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IES Grant

Title: Develop and Improve the Edlnstruments Library
Center: NCER Year: 2020
Principal Investigator: Loeb, Susanna Awardee: Brown University
Program: Unsolicited and Other Awards      [Program Details]
Award Period: 2 years (09/01/2020 – 08/31/2022) Award Amount: $485,407.47
Type: Other Goal Award Number: R305U200008

This project is jointly funded by the National Center for Special Education Research and the National Center for Education Research.

Purpose: The purpose of this project is to develop, expand, refine, critique, improve, and disseminate EdInstruments, an open-source library of education-relevant measurement tools recently launched by the Annenberg Institute at Brown University.

EdInstruments provides information on instruments used to measure students' academic content knowledge, as well as a range of additional capabilities (knowledge, skills, attitudes, and dispositions) that help students thrive and contribute to others. In addition, EdInstruments provides information on instruments measuring educational processes in schools, homes and neighborhoods that contribute to student development. The database aims to be easily searchable and to provide users with overviews of measurements across educational domains that identify promising instruments and holes in current instrument availability.

The repository is intended to be a resource for scholars, educators, schools, districts and the general public. While a number of repositories provide domain-specific instruments, no other resource provides the full range of education measures. To date, the field of education research has demonstrated little agreement or consistency on how to define, measure, and organize the variety of outcomes relevant for improving educational opportunities for students. Without a comprehensive catalog of what is available, the field has lacked a collective understanding of what is and isn't being measured, and what measures still need to be developed. Further, researchers often create measurement tools from scratch rather than building on existing measures, impeding comparability of studies that may target the same goals and hindering progress in the field.

EdInstruments aims to support education improvement by addressing these issues. The annotated database will both give users a detailed overview of the tools currently available and illuminate gaps. The goal is to spur development of needed tools and to help the field move towards greater consensus regarding the measurement instruments that are most useful and reliable. Ultimately, EdInstruments aims to become the default resource for researchers and others embarking on a wide variety of assessments.

Project Activities: During the project, the EdInstruments team will expand and refine instruments included in the repository in six domains: middle grades mathematics, a subdomain of social-emotional learning, early elementary reading, teaching practices, civics, and school climate. They will convene six working group meetings of academic experts in each of these areas to critique the components and organization of the library, highlight the most useful instruments and propose improvements.

Projects: The key outcomes for the project are the expanded and refined database of instruments; the online platform for easy engagement with the database; and six framework documents with online interactivity.

Project Website: