Project Goals

Developing and Validating Assessments to Measure and Build Elementary Teachers’ Content Knowledge for Teaching about Matter and Its Interactions within Teacher Education Settings

This is an NSF-funded collaborative Early-Stage Design and Development project of the Educational Testing Service and Western Washington University. Its fundamental purpose is to examine and gather initial validity evidence for assessments designed to measure and build Kindergarten-fifth grade science teachers’ content knowledge for teaching (CKT) about matter and its interactions. The project will engage in foundational research to examine the nature of teachers’ CKT and to build theories and hypotheses about how the development of CKT can be supported in teacher education settings.

The goals of the project include foundational research and development work related to both the assessment of CKT about matter and its interactions, as well instructional materials that support the development of CKT.

Goal 1: Conduct foundational research to build theories and hypotheses about the nature and development of elementary teachers’ CKT about matter

Goal 2: Develop an instrument to examine the hypothesized dimensionality of the construct, and evaluate the validity and reliability of the assessment instrument for summative use.

Goal 3: Develop a set of instructional materials designed to support the formative use of CKT assessment tasks within teacher education settings.

Goal 4: Create a set of descriptive cases that characterize the productive use of these materials within these settings to develop elementary teachers’ CKT.