Review of Educational Research

Published by American Educational Research Association (AERA)

Online ISSN: 1935-1046


Print ISSN: 0034-6543


Adolescent Work, Vocational Development, and Education
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  • Full-text available

January 2007


1,119 Reads


This review examines contemporary issues in vocational development with emphasis on adolescents' work experiences in social context. Attention is directed to the changing social and cultural context for vocational development, the influence of work experience on adolescent development and educational achievement, and theoretical approaches that guide contemporary studies of vocational development and career maturity. In light of the utility of current theories, new directions are suggested to enhance understanding of adolescent employment, vocational development, and educational pursuits. Social policy initiatives to promote adolescents' exercise of agency and their vocational development are considered.

A Synthesis of Reading Interventions and Effects on Reading Comprehension Outcomes for Older Struggling Readers

March 2009


5,660 Reads

Meaghan S Edmonds






This article reports a synthesis of intervention studies conducted between 1994 and 2004 with older students (Grades 6-12) with reading difficulties. Interventions addressing decoding, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension were included if they measured the effects on reading comprehension. Twenty-nine studies were located and synthesized. Thirteen studies met criteria for a meta-analysis, yielding an effect size (ES) of 0.89 for the weighted average of the difference in comprehension outcomes between treatment and comparison students. Word-level interventions were associated with ES = 0.34 in comprehension outcomes between treatment and comparison students. Implications for comprehension instruction for older struggling readers are described.

Meta-Analysis With Complex Research Designs

September 2014


144 Reads

Previous research has shown that treating dependent effect sizes as independent inflates the variance of the mean effect size and introduces bias by giving studies with more effect sizes more weight in the meta-analysis. This article summarizes the different approaches to handling dependence that have been advocated by methodologists, some of which are more feasible to implement with education research studies than others. A case study using effect sizes from a recent meta-analysis of reading interventions is presented to compare the results obtained from different approaches to dealing with dependence. Overall, mean effect sizes and variance estimates were found to be similar, but estimates of indexes of heterogeneity varied. Meta-analysts are advised to explore the effect of the method of handling dependence on the heterogeneity estimates before conducting moderator analyses and to choose the approach to dependence that is best suited to their research question and their data set.

The Greater Male Variability Controversy: Science Versus Politics

March 1992


61 Reads

Responds to the comments of N. Noddings (see record 1992-29786-001) on the work of A. Feingold (see record 1992-29772-001) supporting greater variability for males in the cognitive domain. The main purpose of Feingold's article is asserted to be a demonstration that previous research on intellective sex differences is incomplete because of the general preoccupation with sex differences in means. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)

Discriminant Analysis

October 2005


151 Reads

The basic notions of descriptive and predictive discriminant analysis (DDA and PDA) are discussed. Descriptions of conductiong a DDA and PDA are given, with implications for reporting results of these two analyses. Distinctions betweeen DDA and PDA are emphasized.

FIGURE 1. Number of academic works using the phrase public pedagogy from 1975 to 2010. Five works published from 1894 to 1975 were omitted from this figure because of their dispersed publication dates. In addition, it should be noted that H. A. Giroux's contributions account for more than one third of the sample for 2001 to 2005.  
Mapping the Complexity of Public Pedagogy Scholarship 1894–2010

September 2011


2,444 Reads

The term public pedagogy first appeared in 1894 and has been widely deployed as a theoretical construct in education research to focus on processes and sites of education beyond formal schooling, with a proliferation of its use by feminist and critical theorists occurring since the mid-1990s. This integrative literature review provides the first synthesis of public pedagogy research through a thematic analysis of a sample of 420 publications. Finding that the public pedagogy construct is often undertheorized and ambiguously presented in education research literature, the study identifies five primary categories of extant public pedagogy research: (a) citizenship within and beyond schools, (b) popular culture and everyday life, (c) informal institutions and public spaces, (d) dominant cultural discourses, and (e) public intellectualism and social activism. These categories provide researchers with a conceptual framework for investigating public pedagogy and for locating future scholarship. The study identifies the need for theoretical specificity in research that employs the public pedagogy construct and for empirical studies that investigate the processes of public pedagogy, particularly in terms of the learner’s perspective.

