Cary Sneider

Associate Research Professor, Portland State University

Cary Sneider is associate research professor at Portland State University in Portland, Oreg., where he teaches courses in research methodology in a master’s of science teaching degree program. He also serves as a consultant on diverse issues in STEM education, such as youth programs at science centers, educational standards, and assessment. He is currently a member of the writing team for Achieve, Inc., working on Next Generation Science Standards, and is also a member of the National Assessment Governing Board, which sets policy for the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), also known as “The Nation’s Report Card.” Until 2007, Sneider served as vice president for educator programs at the Museum of Science in Boston, and prior to that he served as director of astronomy and physics education at the Lawrence Hall of Science at the University of California. Sneider’s curriculum development and research interests have focused on helping students unravel their misconceptions in science, on new ways to link science centers and schools to promote student inquiry, and on integrating engineering and technology education into the K–12 curriculum. Sneider earned a BA in astronomy from Harvard College (1969), and a MA (1976) and PhD in science education (1982) from the University of California at Berkeley. In 1997, he received the Distinguished Informal Science Education award from NSTA, and in 2003, he was named National Associate of the National Academy of Sciences.

Engineering and Technology in Tomorrow’s Science Classroom

By the end of 2012, states will be considering a final draft of Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) in an effort to develop common core educational standards to complement those in English language arts and mathematics that have already been adopted by 46 states. Although the public release of the NGSS is not due for a few months, a preview can be seen in A Framework for K–12 Science Education: Practices, Core Ideas, and Crosscutting Concepts, published by the National Research Council in July 2011. The Framework is intended to serve as the blueprint for the Next Generation Science Standards. I have had the good fortune to serve as a consultant on Framework with the charge of assisting the study committee in deciding how best to include engineering and technology as an integral part of science. The results of that effort appear in Chapter 3 and Chapter 8.I am also a member of the writing committee working on the Next Generation Science Standards, and although I can’t discuss details yet, I can say that we are following the Framework very closely. Read more