This research report evaluates tools for assessing skills that are important predictors of the reading gap that may emerge in later years. It reviews the measures on a set of logistical and psychometric criteria relevant for three purposes: identifying delays; measuring individual differences and change; and informing teaching and learning.
This paper analyzes variation in the medium-term effects of the oversubscribed Boston Public Schools prekindergarten program. The relatively large enrollment effects suggest that more can be learned about how the quality of the environment in kindergarten through third grade affects students’ prekindergarten experience.
Using Nudges to Reach Program Goals
Physical settings influence behavior, as a group of social service agency managers and staff learned during an exercise in laying out an imaginary high school cafeteria to drive profits, promote healthy food, or maximize efficiency. The October 2019 In Practice blog post shows how physical “nudges” can yield better results.
Data can help career and technical education programs refine their models, pinpoint successes, and communicate lessons with funders and stakeholders. Drawing in part on conversations with leaders in the field, this brief outlines four steps programs can take to strengthen their data-collection and measurement activities and develop robust data strategies.
Where Are They Now?
This is the sixth in a series of Q&As with past participants in MDRC’s Judith Gueron Minority Scholars Program in which they reflect on their experiences at MDRC and discuss what they’re up to today.
The Male Student Success Initiative is a program at the Community College of Baltimore County designed to support male students of color throughout their academic journey, leading ultimately to graduation or transfers to four-year institutions. This brief describes the program and introduces MDRC’s evaluation of it.
Profiles of Three Partnerships
In this special post to the Implementation Research Incubator blog, we feature a short video in which leaders from three programs describe how MDRC’s implementation research informed their efforts to improve their programs.
The Behavioral Interventions for Child Support Services (BICS) Project
This intervention tested with the Vermont Office of Child Support changed outreach materials and the structure of conferences with parents in order to increase parent participation in the child support process and increase the percentage of cases where both parents reached agreement outside of court. It did improve both outcomes.
Implementing Individual Placement and Support in a Workforce Setting
Breaking Barriers was a San Diego-based program that provided employment services to low-income individuals with a range of disabilities or other health conditions. Preliminary analyses based on a survey found that the program did not have an impact on the primary outcomes measured — employment, length of employment, and total earnings — during a 15-month follow-up period.
Tips to Keep Participants Coming Back for More
In just seven seconds, most people form a first impression. For program participants, this initial encounter can mean the difference between signing up for services – or walking away. The September 2019 In Practice blog post offers tips for programs seeking to have an impact from the get-go.