Level 3

Alaska Science
Key Element

A student who meets the content standard should apply scientific knowledge and skills to understand issues and everyday events.


green rule

Performance Standard Level 3, Ages 11–14

Students research a local problem or issue and form a viewpoint that is supported by scientific evidence.

Sample Assessment Ideas

green rule

Sample Assessment Ideas

  • Students discuss a problem such as possible causes and effects of muddy or dusty hiking trails and suggest a solution that is feasible for the community to implement.

  • Students research spruce bark beetles in their local area and assess their economic, ecological, and aesthetic impact.

Standards Cross-Reference green rule

Standards Cross-References
( Alaska Department of Education & Early Development Standards

National Science Education Standards

Develop descriptions, explanations, predictions, and models using evidence. Students should base their explanation on what they observed, and as they develop cognitive skills, they should be able to differentiate explanation from description-providing causes for effects and establishing relationships based on evidence and logical argument. This standard requires a subject matter knowledge base so the students can effectively conduct investigations, because developing explanations establishes connections between the content of science and the contexts within which students develop new knowledge. (Page 145)

Scientific explanations emphasize evidence, have logically consistent arguments, and use scientific principles, models, and theories. The scientific community accepts and uses such explanations until displaced by better scientific ones. When such displacement occurs, science advances. (Page 148)



Scientists differ greatly in what phenomena they study and how they go about their work. Although there is no fixed set of steps that all scientists follow, scientific investigations usually involve the collection of relevant evidence, the use of logical reasoning, and the application of imagination in devising hypotheses and explanations to make sense of the collected evidence. (Page 12)

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