Conceptions of Science Achievement in Major Reform Documents

Okhee Lee, Seoung hey Paik

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The construct of science achievement—what K-12 students should know and be able to do in science—is central to science education reform. This paper examines current conceptions of science achievement in major reform documents in the context of standards-based and systemic reform. The paper reviews documents on (a) science content standards, including the National Science Education Standards (National Research Council, 1996) and Project 2061 (American Association for the Advancement of Science, 1989, 1993); (b) performance standards in the New Standards Project (National Center on Education and the Economy, 1997a, 1997b, 1997c, 1998); and (c) assessment frameworks, including the 1996 National Assessment of Educational Progress (National Assessment Governing Board, 1994, 1996) and the Third International Mathematics and Science Study (Martin & Kelly, 1996; McKnight, Schmidt, & Raizen, 1993; Robitallie et al., 1993). Although there is an overall agreement on the conceptions of science achievement among the documents, there are also noticeable differences. Based on the analysis of the five sets of documents, an aggregated view of science achievement is presented in terms of science content and process. Implications for promoting science achievement in standards-based and systemic reform are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)16-26
Number of pages11
JournalSchool Science and Mathematics
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2000

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mathematics (miscellaneous)
  • Education
  • Engineering (miscellaneous)
  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)
  • History and Philosophy of Science


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