External Influences Overview

All Research

For-Profit Colleges

This article look at the students who attend for-profits, the reason they choose these schools, and student out-comes on the number of broad measures and draw several conclusions. The authors write, the evidences shows that public community colleges may provide an equal or better education at lower cost at any for-profits. But budget pressure mean that community colleges and other nonselective public institutions may not be able to meet the demand for higher education. Second, for-profits appear to be at their best with well-defined programs of short duration that prepare students for a specific occupation. But for-profit completion rates, default rates, and labor market outcomes for students seeking associate's or higher degrees compare unfavorable with those of public postsecondary institutions. 

Deming, D., Goldin, C., & Katz, L. (2013). For-profit colleges. The Future of Children, 137-163.
Characteristics of Degree-Granting Postsecondary Institutions

In academic year 2017–18, there were 3,883 degree-granting institutions in the United States1 with first-year undergraduates: 2,407 were 4-year institutions offering programs at the bachelor’s or higher degree level and 1,476 were 2-year institutions offering associate’s degrees and other certificates. Some of the differences in the characteristics of 4-year and 2-year institutions may be related to their differing institutional missions.

Characteristics of Degree-Granting Postsecondary Institutions. (2019). NCES. Retrieved from https://nces.ed.gov/programs/coe/indicator_csa.asp

Transforming the culture of schools: Yup’ik Eskimo examples

This book share issues of equity and school transformation, and shows how one indigenous minority teachers' group engaged in a process of transforming schooling in their community. Documented in one small locale far-removed from mainstream America, the personal narratives by Yupík Eskimo teachers. 

 Lipka, J., & Ilutsik, E. (2014). Transforming the Culture of Schools: Yup¡ k Eskimo Examples. Routledge.

Why Money Matters for Improving Education

This article explore the relationship between per pupil spending and learning, particularly in developing countries that spend much lower levels in education than do OECD countries. Their findings suggest that, when education systems spend above $8,000, the association between student learning and per student spending is no longer statistically significant. Therefore, they find a threshold effect after this level of resources is met, indicating a declining relationship between resources and achievement at high levels of expenditure (consistent with other recent literature). There is a positive relationship between student learning and per pupil expenditure among the low-spending countries (below $8,000 per student), but a flat relationship among high-spending countries. 

 Vegas, E. (2016).Why Money Matters for Improving Education. Brooking Institutions. Retrieved from https://www.brookings.edu/blog/up-front/2016/07/21/why-money-matters-for-improving-education/

High-Performing, High-Poverty Schools: Research Review

This report reviews the research and strategies for achieving high levels of student performance in high poverty schools.


Center for Public Education. (2005, August 22). High-performing, high-poverty schools: Research review. Retrieved December 8, 2016, from Center for Public Education, http://www.centerforpubliceducation.org/Main-Menu/Organizing-a-school/High-performing-high-poverty-schools-At-a-glance-/High-performing-high-poverty-schools-Research-review.html

Educating Amid Uncertainty: The Organizational Supports Teachers Need to Serve Students in High-Poverty, Urban Schools

This study examined how uncertainty, both about students and the context in which they are taught, remains a persistent condition of teachers’ work in high-poverty, urban schools. Their conclusion: Traditional public schools are open systems and require systematic organizational responses to address the uncertainty introduced by their environments. Uncoordinated individual efforts alone are not sufficient to meet the needs of students in high-poverty urban communities.

Kraft, M. A., Papay, J. P., Johnson, S. M., Charner-Laird, M., Ng, M., & Reinhorn, S. (2015). Educating amid uncertainty. Educational Administration Quarterly, 51(5), 753–790. doi:10.1177/0013161X15607617

Value Added of Teachers in High–Poverty Schools and Lower–Poverty Schools

This study examined the complex linkages between teacher quality and socio-economic-based disparities in student achievement. The gap in teacher quality appears to arise from the lower payoff to teacher qualifications in high-poverty schools. In particular, the experience-productivity relationship is weaker in high-poverty schools and is not related to teacher mobility patterns. Recruiting teachers with good credentials into high-poverty schools may be insufficient to narrow the teacher quality gap. Policies that promote the long-term productivity of teachers in challenging high-poverty schools appear key.




