AAAS Project 2061 Biology Textbooks Evaluation

About the Evaluation

The evaluation was conducted in two stages. First, content specialists (including three Ph.D.- biologists) examined the textbooks' student and teacher editions to identify places where one or more of four important biology topics were addressed--in text segments, activities, assessments, and other components. The next stage involved teams of experienced biology teachers and university faculty--all with biology backgrounds, knowledge of the research on science learning and teaching, and extensive training in the Project 2061 curriculum analysis procedure. These reviewers applied a set of research-based instructional criteria to the textbooks' treatments of the four biology topics. The instruction in each textbook was examined meticulously by a total of eight instructional analysts who worked as four independent two-member teams. This analysis required hundreds of hours of careful consideration for each textbook.

Two of the four teams examined each textbook on the topics Molecular Basis of Heredity and Natural Selection & Evolution and two other teams examined each textbook on the topics Cell Structure & Function and Matter & Energy Transformations. The teams analyzed the textbook's prescribed program--what instruction would be like if the teacher were to follow the suggestions in the teachers' guide literally. All analysts used the same criteria for evaluating each textbook and used the same methodology to rate the textbooks on the more than 100 indicators supporting the criteria. Analysts were required to provide specific evidence from the materials to justify each of their ratings.


Jo Ellen Roseman, Ph.D.

Luli Stern, Ph.D.
Biology Consultant

Ann Caldwell
Research Associate

Lori Kurth
Program Associate

Instructional Analysts

Sharlene Argamaso-Hernan, Ph.D.
Baltimore County Public Schools

Andrea Barton
University of Wisconsin-Madison

Angela Benjamin
District of Columbia Public Schools

Leah Bricker
Indiana Department of Education

Judy Capra
Jefferson County Public Schools (Colorado)

Jennifer Cartier, Ph.D.
University of Wisconsin-Madison

Sam Donovan
University of Wisconsin-Madison

Sally Duff
Baltimore City Public Schools (retired)

Marlene Hilkowitz
Penn-Delco School District (Pennsylvania)

Susan Johnson, Ph.D.
University of Wisconsin-Madison and Madison Public Schools

Page Keeley
Maine Department of Education

Karen Mesmer
University of Wisconsin-Madison

Barbara Neureither
Holt Public Schools (Michigan)

Cynthia Passmore
University of Wisconsin-Madison

Howard Putterman
Montgomery County Public Schools (Maryland)

Kathleen Roth, Ph.D.
Michigan State University

Francine Rowe
Edgewood College (Wisconsin)

Teresa Shume
Moorhead State University (Montana)

Eileen Theissen
Baltimore City Public Schools

Molly Weinburgh, Ph.D.
Georgia State University

Project 2061 Biology Textbooks Evaluation Advisory Committee

Andrea Bowden
Baltimore City Public Schools

David Campbell, Ph.D.
National Science Foundation

Wayne Carley, Ph.D.
National Association of Biology Teachers

Delores Dalton
Virginia Department of Education

Clarissa Evans, Ph.D.
Howard County Public Schools (Maryland)

Carolyn Kornegay
District of Columbia Public Schools

Sharon Lynch, Ph.D.
George Washington University

Gerhard Salinger, Ph.D.
National Science Foundation

Rochelle Slutskin
Anne Arundel County Public Schools (Maryland)

Gordon Uno, Ph.D.
National Science Foundation

Gerald Wheeler, Ph.D.
National Science Teachers Association

Continued: Biology Textbooks and the Human Genome