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What do we know about effective teacher preparation?

April 9, 2021

Linking Teacher Preparation Program Design and Implementation to Outcomes for Teachers and Students. This book examines how to improve teacher preparation programs using the best available evidence. The chapters explore how data availability, quality, and use within and across preparation programs shed light on the structures, policies, and practices associated with high-quality teacher preparation. The authors look at critical questions about the connection between what takes place during teacher preparation and subsequent outcomes for teachers and students. Despite a long history of teacher preparation and considerable investments in preservice and in-service training, there remains much to be learned about effectively training teachers. The chapter topics include;

• Improving Teacher Preparation: The Promise, Challenges, and Research Needs of State Accountability Systems,
• Learning to Teach: Optimizing Coursework and Fieldwork Requirements in Traditional Teacher Preparation,
• Using Case Study Data of Completers as Evidence in a Continuous Improvement Model,
• Educating Effective Science Teachers: Preparing and Following Teachers Into the Field,
• Measuring Diversity in Teacher Candidate Practicum Placements and its Relationship to Outcomes,
• Signature Practices in an Urban Residency Program: How Are These Practices Evident in the Graduates’ Classrooms,
• Preparing and Keeping Our Best: Linking a Measure of Preservice Teacher Quality to Professional Outcomes,
• Toward Causal Evidence on Effective Teacher Preparation, and
• Supporting the Use of Evidence in Teacher Preparation: Considerations and Next Steps.

Citation: Carinci, J. E., Jackson, C., & Meyer, S. J. (Eds.). (2020). Linking Teacher Preparation Program Design and Implementation to Outcomes for Teachers and Students. IAP.

Link: Linking Teacher Preparation Program Design and Implementation to Outcomes



Wing Institute announces RFP for 2021-2022 student grant applications

March 23, 2021

Graduate Research Grant 2021 RFP

The purpose of the Wing Institute Graduate Research Funding Program is to:

  1. Sponsor and promote new research in areas of evidence-based education, including: efficacy research, effectiveness research, implementation, and monitoring
  2. Sponsor and promote new research across disciplines, types of research, and venues
  3. Encourage graduate students to focus their future professional work in this subject area, increasing the number of professionals dedicated to the field of evidence-based education
  4. Disseminate research findings for application in real world” settings, further bridging the gap between research and practice.


Grants vary in size; the maximum grant is $5,000 per annum. These funds will be available to recipients as they achieve agreed upon “benchmarks” in the research process.

Applications available: Immediately
Application deadline: May 15, 2021
Funding decisions: June 15, 2021

ELIGIBILITY: Applicants must be enrolled full-time and be in good standing in a masters or doctoral at a regionally accredited university or college.




How important is Mastery Learning to improving student achievement?

March 23, 2021

Mastery Learning. Mastery learning is an instructional approach that relies on students successfully mastering material before moving on to the next lesson. It has been found to be a very powerful instructional method, with effect sizes ranging from 0.50 to 0.58, and is the fundamental component of many education interventions such as Response to Intervention (RtI), Personalized System of Instruction (PSI), and computer-based instruction. Mastery learning requires that instructional materials be sequenced so that instruction builds on what has been previously mastered until the overall learning objectives are mastered. Using formative assessment procedures, teachers frequently assess how each student is progressing toward mastering the objectives in each learning unit. Students who demonstrate competency move on to the next unit. Students may study in groups or alone, working through each unit, but progress is assessed individually. For students who have not mastered the lesson, additional group or individual instruction is provided. Remediation may include tutoring, peer monitoring, small group discussions, or additional homework. Mastery learning has been found to be effective at all levels of education.

Citation: Guinness, K., Detrich, R., Keyworth, R. & States, J. (2021). Overview of Mastery Learning. Oakland, CA: The Wing Institute.




What practices can enhance the impact of instruction in history and social sciences?

March 19, 2021

The effects of historical reading and writing strategy instruction with fourth-through sixth-grade students. This quasi-experimental study of fourth, fifth, and sixth-grade students explored the use of a cognitive apprenticeship model to teach students historical reading and writing strategies.  These results suggest that with appropriate supports and the opportunity to engage in meaningful historical content, students in fourth through sixth grade can analyze primary and secondary source documents and write evidence-based historical arguments. 