Sass, T., Hannaway, J., Xu, Z., Figlio, D., & Feng, L. (2016, June). Value added of teachers in high-poverty schools and lower-poverty schools. Retrieved from http://www.urban.org/research/publication/value-added-teachers-high-poverty-schools-and-lower-poverty-schools

Critical issues in special education

This book is an analysis of important conceptual and practical issues that face special education professionals.

Algozzine, J. E., Thurlow, M., & Ysseldyke, J. E. (2000). Critical issues in special education.

The Condition of Education, 2010 Spotlight: High-Poverty Schools

This report provides extensive data on the high-poverty schools and the students who attend them. It also provides information on principals, teachers, and staff who work in them.

Aud, S., Hussar, W., Planty, M., Snyder, T., Bianco, K., Fox, M., Frohlich, L., Kemp, J., Drake, L. (2010). The Condition of Education 2010 (NCES 2010-028). National Center for Education Statistics, Institute of Education Sciences, U.S. Department of Education. Washington, DC.

Proceed With Caution: Using Web-Based Resources for Instructing Students With and at Risk for EBD.

This article examines issues relating to the use of websites popular with educators. This article offers guidelines for maximizing the usefulness of such sites and for avoiding many of the pitfall educators may face.

Beahm, L. A., Cook, B. G., & Cook, L. (2019). Proceed With Caution: Using Web-Based Resources for Instructing Students With and at Risk for EBD. Beyond Behavior28(1), 13-20.

Comparing Closed For-Profit Colleges to Public College Sector

This research compare for-profit college networks with the public sector. The author emphasize economic criteria for evaluating colleges and the need to consider many such criteria to make a valid comparison. In conclusion, public colleges are much cheaper than for-profit colleges. From a student perspective, this difference would have to be offset by a much superior performance of for-profit colleges to be advantageous. However, the evidence tends to point in the opposite direction. While ITT’s post-enrollment student earnings are comparable to those of many public colleges, on the whole the outcomes of public colleges appear to be better than those of the two closed for-profit networks of colleges.

Belfield, C. (2016). Comparing Closed For-Profit Colleges to Public College Sector. CAPSEE. Retrieved from https://capseecenter.org/comparing-closed-for-profit-colleges-to-public-college-sector/

Disseminating Innovations in Health Care

This article examines the theory and research on the dissemination of innovations and suggests applications of that theory to health care.

Berwick, D. M. (2003). Disseminating innovations in health care. Jama289(15), 1969-1975.

Nine Competencies for Teaching Empathy.

The author shares nine teachable competencies that can serve as a principal's guide for empathy education. This paper will help answer which practices enhance empathy and how will principals know if teachers are implementing them effectively. 

Borba, M. (2018). Nine Competencies for Teaching Empathy. Educational Leadership76(2), 22-28.

Organizing schools for improvement: Lessons from Chicago

The authors of this illuminating book identify a comprehensive set of practices and conditions that were key factors for improvement, including school leadership, the professional capacity of the faculty and staff, and a student-centered learning climate.

Bryk, A. S., Sebring, P. B., Allensworth, E., Easton, J. Q., & Luppescu, S. (2010). Organizing schools for improvement: Lessons from Chicago. University of Chicago Press.

Gauging Goodness of Fit: Teachers’ Assessments of their Instructional Teams in High-Poverty Schools

Rich opportunities for learning are important for all teachers. Whatever expertise they
acquire in their pre-service program, teachers continue to need ongoing professional learning in order to meet additional responsibilities and the evolving needs of their students and schools. Continuous learning is especially vital for teachers who work in the dynamic and demanding environments of high-poverty, urban schools.

Charner-Laird, M., Ng, M., Johnson, S. M., Kraft, M. A., Papay, J. P., & Reinhorn, S. K. (2016). Gauging Goodness of Fit: Teachers’ Assessments of their Instructional Teams in High-Poverty Schools. Retrieved from http://projectngt.gse.harvard.edu/files/gse-projectngt/files/gauging_goodness_of_fit_0622916.pdf

Barriers to Implementing Classroom Management and Behavior Support Plans: An Exploratory Investigation.

