Commissioners' Welcome


Thomas Brock


Dear Colleagues,

Welcome to the 2016 Institute of Education Sciences (IES) Principal Investigators Meeting! This year's theme, Making it Matter: Rigorous Research from Design to Dissemination, underscores IES’ commitment to funding high quality research projects that will lead to meaningful improvements in schools and student outcomes. Our Co-Chairs for the 2016 Principal Investigators (PI) Meeting – Roberta Golinkoff (University of Delaware), Kathleen Lane (University of Kansas), and Grace Wardhana (Kiko Labs) – have channeled their passion for research and dissemination to help select the theme, plan sessions, and identify speakers for this meeting. We are grateful for their contribution.

The overall purpose of this gathering is to strengthen our collective work by fostering discussion and renewing or building connections among the nearly 800 PIs and training fellows currently supported by IES. The specific objectives of this meeting are to:

  • Discuss IES and the U.S. Department of Education priorities and programs;
  • Address challenges and solutions in the field of education research and practice;
  • Spotlight new research findings and methodological approaches from IES-funded projects;
  • Offer professional development on a range of substantive and methodological topics;
  • Provide time for PIs to meet with their NCER and NCSER program officers and other researchers working on similar problems or issues; and
  • Foster connections between IES fellows and others who may be seeking new research or career opportunities, and individuals who want to build new partnerships or fill open positions.

We solicited feedback on last year’s meeting to help us shape this year's agenda. Based on comments we received, we are allowing more time for informal meetings and networking, and have placed even greater emphasis on methodological training. In the interest of supporting dissemination efforts, we are also offering workshops and panels focusing on different forms of dissemination to a variety of audiences. Based on positive responses to last year’s meeting format, we will also continue to hold panel sessions focused on research findings, roundtables on critical education topics, IES technical assistance sessions, poster sessions, and time for program officer and networking meetings.

Thank you for your participation. We are looking forward to a great meeting.

Thomas Brock, NCER Commissioner & Joan McLaughlin, NCSER Commissioner

Joan McLaughlin