Curriculum Development Projects
CORD has successfully completed hundreds of curriculum design and development projects in its 35-year history. Below are just a few examples of recent initiatives.
Through the STEM Transitions initiative, funded by the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Vocational and Adult Education, CORD led the development of more than 60 integrated curriculum projects for use in math, science, and technical courses in six STEM-related career clusters. Described as “integrated projects” because they blend math and science instruction within the context of disciplines such as health science, information technology, manufacturing, transportation/logistics, and agriculture/natural resources, the STEM Transitions instructional materials are intended to motivate students to explore and pursue STEM-related careers in addition to demonstrating the relevance of STEM concepts to our everyday lives. The projects revolve around industry scenarios, involve teamwork, and build critical thinking skills. Read more...
Simulations for Performance Assessments that Report on Knowledge and Skills (SPARKS)
Funded by the National Science Foundation’s Advanced Technological Education program, the SPARKS project provides students access to a virtual lab where they can turn knobs, blow fuses, and receive feedback before they step foot in an electronics lab. SPARKS teaches introductory electronics with a virtual breadboard, components, and test equipment. Activities are presented in a game-like environment, encouraging advancement to higher levels with greater scores. The SPARKS software monitors, records, and interprets student performance and generates scored reports with visual indicators of success. Both individual student and class progress are recorded, allowing instructors to monitor each student’s performance on distinct skills. The software also provides online tutorials to support skills needing improvement. Read more…
Tennessee Career and Technical Education Course Revisions
Under contract to the Tennessee Department of Education’s Division of Career and Technical Education, CORD’s curriculum team led the revision of sixty career-technical courses in multiple career clusters, including revising course standards to incorporate the Common Core State Standards and industry expectations. CORD is also responsible for providing technical support for state staff and developing textbook review rubrics to support implementation of the revised standards.
Energy Industry Fundamentals
Under contract to the Center for Energy Workforce Development (CEWD), CORD developed Energy Industry Fundamentals for use in training programs for both youth and adults. The seven-module course provides a broad understanding of the electric and natural gas utility industry and the energy generation, transmission, and distribution infrastructure. Students who complete the course through an approved provider and pass a comprehensive assessment are eligible to receive the Energy Industry Fundamentals Certificate. CEWD has received ANSI accreditation for the certificate program which aims to ensure potential workers gain an understanding of the energy industry as a prerequisite to occupation-specific training. Course development was made possible through CEWD’s Get into Energy Career Pathways program. Read more…
Hawai’i Excellence through Science and Technology (HiEST) Academy
The HiEST Academy was part of a comprehensive state initiative to engage more students in school-based activities and programs designed to improve their mathematics and science skills and increase the readiness and motivation of Hawai’i high school graduates to pursue postsecondary training and career options in STEM and STEM-related disciplines. CORD developed contextually based math and science instructional materials for grades 9 and 10 aligned to Hawai’i’s academic standards. Customized science textbooks were developed in physical science and biology in addition to online projects for contextual biology. Professional development for Academy teachers was provided on contextual teaching strategies and discipline-specific topics. CORD provides ongoing technical assistance for faculty members and schools as needed to support sustainability of the model.