About Professional Services“Professional Services” refers to the activities offered by the Smithsonian Science Education Center to educators, administrators, and stakeholders aspiring to transform science education. These activities generally fall into one of two categories:
- Leadership Development-overarching experiences provided to educational leadership and stakeholders within a school or district. These events and experiences usually address the five elements of the LASER Model.
- Professional Development-workshops provided to teachers and centered around our STC™ curriculum and modeling inquiry science teaching methods; one of the five pillars of the LASER Model.
The Smithsonian Science Education Center’s inquiry-based approach to science education provides students in classrooms across the country and around the world with captivating, first-hand learning experiences. The SSEC’s Theory of Action, depicted below, advocates for scientifically-based research and best practices to inform the development of a shared vision and an infrastructure for transforming science education programs.
The Leadership and Assistance for Science Education Reform (LASER) Model is nationally and internationally recognized. LASER leads to measurably higher student achievement in science by using research-based curriculum and professional services to improve science teaching and learning. The SSEC accomplishes this by providing a holistic support system underlying excellent, equitable, career-oriented science education through the LASER Model. The LASER Model describes the infrastructure necessary to effectively implement science education reform:
This educational approach is straightforward, revolutionary and results oriented. The SSEC’s portfolio of training programs, curricula, and resources have captured the attention of national and international experts. The SSEC provides an opportunity to change students’ attitudes, improve outcomes, and connect learning to future employment through the STEM disciplines: science, technology, engineering, and math.