Evaluating Instructional Materials

As educators implement new science standards in their classrooms, one of the most important decisions they face is selecting the best instructional materials to support student learning. Achieve has worked with teachers, states, and leaders in science education research to develop a suite of tools to support educators in this effort.


Is this resource designed for the NGSS? The EQuIP tools can help you answer this question.


The Educators Evaluating the Quality of Instructional Products (EQuIP) suite of tools includes rubrics to evaluate science lessons, units, and year-long instructional materials, a professional learning facilitator's guide, and some quality example lessons vetted by the Peer Review Panel for Science. These tools can help educators make evidence-based decisions about which instructional materials to use and help developers/publishers determine how to design materials for the NGSS to ensure that their final product is true to the standards.



Evaluating Instructional Materials



Achieve Reviews: Achieve is broadening its reach to identify more high-quality materials designed for the NGSS. We hope this will help both those developing materials—whether in the classroom, a university, or a publishing company—and those looking for quality materials to support implementation.


EQuIP Rubric for Science: The Educators Evaluating the Quality of Instructional Products (EQuIP) Rubric for science provides criteria by which to measure the degree to which lessons and units are designed for the NGSS. The EQuIP webpage includes information for the EQuIP rubric, a professional learning facilitators guide, helpful training videos, and more.


NGSS Lesson Screener: The NGSS Lesson Screener provides criteria for a quick look into the degree to which lessons and units are designed for the NGSS.


NGSS Alignment Claims: How Publishers Talk About the Next Generation Science StandardsThis document categorizes and describes some of the common ways those developing and marketing science instructional materials are making connections to the NGSS. In addition to sharing the categories of claims common in the marketplace, several examples are provided of claims that Achieve would like to see more frequently—ones that closely tie to the major NGSS Innovations.


PEEC: "PEEC" is an acronym for the Primary Evaluation of Essential Criteria for NGSS Instructional Materials Design. PEEC can be used by educators to evaluate the degree that the NGSS Innovations are represented in science instructional materials programs.

Peer Review Panel: The EQuIP Peer Review Panel (PRP) for Science was launched in September 2016 to provide concrete examples of high quality lessons and units that, along with professional learning, can support implementation of the NGSS. The PRP seeks to identify lessons and units that best illustrate the cognitive demands of the NGSS as introduced in A Framework for K-12 Science Education. To submit lessons or units to the PRP for review, click here.


Quality Examples of Instructional Materials: The criterion-based reviews provided by the Peer Review Panel are meant to be constructive and in the spirit of continuous improvement. All submissions receive feedback regardless of their rating and confidentiality will be ensured for those that are not ready to be shared publicly. Lessons and units that are rated by the PRP as Examples of High Quality NGSS Design, Examples of High Quality NGSS Design, If Improved, or identified as Quality Works in Progress will be publicly posted along with the EQuIP criterion-based feedback so that all educators can benefit from these materials.


NGSS Design Badge: Achieve awards a digital badge called the NGSS Design Badge to science units designed for the NGSS that have earned the highest rating on the EQuIP Rubric for Science based on a review conducted by Achieve or its Science Peer Review PanelThe digital badge includes a logo, the name of the unit, the date the badge was awarded, and a "Verify" button. When a user clicks on the digital badge to verify its authenticity, the badge provides a full EQuIP evaluation describing quality features of the unit in question.


Read the Next Generation Science Standards and the Appendices.

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