In I. Levin and D. Tsybulsky (Eds.), Digital Tools and Solutions for Inquiry-Based STEM Learning (pp.166-196). Hershey, PA: IGI Global.

DeCoito, I., & Richardson, T. (2016). Focusing on integrated STEM concepts in a digital game. In M. Urban and D. Falvo (Eds.), Improving K-12 STEM Education (pp. 1-23). Hershey, PA: IGI Global.

DeCoito, I. (2014). Teaching about the nature of science through digital scientific timelines. In P.D. Morrell and K. Popejoy (Eds.), A few of our favorite things: Teaching ideas for K-12 science methods instructors. The Netherlands: Sense Publishers.

Refereed Journals

DeCoito, I., & Fazio, X. (2017). Developing case studies in teacher education: Spotlighting socioscientific issues. Innovations in Science Teacher Education. Available online at http://innovations.theaste.org/developing-case-studies-in-teacher-education-spotlighting-socioscientific-issues/

DeCoito, I. (2016). STEM education in Canada: A knowledge synthesis. Canadian Journal of Science, Mathematics and Technology Education, 16(2), 114-128.

DeCoito, I., Steele, A., & Goodnough, K. (2016). Introduction to the special issue on science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education. Canadian Journal of Science, Mathematics and Technology Education, 16(2), 109-113.

DeCoito, I., & Gitari, W. (2014). Outreach programs: A case for indigenizing science education curriculum. First Nations Perspectives: The Journal of the MFNERC, 6, 26-51.

DeCoito, I. (2014). Focusing on science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) in the 21st century. Ontario Professional Surveyor, 57(1), 34-36.

Papers in Conference Proceedings

DeCoito, I. (June 2015). Gender differences in STEM career aspirations amongst middle school students. Proceedings of the STEAM International Conference. Honolulu, HI. ISBN2333-4916.

DeCoito, I. (June 2015).  Exploring middle school students’ attitudes and interest in technology, engineering and mathematics subjects. Proceedings of the STEAM International Conference. Honolulu, HI. ISBN2333-4916.

DeCoito, I. (June 2015). Developing integrated science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) projects in education. In S. Nesbit & T. M. Froese (Eds.), Proceedings of EESD15: The 7th Conference on Engineering Education for Sustainable Development (pp. 41-48). University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada.

Academic Conference Proceedings (refereed)

DeCoito, I. (2017). YouTubers, bloggers & app designers: Exploring career aspirations of 21st century learners. Paper presented at the European Science Education Research Association (ESERA), Dublin Ireland (Aug 21-25).

Briona, L., & DeCoito, I. (2017). Developing digital video games (DVGs) in science teacher education. ICT Workshop presented at the European Science Education Research Association (ESERA), Dublin Ireland (Aug 21-25).

Florence, S., & DeCoito, I. (2017). Accessible STEM education: Fostering self-efficacy in STEM for middle school students with learning disabilities. Paper presented at the European Science Education Research Association (ESERA), Dublin Ireland (Aug 21-25).  

Richardson, T., & DeCoito, I. (2017). Teaching, technology, and STEM career trajectories: A longitudinal study of STEM outreach in middle school. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Canadian Society for the Study of Education (CSSE), Toronto, ON (May 27-31).

Myszkal, P., & DeCoito, I. (2017). Exploring the impact of STEM outreach on teacher STEM career awareness. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Canadian Society for the Study of Education (CSSE), Toronto, ON (May 27-31).

Richardson, T., & DeCoito, I. (2017). A case study of the impact of digital video games on students’ physics career awareness. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Canadian Society for the Study of Education (CSSE), Toronto, ON (May 27-31).

Ibrahim, S., Myszkal, P., & DeCoito, I. (2017). The ‘M’ in STEM: Exploring mathematics integration and changes in attitude and interest through STEM outreach. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Canadian Society for the Study of Education (CSSE), Toronto, ON (May 27-31).

