Spotlights on STEM Education Research

CADRE's Spotlights explore important themes in K-12 STEM education research and development by highlighting DRK-12 project contributions, community perspectives, and important resources.

While many of the Spotlights cover cross-cutting topics, such as professional development or culturally relevant instruction, other Spotlights are focused on disciplines or subdisciplines (e.g. computer science, astronomy), STEM practices (e.g. modeling, problem solving), or project design & implementation (e.g. replication, CAREER awards).

Broadening Participation in STEM (2022)

This Spotlight highlights opportunities, resources, and projects that aim to increase involvement in STEM.

Culturally Responsive STEM Education (2022)

In this Spotlight, learn about culturally responsive PreK-12 STEM education and DRK-12 projects researching culturally responsive instruction, curricula, and assessment.

Curriculum: Practitioner Selection, Adaptation, and Design (2022)

This spotlight explores the role of educators in creating quality and coherent curricula in today's science and mathematics classrooms. Two blog posts examine the importance of curriculum coherence (one in the context of science, the other in mathematics), and four projects describe their efforts to support and empower practitioners in this area.

Early Childhood Education (2022)

In this Spotlight, explore NSF-funded projects and resources that focus on early learning opportunities.

English Language Learners (2022)

This Spotlight features DRK-12-funded projects that are researching and developing approaches to improving STEM learning for students classified as English language learners (ELLs) or English learners (ELs). 

Games & Simulations (2022)

In this spotlight, explore DRK-12 games and simulations designed to support science and math learning.

Informal & Formal STEM Education (2022)

This Spotlight examines connections between formal STEM education and learning supported by museums, science centers, families, communities, and other informal settings that are part of the STEM education ecosystem.

Motivation & Engagement in STEM Education (2022)

This Spotlight highlights three projects that are currently researching approaches and learning environments that are designed to motivate and engage students in science, computer science, and software engineering, along with information on the larger body of research, innovations, and instrumentation in the DRK-12 portfolio and other related resources.

Online and Blended Professional Development (2022)

This Spotlight offers grantee perspectives on the current state of STEM professional development (PD) and highlights DRK-12 contributions in the area of online and blended PD.

Online Learning (2022)

This Spotlight shares online learning resources including activities, tools, and tips to support remote student learning and teacher development.

Rural STEM Education (2022)

Explore how DRK-12 projects are increasing access to resources and opportunities in rural communities that can improve student achievement and representation in STEM.

Simulations in STEM Teaching & Learning (2022)

This Spotlight features seven projects researching and developing simulations for teacher and student STEM education.

STEM Pathways (2022)

Examine STEM pathway and workforce development in PreK-12, including projects that are researching and innovating approaches that allow and encourage all students to pursue continued study or careers in STEM.

Story in STEM Education (2022)

In this Spotlight, listen to PIs Roy Gould and Jackie Miller discuss their work and explore the question, "Why is story such a powerful tool in the classroom?"

Supporting Students with Disabilities (2022)

This Spotlight features DRK-12 projects that are addressing approaches and developing tools to support STEM teaching and learning for students with disabilities.

Sustaining and Scaling Professional Development (2022)

Explore innovations, research, and advice around creating sustainable professional development programs or scaling interventions to broaden their impacts on STEM teaching and learning.

Systemic Reform (2022)

In this Spotlight, explore the types of partnerships, methodologies, theoretical frameworks, challenges and strategies that support work enacting reforms on a systemic level. This Spotlight includes a perspective piece by Suzanne Donovan and Alan Schoenfeld, highlights the work of seven projects, and offers additional resources for those interested in learning more.

Teacher Content Knowledge (2022)

Learn about projects developing and studying models and resources to improve and assess teachers' knowledge for teaching science, mathematics, and computer science.

Teacher Preparation Models and Programs (2022)

This Spotlight features a range of DRK-12 projects that are designing, implementing, and/or studying preservice teacher programs in STEM disciplines.

Teaching & Learning During the COVID-19 Pandemic (2022)

Learn about DRK-12-funded efforts to understand the impacts of the pandemic on STEM teaching and learning as well as the early results from a synthesis of NSF-funded research on STEM education during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Technology-Enhanced Assessment (2022)

Explore projects using technology to transform the assessment of student and teacher learning as well as advance the field of educational measurement.

Video-Enhanced Teacher Education (2022)

Learn about DRK-12 work to enhance teacher education using video.

Women and Girls in STEM (2022)

This spotlight features DRK-12 projects working on solutions to engage and support women in STEM fields.