Some of the lesson plans and materials linked from the FunWorks Web site are aligned to academic standards.
This resource addresses multiple standards identified in the National Educational Technology Standards for Students, which were developed by the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE). For more information about these standards, see
A National Science Foundation-funded project, the FunWorks grew out of rigorous research and testing. Following initial rounds of literature reviews and focus groups, the developers worked with a team of youth to design the collection. Subsequently, hundreds of young people gave feedback on the Web site during usability tests and evaluations. This multiphase, participatory research process ensured that the final product would more effectively serve the target audience.
Studies informing the development/advancement of the resource:
Numerous studies of youth career development and career perceptions, as well as young people's Web site design preferences, informed the development of the FunWorks. These studies are identified in the research summaries posted at this Web site: http://edc.org/GDI/CaREN.htm#project.
Pilot testing and evaluations have been carried out at different phases of the process. The collection prototype was tested by more than 100 young people during face-to-face and virtual sessions. Feedback from this group led the developers to make some design changes and add content. Subsequently, evaluation data from educators reveal that the FunWorks is being integrated in STEM classrooms, typically as part of a lesson about careers. Usability testing data from youth shows that they enjoy the FunWorks' features and vivid graphics, but want even more resources and information.