How to Assess New Science Standards: Discovering a Progression in How Children Learn
Implementing assessment for the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) in a manner that meets the aspirations described in the Framework for K-12 standards is dependent on the availability of a set of assessment tasks that can capture the kinds of performance expectations articulated by the NGSS. The new standards require a re-conceptualization of science education around (1) a set of disciplinary core ideas; (2) the need to engage in one or more scientific practice; and (3) developing an understanding of a set of cross cutting themes that frame the discipline of science and engineering. As part of a 4-year grant, researchers led by Professor Mark Wilson, have developed assessment materials that begin to explore how students learn in the science classroom and how that learning is captured and understood. This talk describes an empirically based approach to the study of a scientific practice (scientific argumentation) and science content (structure of matter) that strives to begin to meet the challenge set forth by the NGSS.
Linda Morell is a researcher at the Berkeley Evaluation and Assessment Research (BEAR) Center, University of California, Berkeley. She is the Project Director of the IES-funded “Learning Progressions in Middle School Science Instruction and Assessment” project. Her research focuses on developing an understanding of how students come to understand science content and practice.
Tina Chiu is a graduate student in the Quantitative Measurement and Evaluation program at UC Berkeley. Her research interests are in reading comprehension issues, especially for English Language Learners, in content assessments. She is currently working on the "Learning Progressions in Middle School Science Instruction and Assessment" project as a graduate student researcher.