The Answer Sheet: research


Posted at 04:00 AM ET, 04/14/2014

Frequent school moves can harm children’s mental health -- study

Researchers say youngsters who move a lot may have an increased risk of developing psychotic symptoms by the preteen years.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 AM ET, 04/14/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 04/10/2014

The problem with evidence-based education policy: the evidence

Politics trumps the evidence anyway when it comes to ed policy-making.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 04/10/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:01 AM ET, 02/11/2014

Kids don’t learn better in single-sex classes -- meta analysis

A new meta analysis says the effects are small, if any.

By  |  11:01 AM ET, 02/11/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:00 AM ET, 02/11/2014

Snow days don’t hurt student achievement, study says

A Harvard study says so, at least if you define achievement as standardized test scores.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 AM ET, 02/11/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:17 AM ET, 01/14/2014

And now, the Bunkum Awards (you wouldn’t want to win)

They are given for educational research, and they aren’t awards you’d want to win.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:17 AM ET, 01/14/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:01 AM ET, 11/02/2013

The ‘congenital optimist’

‘We live in an era of nearly constant ideological challenge by those who seek to inflame our doubts about whether we are going to ever regain that wonderful No. 1-in-the-world status that we actually never had.’

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:01 AM ET, 11/02/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 10:53 AM ET, 10/18/2013

Rats find Oreos as addictive as cocaine -- an unusual college research project

They are addictive in humans, too.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:53 AM ET, 10/18/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:29 PM ET, 08/27/2013

Study techniques that work -- and (surprisingly) don't

Is cramming before a test better than not studying at all? Is underlining material a good way to retain information? The answers may surprise you.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:29 PM ET, 08/27/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:01 AM ET, 08/20/2013

How distracting are laptops in class?

More than you might think, according to new research. Daniel Willingham discusses.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:01 AM ET, 08/20/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:47 PM ET, 06/10/2013

The bottom line on student tracking

What the overwhelming evidence really shows.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:47 PM ET, 06/10/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:02 AM ET, 04/18/2013

School principals and the rhetoric of 'instructional leadership'

Today in the education world principals are supposed to be, above most everything else, "instructional leaders." What does that means, and is it accurate?

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:02 AM ET, 04/18/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 10:10 PM ET, 03/01/2013

How sequester will affect University of Maryland

Here's the letter the president of the University of Maryland sent out detailing how the school will be affected by the sequester.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:10 PM ET, 03/01/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:21 AM ET, 02/24/2013

The Grammys, the Oscars and now the Bunkum Awards

Unlike the Grammys and the Oscars, the Bunkum Awards are given to winners who would rather not receive them.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:21 AM ET, 02/24/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 10:48 AM ET, 01/31/2013

Charter schools that start bad stay bad, study finds

Charter schools that start out doing poorly aren't likely to improve, and charters that are successful from the beginning most often stay that way, according to a new study by researchers at Stanford University who also analyzed charter management organizations.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:48 AM ET, 01/31/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:11 PM ET, 11/19/2012

Study: Homework linked to better standardized test scores

Researchers who looked at data from more than 18,000 10th-graders found little correlation between the time students spent doing homework and better grades in math and science courses. But they did find a positive relationship the time spent on homework and standardized test scores.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:11 PM ET, 11/19/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:06 AM ET, 10/28/2012

Eight hurricane experts and the cool things they study

There's more to the study of hurricanes than figuring out the strength of the winds and where they are going to hit. Here are 10 experts on different aspects of hurricanes and the interesting things they study.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:06 AM ET, 10/28/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:03 PM ET, 10/26/2012

Study: Demography remains destiny in NYC despite school choice reforms

School reformers like to say demography is not destiny. But a new study of New York City's reform effort, which made school choice a priority, has failed to bring about educational equity.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:03 PM ET, 10/26/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 02/28/2011

'Brain-based' education: Run from it

A veteran educator explains why teachers should run from any curriculum that says it is "brain-based."

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 02/28/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 09:00 AM ET, 01/22/2011

How about a 21-hour school day?

Educators are talking about extending the school day by a half hour or so. Just maybe, it is posited here, what we need is a 21-hour school day.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:00 AM ET, 01/22/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:35 PM ET, 01/21/2011

Say it isn’t so on IMPACT, Mayor Gray

Here’s why I was so disappointed to a plan by D.C. schools officials to have the flawed IMPACT teacher evaluation system reviewed by a Harvard think tank.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:35 PM ET, 01/21/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 01:25 PM ET, 01/19/2011

New report on educational productivity: a waste of resources?

