The Nation’s Report Card: Science in Action 2009: Introduction

I’ve shared this on Facebook and Google+, but haven’t posted it to this blog.

NAEP–the National Assessment of Educational Progress–posted this report on how its assessments have changed for science. Part of the test is administered using technology.

Read on.

The Nation’s Report Card: Science in Action 2009: Introduction.



Government Site for the Study of American Indian Education

Years ago, I was told that one of the reasons that American Indian educational issues are not studied by IES/NCES (Institute of Educational Sciences/National Center for Education Statistics) is because American Indians represent too small a proportion of the population and they are not a politically “hot” area for study. I was still a graduate student at the time, and was participating in a government-sponsored workshop on using the NCES databases–specifically the NELS:88 (National Education Longitudinal Study of 1988) database for research. Clearly, active study of educational issues related to this very important (to me) small population has not changed.

However, there is a site now that dedicated to American Indians, and it can be found through the link below. If you are interested research or research results about American Indian education issues, this may be the place to start. If enough interest is generated in the site, maybe issues related to indigenous populations will hit the forefront.

NAEP – NIES: National Indian Education Study Home.




Hands-on Computer Tasks Used for NAEP Assessment

If your school is not yet investing in teaching and using technology in the classroom, this US Department of Education report may be the impetus needed to spur the school on to this task. Digital technology is the future of education, so students need to know how to use it effectively for learning. This report on using digital technology as part of the educational experience in science–especially science labs–is an important and necessary item to review. Although the National Center for Education Statistics report came out in 2009, its existence is again released by NEAP to remind schools of the importance of digital technology in education, especially science education.

From this NEAP report (National Assessment of Educational Progress):

For the first time, the NAEP science assessment also included interactive computer tasks in science. While performing the interactive computer and hands-on tasks, students manipulate objects and perform actual experiments, offering us richer data on how students respond to scientific challenges. Several key discoveries were observed.

Report findings:

  • Students were successful on parts of investigations that involved limited sets of data and making straightforward observations of that data.
  • Students were challenged by parts of investigations that contained more variables to manipulate or involved strategic decision making to collect appropriate data.
  • The percentage of students who could select correct conclusions from an investigation was higher than for those students who could select correct conclusions and also explain their results.

via Science in Action: Hands-On and Interactive Computer Tasks From the 2009 Science Assessment.