Integrated Data Research Team

Our research team designs and conducts research on learning environments that support students to develop ideas and practices related to data, statistics, modeling, and inference. These ideas and practices are increasingly necessary in personal, professional, and community life. So, we aim to equip students with the resources and agency to make inferences with data in ways that are both personally and epistemically meaningful. For more information about or work, you can email

What We're Up to:

Sara Photo

Sara Salisbury Awarded National Stem Fellowship 

"Sara Salisbury, a doctoral candidate from Middle Tennessee State University, has been selected for one of 15 highly competitive annual fellowships with the Community for Advancing Discovery Research in Education (CADRE), a resource network for STEM education researchers supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF). 

The CADRE Fellows program, which is now in its thirteenth year, provides capacity-building and networking opportunities for researchers..."

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In addition, click this link the learn more about CADRE!


Sara Salisbury Wins The First Annual 3-Minute Thesis (3MT) competition at MTSU, Hosted by the College of Basic and Applied Sciences. 

"3MT is science communication competition that involves sharing a 3-minute-long presentation showcasing one’s dissertation/ masters research. My 3MT presentation showcases my dissertation work, which includes ecological and place-based education features of our project. The goal is to present your work in a way that is concise and easily understood by the general public; making it clear that science is accessible for all!"

-Sara Salisbury 

*Please click on the link to watch her presentation!


Sara Salisbury Presents at Tennessee Environmental Education Association’s

Sara Salisbury, a Doctoral Candidate in the lab, will be presenting a virtual STEM activity at Tennessee Environmental Education Association’s annual professional development conference! The activity will focus on exploring how students can model the critical ecological practice of quantifying plant coverage in a quadrat. Participants will have to create a mock sample location, fill it with various objects, and grapple with the best way to qualify how much of the sample location is covered. This activity highlights how engaging with critical ecological practices is simple and can occur in any and all (even indoor!) environments

Sara living it up

Sara Salisbury Completes Proposal Defense

We are excited to announce that Sara Salisbury, a newly-minted Doctoral Candidate in the MSE PhD  program, passed her dissertation proposal defense on Friday, September 24th! Sara’s work explores schoolyard-embedded place-based ecology education. Her work thus far has resulted in the creation of a schoolyard-embedded ecology curriculum that will be implemented in Fall 2021 and Spring 2022, and the completion of a pilot study that tested early conjectures and design features.

Interdisciplinary Challenges in Making Statistical Model-Based Inferences 

"If any year has highlighted the need for a data literate society, and the long road we before us to get there, it’s been 2020. A global pandemic with a new virus required scientists around the world to make predictions and decisions based on a diverse set of quickly evolving and competing data models. The uncertainty in the models was publicly visible because of the..." 

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Modeling in Science & Mathematics Education 

"The National Research Council's A Framework for K-12 Science Education: Practices, Crosscutting Concepts, and Core Ideas (2012) identifies modeling as an important practice too often "underemphasized in the context of science education." According to the Framework, "engaging in the practices of science helps students understand how scientific knowledge develops; such direct involvement gives them..."

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[MTSU News] MTSU firsts: Jones, Terletska receive prestigious National Science Foundation grants

"MTSU faculty members Seth Jones and Hanna Terletska hold a distinction no other Middle Tennessee State University professors have ever obtained — National Science Foundation Early Career Development (CAREER) grant recipients. The NSF CAREER awards support junior faculty who exemplify the role of teacher-scholars through research, education and the integration of education and research within..."

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Description of Dr. Ryan Seth Jones CAREER project

"This project is exploring how to productively coordinate instruction around data, statistics, modeling, and inference in middle grades mathematics and science classes. We will conduct design-based research to develop and study innovative tools that support students to generate knowledge about ecological systems by using models of variability to make inferences. In partnership with teachers from our partner school, we will develop two investigations in..."

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What are the CAREER Awards?

"The Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program is a Foundation-wide activity that offers the National Science Foundation's most prestigious awards in support of early-career faculty who have the potential to serve as academic role models in research and education and to lead advances in the mission of their department or organization. Activities pursued by early-career faculty should build a..."

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