Education Research & Speeches

The following white papers, dealing with various educational issues, are available for reading. If you use a white paper in your research, please include an appropriate citation, such as:

Meador, G. (1995). Paradigm Lost? Teaching Physics in the Post-Modern World. Retrieved March 12, 2008 from the World Wide Web: http://www.bhsphysics.org/papers/

The papers are in Adobe Reader format.

Get Adobe Reader



Having trouble reading the PDF versions?
Try clicking on the PDF version link with the right button of your mouse. Then select "Save Target As..." or "Save Link As..." on the pop-up menu to save the file to your hard drive. Then you can use Adobe Reader to open the file you have saved on your disk.



  • Inquiring Minds: What is inquiry learning?
    Adobe PDF Version (122 KB)
    Brochure describing inquiry teaching and learning, including the:
    • changing emphases needed to put the learner first
    • levels of inquiry
    • stages in the shift toward inquiry

  • Remarks to Bright and Gifted High School Students
    Adobe PDF Version (80 KB)
    This 2005 speech was given to academically talented students at Bartlesville High School. Over time several parents who attended have asked for copies of my remarks, so here they are for anyone to consider.

  • Gender Equity in Secondary Science Education
    Adobe PDF Version (214 KB)
    This 1999 paper identifies issues of gender equity where girls lag behind boys in secondary science education. They enroll in fewer advanced courses, do not perform as well on achievement tests, and demonstrate less interest in science and related careers as they progress through school. Progress since the issue was highlighted by an influential 1992 report is examined and new concerns are raised. Corrective actions are discussed.

  • Should High School Graduation Requirements Be Increased?
    Adobe PDF Version (870 KB) | Expanded HTML Version
    This 1999 paper outlines the current high school graduation requirements in Oklahoma and various initiatives. It then examines several major research studies on how science and math course-taking impact student performance: the ACT core curriculum data, findings from the Third International Math and Science Study, results of the National Assessments of Educational Progress, and the Science Proficiency and Course Taking in High School report. The research calls into question the current drive to increase graduation requirements, as it appears that the quality of instruction is more important to improving student performance than the quantity of instruction.

  • Teaching Human Origins: The Law and the Schools
    Adobe PDF Version (45 KB)
    This 1998 paper discusses the "evolution" of court cases in America dealing with the teaching of theories of human origins in public schools, from the infamous Scopes "Monkey Trial" to Supreme Court case law.

  • An Ethnographic Case Study of the Use of a Non-Dedicated Computer Lab
    Adobe PDF Version (73 KB)
    This 1998 case study was conducted, via ethnographic interviews, of nine teachers' use of a non-dedicated computer lab at a senior high school. Instructional strategies and outcomes were identified, as well as factors that positively or negatively impacted the instruction. The results showed that time constraints led teachers to use a "learn by default" strategy, and that the teachers preferred using the lab vs. several computers in their classroom. The teachers incorporated the lab into their curriculum by using it as a productivity tool and as a gateway to the Internet, although slow Internet access speeds were a concern.

  • Paradigm Lost? Teaching Physics in the Post-Modern World
    Adobe PDF Version (130 KB)
    This 1995 paper explores ways of teaching physics in a post-modern world. Classical, modern, and post-modern physics are outlined and contrasted. The discovery method and the learning cycle, approaches which apply post-modern curricular principles to science education, are then examined. This is followed by a discussion of curriculum topics which can illustrate the limitations of classical physics and introduce post-modern physics to the student. Recent efforts to combine pre-modern and modern paradigms in physics education are considered and rejected. The conclusion urges teachers to use the power of both the modern and post-modern paradigms to teach classical and modern physics and to journey beyond them.

  • National Science Reforms: Are We on the Road to a National Curriculum?
    Adobe PDF Version (116 KB)
    This 1994 paper summarizes and critically examines in a historical context three national efforts at science education reform: (a) the National Science Teachers Association's Scope, Sequence, and Coordination of Secondary School Science program; (b) the American Association for the Advancement of Science's Project 2061; and (c) the National Academy of Science's National Science Education Standards. Explanatory links between these current reform efforts and those of the past are identified. The potential for these reforms to evolve into a national science curriculum is discussed.

  • A Staff Development Program on Learning Cycles
    Adobe PDF Version (64 KB)
    This 1994 paper describes a hypothetical high school staff development program on learning cycles, which are inquiry-based alternatives to direct instruction. Their use in science and math instruction has been extensively studied and they could be used in other disciplines as well. The phases of a learning cycle are described, followed by a discussion of relevant research. Then a hypothetical three-year staff development program on learning cycles is described. The program is based on the five-stage RPTIM model (readiness, planning, training, implementation, and maintenance).

  • Does Repeatable Testing Enhance Student Retention of Physics Concepts?
    Adobe PDF Version (1052 KB)
    This 1993 action research project examines the repeatable testing component of mastery learning. An overview of the mastery learning model is provided, followed by results of a study on the use of a repeatable parallel test with teacher-guided student-initiated correctives in three Inquiry Physics classes at Bartlesville High School, Bartlesville, Oklahoma. Effects on student retention were measured and evaluated through the use of a formative test, retest, and retention test. Statistical analysis of the results showed that students who participated in the corrective retesting process had better concept retention than the others.

  • Thoughts on the Hunter Mastery Teaching Model
    Adobe PDF Version (17 KB)
    This 1993 brief cites some of the merits and weaknesses of the widely disseminated Hunter Model of Mastery Teaching, and compares and constrasts it to models of Mastery Learning.

  • Testimony to the 1991 Oklahoma Task Force on Teacher Preparation
    Adobe PDF Version (24 KB)
    Transcript of my remarks to the task force regarding preparing teachers for the classroom. Remarks address student teaching, impractical coursework, science education reforms in preparing elementary and secondary school teachers, and the entry-year program.

  • Relating the Nature of Science and the Central Purpose of American Education to the Learning Cycle
    Adobe PDF Version (21 KB)
    This short 1988 paper gives an overview of what constitutes a learning cycle and relates it to the nature of science as well as the ten rational powers identified by the NEA in 1961.

  • The Piagetian Intelligence Model and the Learning Cycle
    Adobe PDF Version (26 KB)
    This 1988 paper gives an overview of Piaget's ideas regarding quality of thought (sensory-motor, pre-operational, concrete operational, and formal operational developmental periods) and mental functioning (assimilation, disequilibrium, accommodation, and organization). It relates these views to the design of a learning cycle.