This study examines obstacles encountered by 33 educators along with suggested interventions to overcome impediments to effective delivery of classroom management interventions or behavior support plans. Having the right classroom management plan isn’t enough if you can’t deliver the strategies to the students in the classroom.

Collier‐Meek, M. A., Sanetti, L. M., & Boyle, A. M. (2019). Barriers to implementing classroom management and behavior support plans: An exploratory investigation. Psychology in the Schools56(1), 5-17.

Do Bonuses Affect Teacher Staffing and Student Achievement in High-Poverty Schools? Evidence from an Incentive for National Board Certified Teachers in Washington State

This study examined a teacher incentive policy in Washington State that awards a financial bonus to National Board Certified Teachers who teach in high-poverty schools. It found that the bonus policy increased the proportion of National Board Certified Teachers in bonus-eligible schools, through increases in both the number of existing NBCTs hired and the probability that teachers at these schools apply for certification. However, it do not find evidence that the bonus resulted in detectible effects on student test achievement.

Cowan, J., & Goldhaber, D. (2015). Do bonuses affect teacher staffing and student achievement in high-poverty schools? Evidence from an Incentive for National Board Certified Teachers in Washington State. Center for Education Data & Research.

Long-term reduction in implicit race bias: A prejudice habit-breaking intervention

The authors developed a multi-faceted prejudice habit-breaking intervention to produce long-term reductions in implicit race bias. The intervention is based on the premise that implicit bias is like a habit that can be broken through a combination of awareness of implicit bias, concern about the effects of that bias, and the application of strategies to reduce bias.

Devine, P. G., Forscher, P. S., Austin, A. J., & Cox, W. T. (2012). Long-term reduction in implicit race bias: A prejudice habit-breaking intervention. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology48(6), 1267–1278.

The Effects of Organizational Climate and Interorganizational Coordination on the Quality and Outcomes of Children’s Service Systems

This study examines the effects of organizational characteristics, including organizational climate and interorganizational coordination, on the quality and outcomes of children’s service systems.

Glisson, C., & Hemmelgarn, A. (1998). The effects of organizational climate and interorganizational coordination on the quality and outcomes of children’s service systems. Child abuse & neglect22(5), 401-421.

Why Do High-Poverty Schools Have Difficulty Staffing Their Classrooms with Qualified Teachers?

This report investigates the possibility that the characteristics and conditions of schools are behind the teacher shortage crisis. The data indicate that school staffing problems are not primarily due to teacher shortages, in the sense of an insufficient supply of qualified teachers. Rather, the data indicate that school staffing problems are primarily due to a “revolving door” – where large numbers of qualified teachers depart from their jobs long before retirement. The data show that much of the turnover is accounted for by teacher job dissatisfaction and teachers pursuing other jobs. Significant numbers of those who depart from their jobs in these schools report that they are hampered by inadequate support from the school administration, too many intrusions on classroom teaching time, student discipline problems and limited faculty input into school decision-making.

Ingersoll, R. M. (2004). Why do high-poverty schools have difficulty staffing their classrooms with qualified teachers? (Report prepared for Renewing Our Schools, Securing Our Future—A National Task Force on Public Education). Washington, DC: The Center for American Progress and the Institute for America’s Future. Retrieved from https://scholar.gse.upenn.edu/rmi/files/ingersoll-final.pdf.

Implicit bias in the courtroom.

What, if anything, should we do about implicit bias in the courtroom? The authors comprises legal academics, scientists, researchers, and even a sitting federal judge who seek to answer this question in accordance with behavioral realism.

Kang, J., Bennett, M., Carbado, D., & Casey, P. (2011). Implicit bias in the courtroom. UCLa L. rev.59, 1124.

How Does Reading Proficiency Correlate With a Student's Socio-Economic Status?

This analysis examines the influence of poverty on student reading performance across grade levels.

Keyworth, R. (2015). How does reading proficiency correlate with a student's socio-economic status? Oakland, CA: The Wing Institute. Retrieved from https://www.winginstitute.org/how-does-reading-proficiency

An Investigation of Concurrent Validity of Fidelity of Implementation Measures at Initial Years of Implementation.

