Common Instrument Suite - Student

Common Instrument Suite - Student


The Common Instrument Suite Student Survey (CIS-S) is a youth self-report survey that measures a variety of STEM-related attitudes, including STEM engagement, STEM career knowledge, and STEM identity, as well as 21st century skills. It was initially developed with informal/outside-of-school time (OST) STEM programs in mind, but the survey can also be completed by students in school because the concepts are equally applicable. The purpose of the survey is to better understand how informal STEM programming impacts students’ perceptions/attitudes towards STEM.

Thanks to funding from the Noyce Foundation (now STEM Next Opportunity Fund), the original Common Instrument (CI) was developed in 2009 by Dr. Gil Noam (director of PEAR) and OST practitioners and educators from major organizations like Girls Inc. and 4-H. It has been administered over 130,000 times to students enrolled in informal/OST and in-school STEM programs across 47 U.S. states as well as eight countries in Asia, South America, and Europe. Importantly, the CI has demonstrated strong psychometric properties in previous work using advanced methods to assess validity and reliability. The CI survey was originally developed to measure youth STEM engagement, and PEAR has since expanded the original CI survey to include other important indicators inspired by the internationally recognized Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA; and Holistic Student Assessment (HSA) surveys (Noam et al., 2012).

•  The PISA-related items measure how knowledgeable and interested students are in obtaining STEM careers, how intrinsically motivated students are to be involved in STEM-related activities, and how much students enjoy learning about and performing STEM.

•  The HSA items assess 21st-century skills that are highly correlated with interest and achievement in STEM, particularly perseverance, critical thinking, and relationships with peers and adults.

The CI/CIS typically takes between 5 and 20 minutes to complete depending on the number of outcome measures included on the survey, the type of survey design used, and the age of the students. For more information or to request permission to use the Common Instrument Suite, please contact PEAR’s STEM Client Coordinator, Hannah Meisels at or 617-484-3645 x243. 



STELAR is not the author of these materials and cannot provide information on validity or permission for use. Permissions must be requested through the publisher or authors listed below.



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