Argument-Driven Inquiry education programs focus on student-centered learning that is authentic to the discipline. Students must develop and use disciplinary core ideas and practices to answer a specific guiding question or to develop a solution to a problem. Each program helps students develop content literacy as well as English-Language Arts skills.
The current goal of science education in the United States is for all students to become proficient in science by the time they finish high school. In order to be considered proficient in science, students need to learn more than facts and terms. Students need to learn how to use disciplinary core ideas (DCIs), crosscutting concepts (CCs), and science and engineering practices (SEPs) to explore or explain the world around them or to solve problems. They also need to develop science specific literacy skills so they can read, write, and speak in the context of science.
The current goal of mathematics education in the United States is for all students to learn how to participate in and use mathematics to solve problems by the time they finish high school. Authentic participation in and the use of mathematics to solve problems requires making conjectures based on measurements, patterns, and structures found in the physical world, the social world, and in the discipline of mathematics itself. Much like the work of professionals in the other STEM fields, mathematicians must make claims based on evidence and then clarify their logic with justifications. The claims and conjectures must withstand rebuttal and peer review, thus participation in mathematics requires interaction with other members of the community.
STEM education is an integrated and interdisciplinary approach to teaching. This focus gives students an opportunity to learn how to use core ideas and practices from science, mathematics, and engineering to figure out solutions to problems and to deploy technology in the service of problem-solving. It also gives students an opportunity to learn how to collaborate with others and to develop the literacy skills they need to read, write, and speak in the technical subjects. Unfortunately, STEM subjects are usually taught in isolation and there are few existing approaches to STEM education that integrate these subjects in a meaningful way.