She’s Not There Women and Gender as Disappearing Foci in U.S. Research on the Elementary School Teacher, 1995–Present

September 2012


57 Reads

For this literature review, the authors asked, “What is the role of gender in research about elementary-level women teachers and preservice teachers in the past 15 years, and what have scholars learned about the gendered nature of women’s experiences in elementary-level preservice and in-service teaching in that time?” To be eligible for inclusion, works had to be published during or after 1995, study elementary preservice or practicing women educators, take place in the United States, focus on gender, and be empirical. Of the 54 articles that warranted in-depth investigation, 42 articles were excluded because teachers’ gender was subsumed under other social categories such as K–12 female students or male students and teachers. The majority of the 12 relevant articles employed small participant samples and exploratory approaches and depicted female teachers as struggling with or marginalized in the profession. A minority presented women teachers as reveling in the legacies of teaching. These findings beg for more research on women teachers’ gendered experiences.

FIGURE 1. Proportion (frequency) of studies by year of publication.  
Waitoller, F., & Artiles, A. J. (2013). A decade of professional development research for inclusive education: A literature review and notes for a sociocultural research program. Review of Educational Research, 83, 319-356.

September 2013


1,965 Reads

We reviewed the research on professional development (PD) for inclusive education between 2000 and 2009 to answer three questions: (a) How is inclusive education defined in PD research? (b) How is PD for inclusive education studied? (c) How is teacher learning examined in PD research for inclusive education? Systematic procedures were used to identify relevant research and analyze the target studies. We found that most PD research for inclusive education utilized a unitary approach toward difference and exclusion and that teacher learning for inclusive education is undertheorized. We recommend using an intersectional approach to understand difference and exclusion and examining boundary practices to examine teacher learning for inclusive education.

Sex Differences in Variability in Intellectual Abilities: A New Look at an Old Controversy

March 1992


181 Reads

Contemporary research on sex differences in intellectual abilities has focused on male-female differences in average performance, implicitly assuming homogeneity of variance. To examine the validity of that assumption, this article examined sex differences in variability on the national norms of several standardized test batteries. Males were consistently more variable than females in quantitative reasoning, spatial visualization, spelling, and general knowledge. Because these sex differences in variability were coupled with corresponding sex differences in means, it was demonstrated that sex differences in variability and sex differences in central tendency have to be considered together to form correct conclusions about the magnitude of cognitive gender differences.

School-Based Child Sexual Abuse Prevention Programs: A Review of Effectiveness

March 2009


642 Reads

In this systematic and critical review of purely school based child sexual abuse prevention program efficacy studies, 22 studies meeting the inclusion criteria differed by target population, program implementation, and evaluation methodology. Measured outcomes for children included knowledge, skills, emotion, risk perception, touch discrimination, reported response to actual threat or abuse, disclosure, maintenance of gains, and negative effects. Many studies had methodological limitations (e.g., sampling problems, lack of adequate control groups, lack of reliable and valid measures). However, most investigators claimed that their results showed significant impact in primary prevention (increasing all children’s knowledge or awareness and/or abuse prevention skills). There was little evidence of change in disclosure. There was limited follow-up evidence of actual use and effectiveness of prevention skills, and the evidence for maintenance of gains was mixed. Several programs reported some negative effects. Very few studies reported implementation fidelity data, and no study reported cost-effectiveness. Implications for future research, policy, and practice are outlined.

Academic Work

June 1983


104 Reads

This review focuses on the intrinsic character of academic work in elementary and secondry schools and the way that work is experienced by teachers and students in classrooms. The first section contains a review of recent research in cognitive psychology on the intellectual demands of the tasks contained in the school curriculum, with particular attention to the inherent complexity of most of the tasks students encounter. The findings of this research are brought to bear on the issue of direct versus indirect instruction. The second section is directed to studies of how academic work is accomplished in classroom environments. Classrooms appear to shape the content of the curriculum in fundamental ways for all students and especially those who find academic work difficult. In addition, the processes that are likely to have the greatest long-term consequences are the most difficult to teach in classrooms. The paper concludes with an analysis of issues related to improving instruction and extending current directions in research on teaching.

