Our evaluation, applied research and development initiatives aim both to improve programs and contribute knowledge to the development of successful schooling. In our evaluation work, we employ multiple methods—both quantitative and qualitative—to provide the information educators, policymakers, and providers need to strengthen programs, improve teaching and learning, and build knowledge and skills.
In all of our evaluation and research activities, we choose the tools that fit the intended scope, purposes and audiences involved. We accomplish this by working collaboratively with clients to target the questions, approach and scale to define the most appropriate design and instrumentation for the work at hand.
Whether engaged in participatory evaluation or external experimental research efforts, we strive to build local capacity for using research-based evidence to inform and sustain improvements to schooling. In turn, we draw from these same experiences and research evidence to build our knowledge base and inform practical applications in the field.
External program evaluation is the cornerstone of our work. Contracted program evaluation studies range from large-scale national evaluations to locally focused evaluations. Our work includes longitudinal studies, outcome and implementation studies, and designs measuring participant engagement.
In addition, we conduct rigorous evaluations capable of measuring impact without compromising the integrity of programs and interventions. Methods include experimental designs using randomized control trials to examine causal relationships and quasi-experimental designs employing well-specified program and comparison groups or interrupted time series to understand program effects. R&E staff also work with a wide range of clients at all levels of the education community to provide consultation, design and analysis services.
Consultation services include exploring evaluation options during the grant proposal development process; helping design self evaluation tools and strategies so programs can track their own progress; and determining what types and levels of evaluation are most suited to program needs.
Topics of recent evaluations include: