Research-based Best Practices

Formative evaluation is key to the creation of all our programs. In the curriculum development process, we receive extensive feedback from panels of teachers who pilot program lessons in their own classrooms. The lessons are revised based on feedback and on classroom observations by our program developers. The revised lessons are then field-tested by entire faculties in a diverse set of schools, and are revised again before final publication. Our after-school programs are developed using a similar process.

Through questionnaires, surveys, interviews, and focus groups, we conduct ongoing evaluations of our staff development offerings and selected program implementation efforts. We also collaborate with third-party evaluators to conduct comprehensive outcome evaluations of our programs. These studies assess our programs’ effects on students’ academic achievement and their social and ethical growth. The evaluations have shown that when implemented well, our programs have powerful positive effects on students, including strengthening their motivation to learn, promoting their academic achievement, and fostering their growth as caring and principled human beings.

Currently we are engaged in a research project with the Regional Education Laboratory West (REL West) at WestEd. In partnership with Washoe County School District and the Northwest Regional Professional Development Program, we are learning together how to use practical inquiry and data tools to shift instructional practices and support the development of students as writers.

Collaborative Classroom (formerly Developmental Studies Center) has long been recognized as a leader in research on social and emotional learning. You can review published articles here.