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Article  July 7, 2018

The challenge of assessing “knowledge in use”: Examples from three-dimensional science learning and instruction

SRI Authors Nonye M. Alozie



Pellegrino, J. W., Gane, B. D., Zaidi, S. Z., Harris, C. J., McElhaney, K. W., Alozie, N., Haugabook Pennock, P., Severance, S., Neumann, K., Fortus, D., Krajcik, J., Nordine, J., Furtak, E. M., Briggs, D., Chattergoon, R, Penuel, B., Wingert, K., &  Van Horne, K. (2018). The challenge of assessing “knowledge in use”: Examples from three-dimensional science learning and instruction. In Kay, J. and Luckin, R. (Eds.). Rethinking learning in the digital age: making the learning sciences count, proceedings of the 13th International Conference of the Learning Sciences (ICLS) 2018, 2, 1211– 1218. International Conference of the Learning Sciences.


This symposium includes four papers focused on meeting challenges in the design and use of assessments of science proficiency for which students are expected to demonstrate their ability to explain scientific phenomena and solve problems by integrating disciplinary concepts with science and engineering practices. This view of multi-dimensional integrated science learning is exemplified by the performance expectations articulated in the Next Generation Science Standards. The four papers describe work that spans multiple grade levels and includes illustrations of the systematic design of assessments of knowledge-in-use for a range of life and physical science concepts, including a focus on energy. Illustrative tasks are provided together with data on student performance. The papers also consider issues of teacher implementation in classrooms, as well as methods that can be used to help teachers gain a deeper understanding of multi-dimensional science learning goals and effective assessment materials.

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