It's hard to argue with the general notion in a new report about educational productivity released today that says -- are you surprised -- that we waste a lot of money. But beyond that, I'm trying to figure out what else of value the report offers. Help.

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:25 PM ET, 01/19/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:01 AM ET, 01/13/2011

New analysis challenges Gates study on value-added measures

A new analysis challenges a Gates Foundation study said to support the validity of value-added measures to evaluate teachers by using students' standardized test scores.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:01 AM ET, 01/13/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:00 PM ET, 01/12/2011

The big 5: A teacher's translation guide for policymakers

Those hoping for educator buy-in on the next big education reform idea should first consult this translation guide , which explains some catchphrases and buzzwords that set off warning bells for teachers.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:00 PM ET, 01/12/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 01:40 PM ET, 01/10/2011

How colleges can identify depressed students

One out of every four or five students who visits a university health center for a routine cold or sore throat turns out to be depressed, but most centers miss the opportunity to identify these students because they don’t screen for depression, according to new research.

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:40 PM ET, 01/10/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 01/07/2011

What 2010 education research really shows about reform

A review of 2010 education research on charter schools, value-added measures and merit pay shows that the results were not great news for supporters of these reforms.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 01/07/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 10:38 AM ET, 12/28/2010

A hard look at education research

Here's a back-and-forth between authors of a report hailing Florida's school reform and a critique of that report. It shows how controversial education "research" really is.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:38 AM ET, 12/28/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 12/27/2010

Who in education says 'oops'?

A former school superintendent explains why virtually nobody in education policy ever admits that they "either goofed or would reconsider their decision."

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 12/27/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:30 AM ET, 12/06/2010

Willingham: Close to a magic bullet in education

Cognitive scientist Daniel Willingham writes about something that he says may come as close to being a magic bullet in education as anything.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:30 AM ET, 12/06/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:46 PM ET, 11/20/2010

Why teaching experience really matters

Bill Gates just urged school districts and states to stop rewarding teachers for their experience in the classroom and/or advanced education degrees. Arne Duncan makes the same argument. But evidence shows that teaching experience DOES matter.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:46 PM ET, 11/20/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 08:00 AM ET, 11/20/2010

The Matthew Effect, Plinko, and the achievement gap

The argument for integration of low-income students into more affluent schools is that it offers an opportunity to level the playing field and provide high expectations to students who are not traditionally held to the same schooling standards as the white upper and middle class. However, as a Black male who attended Montgomery County Public Schools for high school, I am not convinced that a culture of high expectations extends beyond honors, AP, and IB classrooms.

By Valerie Strauss  |  08:00 AM ET, 11/20/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:09 PM ET, 11/15/2010

Willingham: How 'mind-wandering' affects students

Cognitive scientist Daniel Willingham writes about "mind-wandering" --or zoning out of what you are doing -- and how it affects students at school.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:09 PM ET, 11/15/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 01:21 PM ET, 10/12/2010

Study shows deep disparities in funding for schools

A new study starkly shows deep disparities in the way school districts across the country are funded, a reality that raises big questions about how effective “reforms” that don’t deal with the issue of equity can really be.

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:21 PM ET, 10/12/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 10/08/2010

Poll: Americans misunderstand learning disabilities

A new poll shows that a majority of Americans have severe misperceptions of learning disabilities, the causes and even the definition. This can affect when children are diagnosed and given help that they need.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 AM ET, 10/08/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:11 PM ET, 10/05/2010

Report: Schools, teacher ed programs ignore how kids really learn

James Comer and Robert Pianta write about a new report that says: "Despite big advances in our understanding of how children and adolescents grow and learn, little of that knowledge has found its way into schools or educator preparation programs."

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:11 PM ET, 10/05/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 10/04/2010

Book blasts research base for Obama reform plan

A new book analyzes the research base for President Obama's blueprint for education reform and finds that it is, at best, very weak.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 AM ET, 10/04/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:56 PM ET, 09/21/2010

RIF study: Access to print materials helps student achievement

A comprehensive new study shows that children's book lending and ownership programs were shown to have positive behavioral, educational, and psychological outcomes.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:56 PM ET, 09/21/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:00 AM ET, 09/20/2010

Willingham: Left/right brain theory is bunk

Cognitive scientist Daniel Willingham explains why the left brain/right brain theory is pure mythology.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:00 AM ET, 09/20/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:00 PM ET, 09/16/2010

Why 'Waiting for Superman' premiere was chilling

Something chilling happened at the Washington D.C. premiere of "Waiting for Superman" that involved Michelle Rhee and the A-list audience.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 PM ET, 09/16/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:00 AM ET, 09/10/2010

