Discourse in the Secondary Math and Science Classroom


Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) and Common Core State Math Standards (CCSMS) are the newest guidelines that Michigan science and math teachers must follow in their classrooms. These new standards have a focus on classroom discussion, and helping students to understand why math and science concepts work. These new standards create equity between male and female students, and give students the opportunity to conduct discussions among themselves. I created a survey in order to explore how teachers in math and science classrooms in Michigan's central Upper Peninsula perceive NGSS and CCSMS, and how they view equity in their classrooms. In an attempt to see the classrooms from an objective point of view, the teachers who participated in the survey were asked if they would allow a researcher into their classroom to observe concepts of equity. Teachers taking the survey agreed or disagreed about various statements about NGSS and/or CCSMS and about classroom participation. Sixty seven percent of teachers said they somewhat agree they have a complete understanding of NGSS and/or CCSMS, while 23% strongly agreed. When responding to statements about male and female participation, 13% of teachers surveyed said males participate more, while 20% said females participate more in classroom discussion. This research is just the beginning of the research focused on NGSS and CCSMS. Initial research reveals classroom discussions may improve equity in the classroom.

Class Standing



School of Education, Leadership, and Public Service

Faculty Advisor

Kimberly Smith Kolasa

Faculty Advisor Email