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Transcript of CI500 Introduction
Research in Education
What do we need to know in Education?
How can we know?
What can’t we know? Why?
What influences research (questions, findings, reports)?
Why isn’t research more prevalent in education?
Not translated into a form useful to teachers
No information infrastructure for dissemination
Findings are rarely practical solutions; they don’t answer questions that teachers need answers to
Has been used to disempower and intimidate teachers
“The sad reality is that research has had less constructive influence during the past 10 to 15 years than it did over the previous decade or two. The many calls for evidence based decision making notwithstanding, most of our major policy and reform initiatives have been launched without research support”
[Schaps, in Ed Week 11/4/08]
“The American Bar Foundation sent some test shoppers to new-car dealers in the Chicago area to see what kind of deals they could get. The shoppers included white men and women and black men and women. . . . They found that white men get the best prices; white women are asked to pay about $150 more than white men, black men about $400 more and black women more that $900 more.”
Mike Royko illustrates
an alternative hypothesis
Here's the study:
What else could explain the price differences?
Differential pricing is racist and the government should outlaw bargaining in car sales.Temporarily abandoning our own personal view, can we brainstorm any plausible alternative hypotheses to racism as the reason for the differences in price?
The researchers' conclusions:
...or even worse, bury the findings
Who does better, public or private school children?
Types of Research
Most conclusive of all scientific methods.
The researcher establishes treatments and studies the effects, which can lead to clear interpretations.
The independent variable: What is being tested
The dependent variable: What is the outcome (i.e., score)
Single Subject Research is another form of Experimental Research.
CONTROL GROUP GETS "GOLD STAR"
Examines a relationship between or among two or more variables; looks for a cause and effect.
Can help make more intelligent predictions.
This approach requires no manipulation or intervention, except to administer the instrument.
Used when you want to look for and describe relationships that may exist naturally.
FOCUS ON ORDINAL or INTERVAL DATA
Determines the cause(s) for, or consequence(s) of, differences between groups of people.
Interpretations are limited because the investigator can not say conclusively whether a particular factor is a cause or a result of a behavior.
Differences may occur but the investigator will not be able to say for sure what caused the difference.
CAN USE NOMINAL DATA
Obtains data to determine specific characteristics of a group.
There are 3 difficulties involved with survey research: 1) Ensuring that questions are clear and not misleading, 2) Getting participants to answer questions honestly, and 3) Getting enough questionnaires back so valid interpretations can be made
adapted from Fraenkel, J., Wallen, N., & Hyun, H. (2012). How to design and evaluate research in education, 8th Edition. New York: McGraw Hill.
What about high-stakes, test-based accountability systems, charter schools, voucher programs, supplemental tutoring services, class size reduction...