The present study used cross-sectional data from 1,438 schools to examine relations between fidelity self-assessment and team-based fidelity measures in the first 4 years of implementation of School-Wide Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (SWPBIS). Results showed strong positive correlations between fidelity self-assessments and a team-based measure of fidelity at each year of implementation.

Khoury, C. R., McIntosh, K., & Hoselton, R. (2019). An Investigation of Concurrent Validity of Fidelity of Implementation Measures at Initial Years of Implementation. Remedial and Special Education40(1), 25-31.


Educating Amidst Uncertainty: The Organizational Supports Teachers Need to Serve Students in High-poverty, Urban Schools

This study examined teachers need for organizational responses that addressed the environmental uncertainty of working with students from disadvantaged neighborhoods. It described four types of organizational responses — coordinated instructional supports, systems to promote order and discipline, socio-emotional supports for students, and efforts to engage parents — and illustrate how these responses affected teachers’ ability to manage the uncertainty introduced by their environment.

Kraft, M. A., Papay, J. P., Johnson, S. M., Charner-Laird, M., Ng, M., & Reinhorn, S. (2015). Educating Amid Uncertainty The Organizational Supports Teachers Need to Serve Students in High-Poverty, Urban Schools. Educational Administration Quarterly, 51(5), 753-790.

The Birth and Death Cycles of Educational innovations

A study of 27 promising programs reveals 8 common reasons that educational innovations fail, including disenchanted practitioners; departure of innovation supporters; lack of personnel training; disappearing funding; inadequate supervision; and lack of accountability, administrative support, and termination consequences. Innovations succeed by avoiding overload, complementing school mission, and securing board approval

Latham, G. (1988). The birth and death cycles of educational innovations. Principal68(1), 41-43.

The Behavioralist Goes to School: Leveraging Behavioral Economics to Improve Educational Performance

This paper explore the power of behavioral economics to influence the level of effort exerted by students in a low stakes testing environment. This paper find a substantial impact on test scores from incentives when the rewards are delivered immediately. There is suggestive evidence that rewards framed as losses outperform those framed as gains. 

Levitt, S. D., List, J. A., Neckermann, S., & Sadoff, S. (2016). The behavioralist goes to school: Leveraging behavioral economics to improve educational performance. American Economic Journal: Economic Policy8(4), 183-219.

Dear Colleagues Letter: Resource Comparability

Dear Colleagues Letter: Resource Comparability is a letter written by United States Department of Education. This letter was meant to call people attention to disparities that persist in access to educational resources, and to help address those disparities and comply with the legal obligation to provide students with equal access to these resources without regard to race, color, or national origin (This letter addresses legal obligations under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title VI). This letter builds on the prior work shared by the U.S. Department of Education on this critical topic.

Lhamon, C. E. (2014). Dear colleague letter: Resource comparability. Washington, DC: US Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights. Retrieved from http://www2. ed. gov/about/offices/list/ocr/letters/colleague-resourcecomp-201410. pdf.

No, The Sky is Not Falling: Interpreting the Latest SAT Scores

The College board was recently released SAT scores for the high school graduating class of 2015. Both math and reading scores declined from 2014, continuing a steady downward trend that has been in place for the past decade. Pundits of contrasting political stripes seized on the scores to bolster their political agendas. Petrilli argued that falling SAT scores show that high schools needs more reform. For Burris, the declining scores were evidence of the failure of policies her organization opposes. This articles pointing out that SAT was never meant to measure national achievement and provide detail explanation. 

Loveless, T. (2015). No, the sky is not falling: Interpreting the latest SAT scores. Brown Center Chalkboard. Retrieved from https://www.brookings.edu/blog/brown-center-chalkboard/2015/10/01/no-the-sky-is-not-falling-interpreting-the-latest-sat-scores/

Demanding Medical Excellence: Doctors and Accountability in The Information Age.

This book reveals how the information revolution is changing the way doctors make decisions. Michael Millenson, a three-time Pulitzer Prize nominee as a health-care reporter for the Chicago Tribune, illustrates serious flaws in contemporary medical practice and shows ways to improve care and save tens of thousands of lives.

