National Academies Press: OpenBook

Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future (2007)

Chapter:K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education

« Previous: Appendix D Issue Briefs
Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×

K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education

SUMMARY

US education in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics is undergoing great scrutiny. Just as the launch of Sputnik 1 in 1957 led the United States to undertake the most dramatic educational reforms of the 20th century, the rise of new international competitors in science and technology is forcing the United States to ask whether its educational system is suited to the demands of the 21st century.

These concerns are particularly acute in K–12 education. In comparison with their peers in other countries, US students on average do worse on measures of mathematics and science performance the longer they are in school. On comparisons of problem-solving skills, US students perform more poorly overall than do the students in most of the countries that have participated in international assessments. Some believe the United States has failed to achieve the objective established in the Goals 2000: Educate America Act—for US students to be first in the world in mathematics and science achievement in the year 2000.

National commissions, industrial groups, and leaders in the public and private sectors are in broad agreement with policy initiatives that the federal government could undertake to improve K–12 science, mathematics, and technology education. Some of these are listed below:

This issue paper summarizes findings and recommendations from a variety of recently published reports and papers as input to the deliberations of the Committee on Prospering in the Global Economy of the 21st Century. Statements in this paper should not be seen as the conclusions of the National Academies or the committee.

Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×
Increasing the Number of Excellent Teachers
  • Allocate federal professional-development funds to summer institutes that address the most pressing professional-development needs of mathematics and science teachers.

  • Keep summer-institute facilitators—teachers current with the most effective teaching methods in their disciplines and who have shown demonstrable results of higher student achievement in mathematics and science—abreast of new insights and research in science and mathematics teaching by providing funding for training them.

  • Encourage higher education institutions to establish mathematics and science teaching academies that include faculty from science, mathematics, and education departments through a competitive grant process.

  • Support promising students to study science, mathematics, and engineering teaching—particularly those obtaining degrees in science, mathematics, or engineering who plan to teach at the K–12 level following graduation through scholarships and loan programs for students as well as institutional funding. Qualified college students and midcareer professionals need to be attracted into teaching and given the preparation they require to succeed. Experts in mathematics, science, and technology should be able to become teachers by completing programs to acquire and demonstrate fundamental teaching skills. Recruitment, preparation, and retention of minority-group teachers are particularly important as groups underrepresented in science, mathematics, and engineering become a larger percentage of the student population.

  • Conduct an aggressive, national-outreach media campaign to attract young people to teaching careers in mathematics and science.

  • Work for broad improvements in the professional status of science, mathematics, and technology teachers. Structured induction programs for new teachers, district–business partnerships, award programs, and other incentives can inspire teachers and encourage them to remain in the field. Most important, salaries for science, mathematics, and technology teachers need to reflect what they could receive in the private sector and be in accord with their contributions to society, and teachers need to be treated as professionals and as important members of the science and engineering communities.

Enhancing the Quality and Cohesion of Educational Standards
  • Help colleges, businesses, and schools work together to link K–12 standards to college admissions criteria and workforce needs to create a seamless K–16 educational system.

  • Provide incentives for states and coalitions of states to conduct benchmarking studies between their standards and the best standards available.

Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×
  • Foster the development of high-quality curricula and assessments that are closely aligned with world-class standards.

  • Establish ambitious but realistic goals for student performance—for example, that 30% of high school seniors should be proficient in science by 2010 as measured by the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP).

Changing the Institutional Structure of Schools
  • Provide seed money or incentives for new kinds of schools and new forms of schooling. Promising ideas include small high schools, dual-enrollment programs in high schools and colleges, colocation of schools with institutions of higher education, and wider use of Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate courses.

  • Help districts institute reorganization of the school schedule to support teaching and learning. Possibilities include devoting more time to study of academic subjects, keeping schools open longer in the day and during parts of the summer, and providing teachers with additional time for development and collaboration.

  • Provide scholarships for low-income students who demonstrate that they have taken a core curriculum in high school that prepares them to study science, mathematics, or engineering in college.

The challenge for policy-makers is to find ways of generating meaningful change in an educational system that is large, complex, and pluralistic. Sustained programs of research, coordination, and oversight can channel concerns over K–12 science, mathematics, and technology education in productive directions.

THE CHALLENGE OF K–12 SCIENCE, MATHEMATICS, AND TECHNOLOGY EDUCATION

The state of US K–12 education in science, mathematics, and technology has become a focus of intense concern. With the economies and broader cultures of the United States and other countries becoming increasingly dependent on science and technology, US schools do not seem capable of producing enough students with the knowledge and skills needed to prosper.

On the 1996 NAEP, fewer than one-third of students performed at or above the proficiency level in mathematics and science—with “proficiency” denoting competence in challenging subject matter.1 Alarmingly, more than

1

National Center for Education Statistics. NAEP 1999 Trends in Academic Progress: Three Decades of Academic Performance. NCES 2000-469. Washington, DC: US Department of Education, 2000.

Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×

FIGURE K–12-1A NAEP 1996 science results, grades 4, 8, and 12. Studies suggest that a large portion of US students are lacking in science skills. In 1996, at least one-third of students in 4th, 8th, and 12th grade performed below basic in national tests.

