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Physics and 21st Century Science Standards: The Role of Physics in the NGSS

Resources for Implementing the NGSS

Historical Overview of the Development of the NGSS

The following documents from the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) spearheaded the Project 2061 initiative to improve science literacy for

all by providing broad descriptive and unifying themes of natural, mathematical, and social sciences, goals for student achievement, and atlases that displayed the deep

interconnectedness of the sciences.

Science for All Americans (AAAS & Rutherford, Science for all Americans, 1991)

Benchmarks for Science Literacy (AAAS, 1994)

Atlas of Science Literacy, Vols. 1 & 2 (AAAS, 2001)


National Research Council (NRC)

of the National Academies took inspiration from some of the above documents to formalize the first set of National Science Education

Standards (NSES), with guidelines for how to teach science inquiry. Although the NSES were used as a guiding document for many states, most states still retained their own

standards. The Framework for K-12 Science Education was an attempt to more closely describe the practices of inquiry, while more explicitly mapping the interconnections between

the sciences.

National Science Education Standards (National Academies, 1996)

Inquiry and the National Science Education Standards (National Academies, 2000)

A Framework for K-12 Science Education (National Academies, 2012)

General Resources

To facilitate the implementation of the NGSS in classrooms, the National Academies continue to support the publication of a variety of guides, such as those below:

Developing Assessments for the Next Generation Science Standards (National Academies, 2014)

Literacy for Science: Exploring the Intersection of the Next Generation Science Standards and Common Core for ELA Standards - a Workshop Summary (National Academies,


A Guide to Implementing the Next Generation Science Standards (National Academies, 2015)

Physics Education Resources

AAPT’s ComPADRE supports implementation of the NGSS through the creation of curated collections of resources aligned with NGSS. Visit

to learn


AAPT’s Role in the NGSS

The AAPT aims to support all teachers of physics, regardless of adoption of the NGSS. The AAPT works to make curricular and instructional resources available to its members and

to the general public through online sharing as well as through face-to-face professional gatherings, including annual conferences, workshops, and institutes.

Please visit

to learn more.