ARIS BI Rubric Tutorial

Are you curious about how the ARIS Toolkit can help you plan, review, and improve Broader Impact projects?

In this tutorial, we will introduce you to the resources available in the toolkit through the use of an example case study.

First, we will review an example Broader Impact project proposal.

Then we will walk through the BI Rubric, giving you a chance to rate the case study on each criteria.

Finally, after selecting each option, you can compare your rating with those of the ARIS team. For each criteria, we will explain our rating, and provide links to additional information and guidance available in the ARIS Toolkit. Keep in mind, these example ratings are from the ARIS team, a group of experts in Broader Impacts. However, the ratings of individual reviewers may depart from these, reflecting variation common among individual panel reviewers.

Click the button to start reading the BI case study. Please note, this tutorial works best in a large browser window.

Broader Impact Case Study

Proposed research will leverage ongoing, productive multidisciplinary collaborations between PIs Smith, Jones and Zhou, aimed at elucidating the subcellular processes and chemical signatures that are mechanistically driving the interplay and outcome of calcification, ecophysiology and virus infection. The project provides funding support for PI Smith, a female research professor, who is responsible for generating her entire salary through extramural funding, as well as resources for technical support and three PhD students (2 at Diatom University and one at Coccolith College). The graduate students will have distinct yet complementary projects focused on the interplay between calcification, photosynthesis, lipid chemistry, and virus infection. This project will also nurture ongoing interactions between Smith and Jones with Prof Wales, an ecosystem and biogeochemical modeler at Titanium Tech. PI Jones and Prof Wales had an NSF-funded project (NSF award #1234) examining host-virus interactions under different nutrient regimes and their biogeochemical impact by incorporating mechanistic into mathematical models (see Results from Prior NSF Support). One important anticipated outcome from the proposed work will be to provide quantitative physiological data for key parameters for the costs and benefits of calcification so coccolithophores can be better modeled in the global ocean.

Proposed research activities will uniquely reinforce and expand PIs’ collective broader impact (BI) footprint, with activities and goals designed around creating a career-long approach to science communication and societal engagement in ocean science. We aim to create a meaningful science experience for learners through innovative activities that highlight science research practices, with the rationale that they are critical to current K-12 education reform efforts needed for compliance with the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS Lead States, 2013). The biggest conceptual shift from previous science education standards to the NGSS is the focus on three interwoven scientific themes that students are expected to master over their K-12 careers. Those themes are the ‘Disciplinary Core Ideas’, ‘Crosscutting Concepts’, and ‘Practices of Science and Engineering’. ‘Disciplinary Core Ideas’ have broad importance across multiple sciences or engineering disciplines and are a key tool for understanding a wide range of scientific processes. ‘Crosscutting Concepts’ are the intuitive understanding that a scientist brings to the exploration of contents or a field. Finally, ‘Practices of Science and Engineering’ refer to the ways of knowing and doing that scientists and engineers use to study the natural world. The goal of the NGSS is to move science instruction away from disconnected facts and toward inter-related ideas, which learners can use to explain scientific concepts and solve problems (Krajcik, 2014).

With the help of previous NSF support, PI’s Smith and Jones and educator Quincey created ‘Science Videos’ (PI Smith, 2017), a series of educational videos and hands-on lessons designed to help learners explore the nature and process of science through the NGSS (See Facilities, Equipment and Other Resources). Our ultimate goal with the Science Videos program is to support learners and increase their identity as scientists and build on their reasoning and sense making skills, using this proposed research in molecular microbial ecology as an engaging context. Next steps for the Science Videos platform are to engage a broader group of educators, develop new NGSS ready materials to support the classroom implementation of the current videos, and evaluate the impacts of the project.

