CTL: Insightful design, research, and evaluation of innovative learning environments and assessments
Barbara Means

CTL Visits the White House!

Last November and December, CTL’s Barbara Means and Eric Snow were invited to attend separate meetings at the White House. Means was part of the first-ever White House Summit on Next-Generation High Schools, which focused on expanding opportunities for students underrepresented in STEM to acquire 21st century and STEM skills. The summit brought together government leaders, including Valerie Jarrett, Senior Advisor to the President, National Science Foundation Director France Córdova, and over 100 philanthropists, educators, researchers, and students involved in reshaping the high school experience. Summit attendees discussed ways to redesign high schools to be more personalized, incorporate real-world and hands-on experiences, and expand STEM opportunities for underrepresented groups. Means' own research on Inclusive STEM High Schools relates closely to the last of these goals. Private organizations represented at the meeting pledged more than $375 million in donations to support Next-Generation High School efforts.

Eric Snow

Eric Snow attended a 1-day workshop held to give a variety of stakeholders working in the primary-12 computer science education (P-12 CS ed) space an opportunity to share their progress and to brainstorm new ways to expand computer science access even further. As part of this, senior administration officials wanted to hear the Principled Assessment of Computational Thinking (PACT) team's views on creative “blue sky” approaches to enhance computer science learning outcomes, rather than just inputs. The workshop was attended by approximately 50 people from a wide range of research, academic, government, and private organizations. The activities were organized around a series of lightning talks followed by self-selected group discussions on topics emerging from the talks. The administration officials wanted to hear tangible requests from each group on how they can provide human, material, and/or financial support for moving the P-12 CS ed reform effort forward.

Meet Howard T. Everson Co-Director for Assessment Research at the Center for Technology in Learning

Meet Howard T. Everson, Co-Director for Assessment Research

CTL welcomes Howard Everson, as co-director of Assessment Research. Working with Assessment Research Director Geneva Haertel, Everson will lead the design and development of innovative technology-based assessments of student proficiency in STEM-related disciplines.

Everson’s experience directing research for the College Board and ETS, as well as the National Assessment of Educational Progress Statistical Services Institute, will be leveraged to help states and school districts use student assessments strategically in their efforts to implement new college and career-ready standards. In collaboration with CTL colleagues, Everson will design and lead studies of the validity of learning assessments embedded within online games and other digital learning environments. Learn more about Everson's work.

SRI Education & EDC Host the NSF Next Generation STEM Forum

SRI Education & EDC Host the NSF Next-Generation STEM Forum

Last November, SRI Education and EDC jointly organized the Next-Generation STEM Learning for All Forum at the request of the National Science Foundation and the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. The three official goals of the forum were to (1) showcase NSF-funded research and development and inform policymakers about the potential to transform STEM learning and education, (2) engage a broad community of stakeholders in envisioning the future of STEM learning and in strategizing how to achieve impact, and (3) facilitate networking across stakeholder groups to leverage skills and strengthen coordination toward national goals for STEM education. Approximately 200 state, district, school, and university leaders, federal agency representatives, and policymakers gathered to participate in 75 presentations throughout the day. By the time the forum came to a close, nearly a million Twitter users saw at least one tweet about #NSFnextgenSTEM. Check out a sampling of the event's tweets!

Progress Toward Quality K-12 STEM Education: Resources for Policymakers, Researchers, and Educators

Progress Toward Quality K-12 STEM Education: Resources for Policymakers, Researchers,
and Educators

STEM education quality has a major impact on economic prosperity. While the United States has the ability to measure outputs of the educational system, such as student test scores and career choices, the country does very little to measure key inputs of STEM education quality – the components in the “black box” of education that influence student achievement and career interests. We can’t improve what we don’t measure – and it is time for the United States to start paying attention to aspects of STEM teaching and learning that can enhance all students’ STEM interest and competencies.

To that end, the National Research Council highlights 14 indicators of progress in the nation’s STEM education in the 2013 report Monitoring Progress Toward Successful K-12 STEM Education, including student learning, educators’ capacity, and policy and funding initiatives. This K-12 STEM Education indicator system can illuminate areas where improvement is needed and education practices should be modified. Such a system of indicators is designed to drive improvement, not to serve as a formal accountability system. Recently, three education policy experts contributed concept papers exploring the research and policy implications of the indicators system. In addition, SRI Education developed a road map for measuring and reporting on the K-12 STEM Education indicator system, presenting available data as well as an agenda to support the future data collection. Learn more about these resources.

Quoted: Five Things About Efficacy That Should Be Intuitive, But Are Not

Flipped Learning Technologies to Watch in 2016

Published: Thawing from a Long Winter in Computer Science Education

A Framework for Evaluating Implementation of Community College Workforce Education Partnerships and Programs

Blogged: Beyond Screen Time: Insights on Using Digital Media With Young Children

Developing a Theory of Change for Your Innovation Project

Trending: Innovating Pedagogy 2015

Don't miss our June issue featuring Cyberlearning '16: Designing for Deeper, Broader, and More Equitable Learning. Hosted by SRI and EDC.

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