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 Pub Number  Title  Date
REL 2021114 Using a survey of social and emotional learning and school climate to inform decisionmaking

The District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS) has prioritized efforts to support students' social and emotional learning (SEL) competencies, such as perseverance and social awareness. To measure students' SEL competencies and the school experiences that promote SEL competencies (school climate), DCPS began administering annual surveys to students, teachers, and parents in 2017/18. DCPS partnered with the Mid-Atlantic Regional Educational Laboratory to study how the district could use these surveys to improve students' outcomes. The study found the following:

  • Students' SEL competencies and school experiences are the most favorable in elementary school and the least favorable in middle school and the beginning of high school. This pattern suggests that schools might provide targeted supports before or during grades 6-10 to promote SEL competencies and school experiences when students need the most support.
  • The trajectories of students' SEL competencies and school experiences differed in different schools, to a similar degree as trajectories in academic measures like test scores. To understand why changes in SEL competencies and school experiences differ across schools, DCPS could explore differences in practices between schools with better and worse trajectories. In addition, DCPS could provide targeted support to schools with lower levels of positive change.
  • Of the SEL competencies and school experiences in DCPS's survey, self-management—how well students control their emotions, thoughts, and behavior—is most related to students' later academic outcomes. Programs or interventions that target self-management might have the most potential for improving students' outcomes compared to those that target other SEL competencies or school experiences.
  • In statistical models designed to predict students' future academic outcomes, SEL competency and school experience data add little accuracy beyond prior academic outcomes (such as achievement test scores and attendance) and demographic characteristics. Prior academic outcomes and demographic characteristics predict later outcomes with a high degree of accuracy, and they may implicitly incorporate the SEL competencies and school experiences. These findings suggest that DCPS would not need to use SEL competencies and school experiences to identify whether or not students are at risk of poor academic outcomes.
  • Student, teacher, and parent reports on SEL competencies and school experiences are positively related across schools, but they also exhibit systematic differences, suggesting that some respondent groups may not be aligned in their view of SEL competencies and school experiences. These differences may serve as a tool to help DCPS target efforts to improve communication among students, teachers, and parents.
NCES 2021029 2012–2016 Program for International Student Assessment Young Adult Follow-up Study (PISA YAFS): How reading and mathematics performance at age 15 relate to literacy and numeracy skills and education, workforce, and life outcomes at age 19
This Research and Development report provides data on the literacy and numeracy performance of U.S. young adults at age 19, as well as examines the relationship between that performance and their earlier reading and mathematics proficiency in PISA 2012 at age 15. It also explores how other aspects of their lives at age 19—such as their engagement in postsecondary education, participation in the workforce, attitudes, and vocational interests—are related to their proficiency at age 15.
REL 2021068 Measuring Civic Readiness: A Review of Survey Scales
This resource supports state and local education agencies in identifying, comparing, and contrasting survey scales that measure a variety of civic readiness categories. It describes the format and structure of survey scales, details the civic readiness categories measured by the scales, and summarizes the reliability and validity evidence associated with the scales.
NCES 2020222 Program for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies (PIAAC) U.S. 2017 Sample Public-use File (PUF)
The PIAAC U.S. 2017 public-use file (PUF) contains individual unit data including both responses to the background questionnaire and the cognitive assessment from the third U.S. PIAAC data collection, completed in 2017. Statistical disclosure control treatments were applied due to confidentiality concerns. For more details on the PUF, please refer to Appendix E of the U.S. PIAAC Technical Report (NCES 2020-224).
NCES 2016667REV Program for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies (PIAAC) 2012/2014: U.S. National Supplement Public Use Data Files-Household
The PIAAC 2012/14 U.S. PUF contains individual unit record data including both responses to the background questionnaire and the cognitive assessment from both the first and second U.S. PIAAC data collections, completed in 2012 and 2014, respectively. In September 2017, the PUF was reissued, with an Errata Sheet detailing the revisions. Statistical disclosure control treatments were applied due to confidentiality concerns. For more details on the PUF, please refer to Appendix E of the U.S. PIAAC Technical Report (NCES 2016-036REV).

