Turning Data into Information: The Vital Role of Research in Improving Education

Data Systems That Work
Turning Data into Information: The Vital Role of Research in Improving Education

DQC Why research matters 08092016 thumbnailWhen students, parents, educators, and partners have the right information to make decisions, students excel. One of the most powerful sources of information for families, educators, and policymakers about education is the high-quality analysis and research conducted by trained and engaged experts across the country. Their work gives us answers that cannot be found anywhere else—the answers that inform our decisions about programming, staffing, how to use limited resources, and how to support each student’s growth.

Research identifies areas of unmet need and areas of opportunity, helps education leaders invest in effective and innovative practices, and pinpoints factors that keep kids on track for success. In addition research uncovers dynamics that might challenge conventional wisdom and guide practitioners to more effective solutions. Without high-quality and trustworthy education research, communities will be making decisions in the dark, and more students will be left behind.

View the Appendix for a selection of examples that are illustrative of the diversity of education research in terms of topic, scope, methodology, application, and how deeply tied it is to the policy and practice decisions.