Scaling Up Three-Dimensional Science Learning Through Teacher-Led Study Groups Across a State

Brian J. Reiser*, Sarah Michaels, Jean Moon, Tara Bell, Elizabeth Dyer, Kelsey D. Edwards, Tara A.W. McGill, Michael Novak, Aimee Park

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations


The vision for science teaching in the Framework for K-12 Science Education and the Next Generation Science Standards requires a radical departure from traditional science teaching. Science literacy is defined as three-dimensional (3D), in which students engage in science and engineering practices to develop and apply science disciplinary ideas and crosscutting concepts. This knowledge building presents many challenges for teachers. We describe a two-pronged program for scaling 3D science professional development (PD) across a state: (a) 24 teachers developed expertise in 3D learning and facilitating teacher study groups; (b) these peer facilitators led 22 study groups of teachers in 3D science activities, analyzing student learning, and investigating classroom interactions. We describe design approaches for supporting teacher and facilitator learning. We present analyses of teacher learning, including shifts in 3D science, beliefs, and pedagogical content knowledge that supports 3D science teaching, and consider implications for scalable design approaches for supporting science teacher learning.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)280-298
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Teacher Education
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 1 2017


  • professional development
  • professional learning communities
  • science education
  • standards
  • teacher leadership

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education


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