ITQ ToPPS Information

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About the Program

The ITQ/TOPPS Project at Northwestern Oklahoma State University is designed to provide high quality professional development opportunities for high school and middle school science teachers across northwestern Oklahoma.

The program will help up to 20-30 area teachers gain physics content area knowledge, develop new teaching strategies, integrate instructional technology and attain “Highly Qualified” status. The ultimate goals are to enhance classroom teaching, learning effectiveness and improve student achievement in physics and physical science.


During the summer of 2014, ToPPS IV was held.  The curriculum was vibrations and waves.  Participant activities ranged from determining the speed of sound using echos to building a gummy bear wave demonstrator! 

During the summer of 2013, ToPPS III was held.  Participants engaged in activities that deepened their understanding of electricity & magnetism.

During the summer of 2012, ToPPS II was held. The physics of energy, impulse, momentum and energy were  investigated. 

During the summer of 2011, ToPPS I was held.  During that institute, the physics/science content of kinematics, dynamics and Newton’s laws were investigated. 


ToPPS Program Components

  • A five-day summer institute held at NWOSU, which includes intensive workshops, as well as evening educational and mentoring activities.
  • One follow-up session and at least one regional outreach service will be scheduled during the regular academic year.  These will be about five hours of professional development each.
  • Online sessions during which the Teacher Scholars can share their experiences of implementing institute techniques and pedagogies in their classrooms.

Program Features 

  • Hands On
  • Minds On
  • Active Participation
  • High Tech Labs
  • Low Tech Labs
  • Computer Interfacing
  • Project Construction
  • White-Boarding
  • Constructing and Analyzing Graphs
  • Mentoring and Fun Evening Activities

Program Benefits

  • Ideas for and opportunities to do laboratory activities
  • Tips on classroom demonstrations and presentations
  • Updates and new approaches for standard topics
  • Introduction to new approaches and teaching strategies
  • Colleagues to contact for encouragement and suggestions
  • The opportunity to enroll in 3 hours of graduate level Education (EDUC) , Physics (PHYS) or Physical Science (PHSC) credit

Additional Support

Each participant will receive:

  • A $600 stipend to defray travel costs and incidental expenses
  • On-campus housing for the summer institute
  • Teacher resource guides and other instructional materials to take back and use in the classroom


Christine Audo, Brian Lamore, Nancy Easterly & Evelyn Restivo

  • Lead PTRAs

Karen Jo Matsler


Steven Maier & Jenny Sattler

  • Principal Investigators for the OSRHE ITQ/ToPPS Program
  • Physics Faculty at NWOSU

Please Direct Correspondence To:

Steven J. Maier
Department of Natural Science
Northwestern Oklahoma State University
709 Oklahoma Blvd. Alva, OK  73717  


Office Phone: 580.327.8562
Fax: 580.327.8556