SOURCE: S. C. Loomis and M. L. Bourque, eds. National Assessment of Educational Progress Achievement Levels, 1992-1998 for Science. Washington, DC: National Assessment Governing Board, July 2001. Available at: http://www.nagb.org/pubs/sciencebook.pdf.

one-third of students scored below the basic level in these subjects, meaning they lack the fundamental knowledge and skills they will need to get good jobs and participate fully in our technologically sophisticated society (see Figures K–12-1A and K–12-1B).

International comparisons document a gradual decline in performance and interest in mathematics and science as US students get older. Though 4th graders in the United States perform well in math and science compared with their peers in other countries (see Tables K–12-1 and K–12-2), 12th graders in 1999 were almost last in performance among the countries that participated in the Third International Mathematics and Science Study

Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×

FIGURE K–12-1B NAEP 1996 mathematics results, grades 4, 8, and 12. The results are similar for mathematics: 30% of students scored below basic.

SOURCE: S. C. Loomis and M. L. Bourque, eds. National Assessment of Educational Progress Achievement Levels, 1992-1998 for Science. Washington, DC: National Assessment Governing Board, July 2001. Available at: http://www.nagb.org/pubs/sciencebook.pdf.

(TIMSS).2 Among the 20 countries assessed in advanced mathematics and physics, none scored significantly lower than the United States in mathematics, and only one scored significantly lower in physics.

There has been some good news about student achievement.3 US 8th graders did better on an international assessment of mathematics and science in 2003 than they did in 1995 (see Tables K–12-3 and K–12-4). The

2

National Center for Education Statistics. Pursuing Excellence: A Study of Twelfth-Grade Mathematics and Science Achievement in International Context. NCES 98-049. Washington, DC: US Government Printing Office, 1998.

3

R. W. Bybee and E. Stage. “No Country Left Behind.” Issues in Science and Technology (Winter 2005):69-75.

Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×

TABLE K–12-1 Average TIMSS Mathematics Scale Scores of 4th-Grade Students, by Country: 1995 and 2003

SOURCE: National Center for Education Statistics. Highlights from the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study: TIMSS 2003. Washington, DC: United States Department of Education, December 2004. P. 8. Available at: http://nces.ed.gov/pubs2005/2005005.pdf.

Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×

TABLE K–12-2 Differences in Average TIMSS Science Scale Scores of 4th-Grade Students, by Country: 1995 and 2003

Country

1995

2003

Difference1

Singapore

523

565

42 ▲

Japan

553

543

-10 ▼

Hong Kong SAR2,3

508

542

35 ▲

England3

528

540

13 ▲

United States3

542

536

-6

(Hungary)

508

530

22 ▲

(Latvia-LSS)4

486

530

43 ▲

(Netherlands)3

530

525

-5

New Zealand5

505

523

18 ▲

(Australia)3

521

521

-1

Scotland2

514

502

-12 ▼

(Slovenia)

464

490

26 ▲

Cyprus

450

480

30 ▲

Norway

504

466

-38 ▼

Iran, Islamic Republic of

380

414

34 ▲

▲ p<.05, denotes a significant increase.

▼ p<.05, denotes a significant decrease.

1Difference calculated by subtracting 1995 from 2003 estimate using unrounded numbers.

2Hong Kong is a Special Administrative Region (SAR) of the People's Republic of China.

3Met international guidelines for participation rates only after replacement schools were included.

4Designated LSS because only Latvian-speaking schools were included in 1995. For this analysis, only Latvian-speaking schools are included in the 2003 average.

5In 1995, Maori-speaking students did not participate. Estimates in this table are computed for students taught in English only, which represents between 98-99 percent of the student population in both years.

NOTE: Countries are ordered based on the 2003 average scores. Parentheses indicate countries that did not meet international sampling or other guidelines in 1995. All countries met international sampling and other guidelines in 2003, except as noted. See NCES (1997) for details regarding 1995 data. The tests for significance take into account the standard error for the reported difference. Thus, a small difference between averages for one country may be significant while a large difference for another country may not be significant. Countries were required to sample students in the upper of the two grades that contained the largest number of 9-year-olds. In the United States and most countries, this corresponds to grade 4. See table A1 in appendix A for details. Detail may not sum to totals because of rounding.

SOURCE: International Association for the Evaluation of Educational Achievement (IEA), Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS), 1995 and 2003.

SOURCE: National Center for Education Statistics. Highlights from the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study: TIMSS 2003. Washington, DC: United States Department of Education, December 2004. P. 16. Available at: http://nces.ed.gov/pubs2005/2005005.pdf.

Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×

TABLE K–12-3 Average TIMSS Mathematics Scale Scores of 8th-Grade Students, by Country: 1995 and 2003

SOURCE: National Center for Education Statistics. Highlights from the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study: TIMSS 2003. Washington, DC: United States Department of Education, December 2004. P. 19. Available at: http://nces.ed.gov/pubs2005/2005005.pdf.

Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×

TABLE K–12-4 Difference in Average TIMSS Science Scale Scores of 8th-Grade Students, by Country: 1995, 1999, and 2003

Country

 

 

 

Difference1

1995

1999

2003

(2003-1995)

(2003-1999)

Singapore

580

568

578

-3

10

Chinese Taipei

569

571

2

Korea, Republic of

546

549

558

13 ▲

10 ▲

Hong Kong SAR2,3

510

530

556

46 ▲

27 ▲

Japan

554

550

552

-2

3

Hungary

537

552

543

6

-10 ▼

(Netherlands)2

541

545

536

-6

-9

(United States)

513

515

527

15

12

(Australia)4

514

527

13 ▲

Sweden

553

524

-28 ▼

(Slovenia)4

514

520

7 ▲

New Zealand

511

510

520

9

10

(Lithuania)5

464

488

519

56 ▲

31 ▲

Slovak Republic

532

535

517

-15 ▼

-18 ▼

Belgium-Flemish

533

535

516

-17 ▼

-19 ▼

Russian Federation

523

529

514

-9

-16 ▼

(Latvia-LSS)6

476

503

513

37 ▲

11

(Scotland)2

501

512

10

Malaysia

492

510

18 ▲

Norway

514

494

-21 ▼

Italy7

493

491

-2

(Israel)7

468

488

20 ▲

(Bulgaria)

545

518

479

-66▼

-39 ▼

Jordan

450

475

25 ▲

Moldova, Republic of

459

472

13 ▲

(Romania)

471

472

470

-1

-2

Iran, Islamic Republic of

463

448

453

-9▼

5

(Macedonia, Republic of)

458

449

-9

Cyprus

452

460

441

-11 ▼

-19 ▼

Indonesia5

435

420

-15▼

Chile

420

413

-8

Tunisia

430

404

-26 ▼

Philippines

345

377

32 ▲

South Africa8

243

244

1

—Not available.

†Not applicable.

▲ p<.05, denotes a significant increase.

▼ p<.05, denotes a significant decrease.

1Difference calculated by subtracting 1995 or 1999 from 2003 estimate using unrounded numbers.

2Met international guidelines for participation rates in 2003 only after replacement schools were included.

3Hong Kong is a Special Administrative Region (SAR) of the People’s Republic of China.

4Because of national-level changes in the starting age/date for school, 1999 data for Australia and Slovenia cannot be compared to 2003.

5National desired population does not cover all of the international desired population in all years for Lithuania, and in 2003 for Indonesia.

6Designated LSS because only Latvian-speaking schools were included in 1995 and 1999. For this analysis, only Latvian-speaking schools are included in the 2003 average.

7Because of changes in the population tested, 1995 data for Israel and Italy are not shown.

8Because within classroom sampling was not accounted for, 1995 data are not shown for South Africa.

NOTE: Countries are sorted by 2003 average scores. The tests for significance take into account the standard error for the reported difference. Thus, a small difference between averages for one country may be significant while a large difference for another country may not be significant. Parentheses indicate countries that did not meet international sampling and/or other guidelines in 1995, 1999, and/or 2003. See appendix A for details regarding 2003 data. See Gonzales et al. (2000) for details regarding 1995 and 1999 data. Countries were required to sample students in the upper of the two grades that contained the largest number of 13-year-olds. In the United States and most countries, this corresponds to grade 8. See table A1 in appendix A for details. Detail may not sum to totals because of rounding.

SOURCE: International Association for the Evaluation of Educational Achievement (IEA), Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS), 1995, 1999, and 2003.

SOURCE: National Center for Education Statistics. Highlights from the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study: TIMSS 2003. Washington, DC: United States Department of Education, December 2004. P. 17. Available at: http://nces.ed.gov/pubs2005/2005005.pdf.

Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×

TABLE K–12-5 Trends in Average NAEP Mathematics Scale Scores for Students Ages 9, 13, and 17: 1973-2004

NOTE: *Significantly different from 2004.

SOURCE: National Assessment Governing Board. National Assessment of Educational Progress 2004: Trends in Academic Progress Three Decades of Student Performance in Reading and Mathematics. Washington, DC: United States Department of Education, July 14, 2005.

achievement gap separating Black and Latino students from European-American students narrowed during that period (see Figure K–12-2). However, a recent assessment by the Program for International Student Assessment found that US 15-year-olds are near the bottom of all countries in their ability to solve practical problems requiring mathematical understanding. Additionally, testing for the last 30 years has shown that although scores among 9- and 13-year-olds have increased, scores for 17-year-olds have remained stagnant (see Table K–12-5) and there is a gender gap (see K–12-6).

Perhaps the hardest trend to document is a sense of disillusionment with careers based on science and technology.4 Fewer children respond posi-

4

Committee for Economic Development, Research and Policy Committee. Learning for the Future: Changing the Culture of Math and Science Education to Ensure a Competitive Workforce. New York: Committee for Economic Development, 2003.

Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×

FIGURE K–12-2 TIMSS math and science scores, 4th (1995 and 2003) and 8th (1995, 1999, and 2003) graders.

SOURCE: National Center for Education Statistics. Highlights from the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study: TIMSS 2003. Washington, DC: US Department of Education, December 2004. Figure 1-4. Available at: http://nces.ed.gov/pubs2005/2005005.pdf.

Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×

TABLE K–12-6 Students at or Above Basic and Proficient Levels as Measured in NAEP Mathematics and Science Tests, Grades 4, 8, and 12, by Sex: 1996 and 2000

Variable

 

1996

 

 

2000

 

Grade 4

Grade 8

Grade 12

Grade 4

Grade 8

Grade 12

Mathematics

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

At or above basic

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Male..........................

65*

62*

70*

70

67

66

 

 

Female......................

63*

63

69*

68

65

64

 

At or above pro cient

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Male..........................

24*

25*

18

28

29

20

 

 

Female......................

19*

23

14

24

25

14

Science

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

At or above basic

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Male..........................

68

62

60*

69

64

54

 

 

Female......................

67

61

55

64

57

51

 

At or above pro cient

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Male..........................

31

31*

25

33

36

21

 

 

Female......................

27

27

17

26

27

16

NOTE: *Significantly different from 2000.

SOURCE: National Science Board. Science and Engineering Indicators 2004. NSB 04-01. Arlington, VA: National Science Foundation, 2004. Appendix Table 1-4. This table was based on US Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). The Nation’s Report Card: Mathematics 2000. NCES 2001-517. Washington, DC: US Department of Education, 2001; National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). The Nation’s Report Card: Science 2000. NCES 2003-453. Washington, DC: US Department of Education, 2003.

tively when surveyed to statements such as “I like math” than has been the case in the past. The number of schools offering advanced courses, such as Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate has increased dramatically, but the vast majority of students in high school will never take an advanced science or mathematics course (see Tables K–12-7 and K–12-8; see Figure K–12-3). And a lack of interest in science, mathematics, and technology is particularly pronounced among disadvantaged groups that have been underrepresented in those fields.

In general, many Americans do not know enough about science, technology, and mathematics to contribute to or benefit from the knowledge-based society that is taking shape around us. At the same time, other countries have learned from our example that preeminence in science and engineering pays immense economic and social dividends, and they are boosting their investments in these critical fields.

The traditions of autonomy and pluralism in American education limit

Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×

TABLE K–12-7 High-School Graduates Completing Advanced Mathematics Courses (1990, 1994, and 1998), by Students and School Characteristics in 1998

Year and characteristic

Any trigonometry/ algebra III

Any precalculus/ analysis

Any statistics/ probability

Calculus

Any

AP/IB

1990 .......................................

20.7

13.6

1.0

7.2

NA

1994 .......................................

24.0

17.4

2.1

10.2

NA

1998 .......................................

20.8

23.1

3.7

11.9

6.3

 

Male....................................

19.4

23.1

3.4

12.0

6.8

 

Female................................

22.5

22.9

4.0

11.6

6.0

 

White...................................

23.6

25.1

4.3

13.1

7.0

 

Asian/Pacific Islander ..........

18.0

41.4

3.8

20.1

13.1

 

Black...................................

15.5

14.0

2.1

7.2

3.3

 

Hispanic ..............................

10.9

15.4

1.7

7.1

3.7

 

School urbanicity

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Urban..............................

19.0

28.5

3.6

13.2

7.7

 

 

Suburban ........................

20.9

26.7

4.0

12.1

7.5

 

 

Rural...............................

22.6

13.4

3.4

10.4

3.5

 

School sizea

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Small...............................

22.2

21.9

3.6

10.8

3.4

 

 

Medium...........................

21.9

22.8

3.8

12.9

6.9

 

 

Large ..............................

16.7

25.1

3.4

10.3

7.7

 

School povertyb

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Very low..........................

26.3

35.4

6.5

15.6

8.8

 

 

Low.................................

18.1

23.6

4.3

12.0

6.7

 

 

Medium...........................

22.4

14.9

1.7

9.2

3.9

 

 

High ................................

23.6

9.8

0.8

6.9

4.9

aSmall = fewer than 600 students enrolled, medium = 600-1,800, and large = more than 1,800.

bMeasured by percentage of students eligible for free or reduced-price lunches: very low = 5 percent or less, low = 6-25 percent, medium = 26-50 percent, and high = 51-100 percent.

NOTE: AP = Advanced Placement, IB = International Baccalaureate, NA = not available. AP and IB courses were coded separately in 1998 and 2000 but not in prior years. AP/IB calculus courses are counted both in their specific column and in the “any calculus” column. Before 1998, AP and IB courses were coded with the general set of courses.

SOURCE: National Science Board. Science and Engineering Indicators 2004. NSB 04-01. Arlington, VA: National Science Foundation, 2004. Appendix Table 1-10. This table was based on US Department of Education, Center for National Education Statistics, High School Transcript Studies, various years.

the influence that the federal government can exert on state educational systems, school districts, and individual schools. Nevertheless, the federal government can enable change by leveraging its investments in K–12 education, by providing information and other resources to organizations, and by helping to coordinate the many groups and individuals with a stake in science, mathematics, and technology education. Three policy arenas seem particularly promising: teacher preparation, educational standards, and institutional change.

Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×

TABLE K–12-8 High-School Graduates Completing Advanced Courses (1990, 1994, and 1998), by Students and School Characteristics in 1998

Year and characteristic

Advanced biology

Chemistry

Physics

Advanced biology, chemistry, and physics

Any

AP/IB

Any

AP/IB

Any

AP/IB

1990 ................................

27.5

NA

45.0

NA

21.5

NA

7.4

1994 ................................

34.8

NA

50.4

NA

24.5

NA

9.9

1998 ................................

37.4

4.9

56.4

2.9

28.6

1.7

12.1

 

Male.............................

33.8

4.0

53.3

3.3

31.0

2.3

11.8

 

Female .........................

40.8

5.8

59.2

2.6

26.6

1.2

12.3

 

White............................

38.5

5.0

58.8

2.9

31.1

1.8

13.4

 

Asian/Pacific Islander …

43.0

14.0

63.7

9.5

37.4

4.8

15.7

 

Black............................

35.8

3.4

51.1

1.2

20.3

0.8

7.6

 

Hispanic .......................

31.2

3.1

45.5

2.9

19.4

1.3

8.2

 

School urbanicity

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Urban.......................

43.0

5.9

62.4

3.9

30.8

2.7

14.0

 

 

Suburban .................

39.4

5.9

56.1

3.2

31.2

2.0

14.6

 

 

Rural........................

29.3

2.6

50.9

1.6

23.1

0.4

7.3

 

School sizea..................

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Small........................

36.4

2.9

57.7

0.9

25.7

0.3

11.7

 

 

Medium....................

36.8

4.9

56.6

2.9

31.0

1.9

13.4

 

 

Large .......................

40.1

6.6

55.0

4.8

24.8

2.6

9.2

 

School povertyb

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Very low...................

37.9

6.4

71.2

4.8

43.0

3.6

17.8

 

 

Low..........................

39.4

4.6

54.2

1.9

26.9

0.9

11.7

 

 

Medium....................

34.1

3.4

52.4

2.2

23.6

1.3

10.2

 

 

High .........................

37.7

5.3

50.7

2.1

17.4

1.0

7.5

aSmall = fewer than 600 students enrolled, medium = 600-1,800, and large = more than 1,800.

bMeasured by percentage of students eligible for free or reduced-price lunches: very low = 5 percent or less, low = 6-25 percent, medium = 26-50 percent, and high = 51-100 percent.

NOTE: AP = Advanced Placement, IB = International Baccalaureate, NA = not available. AP and IB courses were coded separately in 1998 and 2000 but not in prior years. AP/IB courses are counted both in their specific columns and in columns that correspond to the general course category. For example, AP chemistry is included in the “any chemistry” column in addition to being listed in its own column. Before 1998, AP and IB courses were coded with the general set of courses.

SOURCE: National Science Board. Science and Engineering Indicators 2004. NSB 04-01. Arlington, VA: National Science Foundation, 2004. Appendix Table 1-11. This table was based on US Department of Education, Center for National Education Statistics, High School Transcript Studies, various years.

IMPROVING THE QUALITY OF MATHEMATICS, SCIENCE, AND TECHNOLOGY TEACHING

Students learn about science, mathematics, and technology first and foremost through interactions with teachers. Changing the nature of those

Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×

FIGURE K–12-3 Number of schools and colleges participating in AP programs.

SOURCE: National Research Council. Learning and Understanding: Improving Advanced Study of Mathematics and Science in US High Schools. Washington, DC: National Academy Press, 2002. Data courtesy of Jay Labov, Center for Education, National Academies.

interactions is the surest way to improve education in these subjects in the United States.

Many mathematics and science teachers in US schools do not have backgrounds needed to teach these subjects well (see Figure K–12-4).5 Many of these teachers at the high school level—and even more at the middle school level—do not have a college degree in the subject they are teaching (see Tables K–12-9 and K–12-10). Many lack certification to teach mathematics and science, and a subset of teachers start in the classroom without any formal training. The lack of adequate training and background is especially severe at schools serving large numbers of disadvantaged students, creating a vicious circle in which a substandard education and low achievement are intertwined (see Table K–12-11). The stresses on teachers are equally se-

5

US Department of Education, The National Commission on Mathematics and Science Teaching for the 21st Century. Before It’s Too Late. Washington, DC: US Department of Education, 2000.

Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×

FIGURE K–12-4 Middle and high school mathematics and science positions filled during the 1993-1994 school year by certified and noncertified teachers.

SOURCE: National Center for Education Statistics. Schools and Staffing Survey (1993-1994). Washington, DC: United States Department of Education, 2006.

vere: Of new mathematics and science teachers, about one-third leave teaching within the first 3 years.

The best predictors of higher student achievement in mathematics and science are (1) full certification of the teacher and (2) a college major in the field being taught.6 Teachers need a high-quality education and continued development as professionals throughout their careers. Federal policy initiatives that could help meet these objectives include the following:

  • Allocate federal professional-development funds to summer institutes that address the most pressing professional-development needs of mathematics and science teachers.7

  • Keep summer-institute facilitators—teachers current with the most effective teaching methods in their disciplines and who have shown demonstrable results of higher student achievement in mathematics and science—abreastof new insights and research in science and mathematics teaching by providing funding for training them.8

6

Ibid.