Impact of Garden-Based Learning on Academic Outcomes in Schools

June 2013


1,736 Reads

What is the impact of garden-based learning on academic outcomes in schools? To address this question, findings across 152 articles (1990–2010) were analyzed resulting in 48 studies that met the inclusion criteria for this synthesis. A review template with operational coding framework was developed. The synthesis results showed a preponderance of positive impacts on direct academic outcomes with the highest positive impact for science followed by math and language arts. Indirect academic outcomes were also measured with social development surfacing most frequently and positively. These results were consistent across programs, student samples, and school types and within the disparate research methodologies used. However, a common issue was lack of research rigor as there were troubling issues with incomplete descriptions of methodological procedures in general and sampling techniques and validity in particular. Recommendations for more systematic and rigorous research are provided to parallel the growing garden-based education movement.

Table 1 .
Table 2 .
Table 7 . Results of the Meta-Analyses: Weighted Mean Effect Sizes (pooled variances), Average Correlations and Confidence Intervals of the correlation coefficients for the categories of the moderator 'self-concept measure'.
Table 8 . Results of the Path Analyses PC MAch-MSelf PC MAch-VSelf PC VAch-MSelf PC VAch-VSelf
A Meta-Analytic Path Analysis of the Internal/External Frame of Reference Model of Academic Achievement and Academic Self-Concept

September 2009


1,247 Reads

A meta-analysis of 69 data sets (N = 125,308) was carried out on studies that simultaneously evaluate the effects of math and verbal achievements on math and verbal self-concepts. As predicted by the internal/external frame of reference (I/E) model, math and verbal achievements were highly correlated overall (.67), but the correlation between math and verbal self-concepts (.10) was close to zero. Correlations between math and verbal achievement and correlations between achievements and self-concepts within the domains were more positive when grades instead of standardized test results were used as achievement indicators. A path analysis revealed support for the I/E model, with positive paths from achievement to the corresponding self-concepts (.61 for math, .49 for verbal) and negative paths from achievement in one subject to self-concept in the other subject (−.21 from math achievement on verbal self-concept, −.27 from verbal achievement to math self-concept). Furthermore, results showed that the I/E model is valid for different age groups, gender groups, and countries. The I/E model did not fit the data when self-efficacy measures were used instead of self-concept measures. These results demonstrate the broad scope of the I/E model as an adequate description of students’ self-evaluation processes as they are influenced by internal and external frames of reference.

Single-Sex and Coeducational Schooling: Relationships to Socioemotional and Academic Development

June 1998


9,051 Reads

The role of coeducation versus separate-sex schooling in the academic, socioemotional, interpersonal, and career development of adolescents is discussed. Arguments and research support for both types of schooling are reviewed. Separate-sex schooling seems to provide potential academic and attitudinal benefits for at least some students. The limitations of current research are discussed, and directions for further research are offered.

Perceived Personal Control and Academic Achievement

March 1981


122 Reads

Perceived control of events is one motivational variable that appears to affect children’s academic achievement. In this review the conceptualization and measurement of the control dimension is discussed from three theoretical perspectives: social learning theory, attribution theory, and intrinsic motivation theories. For each of these three perspectives evidence on the relationship between achievement and perceptions of control is summarized, and possible explanations for the relationship are discussed. Throughout this review similarities and differences among these orientations are pointed out. Specific recommendations are made for research which will advance our understanding of this relationship and which will provide the most useful information to educators.

table 3 (total reading achievement, reading 
Table 3 reports the mean effect size and the associated 95% confidence interval, Q statistic, and I 2 statistic for all summer reading interventions and separately for classroom and 
Table 4 Findings for Research-based Instruction Moderator Analyses for Classroom-based Summer Reading Interventions
Table 6 displays standardized mean gains by 
Table 6 Findings for Income Status Moderators of Reading Achievement from Spring to Fall for Control Group Children
The Effects of Summer Reading on Low-Income Children’s Literacy Achievement From Kindergarten to Grade 8 A Meta-Analysis of Classroom and Home Interventions

September 2013


1,337 Reads

This meta-analysis reviewed research on summer reading interventions conducted in the United States and Canada from 1998 to 2011. The synthesis included 41 classroom- and home-based summer reading interventions involving children from kindergarten to Grade 8. Compared to control group children, children who participated in classroom interventions, involving teacher-directed literacy lessons, or home interventions, involving child-initiated book reading activities, enjoyed significant improvement on multiple reading outcomes. The magnitude of the treatment effect was positive for summer reading interventions that employed research-based reading instruction and included a majority of low-income children. Sensitivity analyses based on within-study comparisons indicated that summer reading interventions had significantly larger benefits for children from low-income backgrounds than for children from a mix of income backgrounds. The findings highlight the potentially positive impact of classroom- and home-based summer reading interventions on the reading comprehension ability of low-income children.

