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NCSS Essential Questions for Psychology Today!. Debra Park Hilary Rosenthal December 2011. Resources for Teachers. Resources for Teachers . Overarching Themes of Standards. Understanding by Design Unit Plan .

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ncss essential questions for psychology today

NCSSEssential Questions for Psychology Today!

Debra Park

Hilary Rosenthal

December 2011


Enduring Understanding(s)

Students will understand that:

Psychological knowledge, like all scientific knowledge, evolves rapidly as new discoveries are made.

Psychological knowledge can be related to everyday life

There are multiple perspectives by which psychologists study and explain human behavior.

Heredity and environment interact in the development of an individual across the lifespan.

Scientific evidence is used to explain all findings in the field of psychology.


Enduring Understanding(s)

  • Students will understand that:
  • Intelligence is more than a score on a test.
  • A multi-cultural and global perspective recognizes how diversity is important to understanding intelligence.
  • Any other suggestions???

Essential Question(s):

How is intelligence defined and measured?

How did the uses and abuses of

Intelligence testing impact the lives of people of color/other groups in our society?

How should intelligence testing be used?

How can the results of various measures of intelligence be applied in the real world?

How can we define and measure intelligence in such a way that the results are valid and culturally fair?

How is our thinking/intelligence affected by the information provided by our culture and environment?


Essential Question(s):

  • Can decision making skills be developed to overcome poor judgment and problem solving abilities?
  • Is intelligence more than being smart in school?
  • Any other suggestions???

Student Objectives/Learning Outcomes:

Students will:

Discuss the conceptualizations of intelligence.

Trace the history of intelligence testing and discuss its use and misuse.

Identify current methods of assessing human abilities and explain measures of reliability and validity.

Determine the biological, cultural and environmental factors that influence intelligence.

Review the research that has been conducted on what is known about intelligence and present a summary of this research.

Discuss what areas of intelligence are still in question and present their findings.


Submit Performance Indicators

Individuals and groups are invited to submit suggested Performance Indicators for the second revision of the National Standards for High School Psychology Curricula.

Content Standard 1: Research methods and measurements used to study behavior and mental processesStudents are able to (performance standards):

1.3 Define systematic procedures used to improve the validity of research findings, such as external validity.

Students may indicate this by (performance indicators):

a.  Describing how test validity and reliability are established and related b.  Determining which of two tests would be more useful for a particular purpose when given relevant data about validity and reliability 


Content Standard 3: Issues in Intelligence

  • Students are able to (performance standards):
  • 3.1 Discuss issues related to the consequences of intelligence testing
  • Students may indicate this by (performance indicators)
  • Explaining the history of intelligence testing and identifying how it have been used and misused.
  • Describing the link between intelligence testing and the eugenics movement
  • Students are able to (performance standards):
  • 3.2 Discuss the influences of biological, cultural, and environmental factors on intelligence
  • Students may indicate this by (performance indicators):
  • a. Characterizing how studies of identical versus fraternal twins help establish the role of heredity in determining individual differences in intelligence
  • b. Explaining the role of cultural and group norms in establishing the frames of reference we use in thinking about individual differences

Contact Info:debrapark@msn.comUbDPowerpointMore sample Unit Plans in UbD formatEssential Questions for US HistoryTeachers of Psychology in Secondary Schoolseleary@apa.orgVisit us at the APA TOPSS Booth!!!!Thanks for coming!!