College Biology Curriculum and the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
It has been more than 17 years since the National Research Council (NRC) and the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) have released their most recent report on science standards. Since then there have been major advances in all scientific fields as well as cognitive sciences and our understanding of teaching and learning.
The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) establish expectations for what K–12 students should know and be able to do. These standards give educators the flexibility to design classroom learning experiences that stimulate students’ interests in science and prepare them for college, careers, and citizenship.
As a college instructor you may not be familiar with the NGSS. This course will provide you with an opportunity to explore the standards and each of the three key components: Science & Engineering Practices, Disciplinary Core Ideas, and Crosscutting Concepts. You will have an opportunity to collaborate with colleagues in developing your own instructional unit promoting in-depth understanding of content and development of key skills—communication, collaboration, inquiry, problem solving, and flexibility.
- Learners will illustrate and outline how to navigate the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) web page in order to locate specific content.
- Learners will summarize the motivations for, and the people involved with, the development of the NGSS.
- Learners will interpret NGSS alphanumeric designations as indications for specific grades levels, Science and Engineering Practices and Domains, Disciplinary Core Ideas, and Crosscutting Concepts and performance expectations.
- Learners will align lessons and/or understanding performances to the NGSS utilizing the correct alphanumeric designation.
- Learners will compose a guide for understanding the NGSS standards’ codes.
- Learners will evaluate peer NGSS guide submissions.
- Learners will select an instructional topic of personal interest and identify relevant Disciplinary Core Ideas (DCI) and Crosscutting Concepts.
- Learners will discuss how the DCI and Concepts support their instructional topic.
- Learners will describe and summarize the eight Science and Engineering Practices.
- Learners will identify a Science and Engineering Practice and Domain relevant to their instructional topic from Unit 3.
- Learners will discuss how the Practice and Domain support their instructional topic.
- Learners will design an activity/assignment/lesson that applies and builds on the Practice, DCI, and Concept explored in the previous two units.
- Learners will create a Wiki entry showcasing their NGSS aligned activity/assignment/lesson.