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ERIC Number: ED498324
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2003-Dec
Pages: 55
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 38
Getting It Right: The MISE Approach to Professional Development. CPRE Research Report Series. RR-055
Corcoran, Tom; McVay, Siobhan; Riordan, Kate
Consortium for Policy Research in Education
The Merck Institute for Science Education (MISE) was founded in 1993 to demonstrate that virtually all students could reach high levels of scientific literacy. MISE formed partnerships with four public school districts where Merck has major facilities and a history of providing employee volunteers and supporting local science education initiatives. MISE's approach to improving science teaching has been systemic, addressing both policy and practice in the partner districts. MISE has helped its partners plan strategically, select high quality instructional resources, support teacher learning, and carry out instructional and curricular reforms. Working together, MISE and its partner districts have developed and implemented a shared vision of good science instruction based on national and state standards. This vision has been the basis for the design and delivery of professional development for teachers and administrators. Sustained by the Partnership since 1994, this professional development program has helped the partner districts make significant reforms in the teaching of science and mathematics. In 1993, MISE contracted with the Consortium for Policy Research in Education (CPRE) at the University of Pennsylvania to evaluate the effectiveness of its work with the four districts. CPRE has documented the activity and progress of the Partnership for a decade and has issued a series of reports on its impact. In this report, researchers assess the Partnership's approach to professional development, addressing the questions: (1) How has the Partnership's professional development measured up against the emerging standards for professional development?; (2) Has participation in Partnership professional development resulted in increased teacher content knowledge?; (3) Has participation in Partnership professional development led to changes in instructional practice?; (4) Has participation in Partnership professional development resulted in improved student achievement?; (5)Has MISE's strategy strengthened district capacity to support the improvement of teaching?; and (6) What lessons can be learned from the experience of MISE and the Partnership with professional development? The report is organized into eight sections. The introduction describes the research questions and data collection methods used by CPRE. In the second section, findings from recent studies of professional development are summarized, and consensus standards of quality that have emerged in the past decade are discussed. MISE's theory of action and the professional development provided by the Partnership are described in section three. In section four, the MISE approach is assessed against consensus standards of quality. Section five presents an examination of the impact of the Partnership professional development strategy on the capacity of the partner districts and schools to support reforms in science education. In sections six and seven, the authors look at the Partnership's impact on teaching and learning. The final section concludes by examining lessons to be learned from the experience of MISE and the Partnership, and considers the issues that it raises. The report includes two appendixes: (A) Annual Reports on CPRE's Evaluation of the Merck Institute for Science Education; and (B) Additional Publications about the Merck Institute for Science Education. (Contains 5 footnotes, 5 figures, and 11 tables.)
Consortium for Policy Research in Education. University of Pennsylvania, 3440 Market Street Suite 560, Philadelphia, PA 19104. Tel: 215-593-0700; Fax: 215-573-7914; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Consortium for Policy Research in Education, Philadelphia, PA.
Identifiers - Location: New Jersey; Pennsylvania