Investigating the Implementation of the Be A Scientist! Project in New York City and Los Angeles Formative Evaluation -Year Two

August 8th, 2013 | EVALUATION

The Center for Children and Technology (CCT) at Education Development Center, Inc., a nonprofit international research and development organization (, conducted the formative evaluation of the second year’s implementation of the Be A Scientist! (BAS) project, which is managed by Iridescent—a nonprofit afterschool STEM program ( The goal of the BAS project is to provide high-quality afterschool science and engineering courses to underserved families in New York City and Los Angeles. The program specifically targets second graders and their families, though siblings and family members of all ages are welcome to attend. Research Questions The formative evaluation is guided by the following research questions: 1. Is the development and implementation of project materials, recruitment strategies, training, and course activities well designed and integrated into the project’s goals? 2. How do participants experience the project? 3. What is the impact of the project on families, undergraduate engineering students, and project partners (e.g., universities, museums)? 4. What are the programmatic and strategic recommendations for the improvement of the project? Methodologies To answer these questions, CCT researchers employed a multi-method research approach, using teachers’ logs, surveys, interviews, and site visits. The research instruments addressed four themes: families’ profiles and educational expectations, implementation success, implementation challenges, and impact on participants. In addition, the student survey asked participants to draw a picture of their favorite building/construction activity and describe what is happening in the picture, and to imagine and draw an engineer at work.



Team Members

Tara Chklovski, Principal Investigator, Iridescent
Harouna Ba, Evaluator, Education Development Center


Funding Source: NSF
Funding Program: ISE/AISL
Award Number: 1008309
Funding Amount: 1500000

Related URLs

Be a Scientist!


Audience: Elementary School Children (6-10) | Evaluators | Families
Discipline: Engineering | Physics
Resource Type: Evaluation Reports | Formative | Interview Protocol | Research and Evaluation Instruments | Survey