Categories for Societal Outcomes
August 31, 2021
Principal Evaluation. The field of principal evaluation, while gaining increased research interest in recent years, lags behind teacher evaluation in terms of conclusions that can be made regarding effective practice. Prior to Race to the Top and ESEA waivers, principal evaluation was implemented inconsistently and evaluation systems lacked instruments with validity and/or reliability, had a tenuous relationship with leadership standards, failed to include measures of student/school outcomes, and had mixed purposes as to their intended use (e.g., sometimes as formative information to help principals improve, while other times as summative information to make personnel decisions). However, today’s evaluation systems have evolved to incorporate multiple measures of principal performance that evaluate principals on research-based principles of effective leadership, often include student outcomes (which is often controversial, however), and are used both to help principals improve and to hold them accountable for their performance. Ongoing and more frequent observations, often conducted by the principal supervisor, who often also serves as a coach/mentor and directs the principal towards needed professional learning, show promise as an effective practice. Using the results from principal evaluations for personnel decisions, such as offering incentives through pay-for-performance programs, yields mixed results and warrants further research attention.
Citation: Donley, J., Detrich, R., States, J., & Keyworth, (2021). Principal Evaluation Oakland, CA: The Wing Institute. https://www.winginstitute.org/quality-leadership-principal-evaluation
August 25, 2021
Disproportionality reduction in exclusionary school discipline: A best-evidence synthesis. Disproportionality in the application of school discipline policies has been well documented over the years (Skiba, et al. (2011), and has been resistant to change. In a systematic review of the evidence of the effectiveness of programs and practices to reduce disproportionality, Cruz, Firestone, and Rodl (2021) found that the positive effects of individual programs such as School Wide Interventions and Support, and Restorative Justice, were either mixed or not evident. More promising were results from combining practices from different programs and including a specific equity framework for training educators. The most promising results were obtained when in-class coaching was a component of the training approach. The challenge of implementing a coaching model was identifying the necessary human and time resources, as well as the financial resources, to effectively implement coaching. This paper touches on several important aspects of the Active Implementation Frameworks including the identification of effective practices (usable innovations) and implementation drivers (professional development, leadership, and enabling contexts). The absence of any one of these features will limit the overall impact on efforts to reduce disproportionality.
Citation: Cruz, R. A., Firestone, A. R., & Rodl, J. E. (2021). Disproportionality reduction in exclusionary school discipline: A best-evidence synthesis. Review of Educational Research, 91(3), 397-431.
June 18, 2021
How could evidence-based reform advance education? This article presents a definition and rationale for evidence-based reform in education, and a discussion of the current state of evidence-based research, focusing on China, the U.S., and the UK. The article suggests ways in which Chinese, U.S., UK, and other scholars might improve the worldwide quality of evidence-based reform in education. One indicator of this partnership is an agreement among the Chinese University of Hong Kong, Nanjing Normal University, and Johns Hopkins University to work together on Chinese and English versions of the website Best Evidence in Brief and a collaboration between Johns Hopkins and the ECNU Review of Education at East China Normal University.
The Wing Institute would like to acknowledge the contributions of Robert Slavin to the field of education. Our condolences go out to Robert Salvin’s family on the loss of one of America’s premier proponents of evidence-based education, who recently passed away on April 24, 2021. Robert Slavin was an education researcher who sought to translate the science of learning into effective teaching practices. Dr. Slavin was a distinguished professor at Johns Hopkins University’s School of Education, where he directed the Center for Research and Reform in Education
Citation: Slavin, R. E., Cheung, A. C., & Zhuang, T. (2021). How could evidence-based reform advance education?. ECNU Review of Education, 4(1), 7-24.
May 18, 2021
Teachers’ Essential Guide to Formative Assessment. This article offers information on how to implement formative assessments that will enhance student performance. The author defines formative assessment and highlights the benefits a teacher can expect when effectively implementing ongoing progress monitoring in the classroom. Formative assessment is defined, tips summarized to guide teachers in selecting the proper assessment tool for the task, and practical techniques for educators to consider are included for how to maximize the effectiveness of formative assessments.
Citation: Knowles, J. (2020). Teachers’ Essential Guide to Formative Assessment.
