Psychological scientists address congressional briefing on STEM education

Focus is on math and science learning at preschool, elementary and middle school levels.

On May 23, APA helped to sponsor a briefing, “From the Lab to the Classroom: IES Research to Improve our Nation’s Math and Science Achievement” on Capitol Hill to highlight the findings of three scientists funded by the Department of Education’s Institute of Education Sciences. All three described work that focuses on improving math and science education. APA’s Executive Director for Science Steven Breckler moderated the briefing and emphasized the need for not only more research on STEM education, but also that as part of the “S” in STEM, psychological science was uniquely positioned to improving learning outcomes across STEM disciplines.

The panel included IES Director John Q. Easton, who provided an overview of the IES portfolio and priorities. He was joined by Douglas Clements, University of Denver, who discussed findings from his research on early childhood mathematics interventions; Robert Siegler, Carnegie Mellon University, who discussed his work on  fraction knowledge and preventing and addressing mathematics learning difficulties; and Nora Newcombe, Temple University, who shared her research from the IES-funded Center on Science and Student Learning that examined the impact of interventions based on cognitive science to improve middle school science instruction in three large school districts in Pennsylvania and Arizona.

Other cosponsoring organizations included the Society for Research in Child Development, the Consortium of Social Science Associations, the American Educational Research Association and the Federation of Associations in Brain and Behavioral Sciences.

For more information contact Karen Studwell.