Why we can't afford small classes anymore: One view

A veteran teacher says the country can no longer afford to maintain small classes, and would a bigger bang for its buck by concentrating on improving teacher quality.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:00 AM ET, 09/10/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:23 AM ET, 09/04/2010

How 'Twilight,' other dark fiction affect teen brains

Scientists, authors and education experts are meeting this weekend at Cambridge University to investigate how fiction with dark themes, such as the "Twilight" saga and the "Harry Potter" series, affects and alters the teenage brain. Here's a Q&A with the conference organizer, who talks about what parents can/should do about it.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:23 AM ET, 09/04/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 08/25/2010

'Impossible' working conditions for teachers

Will Fitzhugh writes about a recent trip to Florida, where he did a workshop with teachers on student research papers -- and then realized that the teachers can't use what they learned in the classroom.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 AM ET, 08/25/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:23 AM ET, 08/17/2010

Willingham: Big questions about the LA Times teachers project

Cognitive scientist Daniel Willingham explains why using value-added measures to judge the effectiveness of a teacher is a mistake, and says that the Los Angeles Times writers who helped evaluate more than 6,000 teachers in this fashion, "are either uniformed or disingenuous about the status of the value-added measures."

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:23 AM ET, 08/17/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:06 AM ET, 07/23/2010

From a list of ideas to an 11,200-word essay

In this letter a high school student details how he wrote a scholarly history paper that was published and what he learned from the experience.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:06 AM ET, 07/23/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 07/15/2010

What does "charterness" mean, exactly?

“Charterness” is not a policy, an education researcher writes. If a particular policy or set of practices seems to help increase student performance, we should replicate those practices, not entire schools that adopted them. Doing the latter is sort of like buying a second home just to have a garage.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 07/15/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 07/11/2010

A new look at Teach for America

Here's a new look at the independent research on the effectiveness of Teach for America teachers.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 07/11/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 10:11 PM ET, 07/09/2010

College students hitting books less, study shows

Add this to the common lament that things aren’t the same as they used to be: College students are apparently not studying anywhere nearly as much as they used to.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:11 PM ET, 07/09/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:30 PM ET, 07/08/2010

Ravitch on teachers and her critics

Education historian Diane Ravitch brings down the house at a teachers convention and answers her critics.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:30 PM ET, 07/08/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 10:00 AM ET, 06/29/2010

Two new studies on charter schools

Two new studies are released today on charter schools, one on financing and the other on student achievement. Neither is especially good news for charter schools.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:00 AM ET, 06/29/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 06/29/2010

New analysis of achievement gap: ½ x ½ = 1½

David Berliner, a prominent education researcher, writes about new data and analysis showing that when it comes to student achievement, family resources are important, school resources are important and the joint effect of the social and fiscal resources found in families and schools appears to be much greater than either alone.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 06/29/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 01:14 PM ET, 06/28/2010

Willingham: Newsweek story on single-sex ed research misses mark

Cognitive scientist Daniel Willingham critiques a Newsweek article on single-sex education and how faithfully it represents research on the issue.

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:14 PM ET, 06/28/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 02:35 PM ET, 06/23/2010

Texas judge rejects creationist master's degree

A federal judge has denied an effort by the Institute for Creation Research to issue masters degrees in science education from “a Biblical scientific creationist viewpoint,” instead siding with state officials who initially refused to allow the program to go forward.

By Valerie Strauss  |  02:35 PM ET, 06/23/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:00 PM ET, 06/16/2010

Minorities drive biggest jump in college freshman enrollment in 40 years, study says

Hispanics and other minority students drove the largest rise in freshman enrollment in the last 40 years at the nation’s 6,100 four-year post-second institutions from fall 2007 to fall 2008, the first year of the recession, according to a study released today by the Pew Research Center. But the enrollment boom was concentrated in certain states and highly focused on a very small number of the largest colleges and universities.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:00 PM ET, 06/16/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 06/15/2010

How homicides affect test scores - study

School reformers who say that poverty and family circumstance are only excuses for poor student performance might do well to look at a new study which found African-American children in Chicago scoring a lot lower on reading and vocabulary tests within a week of a homicide in their neighborhood--even if they did not directly witness the violence.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 06/15/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 09:30 AM ET, 06/11/2010

The subjects college students most heavily research on-line

What subjects are the most heavily researched on line by college students. Here's a list.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:30 AM ET, 06/11/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 10:42 AM ET, 06/03/2010

Sheep deaths in university research lead to probe

Put this in the category of the perils of research: Nine University of Wisconsin-Madison researchers and officials are being investigated to see if they broke state law by killing or allowing sheep to be killed through decompression as part of an experiment on “the bends.”