Key tasks of our BI program include:

  1. An educator fellowship program: The mission of our Fellowship program is to improve K-12 education by providing relevant, professional learning and leadership development for teachers through innovative collaborations with our research team. We propose to provide professional development opportunities for high school teachers designed to: a) Build capacity for bringing current research and accurate science content into classrooms in an engaging, inquiry-based style; b) Develop innovative standards-based curriculum resources that use our research to investigate science and engineering content; and c) Increase student understanding of science content and their practical application of science process skills. A connected team of teacher leaders will emerge that leverages the expertise they have gained from their individual fellowships and allow them to make an even bigger contribution to the improvement of teaching and learning.
  2. Develop new NGSS ready materials to support the classroom implementation: The teacher fellows will co-develop new lessons/ideas for facilitating Science Videos in learning environments (in and out of school). We are exploring using the NSF funded Earth Science Puzzles (Kastens, 2010) as a template for the data lesson. Diatom University educator Quincey has twenty-five year experience working collaboratively with educators to develop and implement research rich projects in K-12 classrooms.
  3. Evaluate our program: A professional evaluator (Dr. Count) will develop survey instruments to measure both the formative and summative impact of the project, using a combination of pre- and post- surveys with students and educators, and interviews to collect this data.

Budget Justification (summary)

Task 1:

  • 15% of FTE educator in years 2,3, and 4 of this four-year award
  • Teacher fellowship stipends (6 teachers, 15 days@$200/day)

Task 2:

  • 15% Research Translator and technology support in years 2 and 3 of this four-year award
  • Teacher stipends to support lesson plan development (2 teachers 10 @$200/day)

Task 3:

  • 5% of FTE evaluator in year 3
  • Project team member and 1 teacher to present at conference in yr. 4: regional conference @$600/person, and c) national conference @$1,200/person
  • Misc. supplies, printing, postage, fax, etc. @ $300/year for years 2,3,4

Facilities, Equipment and Other Resources (related text)

Science Videos is a series of educational videos and hands-on lessons designed to help students explore the nature and process of science. These short videos are designed to introduce the science and engineering practices from the point of view of practicing scientists. The videos focus on the research of Drs. Smith and Jones of virus infections of coccolithophores in the North Atlantic. The videos are meant to illustrate the non-linear, cyclical nature of the scientific process and the creative vision and skills needed to conduct cutting-edge, impactful scientific research. They have been used successfully in both undergraduate and high school classrooms. For the K-12 community, these videos and associated materials have been produced to support the implementation of the Science Framework for K-12 Science Education and the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). The long-term aim of this project is to produce supporting material (lesson plans, discussion prompts, and demonstrations) to complement each of the eight NGSS practices.

The Diatom University’s Education and Outreach group works to promote ocean literacy through the development of a broad range of products and services that use the unique scientific resources and assets of the university. The E&O group serves a variety of clients, including:

  • K-20 students and teachers,
  • informal science learning centers and other non-profit organizations,
  • local, regional, state, national, and international government agencies,
  • the news media,
  • the legislature, and
  • the general public.

Scientists and engineers work directly with members of the E&O group to ensure adequate translation of oceanographic products, programs and services to meet the needs of the individual user communities. These efforts are coordinated by a jointly appointed Data Translator, who ensures the operations group is aware of the visualization and content needs of E&O efforts, and provides the E&O group with access to upcoming data products and research findings for story development.

Letters of collaboration, prior support, budget justification, biosketches are included in the Supplemental Materials Section of this proposal.

Once you have read the case study, click the button below to begin your assessment using the BI Rubric.

BI Rubric Review

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Case Study Examples (click buttons to scroll)

Toolkit Resource

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The intent of this exercise was to review all of the key areas of a thorough BI plan statement, and to showcase the components of the ARIS BI Toolkit that you can reference when creating or evaluating a BI statement.

While the BI Rubric aims to eliminate some of the inherent subjectivity during the evaluation process, individual views may differ. We encourage you to discuss possible differences with your colleagues, as those discussions can lead to more robust BI ideas.

We hope you find the BI Rubric and ARIS Toolkit useful as a way to frame your discussions as you develop your next proposal. Best of luck!