What is WISE?
What is WISE? Curriculum-Based Inquiry Projects Student Engagement Interactive Models Teacher Tools Free & Open Source
What's New?

Sequence of NGSS WISE unitsJan 19, 2018

6th grade teachers are gathering to decide a sequence of WISE units to use for teaching the full NGSS disciplinary standards for the year. Korah Wiley, graduate student, is working with the teachers to customize units to strengthen the links across topics.

New ModelsJan 8, 2018

Two teachers are using a new model and dynamic graph to help students design an optimal insulator for hot and cold drinks. Check out the new model and graph!

Automated GuidanceJan 4, 2018

One of our teachers customized the automated guidance and teacher alerts based on student essays in the Plate Tectonics unit to identify and personalize guidance for all her students. Students made extraordinary improvements on their essays using the combination of teacher and computer guidance!

New RubricsNov 1, 2017

Rubrics including student work examples for automatically scored embedded assessments are now accessible when you preview a project. Try it out in the Thermo Challenge!

2017 WISE Researcher WorkshopAug 3, 2017

Researchers met for our annual researchers workshop in UC Berkeley from July 31-August 3. We shared our research findings and brainstormed future directions. The technology team gave a great demo introducing a lot of new WISE features.

2017 WISE Teacher WorkshopJun 24, 2017

We will be hosting our annual WISE teacher workshop at UC Berkeley from June 26-28. Teachers will share their experiences running WISE projects during this past year.

WISE in another languageMar 17, 2017

Want to use WISE in another language? Contact us and help us translate WISE using our online form!

WISE 5.0 Released!Mar 14, 2016

A brand-new version of WISE has been released! See this post to learn more. If you are a developer or a designer, come join our open-source project!

WISE URL changesNov 9, 2015

We're making changes to the URL of some pages in WISE so that they are shorter and easier to remember. Please click here for details.

2015 NSF Video ShowcaseMay 11, 2015

Check out and vote for our video on automated guidance as part of the 2015 National Science Foundation Video Showcase here!

New Article on WISEJan 28, 2015

WISE researchers recently published an article on WISE teachers customizing units. You can read it here. Please feel free to post your feedback on the discussion forum.

New Grading ToolJan 13, 2015

We have added a new and greatly improved grading tool to WISE. You will find a link to it for each project run you have created. We will continue to work on it and would appreciate any feedback you could provide to help us make it better.

WISE in SpanishFeb 14, 2013

WISE is collaborating with a group in Argentina to create versions of all our activities in Spanish. Check out the Detergents project in Spanish!

WISE included in STEMworks DatabaseAug 17, 2012

WISE has been chosen as an example program that "deepen(s) young people's learning in science, technology, engineering and mathematics" after a rigorous review by WestEd and the non-profit Change the Equation (CTEq) initiative and has been included in the STEMworks database.

WISE Book ReviewAug 17, 2012

Science Learning and Instruction (by WISE Director Marcia Linn & Bat-Sheva Eylon) has been reviewed in the journal Research & Practice in Assessment.

WISE research highlighted by NSTAJun 27, 2012

Research by Kevin McElhaney and WISE director Marcia Linn identified by the National Science Teachers Association's Connections feature as suggested summer reading of current research in science education.

WISE featured in Magazine of the Teachers College, Columbia UniversityJun 27, 2012

Pushing the Right Buttons, by Joe Levine, highlights how WISE tools help teachers understand the needs of individual students and support students to iteratively refine and develop scientific understanding.

June 2012 workshopJun 27, 2012

The LOOPS/CLEAR/CLASS workshop is officially in session! This year's theme is feedback: What makes useful feedback? How can we provide better feedback? How can we design technology supports for using feedback more efficiently and effectively in the classroom? See the workshop website for more details: https://sites.google.com/site/telsworkshops/.

WISE4.5 is released!May 14, 2012

A stable release of WISE v4.5 is now available for download from http://wise4.org/. Among other goodies, there are tools for autoscoring and feedback, an easier authoring interface, and new customizable features in the Idea Manager tool. See the WISE4-Discuss Google Group for details! Click Here

New MItosis ProjectJun 27, 2012

The "Mitosis and Cell Processes Project, one of our most popular, has been completely updated. You will find it titled "What makes a good cancer medicine?: Observing mitosis and cell processes" in our Library.

AERA 2012Mar 19, 2012

We're getting ready for AERA in Vancouver, BC! New research presented April 13-17 by Marcia Linn, David Miller, Kelly Ryoo, and Hillary Swanson. Check us out on the AERA program!

WISE Server DowntimeFeb 6, 2012

The WISE server will be down for maintenance on Sunday February 12th from 10:00 AM to 1:00 PM Pacific Standard Time. WE are sorry for any inconvenience.

New Design!Aug 10, 2011

We're excited to unveil our new design for WISE! Tell us what you think. We're still ironing out the bugs, so if you find any problems, let us know.

New WISE Projects!Aug 10, 2011

Great new projects have been added to our Library: "How Can Detergents be Used to Clean Oil Spills?" and "How Can We Recycle Old Tires?" for high school chemistry classes and "Investigating Planetary Motion and Seasons" for use in high school earth science or general science classes.

New Book PublishedApr 30, 2011

Linn & Eylon (2011). Science Learning and Instruction: Taking Advantage of Technology to Promote Knowledge Integration.

New Review PaperAug 8, 2011

Gerard, Varma, Corliss, & Linn (in press). "Professional development in technology-enhanced inquiry science." Available online.