How to get PIAAC Restricted Use Data.
REL 2016165 Guide to the Competency-based Learning Survey for Students
Many states are beginning to move away from policies that base student advancement on credits and "seat time" toward competency-based learning policies that provide schools with the flexibility to link advancement to a student's mastery of content. As schools and districts implement these changes, information about students' exposure to and understanding of competency-based learning policies and practices can help identify areas of improvement for implementation and communication with students. However, few tools exist for systematically collecting this information. In response to this need, the Regional Educational Laboratory Northeast and Islands worked with practitioners and researchers to develop a new survey—the Competency-Based Learning Survey for Students. Designed to be administered to students attending high schools in which competency-based learning is being implemented, the survey collects information regarding students' beliefs about, understanding of, and exposure to key elements of competency-based learning. This report describes (1) why the survey was developed, (2) elements of competency-based learning addressed by the survey, (3) how to adapt and administer the survey, and (4) how to analyze the results. The report includes the complete survey instrument.
REL 2016132 Stated Briefly: The utility of teacher and student surveys in principal evaluations: An empirical investigation
This "Stated Briefly" report is a companion piece that summarizes the results of another report of the same name. This study examined whether measures from student and teacher surveys that reflect principals' practice are related to schoolwide academic performance. The study was conducted using data from 2011–12 on 39 elementary and secondary schools within a midsize urban school district in the REL Midwest Region. The research team used the results of the district's Tripod student and teacher surveys to construct six school-level measures of school conditions that prior research has shown to associate with effective school leadership. The study finds that adding the full set of six survey measures as a group results in statistically significant increases in variation explained in mathematics and composite value-added outcomes, but not in reading. A stepwise regression procedure identified two measures—instructional leadership and classroom instructional environment—as an optimal subset of the six measures. This evidence indicates that student and teacher survey measures can have utility for principal performance evaluation.
REL 2014039 The Appropriateness of a California Student and Staff Survey for Measuring Middle School Climate
The purpose of this study was to examine the appropriateness of using student and staff self-report surveys—the California School Climate, Health, and Learning Survey (Cal-SCHLS)—to assess school climate in middle schools. The study examined (a) the domains of school climate assessed by the surveys; (b) the reliability of the surveys at both the respondent and school levels; (c) the stability of the survey measures over time; and (d) the relationship of the survey measures to student achievement and discipline. The results suggested that the Cal-SCHLS student survey can be used to validly and reliably assess the following six school-climate domains at the school level: (a) safety and connectedness; (b) caring relationships with adults; (c) meaningful participation; (d) substance use at schools; (e) bullying and discrimination; and (f) delinquency. The Cal-SCHLS teacher survey can also be used to validly and reliably assess six domains: (a) support and safety; (b) caring staff-student relationships; (c) staff peer relationships; (d) student health and engagement; (e) student delinquency; and (f) resource provision. The surveys may help educators identify building-level needs related to school climate, target supports and reforms, and monitor progress in climate improvement efforts.
REL 2014035 Speak Out, Listen Up! Tools for Using Student Perspectives and Local Data for School Improvement
Listening closely to what students say about their school experiences can be beneficial to educators for understanding and addressing school-related topics and problems and rethinking policies and practices. The purpose of this toolkit is to provide educators with a purposeful and systematic way to elicit and listen to student voice to inform school improvement efforts. School improvement is complex work that relies on multiple sources of information to frame challenges and address and monitor change efforts. Student voice brings an additional, important source of information to these efforts. The toolkit offers three tools. ASK (Analyzing Surveys with Kids) involves students in analyzing and interpreting survey results associated with a school-related topic or problem and then producing suggestions for school improvement. Inside-Outside Fishbowl organizes a special kind of focus group in which students and educators trade roles as speakers and listeners during a facilitated discussion of a school-related topic or problem, and jointly develop an action plan. S4 (Students Studying Students’ Stories) guides a digital storytelling process in which students produce and analyze videotaped interviews of other students about a school-related topic or problem and then host forums with educators to suggest improvements. The toolkit includes detailed information about how the tools work, the questions they address, the number and types of participants needed, the amount of time required, space and materials considerations, and directions for using the tools. It also includes a tool template so schools and districts can create new student voice tools for their particular needs and interests.
REL 2011098 Measuring Student Engagement in Upper Elementary through High School: A Description of 21 Instruments
This report reviews the characteristics of 21 instruments that measure student engagement in upper elementary through high school. It summarizes what each instrument measures, describes its purposes and uses, and provides technical information on its psychometric properties.
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