I am pleased to announce that Dr. Matthew Soldner will be assuming the role of Commissioner of the National Center for Education Evaluation and Regional Assistance (NCEE) beginning on 2 July 2018.
Dr. Soldner was most recently a Principal Researcher in the Higher Education practice area at the American Institutes for Research (AIR), where his work focused on federal higher education policy and collaborative research with colleges and universities designed to improve student success outcomes while reducing equity gaps. His expertise includes the design and implementation of complex, mixed-methods evaluations; innovative practices designed to improve student outcomes; postsecondary competency-based education; federal financial aid; and federal statistical policy and practice. Prior to joining AIR, Matt was a senior technical advisor for the Department of Education's National Center for Education Statistics, providing methodological and analytic guidance on studies like the National Postsecondary Student Aid Study, the Beginning Postsecondary Students Longitudinal Study, and the Baccalaureate and Beyond Longitudinal Study. He also advised senior Department leadership on analyses related to regulation and postsecondary policymaking. His Ph.D. is from the University of Maryland.
Matt brings much needed experience with higher education and great organizational skills to IES. We are looking forward to a productive and exciting time with Matt on board.
Director, Institute of Education Sciences
The National Center for Education Evaluation and Regional Assistance (NCEE) is one of the four centers of the Institute of Education Sciences. NCEE is responsible for conducting rigorous evaluations of federal programs, synthesizing and disseminating information from evaluation and research, and providing technical assistance to improve student achievement through the work of the evaluation division and the knowledge utilization division that includes the Regional Educational Laboratory Program; the What Works Clearinghouse, the Education Resources Information Center (ERIC), and the National Library of Education.
NCEE's evaluation division focuses on conducting rigorous impact studies of promising education programs and practices that are supported through federal funds by conducting studies that will assess the impact of education programs on academic achievement, particularly in reading, mathematics, and science. The evaluation studies use methodologies that can provide credible scientific evidence to answer questions of effectiveness.
The programs administered by NCEE through the knowledge utilization division include the Regional Educational Laboratory Program that is designed to serve the educational needs of designated regions by bringing the latest and best research and proven practices into school improvement efforts; the What Works Clearinghouse synthesizes the best evidence of the effectiveness of education programs, policies, and practices and reports on up-to-date research findings available through its website at http://ies.ed.gov/ncee/wwc/; the Education Resources Information Center (ERIC) the largest education database in the world that provides the public with a centralized ERIC website for searching the ERIC bibliographic databases of more than 1.1 million citations; and the National Library of Education that collects and archives information, providing special historical and current collections of Department of Education documents, a collection of journals supporting the ERIC database, research reports supporting the What Works Clearinghouse, and resources supporting current and historical federal education legislation.
Overall, the combined activities of NCEE are designed to promote the adoption of rigorous evaluation designs and methodologies in federal and non-federal education evaluation studies; provide technical assistance through the 10 regional educational laboratories on evidence-based research; and widely disseminate information on rigorously conducted education research and evaluation to state and local educational agencies, institutions of higher education, Congress, parents, teachers, media and the general public on effective programs and practices that improve student achievement. NCEE is committed to providing quick and easy access to evidence-based information through online databases such ERIC and the What Works Clearinghouse.
For more information on the work of the NCEE evaluation and knowledge utilization divisions, consult NCEE Projects and Programs.