Florence, S., Gerrard, D., & DeCoito, I. (accepted 2017). STEM outreach workshops: Fostering curiosity in middle school students. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Canadian Society for the Study of Education (CSSE), Toronto, ON (May 27-31).

Florence, S., & DeCoito, I. (2017). Decoding STEM: The impact of STEM outreach programs on English language learners. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the National Association for Research in Science Teaching (NARST), San Antonio, TX (April 22-25).

Ibrahim, S., & DeCoito, I. (2017). Exploring fluctuating interest in STEM careers amongst middle school girls. Poster presented at the annual meeting of the National Association for Research in Science Teaching (NARST), San Antonio, TX (April 22-25).

Myszkal, P., & DeCoito, I. (2017). STEM outreach programs: Impacting science teachers’ beliefs and outcome expectancies.  Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Association for Science Teacher Education (ASTE), Des Moines, Iowa (Jan 12-14, 2017).

Richardson, T., & DeCoito, I. (2017 presentation). Teachers and technology in STEM education – Present practice and future directions. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Association for Science Teacher Education (ASTE), Des Moines, Iowa (Jan 12-14, 2017).

Otoide, L., DeCoito, I., & Gichuru, J. (2016). The influence of border crossing on the preparation of mathematics teachers in a refugee context. Paper presented at the World Education Research Association (WERA), Washington, DC (April 2-12, 2016).

DeCoito, I., Gichuru, J., & Otoide, L. (2016). The role of cultural tools in teaching and learning mathematics in a refugee context. Paper presented at the American Education Research Association (AERA), Washington, DC (April 8-12, 2016).

Di Tomasso, S., & DeCoito, I. (2016). Integrating STEM education and Indigenous perspectives: A case study of an Aboriginal teacher. Paper presented at the American Education Research Association (AERA), Washington, DC (April 8-12, 2016).

Myszkal, P., & DeCoito, I. (2016). Seeking out professional development opportunities in STEM education: A case study of middle school teachers. Paper presented at the American Education Research Association (AERA), Washington, DC (April 8-12, 2016).

Myszkal, P., & DeCoito, I. (2016). Connecting instruction and teachers’ self-efficacy and beliefs in STEM education. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Association for Science Teacher Education (ASTE), Reno, NV (January 7-9, 2016).

Richardson, T., & DeCoito, I. (2016). A case study of the impact of digital games on students’ physics career awareness. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Association for Science Teacher Education (ASTE), Reno, NV (January 7-9, 2016).

Di Tomasso, S., & DeCoito, I. (2016). Exploring sociocultural influences on science teaching in an Aboriginal context. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Association for Science Teacher Education (ASTE), Reno, NV (January 7-9, 2016).

DeCoito, I., Florence, S., & MacDonald, A. (2015). Exploring middle school students’ attitudes and interest in mathematics, technology, and engineering subjects. Paper presented at the STEM International Conference, Honolulu, HI, June 13-15.

DeCoito, I., MacDonald, A., & Florence, S. (2015). Gender differences in STEM career aspirations amongst middle school students. Paper presented at the STEM International Conference, Honolulu, HI, June 13-15.

DeCoito, I. (2015). Developing integrated STEM projects in education. Paper presented at the 7th International Conference on Engineering Education for Sustainable Development, Vancouver, BC, June 9-12.

Gichuru, J., DeCoito, I., & Otoide, L. (2015). Teaching and learning mathematics in a refugee context. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Canadian Society for the Study of Education, Ottawa, ON, May 30-June3.

Otoide, L., DeCoito, I., & Gichuru J. (2015). Integrating inquiry and culturally relevant practices in the teaching of mathematics in a refugee context. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Canadian Society for the Study of Education, Ottawa, ON, May 30-June 3.

DeCoito, I., & Bellomo, K. (2015). Exploring STEM projects in teacher education. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Canadian Society for the Study of Education, Ottawa, ON, May 30-June 3.

Richardson, T. & DeCoito, I. (2015). STEM literacy: Exploring middle school teacher STEM career awareness. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Canadian Society for the Study of Education, Ottawa, ON, May 30-June 3.

MacDonald, A., DeCoito, I., & Florence, S. (2015). Enhancing 21st century learning skills through science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) workshops. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Canadian Society for the Study of Education, Ottawa, ON, May 30-June 3.

Lorenz, S., Son, H., Jordan, R., & DeCoito, I. (2014). STEM-ifying science in teacher education. Innovative showcase presented at the International Conference of STEM in Education, Vancouver, BC, July 12-15.

DeCoito, I., Florence, S., Myszkal, P., Richardson, T., & DiLucia, D. (2014). Exploring grade 6 girls’ attitudes and interest in STEM. Paper presented at the International Conference of STEM in Education, Vancouver, BC, July 12-15.

DeCoito, I., Myszkal, P., Richardson, T., DiLucia, D., & Florence, S. (2014). Teaching for relevance:Linking science instructionto STEM career awareness. Paper presented at the International Conference of STEM in Education, Vancouver, BC, July 12-15.

DeCoito, I. (2014). Addressing social justice through school gardens. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Canadian Society for the Study of Education, St. Catharines, ON, May 24-29.

DeCoito, I. (2014). Engaging learning communities through digital literacies in teacher education. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Canadian Society for the Study of Education, St. Catharines, ON, May 24-29.

DeCoito, I. (2014). Translating research into practice: Developing science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) projects in teacher education. Paper presented at the Ministry of Education – Faculties of Education Forum, Toronto, ON, May 14.

Technical Reports

DeCoito I. (December 2016). A longitudinal study: Investigating the impact of an outreach program on students’ future course selection and STEM career choices, Phase III. London: Western University. (208 pages)

DeCoito, I. (October 2016). The digital gap: Access, innovation, and impact in Aboriginal communities. Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. (30 pages)

DeCoito I. (December 2015). A longitudinal study: Investigating the impact of an outreach program on students’ future course selection and STEM career choices, Phase II. London: Western University. (200 pages)

DeCoito, I. (October 2015). Focusing on science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) initiatives in K-12 education. Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. (30 pages)

Bellomo, K., & DeCoito, I., (June, 2015). Guyana Improving Teacher Education Project (GITEP), Cycle 4, Professional Development in Science Education. Halifax, NS: Mount Saint Vincent University.

DeCoito, I. (March, 2015). Guyana Improving Teacher Education Project (GITEP), Cycle 3, Professional Development in STEM Education. Halifax, NS: Mount Saint Vincent University.

DeCoito I. (December 2014). A longitudinal study: Investigating the impact of an outreach program on students’ future course selection and STEM career choices, Phase I. London: Western University. (170 pages)

Teaching and Supervision

Courses Taught at Western University

Undergraduate

  • Introduction to STEM Education
  • Curriculum and Pedagogy in STEM Education
  • Teaching Science & Technology in the Primary/Junior Divisions

Graduate

  • Introduction to Curriculum
  • Diverse Traditions: Approaches to Educational Research
  • Introduction to Multiliteracies Pedagogy
  • Understanding Research Methods for Educational Practice
  • Introduction to Curriculum in Higher Education in STEM Disciplines
  • Teaching and Learning in Higher Education in STEM Disciplines

GRADUATE SUPERVISION

MA Supervision

Kayla Lambie, Western University, 2017

Hoa Pham, Western University, 2016, in progress

Maryam Khorhe, Western University, 2015, in progress

Stephanie Florence (Co-supervisor) York University, 2015, in progress

PhD Supervision

Carol-Anne Lane (Supervisor), Western University, 2017.

Abulaihaiti Kasimu (Co-supervisor), Western University, 2017.

Tarek Faid (Supervisor), Western University, 2016, in progress.

Christine Manser (Supervisor), Western University, 2015, in progress.