It is critical to the success of the review that definitions of the criteria on Form 3 be agreed upon and understood by all reviewers and be compatible with local needs. To develop a shared understanding of the criteria have the reviewers participate in developing a working definition for each criterion:

  • active engagement

  • depth of understanding

  • scientific inquiry

  • assessments

The finished working definitions should be distributed to reviewers with their review forms.

  1. Divide the review team into small groups and assign one of the student learning criteria to each group.

  2. Each small group should brainstorm, then prioritize, and finally summarize responses to the following questions in brief statements:

  • Why is this criterion important?

  • What are the most important elements for meeting this criterion? Apply your knowledge of effective teaching strategies and research on learning. Consult reference documents on standards and effective science education.

  • What qualities of instructional materials should a reviewer look for in reviewing with this criterion?

  1. A representative from each small group can present its products to the others for review and comment. All reviewers need to understand and agree with the definitions of each criterion. If necessary, the small groups should meet again to make revisions.

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