STEM ZTC Project Update: June 2020

This monthly status report is to share progress each month for the the STEM ZTC Project and to outline plans for the coming month.


This section will be highlights from the last month. High level budget info. Can include a video snapshot of features for example.

June has proven to be a busy month for STEM-related projects and activity. One major project has officially kicked off with the development of problems sets for Physics. A grant for a ZTC in Associate of Science degree was awarded to TRU, and we held a webinar on the pivot to online for STEM educators which was a success.

More information about previous activity and timelines for the project can be found on the STEM ZTC Charter Wiki page. This status report will provide a snapshot of the latest activity and current information.

Activity Last Month

Goals that were met, decisions made, milestones met, etc.

In June, Melanie gave a presentation on OER at the Math Articulation Committee meeting with Arianna and Clint (who presented on Open Homework Systems). The session was interactive and identified gaps in available OER for upper year math courses.

Melanie hosted a Webinar on the pivot online for STEM Educators with a panel of three instructors from Douglas College and TRU. Approximately 60 people attended the webinar. Material and recording are available here. Melanie also attended a similar session put on be Ed Surge on ‘How to Support Successful STEM Learning Online’.

The following is a summary of the activity on STEM ZTC projects:

1) 1st Year Engineering Common Curriculum

Brian Dick (VIU) has been conducting the environmental scan to identify OER that has been adopted by engineering 1st year programs in BC and across Canada. He will be identifying where there are gaps in existing OER and where existing resources have not been adopted. Brian expects to have preliminary results from this analysis in July.

Physics – Statics and Dynamics
Work is underway on the statics and dynamics project. BCcampus is providing a grant of $12,000 to UBC and $3,000 to Douglas College to develop problem sets (approx 1,000) in WebWork homework system in time for September classes. Most of this funding is going toward the hiring of four co-op students who are not in place and working on the project. A graphic designer, Brina Schenk, will be contracted to develop the diagrams and illustrations for the project.

2) Associate Science ZTC

TRU-OL submitted a proposal to develop a ZTC in Associate of Science degree (2-year program) which was accepted. The grant will be for $48,000 to fund the course development and OER adaption/adoption required. A blog post about the grant and the ZTC pathway for other institutions to consider based on current adoptions will be released in July.

Krista and Melanie also met with Douglas College who are interested in a ZTC in Assoc Science and are currently mapping their pathway.

3) Drafting Design Certificate ZTC

No update.

Planned Activity

Goals for next month – what we’re looking forward to/excited about. Includes development, meetings, communication, etc.

Here are the activities planned for next month:

  • Follow up with Douglas College about possible ZTC Assoc of Science
  • Continue to coordinate activity for statics & dynamics project (funding agreements to be completed)
  • Hire Graphic Designer for statics & dynamics project
  • Publish Blog post: Associate Science pathway
  • STEM Advisory Meeting

Risks and Issues

Timelines for projects may be impacted as a result of Covid-19 related delays.LowCurrently STEM ZTC projects are on target. Using a phased approach on projects will help to manage possible delays.
Work on STEM ZTC projects will likely extend beyond the end of fiscal 2020/21. While existing funds will be distributed to institutions on time, they will require from BCcampus beyond March 31s, 2021MediumProject Manager roles will continue until Sept 2021 to provide that level of support.

Lessons Learned

List of things that went well and what improvements could be made.

It is exciting to look forward to a ZTC in Associate of Science degree. We are looking forward to publishing the information about the general pathway as well. Having gone through the exercise of trying to map out and visually show the map we have learned that this is not as easy as it seems! Creating the information in an easy and digestible format will be key for institutions to think about how they can apply the information in the context of their own programs. Going through this process is laying the groundwork for future OER/program mapping.

Links and Resources

Include links to useful/related info such as slides from an update meeting, related projects or other resources of interest.

Pivot online for STEM Educators