A Meta-Analytic Review of the Effect on Learning of the Interaction Between Prior Achievement and Instructional Support

March 1989


28 Reads

Aptitude-treatment interaction research has been plagued by conceptual and methodological problems that are evidenced in inconsistent results and unreplicated studies. These problems can be addressed, in part, by using meta-analytic techniques. These techniques were used in this study to test the effect of the interaction of prior achievement with instructional support on learning. This aptitude-treatment interaction was tested by assessing how the learning of subjects with different levels of prior achievement is effected by providing organizational and structuring instructional support as opposed to learner-controlled or self-paced instructional support. The results reveal an interaction that is consistent with the interpretation that there are greater differences in learning achievement between subjects with high prior achievement and subjects with low prior achievement when structuring and organizing support are provided and smaller differences between these subjects when instruction is self-paced. Although this study indicates that differences in achievement levels can be reduced through instructional treatment, further research is needed to evaluate other effects, such as total and subgroup mean achievement.

The Effect of School Resources on Student Achievement

September 1996


681 Reads

A universe of education production function studies was assembled in order to utilize meta-analytic methods to assess the direction and magnitude of the relations between a variety of school inputs and student achievement. The 60 primary research studies aggregated data at the level of school districts or smaller units and either controlled for socioeconomic characteristics or were longitudinal in design. The analysis found that a broad range of resources were positively related to student outcomes, with effect sizes large enough to suggest that moderate increases in spending may be associated with significant increases in achievement. The discussion relates the findings of this study with trends in student achievement from the National Assessment of Educational Progress and changes in social capital over the last two decades.

Variables Affecting Achievement of Middle School Mexican American Students

January 1971


19 Reads

Literature pertaining to research done on academic achievement of Mexican American students is reviewed in this paper. The literature deals with such variables as socioeconomic, physical, psychological, and cultural aspects; language factors; attitudes; language development; and environment. A 15-page discussion of recommendations for improving curriculum, instruction, and teacher education for educating the Mexican American is included. Also included is a bibliography containing over 200 relevant citations. (NQ)

The Effect of Family Literacy Interventions on Children's Acquisition of Reading. From Kindergarten to Grade 3. A Meta-Analytic Review

January 2006


661 Reads

This review focuses on intervention studies that tested whether parent-child reading activities would enhance children's reading acquisition. The combined results for the 16 intervention studies, representing 1,340 families, were clear: Parent involvement has a positive effect on children's reading acquisition. Further analyses revealed that interventions in which parents tutored their children using specific literacy activities produced larger effects than those in which parents listened to their children read books. The three studies in which parents read to their children did not result in significant reading gains. When deciding which type of intervention to implement, educators will have to weigh a variety of factors such as the differences in effectiveness across the different types of intervention, the amount of resources needed to implement the interventions, and the reading level of the children.

The Role of Anomalous Data in Knowledge Acquisition: A Theoretical Framework and Implications for Science Instruction

March 1993


11,252 Reads

Understanding how science students respond to anomalous data is essential to understanding knowledge acquisition in science classrooms. This article presents a detailed analysis of the ways in which scientists and science students respond to such data. We postulate that there are seven distinct forms of response to anomalous data, only one of which is to accept the data and change theories. The other six responses involve discounting the data in various ways in order to protect the preinstructional theory. We analyze the factors that influence which of these seven forms of response a scientist or student will choose, giving special attention to the factors that make theory change more likely. Finally, we discuss the implications of our framework for science instruction.