Citation: Wissinger, D. R., De La Paz, S., & Jackson, C. (2021). The effects of historical reading and writing strategy instruction with fourth-through sixth-grade students. Journal of Educational Psychology113(1), 49.




Are Dyslexia interventions evidence-based?

March 19, 2021

Are Scientific Reading Instruction and Dyslexia Interventions the Same? Distinctions for Elementary Education Preparation Programs. Dyslexia is a language-based disability that can hinder the fluent acquisition of reading skills. Dyslexia poses a particular challenge to teachers instructing students in reading. It is estimated that approximately 15%-20% of the population is impacted by dyslexia. This paper compares the tenets of structured literacy, the reading method used in many dyslexia programs, to scientific reading instruction. Directed content analysis of documents relevant to the research topic revealed three themes which accounted for concepts from the National Reading Panel report, Scientific Reading Instruction, and the International Dyslexia Association. 

Citation: Woods, L., & Graham, K. K. (2020). Are Scientific Reading Instruction and Dyslexia Interventions the Same? Distinctions for Elementary Education Preparation Programs. SRATE Journal29(1), n1.




How can teachers increase the effectiveness of science instruction?

March 19, 2021

Effective programs for elementary science: A best-evidence synthesis. This article presents a systematic review of research on the achievement outcomes of all types of approaches to teaching science in elementary schools. The review concludes that science teaching methods focused on enhancing teachers’ classroom instruction throughout the year, such as cooperative learning and science-reading integration, as well as approaches that give teachers technology tools to enhance instruction, have significant potential to improve science learning. 

Citation: Slavin, R. E., Lake, C., Hanley, P., & Thurston, A. (2012). Effective programs for elementary science: A best-evidence synthesis. Baltimore, MD, Johns Hopkins University.




What does research tell us about teaching writing?

March 17, 2021

Research-Based Writing Practices and the Common Core: Meta-analysis and Meta-synthesis. To meet writing objectives specified in the Common Core State Standards (CCSS), many teachers need to make significant changes in how writing is taught. While CCSS identified what students need to master, it did not provide guidance on how teachers are to meet these writing benchmarks. The current article presents research-supported practices that can be used to meet CCSS writing objectives in kindergarten to grade 8. This paper identified these practices by conducting a new meta- analysis of writing intervention studies, which included true and quasi-experiments, as well as single-subject design studies. 

Citation: Graham, S., Harris, K. R., and (2015). Research-Based Writing Practices and the Common Core: Meta-analysis and Meta-synthesis. The Elementary School Journal, Vol. 115, No. 4 (June 2015), pp. 498-522.




How do we interpret basic research on teaching reading instruction?

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 Quarterly55, S235-S247.




What do we know about teacher outreach and recruitment?

March 17, 2021

Teacher Outreach. Ensuring that qualified teachers are available to fill the nation’s classrooms begins with attracting a sufficient number of qualified candidates and matching aspiring teachers to enrollment needs. Until recently, aligning staffing to fluctuating enrollment has been complicated by a steady growth in population and the need to fill teaching vacancies produced by high turnover. This landscape is shifting as student enrollment declines and a sufficient supply of teachers is difficult to predict for the foreseeable future. With enough teachers, the spotlight can move from quantity to quality of candidates. Currently, the competence of teacher candidates in the United States compares poorly with that of candidates internationally. Nationally, lower entrance criteria and more lenient grading for pre-service students in teaching allow less capable students to graduate than is the case in other professions. Fortunately, this picture is changing as federal and state policies raise standards and increase academic abilities of new teachers. To maintain progress in attracting qualified candidates, working conditions and compensation should be improved to alter the perception that teaching is undervalued and to reverse past trends in which less-qualified people chose careers in teaching.

Citation: Cleaver, S., Detrich, R., States, J. & Keyworth, R. (2021). Teacher Outreach. Oakland, CA: The Wing Institute.




What instructional practices can be leveraged to improve mathematics instruction?

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 Brief51, 1-4.