Globe Year 8 Evaluation: Adapting Implementation to Diverse Contexts


Penuel, W. R., Korbak, C., Lewis, A., & Yarnall, L. (2004). GLOBE Year 8 evaluation: Adapting implementation to diverse contexts. Menlo Park, CA: SRI International.


SRI International (SRI) prepared this evaluation research report for the GLOBE Program. This is the first report submitted under a new grant to SRI for the GLOBE evaluation and the eighth in a series of annual evaluation reports SRI has provided to the GLOBE Program since its inception. The Year 8 evaluation report focuses on how GLOBE’s United States partners and teachers adapt GLOBE to fit their local contexts. Adaptation is a hallmark of GLOBE, as it is for all educational innovations. In the process of translating a program design into a classroom reality, program staff, partners, and teachers each place different levels of emphasis on particular program goals and activities. Adaptation is also necessary because different states and regions have unique configurations of educational goals and policies, as well as different concerns that could be the focus of inquiry into Earth systems. GLOBE’s partners make choices about how to organize training sessions and use precious resources for follow-up. Teachers adapt GLOBE to help meet myriad demands on them related to curriculum, assessment, and classroom management. GLOBE Program staff have periodically reorganized training of trainers in response to partners’ and teachers’ observed needs. SRI’s Year 8 report highlights issues related to the adaptation of GLOBE to diverse local educational and environmental contexts.

We studied two aspects of adaptation of GLOBE this year (2002-03). First, we examined how partners have adapted training and follow-up support to meet teacher needs. Second, we analyzed GLOBE implementation in a subset of schools in which at least 80% of students come from communities of color that are underrepresented in science (e.g., African Americans, Hispanics, Native Americans). Together, these data help to tell a story about the ways partners and teachers have been resourceful in the face of challenges posed by their local policy contexts and by limitations on financial resources.

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