PITTSBURGH, May 9, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- ASSET STEM Education™ is pleased to announce the independent evaluation results of its five-year, $26 million (includes federal and private-sector funding) U.S. Department of Education Investing in Innovation (i3): Validation Grant awarded in 2010.
Between October 2010 and September 2015, ASSET engaged 565 K-6 educators from 24 schools across Pennsylvania in 30+ days of advanced professional development on science-related content, effective instructional (pedagogical) approaches and educational leadership. The educators, in turn, improved learning outcomes for 38,142 rural and high-needs students.
The independent evaluation of the program indicates participating educators developed: 1) increased understanding of inquiry-based science; 2) improved pedagogical practices; 3) increased content knowledge across science, technology, engineering and math (STEM); and 4) strengthened collaboration with teacher peers.
Improved teacher quality and effectiveness positively impacted student achievement in science and math. After three years of program implementation, students in the treatment group (i.e., program beneficiaries) increased standardized test scores and out-performed students in a control group of similar schools that did not participate in the program or prior statewide science initiatives.
Compared to the control group, the treatment group students scored on average…
- 44.2 points higher and within 11 points of Advanced performance in 4th grade science
- 36.7 points higher in 3rd grade math
- 41.8 points higher and within 18 points of Advanced performance in 4th grade math
These findings from the Pennsylvania System of School Assessment (PSSA) were statistically significant, or approaching statistically significant, and educationally meaningful, indicating the size of the program's effect is noteworthy relative to other education improvement approaches.
"As schools face growing pressure to increase student achievement, ASSET is proud to continue delivering proven solutions," says ASSET Executive Director Dr. Cynthia Pulkowski. "It is rare to measurably move the needle on student achievement across multiple, culturally and geographically diverse schools at the same time."
The program evaluator, Dr. Shula Nedley, was formerly Director of Assessment, Evaluation and Research at Pittsburgh Public Schools and Director of the Bureau of Assessment and Accountability at Pennsylvania Department of Education.
About ASSET STEM Education™
Founded in 1994 by the Bayer Corporation and community partners, ASSET is a national leader in STEM education. ASSET provides professional development and hands-on STEM materials to 3,000 educators annually, impacting 200,000+ school-aged youth. www.assetinc.org.
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SOURCE ASSET STEM Education