Publications

Issue Focus

Top 10 MDRC Publications in 2015

12/2015

In 2015, MDRC has published more than 40 reports and briefs on programs affecting low-income Americans in all realms of education and social policy: education from preschool to postsecondary, workforce development, behavioral science, youth development, home visiting, foster care, and more. Here’s a list of 10 of our most popular publications released in 2015 – plus the top infographic, video, and podcast!

Doubling Graduation Rates: Three-Year Effects of CUNY’s Accelerated Study in Associate Programs (ASAP) for Developmental Education Students

The City University of New York’s comprehensive ASAP program nearly doubles the three-year graduation rate for developmental education students in community college — at a lower cost-per-degree than regular services. ASAP also increases rates of transfer to four-year colleges.

Becoming Adults: One-Year Impact Findings from the Youth Villages Transitional Living Evaluation

This study evaluated a program, called YVLifeSet, that offers individualized services to young people who are making the transition from foster care or juvenile justice custody to independent adulthood. After one year, the program increased earnings, reduced homelessness and material hardship, and improved outcomes related to health and safety.

Mobilizing Volunteer Tutors to Improve Student Literacy: Implementation, Impacts, and Costs of the Reading Partners Program

One-on-one tutoring by volunteers improves the reading proficiency of struggling second- to fifth-graders, according to MDRC’s random assignment study. As a program staffed mostly by volunteers, Reading Partners is substantially less costly than other supplemental reading services typically offered to struggling readers.

In Search of a Match: A Guide for Helping Students Make Informed College Choices

This guide for counselors and advisers offers strategies for helping low-income high school students choose selective colleges that match their academic profiles, financial considerations, and personal needs. It tracks the many steps in the college search, application, and selection process, suggesting ways to incorporate a “match” focus at each stage.

The Mother and Infant Home Visiting Program Evaluation: Early Findings on the Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting Program — A Report to Congress

This report presents the first findings from MIHOPE, the legislatively mandated national evaluation of the Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting program. It includes an analysis of the states’ needs assessments, as well as baseline characteristics of families, staff, local programs, and models participating in the study.

Toward a Better Future: Evidence on Improving Employment Outcomes for Disadvantaged Youth in the United States

The Great Recession took a toll on the already dim economic prospects of low-income 16- to 24-year-olds who face structural barriers to employment. Evidence indicates that involvement of employers in devising education, training, and work experiences that meet labor market demands should be a key component of any policy response.

Testimony on Opportunities to Improve Student Success in the Higher Education Act: Presented Before the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions

On August 5, Lashawn Richburg-Hayes testified before the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions on what research evidence suggests about the best ways to improve the academic success of low-income college students.

The Power of Prompts: Using Behavioral Insights to Encourage People to Participate

Several low-cost behavioral messaging interventions boosted participant attendance at an optional informational meeting for Paycheck Plus, an earnings supplement program in New York City. This test is part of the Behavioral Interventions to Advance Self-Sufficiency project, sponsored by the federal Administration for Children and Families.

The Second Generation of Jobs-Plus Programs: Implementation Lessons from San Antonio and the Bronx

Jobs-Plus was designed to raise and sustain the employment and earnings of residents of public housing developments. This report investigates how Jobs-Plus was replicated in more contemporary settings, analyzing the early implementation experiences of a community-based provider in the Bronx, NY, and the San Antonio Housing Authority in Texas.

Evaluation of Response to Intervention (RtI) Practices for Elementary School Reading

This report describes the adoption of RtI practices in a large, multistate sample of schools, examines the implementation of tiered intervention services for students at risk of reading difficulty, and finds that assignment to receive intervention did not improve reading outcomes among students scoring just below the eligibility point.

Bonus! Most Popular Infographic, Video, and Podcast