The NextGenScience project at WestEd today announced the addition of seven new members to its Science Peer Review Panel (PRP) to continue its work evaluating lesson sequences and units designed for the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS).

Since its launch in 2016 at Achieve, the Science PRP has reviewed over 350 science units and lessons and has shared 39 quality examples of science materials on NextGenScience shares reviewed free and publicly available quality units, along with EQuIP feedback on them, to serve as concrete examples to educators and leaders who are seeking NGSS-designed materials. Of the quality materials posted, only the units with the highest rating on the EQuIP Rubric for Science earn the NGSS Design Badge, a verifiable digital badge that indicates the highest quality of NGSS design. Of the 24 units that have been awarded the NGSS Design Badge by the Science PRP in the last two years, nearly half of the units went through at least two cycles of review and revision before receiving high marks from reviewers.

As part of their role, peer reviewers receive professional learning to deepen their understanding of the NGSS and the EQuIP Rubric for Science evaluation process for instructional materials. Peer reviewers play a major role in advancing science education across the country but also find NextGenScience’s PRP to be valuable for their own learning as science educators. “In my district, I’m considered the go-to person for the NGSS,” shared one peer reviewer on the panel. “I have been able to use my learning from the PRP to help colleagues advance their knowledge and understanding of the dimensions through formal and informal professional learning.”

All peer reviewers completed a rigorous application process, demonstrating extensive knowledge of the NGSS and an understanding of features of NGSS-designed materials. The 15 peer reviewers represent 11 states from across the country: California, Delaware, Georgia, Illinois, Kentucky, Maryland, Nevada, Nebraska, Pennsylvania, Vermont, and Wisconsin.

New Members of the 2022–2023 NextGenScience Peer Review Panel

  • Liz Beans, Secondary Science and Biotechnology Curriculum and Instruction Specialist, South San Francisco Unified School District, CA
  • Michael Burt, Science Teacher, McLean County Unit 5 Schools, IL
  • Kavita Gupta, Science Curriculum Lead and Research Class Teacher, Fremont Union High School District, CA
  • Sarah Nelson Wiese, Secondary Science Teacher, Omaha Public Schools, NE
  • Shubha Sarode, Science Instructional Coach, University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education, PA
  • Amy Trauth, Assistant Professor, University of Delaware, DE
  • Megan Willig, Program Coordinator, Environmental Education at the National Environmental Education Foundation, WI

Returning Members of the 2022–2023 NextGenScience Peer Review Panel

  • David Allen, 6-12 Science Curriculum Coordinator, West Aurora School District 129, IL
  • Christine Depatie, STEM Teacher/Coach, Missisquoi Valley School District, VT
  • Kathy Gill, Retired Teacher, Davis Joint Unified School District, CA
  • Justin Harvey, Physics Teacher, Dacula High School, GA
  • Amy Hilliard, Lead Teacher, Western Heights Middle School, Washington County Public Schools, MD
  • Lori Henrickson, Science Teacher, Clark County School District, NV
  • Diane Johnson, Master Teacher, MSUTeach, Morehead State University, KY
  • Barbara Woods, Science Specialist, Retired Teacher, Galt Joint Union School District, CA

About NextGenScience at WestEd

In April 2020, NextGenScience launched at WestEd to support educators with the implementation of rigorous science standards across the nation. The project brings together expertise in classroom teaching, learning design, science leadership, and policy analysis. The team was formerly part of Achieve — the nonprofit organization that coordinated the development of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) in 2013 and led efforts to improve the design, selection, and implementation of high-quality science curricula and assessments. At WestEd, NextGenScience works alongside educators to design quality, coherent programs that align science standards, instructional materials, professional learning, and assessments.