Welcome to RAND Education
Bringing accurate data and objective analysis to education policy
For over three decades, RAND Education has applied its expertise to almost every aspect of the education system. RAND Education's staff includes more than 70 experts from a wide range of disciplines. Sponsors of our research include government agencies, foundations, and private-sector organizations.
Our mission is to bring accurate data and objective analysis to education policy. We are a division within RAND, a nonprofit institute that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis.
RAND Helps Shape the Measures of Effective Teaching (MET) Project's Final Report
At the heart of the effort to improve education is the need for accurate measurement; without reliable data generated by proven methods, it's impossible to tell what strategies hold the most promise for improving our schools. RAND Education researchers have contributed to the Measures of Effective Teaching (MET) project, funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, which researches key issues in identifying effective teachers:
An accurate combined measure of teacher effectiveness would be the gold standard to capture and communicate information about the quality of educators. While the challenges to building such a measure are significant, research can help guide the way.
Using data from the Measures of Effective Teaching (MET) project, researchers developed a model to compile data from multiple sources that could be used to make inferences about a teacher's impact on student achievement.
Random assignment of students to teachers is crucial in controlling for variables apart from teacher influence that may influence student achievement. This report captures the technical methods, findings, and implications of the MET project's random assignment study of teaching effectiveness measures.
Many factors contribute to a student's academic performance, but research suggests that, among school-related factors, teachers matter most. What's less clear is how to measure an individual teacher's effectiveness. A new RAND Education website features fact sheets, blog posts, research briefs, and more on this important issue.
The Delaware Stars for Early Success Evaluation assesses whether rating tiers reflect relevant differences in the quality of home- and center-based programs and whether the system is operating effectively.
Prisoners say they need education and job training to reintegrate into society. They're right: 68 percent of inmates in state prisons lack a high school diploma. Correctional education programs improve job prospects upon release from prison, reduce recidivism, and save taxpayer dollars.
A first-year algebra curriculum that blends tutoring software with conventional textbook learning had a positive effect for high school algebra students. Researchers found significant improvements—a change equivalent to moving from the 50th percentile to the 58th on an algebra posttest.
A “blended” approach that combines traditional textbook learning and computer-based instruction could help improve performance among algebra students.
States and school districts can help principals be more successful by matching the correct candidate with the appropriate school, by using a high-quality system to evaluate them, by giving them the right amount of autonomy, and by providing them with the resources and support they need to produce better education outcomes.
The leadership of the Arabian Gulf nation of Qatar sees education as the key to Qatar's economic and social progress. Long concerned that the country's education system was not meeting the needs of its society, the Qatari leadership approached the RAND Corporation in 2001, asking it to examine the kindergarten through grade 12 (K-12) education system.