May 18, 2021
Playing like you practice: Formative and Summative Techniques to Assess Student Learning. This chapter offers a practical review of formative and summative assessment techniques, the evidence for their effectiveness in the classroom, and provides concrete strategies and resources for a range of classroom contexts and formats. The formative assessment techniques can be incorporated into virtually any class, in-person or online. Each of these strategies are adaptable to many different course contexts and virtually any topic. The most common form of summative assessment is the multiple-choice exam. Beyond examinations, summative assessment can involve a wide range of projects and other written assignments. At the most complex and challenging end of the spectrum of summative assessment techniques, the portfolio involves a collection of artifacts of student learning organized around a particular learning outcome.
Citation: Beers, M. J. (2020). Formative and Summative Techniques to Assess Student Learning. High impact teaching for sport and exercise psychology educators.
May 17, 2021
For many teachers, the image of students sitting in silence filling out bubbles, computing mathematical equations, or writing timed essays causes an intensely negative reaction. Since the passage of the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) in 2002 and its 2015 update, the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), every third through eighth grader in U.S. public schools now takes tests calibrated to state standards, with the aggregate results made public. In a study of the nation’s largest urban school districts, students took an average of 112 standardized tests between pre-K and grade 12. The pushback on high-stakes testing has also accelerated a national conversation about how students truly learn and retain information. This paper acknowledges the validity of teachers concerns, but discusses the need for well-designed classroom tests and quizzes and standardized exams.
Citation: Berwick, C. (2019). What Does the Research Say About Testing? Marin County, CA: Edutopia.
May 5, 2021
NEPC Review: “Student Assessment During COVID-19. School closings and the ever-increasing number of deaths provide the backdrop for a proposal by the Center for American Progress (CAP) to deny waivers of the federally mandated administration of standardized tests in spring 2021. Further, the federal government proposes to add to those assessments in ways that CAP argues would make the test results more useful. In its recent report, CAP sides with the Department of Education’s policy of denying such requests for waivers, and it calls for additional assessments that “capture multiple as- pects of student well-being, including social-emotional needs, engagement, and conditions for learning” as well as supplementary gathering of student information. The report contends this will ensure greater equity in the time of the pandemic, supposedly through the addition of the new measures to annual assessments.
Citation: Glass, G.V., Mathis, W.J., & Berliner, D.C. (2020). NEPC Review: “Student Assessment During COVID-19.” Boulder, CO: National Education Policy Center. Retrieved May 5, 2021 from http://nepc.colorado.edu/thinktank/pandemic-assessment
April 12, 2021
Exploring the impact of student teaching apprenticeships on student achievement and mentor teachers.The authors examine the impact of preservice teachers on student achievement during the apprenticeship training and in the future. While the average causal effect of hosting a student-teacher on student performance in the internship year is indistinguishable from zero in both math and reading, hosting a student-teacher has modest positive impacts on student math reading achievement in a teacher’s classroom in the following years. These findings suggest that schools can participate in the student teaching process without fear of short-term decreases in student test scores while potentially gaining modest, long-term increases in test scores.
Citation: Goldhaber, D., Krieg, J. M., & Theobald, R. (2020). Exploring the impact of student teaching apprenticeships on student achievement and mentor teachers. Journal of Research on Educational Effectiveness, 13(2), 213-234.
March 17, 2021
What constitutes a science of reading instruction? Recently, the term science of reading has been used in public debate to promote policies and instructional practices based on research on the basic cognitive mechanisms of reading, the neural processes involved in reading, computational models of learning to read, and the like. In this article, the author cautions against instructional over- generalizations based on various kinds of basic research without an adequate consideration of instructional experiments. The author provides several examples of the premature translation of basic research findings into wide-scale pedagogical application.
Citation: Shanahan, T. (2020). What constitutes a science of reading instruction?. Reading Research Quarterly, 55, S235-S247.
March 16, 2021
Improving pedagogy in the developmental mathematics classroom. This Brief summarizes a literature review that examines the research evidence concerning a potential means for improving course completion and learning outcomes among developmental math students: reforming mathematics classroom pedagogy. It concludes by offering recommendations for future research and for the adoption of particular instructional practices.
Citation: Hodara, M. (2011). Improving pedagogy in the developmental mathematics classroom. CCRC Brief, 51, 1-4.