7

Ibid.

8

Ibid.

Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×

TABLE K–12-9 Public High School Students Whose Mathematics and Science Teachers Majored or Minored in Various Subject Fields, by Poverty Level and Minority Enrollment in School: 1999-2000

Subject and school characteristics

Mathematics/statistics major

Mathematics/statistics minor

Mathematics education major

Science, computer science, or engineering major

Other major

Mathematics

 

 

 

 

 

 

Students in poverty (percent)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

0–10...........................

45.1

3.7

31.3

4.0

15.9

 

 

More than 10 to 50...........................

37.6

5.2

34.4

4.0

18.8

 

 

More than 50...........................

43.4

5.8

23.6

10.3

17.0

 

Minority enrollment (percent)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

0–5...........................

42.5

3.7

35.3

2.4

16.2

 

 

More than 5 to 45...........................

39.4

4.4

35.7

4.1

16.3

 

 

More than 45...........................

41.6

6.6

24.5

7.3

19.9

Biology/life sciences

Biology/life science major

Biology/life science minor

Other science major or minor

Science education major

Other major

 

Students in poverty (percent)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

0–10...........................

62.6

5.7

7.0

7.8

16.9

 

 

More than 10 to 50...........................

61.2

7.1

8.0

11.6

12.0

 

 

More than 50...........................

62.5

6.4

2.7

7.0

21.4

 

Minority enrollment (percent)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

0–5...........................

59.8

7.9

5.4

13.5

13.4

 

 

More than 5 to 45...........................

64.2

4.6

6.0

8.4

16.7

 

 

More than 45...........................

64.4

7.8

7.0

6.5

14.3

Physical sciences

Physical science major

Physical science minor

Biology/life science major or minor

Science education major

Other major

 

Students in poverty (percent)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

0–10...........................

41.8

10.7

14.4

15.5

17.6

 

 

More than 10 to 50...........................

40.9

14.2

13.1

15.2

16.6

 

 

More than 50...........................

30.8

15.7

26.1

6.0

21.5

 

Minority enrollment (percent)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

0–5...........................

41.4

11.2

14.4

19.3

13.6

 

 

More than 5 to 45...........................

41.7

14.3

15.0

13.4

15.7

 

 

More than 45...........................

40.7

14.3

18.2

7.4

19.4

NOTE: Students in poverty are those who are approved to receive free or reduced-price lunches. Percents may not sum to 100 because of rounding. Physical sciences include chemistry, geology/earth sciences, other natural sciences (except biology/life sciences), and engineering.

SOURCE: National Science Board. Science and Engineering Indicators 2004. NSB 04-01. Arlington, VA: National Science Foundation, 2004. Appendix Table 1-13. This table was based on US Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Schools and Staffing Survey, 1999-2000.

  • Encourage higher-education institutions to establish mathematics and science teaching academies that include faculty from science, mathematics, and education departments through a competitive grant process.9

  • Support promising students to study science, mathematics, and engineering teaching—particularly those obtaining degrees in science, mathematics, or engineering who plan to teach at the K–12 level following graduation through scholarships and loan programs for students as well as institutional funding.10 Qualified college students and midcareer profession-

9

Ibid.

10

Ibid.

Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×

TABLE K–12-10 Public Middle and High School Mathematics and Science Teachers Who Entered Profession Between 1995-1996 and 1999-2000 and Reported Feeling Well Prepared in Various Aspects of Teaching in First Year, by Participating in Induction and Mentoring Activities: 1999-2000

Subject and activity

Handle classroom management and discipline

Use variety of instructional methods

Teach subject matter

Use computers in classroom instruction

Plan lessons effectively

Assess students

Select/adapt curriculum and instructional materials

All mathematics teachers ...............

50.5

65.1

90.1

41.5

77.5

69.7

53.9

 

Induction program

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yes.........................................

50.8

67.2

89.4

45.1

78.2

70.9

55.8

 

 

No..........................................

50.0

61.8

91.1

35.7

76.4

67.9

51.0

 

Mentor

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yes.........................................

53.5

68.7

89.6

41.8

79.3

72.6

57.1

 

 

No..........................................

44.6

58.2

91.0

40.8

74.0

64.1

47.8

All science teachers........................

50.8

66.0

82.9

48.0

69.4

68.8

58.6

 

Induction program

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yes.........................................

51.7

70.1

83.8

51.3

74.7

72.5

63.6

 

 

No..........................................

49.1

58.0

81.0

41.5

59.0

61.6

48.6

 

Mentor

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yes.........................................

56.6

73.6

84.9

51.5

75.3

74.3

64.6

 

 

No..........................................

42.0

54.4

79.7

42.6

60.3

60.4

49.2

SOURCE: National Science Board. Science and Engineering Indicators 2004. NSB 04-01. Arlington, VA: National Science Foundation, 2004. Appendix Table 1-15. This table was based on US Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Schools and Staff ing Survey, 1999-2000.

Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×

TABLE K–12-11 Public School Students, Teachers, and Cost Data

Fall 2003 enrollment K–12a

48,132,518

High school graduates—2003-2004a

2,771,781

Male graduates going to college—2001b

60%

Female graduates going to college—2001b

64%

Total number of school teachers—2003-2004a

3,044,012

Total number of math and science teachers (K–12)c

1,700,000

Total number of math teachers (6–12) 1999-2000d

191,214

Total number of science teachers (6–12) 1999-2000d

159,488

Average public school teacher salary—2003-2004a

$46,752

Average spent per studenta

$8,248

Operating school districts in the United Statesa

15,397

SOURCES:

aNational Education Association. Rankings & Estimates: Rankings of the States 2004 and Estimates of School Statistics 2005. Atlanta, GA: NEA Research, June 2005. Available at: http://www.nea.org/edstats/images/05rankings.pdf.

bNational Science Board. Science and Engineering Indicators 2004. NSB 04-01. Arlington, VA: National Science Foundation, 2004. Appendix Table 1-19.

cNational Commission on Mathematics and Science Teaching for the 21st Century. Before It’s Too Late: A Report to the Nation. Washington, DC: National Assessment of Education Progress, September 27, 2000. Available at: http://www.ed.gov/inits/Math/glenn/toc.html.

dNational Center for Education Statistics. Digest of Education Statistics 2003. Washington, DC: US Department of Education, 2004. Table 67.

als need to be attracted into teaching and given the preparation they require to succeed. Experts in mathematics, science, and technology should be able to become teachers by completing programs to acquire and demonstrate fundamental teaching skills. Recruitment, preparation, and retention of minority-group teachers are particularly important as groups underrepresented in science, mathematics, and engineering become a larger percentage of the student population.11

  • Conduct an aggressive national-outreach media campaign to attract young people to teaching careers in mathematics and science.12

  • Work for broad improvements in the professional status of science, mathematics, and technology teachers.13 Structured induction programs for new teachers, district–business partnerships, award programs, and other incentives can inspire teachers and encourage them to remain in the field. Most

11

National Research Council, Committee on Science and Mathematics Teacher Preparation. Educating Teachers of Science, Mathematics, and Technology: New Practices for the New Millennium. Washington, DC: National Academy Press, 2000.

12

Ibid.

13

National Science Foundation, National Science Board. The Science and Engineering Workforce: Realizing America’s Potential. Arlington, VA: National Science Foundation, 2003.

Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×

important, salaries for science, mathematics, and technology teachers need to reflect what they could receive in the private sector and be in accord with their contributions to society, and teachers need to be treated as professionals and as important members of the science and engineering communities.

ENHANCING THE QUALITY AND COHESION OF EDUCATIONAL STANDARDS

Since the early 1990s, states have been developing academic standards in mathematics, science, and technology education based in part on national standards developed by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, the National Research Council, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and other organizations. The use of these standards in curriculum development, teaching, and assessment has had a positive effect on student performance and probably contributed to the recent increased performance of 8th-grade students in international comparisons.14

But standards still vary greatly from state to state and across districts and often are not well aligned with the tests used to measure student performance. In addition, many sets of standards remain focused on lower-level skills that may be easier to measure but are not necessarily linked to the knowledge and skills that students will need to do well in college and in the modern workforce. A common flaw in mathematics and science curricula and textbooks is the attempt to cover too much material, which leads to superficial treatments of subjects and to needless repetition when hastily taught material is not learned the first time. Standards need to identify the most important “big ideas” in mathematics, science, and technology, and teachers need to ensure that those subjects are mastered.

The No Child Left Behind legislation requires testing of students’ knowledge of science beginning in 2006-2007, and the science portion of the NAEP is being redesigned. Development of such assessments raises profound methodologic issues, such as how to assess inquiry and problem-solving skills using traditional large-scale testing formats.

Several federal initiatives can serve the national interest in establishing and maintaining high educational standards while respecting local responsibility for teaching and learning:

  • Help colleges, businesses, and schools work together to link K–12 standards to college admissions criteria and workforce needs to create a seamless K–16 educational system.15

14

Bybee and Stage, 2005.

15

National Science Foundation, National Science Board. Preparing Our Children: Math and Science Education in the National Interest. Arlington, VA: National Science Foundation, 1999.

Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×
  • Provide incentives for states and coalitions of states to conduct benchmarking studies between their standards and the best standards available.

  • Foster the development of high-quality curricula and assessments that are closely aligned with world-class standards.

  • Establish ambitious but realistic goals for student performance—for example, that 30% of high school seniors should be proficient in science by 2010 as measured by the NAEP.

CHANGING THE INSTITUTIONAL STRUCTURE OF SCHOOLS

Students and teachers remain constrained by several of the key organizational features of schools.16 The structure of the curriculum, of individual classes, of schools, and of the school day keeps many students from taking advantage of opportunities that could build their interest in science and technology.

Possible federal initiatives include these:

  • Provide seed money or incentives for new kinds of schools and new forms of schooling. Promising ideas include small high schools, dual-enrollment programs in high schools and colleges, colocation of schools with institutions of higher education, and wider use of Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate courses.