Millenson, M. L. (2018). Demanding medical excellence: Doctors and accountability in the information age. University of Chicago Press.

Equality and Quality in U.S. Education: Systemic Problems, Systemic Solutions. Policy Brief

This paper enters debate about how U.S. schools might address long-standing disparities in educational and economic opportunities while improving the educational outcomes for all students. with a vision and an argument for realizing that vision, based on lessons learned from 60 years of education research and reform efforts. The central points covered draw on a much more extensive treatment of these issues published in 2015. The aim is to spark fruitful discussion among educators, policymakers, and researchers.

O'Day, J. A., & Smith, M. S. (2016). Equality and Quality in US Education: Systemic Problems, Systemic Solutions. Policy Brief. Education Policy Center at American Institutes for Research.

Trends Shaping Education Spotlight 8

Trends Shaping Education Spotlights is a series of briefs bringing together global mega trends, academic research and concrete policy examples to support strategic thinking in education. Using a multidisciplinary lens and a visual and concise format, this is a series directed at a broad audience, including policy makers, principals and teachers, researchers and parents and students.

OECD (2017). Mind the gap: Inequity in education. Trends Shaping Education Spotlights, No. 8. Paris: OECD Publishing. Retrieved from https://doi.org/10.1787/5775ac71-en.

PISA 2015 Results in Focus

Over the past decade, the OECD Programme for International Student Assessment, PISA, has become the world’s premier yardstick for evaluating the quality, equity and efficiency of school systems. This special issue of the PISA in Focus series highlights the results of the first two volumes of the PISA 2015 initial report: Excellence and Equity in Education; and Policies and Practices for Successful Schools.

OECD Publishing (2016). PISA 2015 Results in Focus. PISA in Focus,67. Retrieved from https://doi.org/10.1787/aa9237e6-en.

Report Urges Educators to Avoid Using International Test to Make Policy

This articles suggest policymakers to focus less on the international test and more on how states compare to each other when trying to improve schools. This article also shows how it's not worthwhile to compare school in countries where the conditions are different. 

Rabinovitz, j. (2015, October). Report urges educators to avoid using international tests to make policy. Standford Graduate School of Education. Retrieved from https://ed.stanford.edu/news/national-test-superior-international-ones-assessing-us-schools-says-report

The Geography of Racial/Ethnic Test Score Gaps

The authors estimate racial/ethnic achievement gaps in several hundred metropolitan areas and several thousand school districts in the United States using the results of roughly 200 million standardized math and English language arts (ELA) tests administered to public school students from 2009 to 2013. They show that the strongest correlates of achievement gaps are local racial/ethnic differences in parental income and educational attainment, local average parental education levels, and patterns of racial/ethnic segregation, consistent with a theoretical model in which family socioeconomic factors affect educational opportunity partly through residential and school segregation patterns.

Reardon, S. F., Kalogrides, D., & Shores, K. (2019). The geography of racial/ethnic test score gaps. American Journal of Sociology124(4), 1164-1221.

School Segregation and Racial Academic Achievement Gaps

This study found that one aspect of segregation in particular—the disparity in average school poverty rates between white and black students’ schools—is consistently the single most powerful correlate of achievement gaps. This implies that high-poverty schools are, on average, much less effective than lower-poverty schools, and suggests that strategies that reduce the differential exposure of black, Hispanic, and white students to poor classmates may lead to meaningful reductions in academic achievement gaps.

Reardon, S.F. (2015). School Segregation and Racial Academic Achievement Gaps (CEPA Working Paper No.15-12). Retrieved from Stanford Center for Education Policy Analysis: http://cepa.stanford.edu/wp15-12

Teacher Turnover in High-Poverty Schools: What We Know and Can Do

This paper reviews evidence from six recent studies, which collectively suggest that teachers who leave high-poverty schools are not fleeing their students, but rather the poor working conditions that make it difficult for them to teach and their students to learn. They include school leadership, collegial relationships, and elements of school culture.

Simon, N. S., & Johnson, S. M. (2013). Teacher turnover in high-poverty schools: What we know and can do. Teachers College Record, 117, 1-36

Digest of Education Statistics 2017

This annual publication is thedefinitive compendium of data on virtually every aspects of education from pre-kindergarten through graduate school. Its chapters include: All Levels of Education, Elementary and Secondary Education, Postsecondary Education, Federal Funds for Education and Related Activities, Outcomes of Education, International Comparisons of Education, and Libraries and Use of Technology. 

