Schank, P., Krajcik, J., & Yunker, M. (2007). Can Nanoscience Be a Catalyst for Education Reform? In F. Allhoff, P. Lin, J. Moor, & J. Weckert (Eds.), Nanoethics: The ethical and social implications of nanotechnology. Hobeken, NJ: Wiley Publishing.
Understanding the new discoveries and technologies resulting from modern science, including nanoscale science, requires a population with a high degree of science literacy. Unfortunately, U.S. students rank near the bottom on international studies of educational performance in science and mathematics. This essay explores the implications of national initiatives to prepare students with the science and engineering knowledge necessary to function in a highly technological society and to maintain the momentum of discovery and innovation that will sustain the nation’s economic prosperity. Nanoscience can serve as a catalyst to reconsider how to bring about deep reform of science education and public policy in support of science education goals.
Keywords: science education, student achievement, education reform, teacher preparation, workforce preparation