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2022 IES Learning Acceleration Challenges

The U.S. Department of Education's Institute of Education Sciences (IES) has launched the Learning Acceleration Challenges to identify and test interventions to improve math and science achievement.

The Math Prize seeks school-based, digital interventions to significantly improve math outcomes for upper elementary school students with or at risk for a disability that affects math performance. Interventions should specifically focus on fractions, and can also include prerequisite skills such as whole numbers and operations.

Enter by September 30

The Science Prize seeks interventions to significantly improve science outcomes for middle school students with low performance in science. Interventions may be digital, non-digital, or hybrid and designed for implementation at school or in out-of-school-time programs.

Enter by September 30

The challenges are being conducted in two phases. In Phase 1, entrants will submit proposals for interventions that could be implemented during Phase 2. Up to five finalists per challenge will be selected to participate in Phase 2 based on scoring by judges against the Phase 1 selection criteria. Each finalist will receive $25,000 at the end of Phase 1.

In Phase 2, finalists will implement their interventions at partner schools or out-school-time-programs (Science Prize only). The duration of interventions may vary, but they must be implemented between November 2022 and April 2023. The Math Prize will offer up to $725,000 in prizes. The Science Prize will offer up to $825,000 in prizes, which may include additional prize money to recognize out-of-school-time interventions.

Recordings of Prior Webinars:

Recordings of prior Office Hours with Subject Matter Experts:

  • Office hours with Dr. Andrew McEachin held September 7
    View Video Recording | Download Transcript (PDF: 64 KB)
    • Benefits and considerations for different random assignment examples
    • How NWEA will support finalists with randomization
    • Data collection and sharing requirements in Phase 2
  • Office hours with Dr. Sivan Tuchman held September 8
    View Video Recording | Download Transcript (PDF: 53 KB)
    • Benefits and considerations for RCTs in schools
    • Identifying eligible students
    • Considerations for determining an adequate sample size
  • Office hours with Dr. David Knight held September 14 – Recording and Transcript Coming Soon
    • Cost Analysis
  • Office hours with Dr. Kiera Brodsky Chase held September 15 – Recording and Transcript Coming Soon
    • Implementation Planning

Please Note: Submission requirements have changed since these recording. Please see Challenge FAQ for the Math Prize or Science Prize for up-to-date submission requirements.

If you have any questions, reach out to the Challenges Team at