Stronger Workforce

Building a Science of Classrooms: Application of the CLASS Framework in Over 4,000 U.S. Early Childhood and Elementary Classrooms

In Building a Science of Classrooms, Hamre, Pianta, Mashburn, and Downer present a scientific framework to assess classroom quality from PreK through Third Grade. Grounded in developmental theory, the Classroom Assessment Scoring System (CLASS) is a standardized classroom measure that has been validated in classrooms across the country.

The CLASS framework examines three areas of classroom interactions that are critical to student outcomes throughout children’s education from Prekindergarten through Third Grade - Emotional Support, Instructional Support, and Classroom Organization.

The CLASS Framework serves as a useful tool for: (1) studying the unique contributions of classroom quality in student outcomes; (2) professional development for teachers to improve practice; and (3) policy and accrediting bodies to contribute to defining what teachers should know and be able to do.