National Science Teachers Association
Making the Transition to Scientific and Engineering Practices: Visiting the Potential of the Next Generation Science Standards

This Web Seminar took place on October 25, 2011 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time. Presenting was Dr. Francis Eberle, NSTA Executive Director, Dr. Brian Reiser, Professor of Learning Sciences in the School of Education and Social Policy at Northwestern University, and former NSTA President Harold Pratt. In this seminar, the presenters talked about the changes outlined in the new Science Framework and how the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) will incorporate these changes in ways that will influence classroom practice.

This program gave an outline of the relationship between the new Science Framework, the forthcoming Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), and some of the teaching practices these documents are expected to influence. Dr. Eberle gave the initial overview and discussed the interplay between the Framework and NGSS. He also shared a timeline for the development of additional items. Dr. Reiser presented the bulk of the program, describing anticipated changes in classroom practices and the new emphasis on engineering concepts and applications. Giving a response from the NSTA perspective, Mr. Pratt talked about resources for educators and some of the things teachers should consider as they prepare for NGSS to become part of their work.

One hundred and ninety-one (191) participants were present at the live Web Seminar in addition to the presenter and NSTA staff. Participating educators represented the states of. Alabama, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, Washington and the District of Columbia. Two participants attended the Web Seminar from locations outside the United States: Canada, Germany.

Seminar participants received one of the NSTA SciGuides. A certificate of attendance was deposited into participants' My PD Record and Certificates area in the NSTA Learning Center for completing the evaluation form at the end of the program.

Here are some comments provided by the participants at the end of the Web Seminar:

  • “I appreciate the suggestions about how to incorporate real world engineering and research practices within my science classes.”
  • “One of my goals in my PD portfolio is understanding the framework so this will be my first piece of evidence.”
  • “I manage a teacher professional development grant to build a cadre of science technology and engineering teacher leaders to develop online PD. The basis of our work is the Ready, Set, Science and the Framework. I am very interested in following the transition! This is very exciting.”
  • “Hearing a discussion of the information I've read in the Framework and the work upon it was based helped me connect the ideas more effectively.”

Thanks to the participants and the presenter for the learning opportunity, the interactions, and a job well done!

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Underwritten by the GE Foundation