  • Help districts institute reorganization of the school schedule to support teaching and learning.17 Possibilities include devoting more time to study of academic subjects, keeping schools open longer in the day and during parts of the summer, and providing teachers with additional time for development and collaboration.

  • Provide scholarships for low-income students who demonstrate that they have taken a core curriculum in high school that prepares them to study science, mathematics, or engineering in college.

CATALYZING CHANGE

The federal government has an important role to play in catalyzing the efforts of states, school districts, and schools to improve science, mathematics, and technology education. Promising actions include the following:

16

US Department of Education, National Education Commission on Time and Learning. Prisoners of Time. Washington, DC: US Department of Education, 1994.

17

Ibid.

Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×
  • Launch a large-scale program of research, demonstration, and evaluation in K–12 science, mathematics, and technology education.18 Such a program should include distinguished researchers working in partnership with practitioners and policy-makers and supported by a national coalition of public and private funding organizations and other stakeholders.

  • Help create a nongovernment Coordinating Council for Mathematics and Science Teaching that would bring together groups with a stake in mathematics and science teaching and monitor progress on teacher recruitment, preparation, retention, and rewards.19

  • Support the creation of state councils of business leaders, higher-education representatives, and K–12 educators to achieve comprehensive, coordinated, system-level improvement in science, mathematics, and technology education from prekindergarten through college.20

The United States brings unique strengths to the challenge of reforming K–12 science, mathematics, and technology education, including the flexibility of its workforce and its unparalleled legacy of achievement in science and technology. The challenge facing policy-makers is to find ways of generating meaningful change in an educational system that is large, complex, and pluralistic.

18

National Research Council, Committee on a Feasibility Study for a Strategic Education Research Program. Improving Student Learning: A Strategic Plan for Education Research and Its Utilization. Washington, DC: National Academy Press, 1999.

19

US Department of Education, The National Commission on Mathematics and Science Teaching for the 21st Century. Before It’s Too Late. Washington, DC: US Department of Education, 2000.

20

Business-Higher Education Forum. A Commitment to America’s Future: Responding to the Crisis in Mathematics and Science Education. Washington, DC: American Council on Education, 2005.

Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×
Page303
Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×
Page304
Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×
Page305
Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×
Page306
Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×
Page307
Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×
Page308
Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×
Page309
Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×
Page310
Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×
Page311
Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×
Page312
Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×
Page313
Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×
Page314
Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×
Page315
Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×
Page316
Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×
Page317
Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×
Page318
Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×
Page319
Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×
Page320
Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×
Page321
Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×
Page322
Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×
Page323
Suggested Citation:"K–12 Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education." National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine. 2007. Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/11463.
×
Page324
Next: Attracting the Most Able US Students to Science and Engineering »
Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future Get This Book
×
Buy Paperback | $64.95
MyNAP members save 10% online.
Login or Register to save!
Download Free PDF

In a world where advanced knowledge is widespread and low-cost labor is readily available, U.S. advantages in the marketplace and in science and technology have begun to erode. A comprehensive and coordinated federal effort is urgently needed to bolster U.S. competitiveness and pre-eminence in these areas. This congressionally requested report by a pre-eminent committee makes four recommendations along with 20 implementation actions that federal policy-makers should take to create high-quality jobs and focus new science and technology efforts on meeting the nation's needs, especially in the area of clean, affordable energy:

1) Increase America's talent pool by vastly improving K-12 mathematics and science education;

2) Sustain and strengthen the nation's commitment to long-term basic research;

3) Develop, recruit, and retain top students, scientists, and engineers from both the U.S. and abroad; and

4) Ensure that the United States is the premier place in the world for innovation.

Some actions will involve changing existing laws, while others will require financial support that would come from reallocating existing budgets or increasing them. Rising Above the Gathering Storm will be of great interest to federal and state government agencies, educators and schools, public decision makers, research sponsors, regulatory analysts, and scholars.

  1. ×

    Welcome to OpenBook!

    You're looking at OpenBook, NAP.edu's online reading room since 1999. Based on feedback from you, our users, we've made some improvements that make it easier than ever to read thousands of publications on our website.

    Do you want to take a quick tour of the OpenBook's features?

    No Thanks Take a Tour »
  2. ×

    Show this book's table of contents, where you can jump to any chapter by name.

    « Back Next »
  3. ×

    ...or use these buttons to go back to the previous chapter or skip to the next one.

    « Back Next »
  4. ×

    Jump up to the previous page or down to the next one. Also, you can type in a page number and press Enter to go directly to that page in the book.

    « Back Next »
  5. ×

    Switch between the Original Pages, where you can read the report as it appeared in print, and Text Pages for the web version, where you can highlight and search the text.

    « Back Next »
  6. ×

    To search the entire text of this book, type in your search term here and press Enter.

    « Back Next »
  7. ×

    Share a link to this book page on your preferred social network or via email.

    « Back Next »
  8. ×

    View our suggested citation for this chapter.

    « Back Next »
  9. ×

    Ready to take your reading offline? Click here to buy this book in print or download it as a free PDF, if available.

    « Back Next »
Stay Connected!