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How Do You Fit New NGSS-based Assessment into Current Science Curricula?

[fa icon="calendar"] September, 2016 / by Press Room

Press Room

Having to select new curriculum and find appropriate NGSS-aligned assessment tools to support your transition to the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS*) can be a challenge. According to a recent article in Education Dive, the hurdle is even higher: “Teachers should be assessing whether students get the core ideas, but they also need to know whether students understand the larger framework and the ways scientists and engineers approach questions about the world.” In other words, K-12 science education today has to go beyond confirming content knowledge, to helping students make connections across science disciplines. At the same time, students are tasked to figure out how to understand natural phenomenon and create solutions to design problems. That’s a tall order, for sure.

3 challenges to NGSS implementation

We’ve heard from teachers recently about 3 key challenges to implementing NGSS standards in the classroom:

  • Difficulty finding formative assessment activities that provide evidence of student understanding of the 3 dimensions required by the NGSS
  • Length of time for NGSS adoption: it’s too slow for some teachers, and too fast for others.
  • Teachers’ desire to do inquiry-based, project-centered science instruction in line with NGSS¾even if their current curricula isn’t yet aligned to the new standards.

These factors can certainly complicate your district’s transition to the NGSS.

Meet the challenges with curriculum correlations

How do you overcome these challenges? Measured Progress now provides correlation documents to help you connect your curriculum with STEM Gauge® formative assessment tools. You can use the correlations to see how and when to use STEM Gauge items to support NGSS-aligned instruction within your current curriculum. Use the appropriate link below to download the correlation document for your curriculum and add depth to your NGSS transition.

IQWST Correlation  STC Correlation FOSS Correlation

Let us know if you’d like to see a more in-depth example of the correlations done at the individual item and unit level or use a different curriculum.

STEM Gauge topic-based item sets, the curriculum correlation documents, and the STEM Gauge Teacher’s Guide are all available now for grades 6–8 as tools to support teachers and district science leaders in the transition to the NGSS. Similar resources will be available soon for grades K–5, to help students learn to think, act, and approach the world like a scientist or an engineer.


*NGSS is a registered trademark of Achieve. Neither Achieve nor the lead states and partners that developed the Next Generation Science Standards were involved in the production of this product, and do not endorse it.

Topics: Classroom Assessment, Formative Assessment, NGSS

Press Room

Written by Press Room

Our Press Room chooses topics of interest from activities around the company, to provide a closer look at ways to improve learning and instruction, and to help demystify assessment issues.