What We Know About Second Language Acquisition

March 2012


14,017 Reads

Educational policies that impact second language (L2) learners—a rapidly-growing group—are often enacted without consulting relevant research. This review synthesized research regarding optimal conditions for L2 acquisition, facilitative L2 learner and teacher characteristics, and speed of L2 acquisition, from four bodies of work—foreign language education, child language research, sociocultural studies, and psycholinguistics—often overlooked by educators. Seventy-one peer-reviewed journal articles studying PK-12 L2 learners met inclusion criteria. Findings included: 1) Optimal conditions for L2 learners immersed in a majority-L2 society include strong home literacy practices, opportunities to use the L2 informally, well-implemented specially-designed L2 educational programs, and sufficient time devoted to L2 literacy instruction, whereas L2 learners with little L2 exposure require explicit instruction to master grammar; 2) L2 learners with strong L2 aptitude, motivation, and first language (L1) skills are more successful; 3) Effective L2 teachers demonstrate sufficient L2 proficiency, strong instructional skills, and proficiency in their students’ L1; 4) L2 learners require 3-7 years to reach L2 proficiency, with younger learners typically taking longer but more likely to achieve close-to-native results. These findings, even those most relevant to education, are not reflected in current US policy. Additional research is needed on the characteristics of successful or unsuccessful L2 learners and L2 teachers. Such research should attend systematically to the differences between L2 learning in maximal versus minimal input settings; whereas the psycholinguistic challenges of L2 learning might be common across settings, the sociocultural and interactional challenges and opportunities differ in ways that can massively impact outcomes.

Determinants of University Students' Political Attitudes or Demythologizing Campus Political Activism

December 1972


12 Reads

Four general hypotheses concerning the sources of university students' political attitudes are presented and evaluated in this paper. A cross-sectional survey of American male Harvard University graduate students was conducted with a questionnaire dealing with attitudes toward United States involvement in Vietnam. Responses were analyzed by computer and relevant statistical tests were used to verify each hypothesis. The findings contribute to the understanding of the determinants of political attitudes and to the understanding of the relationship between students' political attitudes and their general values. An appendix includes tables of data compiled in the study. (SHM)

TABLE 1 Descriptive statistics of the reviewed costing out literature Dimension %
The Cost of Providing an Adequate Education to English Language Learners A Review of the Literature

June 2012


756 Reads

This article systematically reviews the cost study literature as it relates to the treatment of English language learners (ELLs). Despite the substantial number of costing out studies that have been conducted over the past several decades, the school finance literature has failed to focus on ELLs—the fastest growing segment of the school-age population. Little attention has been paid to how ELL students are treated under the various costing out methodologies or which approaches yield the most useful results. The two criterion to select the costing out literature to review included (a) peer-reviewed journal articles and commissioned reports that used one of the four primary cost study methodologies (professional judgment panel, successful school model, evidence-based model, and cost function analysis), and (b) studies published after 1990 that focused on generating statewide funding recommendations at the district level. A total of 70 empirical cost studies met these criteria. The review concludes that there is substantial variability in the treatment of ELLs across cost study methodologies, although all methods agree that current funding levels are insufficient to meet specified performance standards. To comprehensively assess the resource needs of this growing school population, cost studies that specifically focus on ELLs will need to be conducted to improve transparency and representativeness for ELLs.

Assessing Neighborhood Racial Segregation and Macroeconomic Effects in the Education of African Americans

December 2010


54 Reads

The “underclass” debate of the 1980s often concerned the relative importance of neighborhood racial and economic isolation to the educational challenges facing many African Americans. This review organizes the neighborhood effects research that has emerged since that time according to these differing perspectives. The review’s triangulated approach assesses (a) the association of a neighborhood’s racial segregation and low level of economic resources to less academic success, (b) whether certain neighborhood social processes lower children’s educational performance, and (c) if residential opportunity leads to improvements in educational performance after children leave impoverished and segregated neighborhoods for integrated and middle-class areas. The analysis reveals that the education of African Americans appears less affected by neighborhood conditions than the two perspectives suggest, at least as they are currently conceptualized and measured. The results are contextualized with the author’s identification of areas in the field where more research is needed, the problems and promise associated with particular analytical strategies, and other social, school-based, and human development dynamics that complicate the estimation of neighborhood influences in education.

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