About IES: IES Diversity Statement
IES was established by the Education Sciences Reform Act of 2002 (ESRA – P.L. 107-279), in part to improve academic achievement and access to educational opportunities for all students. In carrying out this mission, IES takes steps to ensure that our work is carried out in a manner that is free of racial, cultural, gender, or regional bias.
All IES work benefits from diverse perspectives. Our ability to conduct and support high-quality research, collect and disseminate timely data, and evaluate the impact of educational policy and practice depends on our ability to attract, train, partner with, and support talented researchers, statisticians, and evaluators from all backgrounds. IES leadership strongly believes this demands a commitment to the many facets of human diversity that shape our lives, including age, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, culture, race, ethnicity, religion, disability, and socioeconomic status.
While the science of diversity is complex, a growing body of research suggests that diversity can improve performance in areas such as productivity, problem-solving, and innovation. We also believe that our commitment to diversity enhances public trust, helps ensure that our work is free of bias, and increases the likelihood that everyone will participate in and benefit from IES-funded work.
The IES portfolio of work offers examples of various ways this commitment translates into action. Read about recent examples below.
Preparing a diverse research workforce
- Establishing Pathways to the Education Sciences to award grants to minority-serving institutions and their partners to create education research training programs (eight weeks to 1 year in length) that prepare fellows for doctoral study.
- Including diversity recruitment requirements in all Research Training Program requests for applications (RFAs). Specific language can be found in the FY 2021 Training RFAs for NCER and NCSER.
- Establishing the NAEP-ETS Summer Undergraduate Research Internship (in partnership with ETS) and the NAEP Doctoral Student Internship Program (in partnership with the American Institutes of Research).
Grantmaking for diversity
- Encouraging applications from minority-serving institutions, alone or in combination with other institutions, that meet the eligibility criteria for each RFA.
- Funding research to address the challenges faced by students in underserved groups. Recently funded studies address disproportionality in school discipline, professional development to train educators on implicit bias and strategies to increase equity in school discipline, and the use of culturally and contextually relevant academic and behavioral practices.
- In the future, publicly reporting on the types of institutions that apply for and receive IES funding (for example, public/private IHEs, non-profits, HSIs, and HBCUs).
Research, data collection, and analysis
- Collecting, analyzing, and reporting statistical data and information related to education in a manner that is disaggregated by as many facets of diversity as possible.
- Assisting other offices within the Department of Education, including the Office of Civil Rights, to help ensure proper collection, analysis, and reporting of data to promote educational opportunity for all students and learners residing in the United States.
- Conducting the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), along with numerous international assessments, which play a key role in identifying and measuring differing educational outcomes for different population groups within the United States.
- Conducting rigorous evaluations of federal programs that are explicitly designed to improve outcomes for students who have historically faced disadvantage. Examples include the Academic Language Intervention Impact Evaluation and the Evaluation of Transition Supports for Youth with Disabilities.
- Designing new, evidence-based interventions that can be embedded within existing federal programs and tested at scale (for example, the Effectiveness of Promising Strategies in Federal College Access Programs: Study of Enhanced Advising to Improve College Fit in Upward Bound).
- Through the Regional Educational Laboratories, conducting stakeholder-requested research and technical assistance projects that address efforts to improve outcomes for all students (for example, Progress of Arizona Kindergartners toward English Proficiency in Grade 3 by English Learner Student Classification at REL West and American Indian Needs Assessment Survey at REL Central).
- Expanding our efforts to increase diversity among the peer reviewers who evaluate the significance and quality of the research we fund, and the reports that we produce.
Hiring and Staffing in IES
IES maintains the same commitment to diversity in hiring as our parent agency, the U.S. Department of Education. In practice, this means we "do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, genetic information, sexual orientation, gender identity, status as a parent, marital status or political affiliation." We also take seriously the idea that our work benefits from a genuine commitment to diversity, by considering applications from individuals representing all kinds of backgrounds. If you are interested in working at IES, please consider our current openings for Education Research Scientists and Associate Education Research Scientists.