Blueprint for Great SchoolsAug 9, 2011

CA State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson calls for connecting children to the online world in the classroom and at home. See http://www.cde.ca.gov for more details.

WISE4 Now AvailableAug 26, 2010

We are pleased to announce that our new learning environment WISE4 is now available in open beta format. WISE4 does require creating a new account. There continues to be no cost or commitment to joining. We will be continuing to add new projects over the next few months. Let us know what you think.

WISE 4.0 ProgressDec 1, 2009

We are currently in beta testing with our partner schools. We are looking forward to full release in the fall of 2010. Keep checking in for updates.

WISE Projects Browse WISE Curricula +
Earth Science
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    Plate Tectonics with Auto Guidance

    Students investigate how processes inside of Earth cause different geological landforms including earthquakes, volcanoes and mountains. Students use dynamic models to explore convection, and write and revise short essays using automated, adaptive guidance.

    Features: Automated guidance, automated teacher alerts, virtual model, graphs

    Performance Expectations: MS-ESS2-2 (Earth's Systems), MS-ESS2-3 (Earth's Systems)

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    Solar Radiation and Solar Ovens

    Students design, build, and test solar ovens. They critique and refine their own and their peers’ designs. Students learn about how energy is transformed from solar radiation to heat and infrared radiation.

    Features: Automated guidance, virtual model and dynamic graph, hands-on design

    Performance Expectations: MS-PS3 (Energy), MS-ESS3-5 (Earth and Human Activity), MS-ETS-1-4 (Engineering Design)

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    Climate Change & Solar Radiation

    Students learn about the contributing causes of climate change, particularly the mechanisms behind the greenhouse effect. Students learn to distinguish between this and non-causal factors, such as ozone depletion.

    Features: Automated guidance, virtual model and dynamic graph, MyModel

    Performance Expectations: MS-ESS3-3 (Earth and Human Activity), MS-ESS3-5 (Earth and Human Activity)

Life Science
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    Photosynthesis & Cellular Respiration

    Using interactive visualizations, students explore how light energy is transformed into chemical energy and stored in glucose during photosynthesis, and how plants release the chemical energy as usable energy.

    Features: Automated guidance, virtual model and dynamic graph, MyModel

    Performance Expectations: MS-LS1-6 (From Molecules to Organisms: Structures and Processes), MS-LS2-3 (Ecosystems: Interactions, Energy, and Dynamics), MS-PS1-2 (Matter and its Interactions)

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    Genetic Inheritance

    Students use dynamic models, graphs, and critique to explore the science behind genetics and the inheritance of traits.

    Features: Virtual model, argumentation

    Performance Expectations: MS-LS3-2 (Heredity: Inheritance and Variation of Traits)

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    Ocean Biodiversity

    Students collaboratively learn about the main ideas of evolution (mutations and variation, environmental pressures, natural selection, phenotype versus genotype plasticity, heredity and biodiversity, speed of evolution) through a sequence of interactive activities. These include graph-based analysis of a model simulating natural selection. To develop scientific discourse capabilities, students are guided to share ideas and arguments regarding the simulation, and collaboratively discuss science and graphing.

    Features: Virtual model and dynamic graph, argumentation

    Performance Expectations: MS-LS3 (Heredity: Inheritance and Variation of Traits), MS-LS4-4 (Biological Evolution: Unity and Diversity), MS-LS4-6 (Biological Evolution: Unity and Diversity)

Physical Science
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    Thermodynamics: Understanding Heat & Temperature

    Students explore heat transfer, using models to investigate rate of conduction in different materials and thermal equilibrium.

    Performance Expectations: MS-PS3-3 (Energy), MS-PS3-4 (Energy), MS-PS3-5 (Energy)

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    Musical Instruments

    Students learn about the properties of sound waves (wavelength, frequency and amplitude) and apply this information to the design and construction of their own instruments (a single-stringed monochord).

    Features: Virtual model and dynamic graph, hands-on design, design report

    Performance Expectations: MS-PS4-1 (Waves and their Applications in Technologies for Information Transfer), MS-PS4-2 (Waves and their Applications in Technologies for Information Transfer)

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    Chemical Reactions and Alternative Fuels: Making a Change

    Students explore the relationship between carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and global temperature. Students investigate the carbon dioxide emitted and total cost incurred for various combinations of alternative fuels to determine an ideal solution to propose the their congressperson. Students explore the components of a strong argument (claim, evidence, reasoning) and write a persuasive letter to their congressperson.

    Features: Automated guidance, virtual model and dynamic graph, argumentation, Letter to Congress

    Performance Expectations: MS-ESS3 (Earth and Human Activity), MS-PS1 (Matter and its Interactions)

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    Thermodynamics Challenge

    Students explore heat transfer, using models to investigate rate of conduction in different materials and thermal equilibrium. [NB-Graph Auto]

    Performance Expectations: MS-PS3-3 (Energy), MS-PS3-4 (Energy), MS-PS3-5 (Energy)

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    Graphing Stories

    This project helps students understand that every graph has a story to tell. The project is based on the study of motion.

    Practices: Analyzing and Interpreting Data; Using Mathematics; Obtaining, Evaluating, and Communicating Information

    Features: Automated guidance, virtual model and dynamic graph, graph construction

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    Newton Scooters

    Students design, build, and test self-propelled vehicles: scooters that use elastic potential energy from rubber bands or balloons. Students use scientific concepts to solve engineering challenges while designing, building, testing and reflecting on their scooters in an iterative process.

    Features: Virtual model and dynamic graph, hands-on design

    Performance Expectations: MS-PS3-1 (Energy), MS-PS3-2 (Energy)