Knowledge Synthesis on the Implementation and Effects of Revising High School Graduation Credit Requirements in Mathematics and Science

Principal Investigator: 
Project Overview
Background & Purpose: 

In this Knowledge Diffusion project, researchers are evaluating and synthesizing knowledge about the implementation and effects of changes in high school graduation requirements for mathematics and science. A substantial majority of the states have recently revised these graduation requirements, are currently revising them, or are actively considering such revisions. Policy makers intend these changes to better prepare students for college and/or help them to be successful in the 21st century workforce. However, there are questions and concerns about how mathematics and science courses and instruction are adjusted at the district and school levels in response to these policies. This project will synthesize literature from a variety of sources (e.g., peer reviewed journals, state-commissioned reports) about this topic to shed light on the impact of these policy revisions on such variables as school funding for mathematics and science education, shortages of mathematics and science teachers, special student populations (e.g., English Language Learners, students with disabilities), dropouts, and career-technical education.

Research Design: 

This study involves synthesizing existing published research on the topic, as well as current practice-based knowledge acquired through the use of an online Expert Practitioner Panel. The proposed synthesis process is adapted from the Knowledge Management and Dissemination project (KMD), conducted by WestEd in partnership with and under the leadership of Horizon Research and the Education Development Corporation (EDC). This process provides researchers with a method of systematically rating each study’s methodological integrity and evidentiary utility, with the ultimate goal of characterizing the strengths and limitations of each study. These standards were developed by KMD staff along with a panel of mathematics and science education researchers, research methodologists, and education reform leaders. A detailed codebook was developed for this process as part of the KMD project and will be used in this proposed study.


Our project is still in its early stages and there are no findings thus far.

Publications & Presentations: 

Our project is still in its early stages and there are no references to it thus far.