卓越實證概述 Best Evidence in Brief

Primary School Education

Digital game-based learning enhances children’s language learning

Incorporating educational content into digital games and using those games as part of the elementary school curriculum to deliver traditional subjects has become a recent trend. Yu and Tsuei have launched a quasi-experimental study in digital game-based learning, examining its effect on the learning progress of elementary school students in Chinese language-arts. The authors recruited 126 4th graders (aged 9–10 years) from six classes in an elementary school in Taipei, Taiwan, with four classes as experimental group, and two classes as control group. Throughout a six-week experimental period, while the control-group classes read e-books on personal computers for 20 minutes each week, two experimental-group classes were assigned to play the game Legendary Beast Rescue I (EG I), and the other two classes, the game Legendary Beast Rescue II (EG II) for the same time span as the students’ learning of Chinese language-arts. The two games differ in their rewards mechanisms,...

02 05 2022
Does a preschool intervention work?

In 2003 and 2004, a team of researchers implemented a year-long social and emotional learning (SEL) intervention with 192 children within 22 classrooms within 12 Head Start programs. This intervention, called Head Start REDI, was an integration of PATHS, which is a well-known SEL intervention, and a daily interactive reading program using books aligned with PATHS’ social and emotional themes. Teachers in the intervention group received a four-day training and weekly mentoring. An additional 164 children within 22 classrooms within 13 Head Start programs served as a control group. Karen Bierman and her team followed these children after 8 to 10 years to estimate the long-term effects of the intervention. Among the original 356 children, 281 children (81%) were reassessed in this study. Children who were 4 years old at the time of intervention were in grades 7 and 9 when they were assessed again. The researchers found that children...

02 05 2022
Understanding the dynamics of dosage response on reading interventions

A recent meta-analysis published in the Review of Educational Research intends to identify and understand the intervention characteristics associated with the largest reading effect sizes. To support students’ reading outcomes, current models of intervention delivery have utilized multi-tiered systems of support (MTSS), also referred to as Response to Intervention (RtI). Within current MTSS and RtI frameworks, intervention levels are organized around three tiers. Tier 1 consists of delivering general education classroom instruction. Tier 2 consists of small group or 1:1 tutoring. Tier 3 consists of 1:1 instruction, with higher dosage and personalization. However, despite the promise of early reading interventions, about 18% to 55% of K–3 students with reading disabilities (SWRD) under Tier 2 intervention have continued to struggle in reading. Therefore, it remains critical to better understand how and when to intensify reading interventions. Since linear models in intervention research and meta-analyses have been unable to substantiate the claim...

25 03 2022
Effectiveness of volunteer tutoring

Markovitz and colleagues recently reported on a replication and expansion of a previous randomized controlled trial focused on volunteer tutoring in reading for at-risk early elementary school students. The study focuses on the effectiveness of the Minnesota Reading Corps and the Wisconsin Reading Corps, which are both programs within AmeriCorps. The initial 2014 study focused solely on Minnesota and was limited in its ability to assess impacts for second and third grade students. The authors suggest the study is useful because aspects of the tutoring programs have changed, they are now evaluating the effects of tutoring in two separate programs, and they are now able to have a longer evaluation of the effects on second and third grade students. The study used a matched-pairs design in which students were matched based upon their baseline fall test scores, and then one student was assigned to the control group while the other...

25 03 2022
For whom does the Good Behavior Game work?

There are ample evidence that social-emotional learning programs support behavioral and academic outcomes in students. However, few studies have looked at the “who” and “why” that make these programs work. In a study published in the Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, implementation variability and participant risk status were examined as predictors of disruptive behavior outcomes. In this large cluster randomized controlled trial, seventy-seven English primary schools (N = 3,084 children, aged 6–7) were assigned to either receive the Good Behavior Game or to continue with business-as-usual. The Good Behavior Game is a universal behavior management intervention that encourages students to monitor their behavior in return for tangible rewards. Due to the clustered nature of the data, hierarchical linear models were fitted to the data. This study used intent-to-treat as well as complier average causal effects samples to compare findings between the two. Interestingly, intent-to-treat analysis found no discernible impact...

11 03 2022
Does small group mathematics instruction work for all students?

A recent randomized evaluation conducted in Norway investigated the effects of a small group mathematics instruction on student academic achievement in elementary school. The study involved 159 elementary schools and 14,891 students in 10 municipalities in Norway. Schools were randomly assigned to receive the intervention or business as usual. Students in the intervention group were pulled out from their regular math class into small groups homogenous for ability for 3-4 hours per week. Therefore, the small group instruction was delivered to all students in the class, not only to low-achieving students or pupils at risk for failure. The intervention lasts for one or two years with two periods of 4-6 weeks of intervention each year. The authors evaluated the effects of the intervention on student mathematics achievement in fifth grade – after one or two years of intervention – through the Norwegian national test. Results showed significant positive effects for...

11 03 2022
Short-term and long-term effects of the School Improvement Grants initiative

School Improvement Grants (SIGs) were grants for state education agencies to address underperformance in public schools in the US. The SIG program required schools to adopt a reform model by choosing among four alternatives: the transformation model required reforms in the school instructional and evaluation system and changing the leadership; the turnaround model required the same transformations plus replacing 50% of the staff; the restart model required closing the school and opening it under the leadership of an education management organization; and the closure model required closing the school. Among these models, most of the SIG schools chose the transformation model, some schools the turnaround model, and a few schools the restart model. A recent study evaluated the effects of SIGs on student academic achievement and graduation rates, focusing on schools that adopted the transformation and turnaround models. A total of 99 schools and 35,200 students in grades 3 and...

11 02 2022
School improvement meta-analysis

In a recent meta-analysis, Schueler and colleagues investigated the effects of school improvement initiatives spanning four major categories: turnaround, labeling, charter conversion, and closure. The search covered the years 2000-2019, effectively capturing the school improvement landscape from No Child Left Behind up until the COVID-19 pandemic school closures. Following a literature search and inclusion review, 67 studies were utilized in the analysis as the authors sought to determine the general effects of school improvement initiatives on low-performing K-12 student achievement along with specific effects associated with features of these initiatives. The general impacts of school initiatives were shown below. For effects on high-stakes achievement test scores: a significant positive effect was found (ES = + 0.06) on math achievement and an insignificant effect on English achievement. For effects on low-stakes achievement test scores: a significant positive effect was found in both STEM (ES = +0.07) and the humanities (ES =...

11 02 2022
The Medium-Term Effects of Tutoring

Cabezas and colleagues recently concluded eight years of data collection from a randomized controlled trial designed to explore the short-term and medium-term effects of a tutoring intervention in Chile.  The program was administered by the Minister of Education and was directed toward fourth grade students from low socioeconomic backgrounds attending low-performing schools.  Students in the treatment group received 15 weekly 90-minute tutoring sessions with a focus on shared reading.  The program demonstrated small to moderate short-term effects that are similar or slightly smaller than previous research on tutoring programs.  Overall reading and literature test scores showed a small effect (ES = + 0.06). Reading comprehension scores showed positive effect (ES = + 0.11). But use of language, texts production, and attitude towards reading did not show significant effects. The medium-term effects, which extend through the end of high school, are the focus of the study.  The treatment shows a beneficial...

21 01 2022