Authentic Research Modules in Science (ARMS)

Each Authentic Research Module in Science (ARMS) is a semester-long research course designed to help high school students think and work like scientists—providing the tools and instruction students need to carry out genuine research projects in schools with limited laboratory resources. By collaborating with multiple high schools and science research classes throughout New York City, CUNY GK-12 Fellows have developed novel ways for students to perform authentic research that teaches science process skills, content knowledge, and science literacy. Participation in ARMS enables student researchers to become citizen scientists and achieve higher levels of success in city, state, and national science research competitions.

ARMS are designed in keeping with a standard, backward design template, and each Module incorporates best practices in learning theory, instructional design, and evaluation. The ARMS also have specific components that focus on basic scientific literacy and computational skills. They are intended to have a lasting impact in our city’s high schools—even after the GK-12 Fellows must move on to new challenges. Since the New York City urban environment provides a rich resource for student explorations, each ARM focuses on the living urban environment as a research theme. However, any ARMS can be adapted to a suburban or rural setting. Please explore the courses that follow and use the Contact Us link to send us your feedback.

Educators are granted permission to use the ARMS referenced on this page for educational purposes only. Please credit the National Science Foundation, the CUNY Science Now GK-12 program, and the authors responsible for developing the course.

Course Title (ARMS):

Good in the 'Hood is a web-based course which studies access to green space in urban areas and issues of environmental justice

Backyard Toxicology  is a study of how toxins interact with living organisms

Wingin' It is a study of how birds adapt to urban environments.

Wild City is a study the types of wildlife that are found in cities and how they survive in an urban environment

DNA Detectives students use modern techniques of molecular genetics to solve a wildlife forensics mystery

Molecular NYC is a study of the biodiversity of New York City through DNA barcoding


Click here for the full list of ARMS.