Snyder, T.D., de Brey, C., and Dillow, S.A. (2019). Digest of Education Statistics 2017 (NCES 2018-070). National Center for Education Statistics, Institute of Education Sciences, U.S. Department of Education. Washington, DC.


Studies Probe How Schools Widen Achievement Gaps

This article pointing some findings about achievement gap within school.

Sparks, S. D. (2015). Studies Probe How Schools Widen Achievement Gaps. Education Week. Retrieved from https://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2015/10/07/schools-help-widen-academic-gaps-studies-find.html

Does a longer school year or longer school day improve student achievement scores?

This reviews looks at the issue, do longer school days and longer school years improve student achievement?

States, J. (2011). Does a longer school year or longer school day improve student achievement scores? Retrieved from does-longer-school-year.

A New Majority: Low Income Students Now a Majority In the Nation’s Public Schools

For the first time in recent history, a majority of the schoolchildren attending the nation’s public schools come from low income families. The latest data collected from the states by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), evidence that 51 percent of the students across the nation’s public schools were low income in 2013.


Suitts, Steve. A New Majority Research Bulletin: Low Income Students Now a Majority in the Nation's Public Schools. Southern Education Foundation. (2015).

U.S. Education in 2017 in 10 Charts

This article provide charts, graphs, maps, and visualizations of all feature data that Education Week released in 2017 and convey some big takeaways about U.S. schools, students, and teachers in 2017.


U.S. Education in 2017 in 10 Charts. Education Week, December. (2017). Retrieved from https://www.edweek.org/ew/section/multimedia/us-education-in-2017-in-10-charts.html

How does the rich-poor learning gap vary across countries?

This article show different approach that researcher took to answer questions on social gradient in education between the countries. Comparing some of these results highlights weak service delivery in many developing countries. Even where resources may be similar, social gradients are steep in some, indicating much worse educational outcomes for the poor. And public resources are often extremely poorly converted into learning. The differential ability of schools and school systems to convert resources into learning outcomes remains a major impediment to improving educational outcomes, and indeed life chances, for the poor.

Van Der Berg, S. (2015). How does the rich-poor learning gap vary across countries?. Brookings Institution. Retrieved from https://www.brookings.edu/blog/future-development/2015/03/09/how-does-the-rich-poor-learning-gap-vary-across-countries/

How schools matter: The link between teacher classroom practices and student academic performance
Quantitative studies of school effects have generally supported the notion that the problems of U.S. education lie outside of the school. Yet such studies neglect the primary venue through which students learn, the classroom. The current study explores the link between classroom practices and student academic performance by applying multilevel modeling to the 1996 National Assessment of Educational Progress in mathematics. The study finds that the effects of classroom practices, when added to those of other teacher characteristics, are comparable in size to those of student background, suggesting that teachers can contribute as much to student learning as the students themselves.


Wenglinsky, H. (2002). How schools matter: The link between teacher classroom practices and student academic performance. Education Policy Analysis Archives, 10(12).

Reading Comprehension Tests Don’t Test Reading

In this video from Cool Reading Facts, Daniel Willingham, professor of psychology at the University of Virginia, discusses significant factors key to success in reading comprehension. His analysis suggests that educators frequently miss the critical role that basic knowledge plays in successfully interpreting and understanding passages in reading texts and that reading comprehension tests are actually knowledge tests in disguise. He makes three important points: (1) Students must have the basic decoding skills to translate print into meaningful information, (2) having a basic familiarity with the subject matter is of prime importance in comprehending what the writer is trying to communicate, and (3) providing students with an enriched knowledge base through the school’s curriculum is especially important for students from disadvantaged circumstances, whose only source of essential background information often is school. In contrast, children from privileged circumstances may be introduced to essential background information away from school.

Willingham, D. (2017). Cool Reading Facts 5: Reading comprehension tests don’t test reading [Video file]. National Public Radio, Science Friday Educator Collaborative.

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