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|Conducting Implementation Research in Impact Studies of Education Interventions: A Guide for Researchers
Implementation analyses conducted as part of impact studies can help educators know whether a tested intervention is likely to be a good fit for their own settings. This guide can help researchers design and conduct these kinds of analyses. The guide provides steps and recommendations about ways to specify implementation research questions, assess whether and how the planned intervention is implemented, document the context in which the intervention is implemented, and measure the difference between the intervention and what members of the control group receive. It presents strategies for analysis and reporting about these topics, and also for linking implementation and impact findings. The guide offers key definitions, examples, templates, and links to resources.
|The relative effectiveness of two approaches to early literacy intervention in grades K-2
This study examined whether using a stand-alone intervention outside the core curriculum leads to better outcomes than using the embedded curriculum for small group intervention in grades K-2. Fifty-five schools located across Florida were randomly assigned to stand-alone or embedded interventions delivered daily throughout the school year for 45 minutes in small groups of four or five students. Students below the 30th percentile in reading-related skills and/or vocabulary were eligible for intervention. One-third of participating students were English language learners. Both interventions were implemented with high fidelity. The stand-alone intervention significantly improved grade 2 spelling. However, impacts on other student outcomes were comparable. On average, students showed improvement in reading and language skills in both interventions. The two interventions had relatively similar impacts on reading and language outcomes among English learners and non-English learners, with the exception of some reading outcomes in kindergarten.
|Self-study guide for implementing literacy interventions in Grades 3-8
The Grades 3–8 Self-Study Guide for Implementing Literacy Interventions was developed to help district- and school-based practitioners conduct self-studies for planning and implementing literacy interventions. It is intended to promote reflection about current strengths and challenges in planning for implementation of literacy interventions, spark conversations among staff, and identify areas for improvement. This guide provides a template for data collection and guiding questions for discussion that may improve the implementation of literacy interventions.
|Self-study Guide for Implementing Early Literacy Interventions
The Self-study Guide for Implementing Early Literacy Interventions is a tool to help district and school-based practitioners conduct self-studies for planning and implementing early literacy interventions for kindergarten, grade1 and grade 2 students. This guide is designed to promote reflection about current strengths and challenges in planning for implementation of early literacy interventions, spark conversations among staff, and identify areas for improvement. This self-study guide provides a template for data collection and guiding questions for discussion.
|Fast Track: Elementary School
Fast Track is a comprehensive intervention designed to reduce conduct problems and promote academic, behavioral, and social improvement. The program’s components include the Promoting Alternative THinking Strategies curriculum, parent groups, parent–child sharing time, child social skills training, home visiting, child peer-pairing, and academic tutoring. The WWC identified one study of Fast Track that both falls within the scope of the Children Classified as Having an Emotional Disturbance topic area and meets WWC group design standards. This study meets standards without reservations and included 891 students who were identified in kindergarten as being behaviorally disruptive and at high risk for long-term antisocial behavior in 54 schools in four locations. For children classified as having an emotional disturbance (or children at risk for classification), Fast Track was found to have potentially positive effects on emotional/internal behavior, reading achievement/literacy, external behavior, and social outcomes.
|WWC Review of the Report "Evaluation of a Two-Year Middle-School Physical Education Intervention: M-SPAN"
The 2004 study, Evaluation of a Two-Year Middle-School Physical Education Intervention: M-SPAN, investigated the effect of the Middle School Physical Activity and Nutrition (M-SPAN) intervention on the physical activity level of middle school students in 24 public middle schools from six districts in Southern California. M-SPAN aims to increase physical activity in physical education (PE) classes and reduce students’ fat intake by encouraging healthy eating habits. For this 2-year study, schools were stratified by school district and then randomly assigned to either M-SPAN or a comparison condition. The study assessed the effectiveness of M-SPAN by examining moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA), the amount of time students spent either walking or being very active, and other types of activities and PE lesson content across schools that received the M-SPAN training. Study authors reported that the M-SPAN intervention caused a statistically significant improvement in the amount of time students spent in MVPA. The WWC confirmed that the M-SPAN intervention improved the MVPA in schools by an average of 3 minutes per lesson across the 2-year period of the study. This study is a well-implemented randomized controlled trial, and the research described meets WWC evidence standards without reservations. The WWC cautions that the changes in observed MVPA (and other outcomes) may be in part due to (a) changes in MVPA in intervention schools, (b) high-activity students moving into the intervention schools or low-activity students moving out of the comparison schools, or (c) a combination of both effects. This study cannot separate these effects—it can only report on their combined impact. Additionally, because the study analyzed school level data, the magnitude of the effects reported cannot be directly compared to the magnitude of an effect of an intervention that uses student-level data for the analysis.
|Baseline Analyses of SIG Applications and SIG-Eligible and SIG-Awarded Schools
The Study of School Turnaround is an examination of the implementation of School Improvement Grants (SIG) authorized under Title I section 1003(g) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act and supplemented by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. "Baseline Analyses of SIG Applications and SIG-Eligible and SIG-Awarded Schools" uses publicly-available data from State Education Agency (SEA) websites, SEA SIG applications, and the National Center for Education Statistics' Common Core of Data to examine the following: (1) the SIG related policies and practices that states intend to implement, and (2) the characteristics of SIG eligible and SIG awarded schools. This first report provides context on SIG.
|The Status of State-level Response to Intervention Policies and Procedures in the West Region States and Five Other States
Response to intervention (RTI) can be both a system for providing early interventions to struggling students and a special education diagnostic tool for evaluating and identifying students with specific learning disabilities. Contributing to the very limited literature on state-level approaches, this report describes how nine states define and support RTI at the state level.
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