Taking the pulse of bioscience education in America: A State-by-State Analysis. Battelle Technology Partnership Practice May 2009. Project Team. Battelle World’s largest independent research and development organization Conducts $5.2 billion in global R&D annually
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Battelle Technology Partnership Practice
Like other technology-driven industries, the biosciences calls for a college-educated workforce (but not all PhDs and MDs), lots of technicians, engineers and quality control.
Estimated that over 80% of life science jobs require post-secondary education.
What differentiates biosciences industry is its specialized skill requirements.
MA Life Sciences Center, “Growing Talent: Meeting the Evolving Needs of the Massachusetts Life Sciences Industry,” found the following specific workforce shortages:
Clinical trials management
Process development and manufacturing engineers
Laboratory animal care
Specialty scientific fields, like toxicology
Quality assurance and quality controlBioscience Talent Challenge
U.S. failing to keep pace with international competitors: calls for a college-educated workforce (but not all PhDs and MDs), lots of technicians, engineers and quality control.
On science literacy —as measured by the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) — U.S. stands 17th out of 29 OECD nations.
U.S. has slipped to 7th in the world in the educational attainment of younger adults aged 25 to 34 with at least an associate’s degree — serious risk that theeducational attainment of younger workers in U.S. may fall short of older generation of workers it is replacing.
Warning Signs on Bioscience Education:
On the National Assessment of Educational Progress, life sciences scores for 12th graders have declined from 1996 to 2005.
Based on American College Test — a standardized achievement test for college admission — only 28% of U.S. students taking the test had a score indicating college readiness for biology.But U.S. falling behind…and so a crisis is brewing!
Time is ripe for an calls for a college-educated workforce (but not all PhDs and MDs), lots of technicians, engineers and quality control.in-depth analysis of states’ performance in preparing an educated bioscience workforce.
Focus on middle and high school level as primary feeders to postsecondary education and shapers of career awareness and preparation.
How well are students in high school and middle school being prepared in the biosciences in particular and in science and mathematics in general?
How and to what extent are states incorporating the biosciences into school curricula?
How well prepared are science teachers to teach students about the biosciences?
To what extent are students exposed to the biosciences and made aware of career opportunities and educational requirements?Project Objective
Framework was developed after consultation with calls for a college-educated workforce (but not all PhDs and MDs), lots of technicians, engineers and quality control.
National experts in bioscience education
Battelle used existing secondary data supplemented by state specific surveys
Standards and requirements
Teach quality and preparation
Experiential learning and career awarenessMethodology
SOURCES OF ACHIEVEMENT DATA
The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP)
Advanced placement (AP) tests
The American College Test (ACT)
The Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT)
Striking regional differences in 8th grade NAEP Science Average Scores for 2005 with Northeastern, Mountain and Upper Midwest regions standing out as higher performers
Leading States in NAEP Science Achievement
Leading States in ACT Science Achievement
Leaders of the Pack receive a passing grade of 3 or greater on the AP Biology testConnecticut, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Ohio, Vermont, Wisconsin
Second Tier Colorado, Delaware, Idaho, Illinois, Maryland, Missouri, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Tennessee, Utah, Virginia, Washington
Middling PerformanceAlabama, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Indiana, Kentucky, Maine, Michigan, Montana, South Carolina, Wyoming
Lagging PerformanceArkansas, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, Nevada, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas, West Virginia
Not Rated: Alaska, Iowa, Kansas, Nebraska, New York, Pennsylvania and Puerto Rico were not rated as they did not participate in the NAEP science assessment in 2005Wide disparities exist among the states in student performance in the biosciences and broader sciences
The patterns of student performance across key achievement measures suggest states fall into several broad categories.
Mitch Horowitz bioscience education if the U.S. is to remain globally competitive in the biosciences
Battelle Technology Partnership Practice
A copy of the report as well as the individual profiles for the 50 states, Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia can be found at