Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Research Shows...Very Little

I'm taking a class, Introduction to Supervision of Instruction. It's actually been a very intriguing course. One of the few assignments has been to choose one skill, competency, or program that you believe has a positive impact on student achievement and look closely at the research on it. (Basically our professor figures we'll find that there is very little valid, reliable research proving positive effects on student achievement for just about anything.)

As a result of this class, Bud the Teacher's recent tweets really struck me.

I am amazed at how often we say that research shows something when there is minimal proof of such things. This is true not just of teachers and administrators in schools and districts but for reporters and politicians. I am finding it shockingly frustrating.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Once your mind starts raises red flags for uncited information, it's absolutely mind-boggling how often it happens.

Even better is when you realize that most "research" is completely unreliable...sample sizes too small, variables not controlled, assumptions and weak research into previous studies.

It's kind of a miracle that we know anything.