Fifth Graders in Oregon Districts Using STEMscopes NGSS Digital Science Curriculum Achieve Higher Proficiency Rates on State Science Assessment


In 2018, Oregon school districts that used the STEMscopes„¢ NGSS digital science curriculum with their fifth grade students showed higher proficiency rates on the state science assessment than districts that did not use STEMscopes, according to a new study published by Accelerate Learning.

The state average proficiency rate for all 174 Oregon districts that reported fifth grade assessment results was 63 percent. Twenty-seven of these districts used STEMscopes NGSS during the 2017-18 school year, and 147 districts used a district-created or other science curriculum. For the STEMscopes districts the average proficiency rate was 67 percent; for the non-STEMscopes districts it was 62 percent. In addition, the districts that used STEMscopes improved their proficiency rates by 2 percentage points from 2017 to 2018, while districts that did not use STEMscopes decreased their proficiency rates by 2 points.

The study also conducted analyses to examine these assessment results while accounting for district demographic differences and 2017 proficiency rates. The results showed that, after accounting for these important variables, districts that used STEMscopes continued to have significantly higher overall proficiency rates compared to districts that did not use it. Specifically, using STEMscopes NGSS increased proficiency rates by 4 percentage points, which translates to an additional 371 fifth grade students considered proficient in science.

Since Oregon adopted the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) in 2014, districts have been turning to STEMscopes NGSS to make it easier for new and veteran teachers alike to teach to the rigor and depth demanded by the standards, said Vernon Johnson, president and CEO of Accelerate Learning. Its very rewarding to see that STEMscopes embedded professional development and hands-on, inquiry-based approach are having a positive impact on teaching and learning, and we congratulate these districts on their success.

Built from the ground up to the NGSS, STEMscopes NGSS provides teacher and student digital resources, supplemental print materials, and hands-on exploration kits that build student engagement and excitement for learning science. It places problem-based learning, engineering challenges, scientific investigations, math and literacy connections, and culminating claim-evidence-reasoning assessments at teachers fingertips so they can easily help students understand the NGSS as they were designed.

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Javier Encinas
Vice President Marketing, Accelerate Learning
[email protected]