What We Believe

The Association for the Cooperative Advancement of Science and Education (ACASE) is a group of scientists and teachers who develop systematic ways to make the experience of students deeper and more creative, and to reignite the spark that inspired many teachers to take on the challenges of the classroom.

Today’s teachers and students face a number of oppressive problems:

  • Non-educational use of testing is driving attention away from the important goals of instruction.
  • Students are memorizing facts, rules, and formulas but are not able to apply them in practical settings.
  • Most classroom tests are geared to grading and not the improvement of instruction.
  • Information is not available to teachers, schools, or state agencies on the degree to which students have attained important concepts and process skills.

We have been working with creative teachers and scientists for over a decade to build concepts and technologies that will allow educators to accurately monitor student progress in attaining important education goals and objectives. This, we believe, will lead to a positive and sustainable impact on the problems listed above. Our research (Zachos, Hick, Doane, & Sargent 2000) indicates that by secondary school age, young people are ready to discover natural laws through direct investigations into phenomena.

At present ACASE’s attention is directed to the following broad educational goals.

Overall Goals of ACASE

  1. Use educational assessment as a tool to support the attainment of higher order cognitive capabilities, such as the capabilities needed to conduct scientific inquiry and discover scientific concepts.
  2. Present a countervailing force to destructive testing practices by demonstrating and instituting truly educational assessment practices in learning settings, through practices which support teachers, motivate students, and encourage excellence.
  3. Build a core of competent educational transformation agents by providing professional development in concepts, skills, and techniques related to educational assessment.

Day-to-Day Work

ACASE develops innovative modes of educational assessment with the explicit goal of using data generated by these assessments to support instructional decision-making. Our web-based tools provide an information management system that allows educators to grasp and take action to support the growth of student learning over time.

Associates of ACASE collaborate on ongoing projects and long-term initiatives, make public presentations, and discuss matters of public interest in science and education.

For more information please email Paul Zachos at paz@acase.org.