Teachers Don’t Just Use Research — Some Are Designing It Themselves

When Carlo Diy throws out a question to his high school entrepreneurship and marketing students, he steels himself for an uncomfortable few moments ahead. “It’s just crickets,” says Diy, a second-year teacher at Durham Public Schools in North Carolina. “That’s been really challenging for me and, I know, for pretty much all other teachers during … Read more

Students Are Slipping Through the Cracks of Special Education. Schools Must Do Better.

This is the story of a student who got lost in the system. Jason* was a 10th grader affected by the pandemic like many other students and their families. He came to school one day and explained to his teacher that his mother had lost her job at a day care due to declining enrollment. … Read more

Can an XPrize For Learning Science ‘Lure’ New Types of Researchers Into Education?

The field of education research is usually pretty sleepy—marked by small one-off trials isolated from the work of other research projects. That frustrates Mark Schneider, the director of the Institute for Education Sciences at the U.S. Department of Education. So he’s pushing to bring a little flash—and more experimentation on the big-name education platforms that … Read more

How Much Does the U.S. Spend on Edtech? No One Knows, and That’s a Problem

The U.S. edtech industry is massive. By our estimate, startups and companies raised upward of $2.2 billion in 2020 alone. Yet, curiously, the amount districts, states and the federal government spend on these products each year is something of an unknown variable. According to a new analysis published this week by the Edtech Evidence Exchange, … Read more

Growing Evidence Indicates It Is Safe to Reopen School Buildings

The number of schools resuming in-person instruction continues to grow, as the U.S. ramps up its vaccination campaign and daily coronavirus cases continue to decline. As of mid-March, about half of U.S. students are attending traditional in-person school every day, and about 30 percent are participating in some face-to-face learning through a hybrid model, according … Read more

Our Research Shows Educators Are Experiencing Trauma During the Pandemic. Here’s How We Can Reduce the Burden.

Educators play a critical role in our communities, but lately—and increasingly— they are burdened with responsibilities more appropriate for other members of the community, such as counselors, social workers, nurses and community organizers. This juggling act is particularly salient in under-resourced communities, where grappling with these issues can be a daily struggle. Since the onset … Read more

Our Research Shows Educators Are Experiencing Trauma During the Pandemic. Here’s How We Can Reduce the Burden.

Educators play a critical role in our communities, but lately—and increasingly— they are burdened with responsibilities more appropriate for other members of the community, such as counselors, social workers, nurses and community organizers. This juggling act is particularly salient in under-resourced communities, where grappling with these issues can be a daily struggle. Since the onset … Read more

A Social-Emotional Learning Expert Explains Why ‘Unity’ Is So Elusive

In his Inaugural Address last month, President Joe Biden spoke at length about unity. He mentioned the word 11 times in his 19-minute speech, as he implored Americans to set aside their differences and come together as one nation. Biden argued that unity offers the best way forward if our country hopes to heal from … Read more

When Virtual Animations Are Teaching, Can They Make an Emotional Connection?

Studies have shown that students learn better from instructors displaying positive emotions—in other words, an upbeat lecturer is more effective than someone delivering in monotone. But when video lessons are led by computer animations instead of live instructors, how much do their simulated emotions matter? That’s the subject of a research project at the University … Read more

Do Instructional Videos Work Better When the Teacher is On Screen? It Depends.

As the pandemic has forced more teaching online, plenty of instructors have been trying to figure out the best way to keep students’ attention and interest with lecture videos or Zoom sessions. Meanwhile, learning scientists have been taking a more clinical approach, using experiments to test the question: How important is it for the teacher … Read more