National Education Policy Center:  “We toss the baby out with the bathwater when we ignore all studies simply because some of them are fatally flawed”

BOULDER, CO (April 28, 2016) – One way to ignore solid evidence is to dismiss research because, “it can be made to say anything.” This is unfortunately true.

But we toss the baby out with the bathwater when we ignore all studies because some are fatally flawed.

A new, single-page brief provides tips for identifying higher-quality studies and otherwise making better use of education policy research.

“When readers heed basic cautions, research can provide valuable guidance that helps them learn from past experiences rather than reinventing the wheel by repeatedly re-introducing policies and practices that have failed in the past,” said Holly Yettick, PhD, director of the Education Week Research Center and author of the brief.

Yettick briskly walks through some of the key issues that readers of education research should understand.

These topics include:

> Peer review

> The importance of prioritizing research reviews over standalone studies

> “P values” and statistical significance

> Effect sizes

> Research in real-world situations

This brief is the fifth in a series of concise publications, Research-Based Options for Education Policymaking, that takes up a number of important policy issues and identifies policies supported by research.

Each section focuses on a different issue, and its recommendations to policymakers are based on the latest scholarship.

Find Holly Yettick’s brief on the NEPC website at:

Source: Making Good Use of Policy Research | National Education Policy Center