Date of Award

Spring 5-2015

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)



First Advisor

Dr. Sherry DeVore

Second Advisor

Dr. Shelly Fransen

Third Advisor

Dr. Kim Fitzpatrick


A case study was conducted of an elementary STEAM laboratory program in a Midwest Missouri school district, which was unique to the area, and involved risk-taking by the school officials. The delivery model for instruction in the program was inquiry-based learning with a STEAM focus. The planning of the program involved the community, as well as district personnel. The purpose of the study was to evaluate the efficacy of the program at the end of the first year to determine if the goals of the planning committee had been met and if the perceptions of the stakeholders were in favor of the decisions made to implement the program. A mixed research design was conducted which included surveys of parents and teachers involved in the program, standardized assessment scores compared to those of traditional elementary buildings in the district, and interviews with administrators involved in the planning and implementation of the program. The over-arching purpose of the study was to provide a model for future planning in the school district, as well as for other districts interested in the development of a STEAM program. Results of the mixed design were mostly positive, with survey results indicating favorable perceptions by the participants. Results of standardized testing were of mixed results as to the academic achievement of students involved in the program; however, administrator interviews indicated no expectations for increased achievement during the first year of operation. Indications were that the first year of operation of the laboratory school had met expectations, and the STEAM program would serve as a model for districts in making the choice to follow the same path toward including a STEAM curricular program in the future.


Copyright 2015