Improving STEM education is a team effort. It requires dedicated teachers as well as researchers, curriculum developers, and scholars, all working together to support innovation and excellence in the classroom.

This is the idea behind the Community for Advancing Discovery Research in Education (CADRE), a network for STEM education researchers who have been funded by the National Science Foundation’s (NSF’s) Discovery Research pre-K–12 (DRK–12) program. Through its leadership of CADRE, EDC supports project teams for NSF-funded initiatives across the United States with the express purpose of helping the DRK–12 community share important discoveries, connect with each other, and develop the innovative products that will shape the future of STEM education.

Key Activities

EDC’s CADRE staff support a network of more than 300 actively funded NSF projects and their principal investigators and project staff. CADRE staff undertake the following activities:

  • Sponsor the CADRE Fellows program, a capacity-building professional development experience for early career researchers and developers
  • Disseminate news and information to more than 4,000 STEM education researchers and 20,000 teachers, administrators, and industry representatives via a website, social media, podcasts, video showcases, and webinars
  • Coordinate bi-annual principal investigator (PI) meetings to bring together DRK–12-funded educators, researchers, and scientists from across the country


  • Supported the capacity building of more than 700 DRK–12 projects and their PIs and program staff since 2008
  • Supported a new cohort of 10 CADRE Fellows each year since 2009

Additionally, according to evaluation surveys:

  • Participants of the DRK–12 PI meeting indicated that the meeting met their purpose of engaging with other awardees, sharing their own work and learning about the work of others, and learning new information or strategies they can apply to their own work. 
  • High percentages of CADRE Fellows reported the program helped them network with early career peers, prepared them for proposing funding, exposed them to the NSF community and funding contexts, acquainted them with different work contexts and career tracks, and bolstered their credentials or career tracks.

Learn More

Community for Advancing Discovery Research in Education (CADRE)
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National Science Foundation

Collaborate closely with other NSF Networks