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Science Resources
2 high school girls doing a science experiment

Iowa Science Standards

Iowa Science Standards describe what students in grades K-12 should know and be able to do as a result of instruction. The new science standards reflect our state’s emphasis on giving all students the real-world knowledge and skills needed to be ready for success in college and in the workforce, regardless of the career paths they choose.


Kris Kilibarda


Science on


Tools to design instruction that supports all students to meet Iowa Core expectations in science.

Resources for Communicating the Standards with Parents and Community Members

Resources for Districts

Iowa Science Standards: An Overview for Principals

Resources for Teachers

Successful STEM Education - A National Science Foundation initiative focused on providing information, events (with links to session materials), and resources to support effective STEM teaching and learning.



Tools to engage in assessment for learning and assessment of learning the Iowa Core in science.

Conclusions and Recommendations - A summary of best practices in science assessment from the Board of Testing and Assessment Report on Developing Assessment for the Next Generation Science Standards. Full report.

Assessment Projects and Resources

Professional Development

Tools to use in professional development in science.

STEM Smart Brief - Provides information on research and promising practices in teaching and learning under the Next Generation Science Standards.

Professional Development for the Iowa Science Standards

Professional Learning from National Science Teachers Association (NSTA)

Professional Learning from Education Partners

Katherine EastinThe Iowa Core science standards were created for students in an effort to provide every student in Iowa with the best education possible. I support the science standards because they provide me with direction in my teaching and allow for collaboration and discussion with my peers. By providing teachers with direction, the standards help to set boundaries on curriculum allowing teachers to dive deep into topics and create curriculum that challenges students to truly understand scientific phenomena and strengthen critical thinking skills. This Iowa Core science standards allow for collaboration between educational leaders and teachers to create this challenging curriculum.
The new science standards are unlike anything we’ve ever seen before. They don’t put as much emphasis on content facts that teachers need to deliver to students in a classroom, but instead focus on what students should be able to do with the content they have learned.
The standards focus on student application of science content and skills versus the rote memorization of content facts. The standards are written to focus on teaching students how to be scientists and do science versus separating out the skills and content from the standards. By teaching students in a manner that makes them feel like a “real” scientist, we will be able to foster a sense of curiosity, increase creativity, boost confidence, and strengthen critical thinking skills.

The science standards don’t dictate curriculum but instead state what a student should be able to do after instruction. The standards are written to incorporate science skills, content, and overarching connections into every standard. This means that the standards are looking at all aspects of science and what it means to do science as a real-life scientist and teaching our youth how to utilize and build their skills, content, and abilities to make connections.

Even if some students decide that science is not their interest or if they decide to continue their education in a different field of study, the skills learned through a science program aligned to this new Iowa Core science standards will improve their chances at success in the future.