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:42 AM ET, 06/03/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:04 AM ET, 05/30/2010

School junk food ban works, study finds

Banning junk food from schools actually does have a beneficial effect on students, a new research study shows.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:04 AM ET, 05/30/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 05/25/2010

Concern over accented teachers not original to Arizona

The state of Arizona has gotten a lot of attention lately for its decision to remove teachers who speak with pronounced foreign accent and/or whose speech is ungrammatical from classrooms with students learning to speak English. But the idea wasn’t original to the Arizona Board of Education.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 05/25/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:00 PM ET, 05/24/2010

Data shows kids shouldn't multitask -- Willingham

Cognitive scientist Daniel Willingham looks at the data about whether kids really can effectively multi-task in the way many of them think they can.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:00 PM ET, 05/24/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:15 PM ET, 05/18/2010

Report looks at role of poverty, parents in student success

A new report by the Casey Foundation shows the close link between poverty and student success in reading, and makes recommendations for schools and community members.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:15 PM ET, 05/18/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:26 PM ET, 05/17/2010

Is education research all dreck? -- Willingham

Cognitive scientist evaluates whether education research is all garbage or has some value.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:26 PM ET, 05/17/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:08 PM ET, 05/05/2010

Accented teachers may be better for English language learners: study

Arizona may be making a mistake by trying to remove heavily accented Hispanic teachers from classrooms filled with Hispanic English-language learners. A new study on how well students learn second languages from teachers with accents suggests that tudents can learn a second language better from a teacher who speaks in the same accent as the student.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:08 PM ET, 05/05/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:00 PM ET, 04/28/2010

Social media addiction: Worse than you think

So 200 University of Maryland students agreed to go without social media for 24 hours--no cell phones or computers--and their reaction was akin to drug withdrawal. I don’t know if these students are clinically addicted or not, but anybody who remembers enjoying life before the cell phone was invented may find some of the student's blog posts disturbing because they reveal thinking that is markedly narrow, unimaginative and too often historically obtuse.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:00 PM ET, 04/28/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 02:20 PM ET, 04/25/2010

New strategy to teach vocabulary -- Viadero

A Harvard researcher develops and tests a new strategy for directly teaching all-purpose academic words to middle school students.

By Valerie Strauss  |  02:20 PM ET, 04/25/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 09:03 AM ET, 04/19/2010

How writing improves reading skills--study

It is often said that reading can improve a student’s writing. A new study says the reverse--that writing can improve reading skills as well as content learning--is equally true, and identifies three ways that teachers and even parents can help students make the connection.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:03 AM ET, 04/19/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 04/19/2010

New analysis of violence on campus

Colleges and universities should strategically review their threat assessment capacities because some of the conventional beliefs about these attacks are not accurate, a new report issued by the federal government says. For example, while much attention is given to the “traveling” attacker, such as the student who killed 32 students in a shooting spree at Virginia Tech in 2007, only 3 percent of the attackers acctually move from building to building.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 04/19/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:07 AM ET, 04/12/2010

New Harvard research on teacher effectiveness

By Debra Viadero. A new statistical analysis from a group of researchers at Harvard University’s Center for Education Policy Research adds a new wrinkle to the known body of research on the effectiveness of teachers.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:07 AM ET, 04/12/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:15 PM ET, 03/30/2010

Researchers take new look at teenage brain

It has become commonplace these days to hear that teens are victims of their own immature brains and raging hormones. But University of Virginia researchers Joseph P. Allen and Claudia Worrell Allen say that while the prefrontal cortex isn’t fully developed in teens, it’s far from missing, and we still have little evidence that this affects teens’ real-life behavior.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:15 PM ET, 03/30/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 10:30 AM ET, 03/10/2010

“Eyeballs in the Fridge”--New data on what drives males, females into science

What drives males and females to become scientists? A new study finds differences, and suggests that more science should be taught earlier.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:30 AM ET, 03/10/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:40 PM ET, 11/13/2009

How well do kids do research today? Should they ever look at Wikipedia?

Parents: How extensively do your children do research for school papers? Does anybody still own encyclopedias? Teachers: What/how many sources do you require when you assign a research paper? Is Wikipedia acceptable as a source?

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:40 PM ET, 11/13/2009 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 09/15/2009

CHECKING IT OUT: Studies on Homework and The Value of Parent Involvement in Education

THE ISSUE: A new study challenges the notion that students are bogged down in too much homework. DISCUSSION: The research was led by Professor Kenneth A. Kiewra, a professor of educational psychology at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln. He...

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 09/15/2009 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)