Education and Literacy

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RAND research on early childhood, K-12, and higher education covers issues such as assessment and accountability, choice-based and standards-based reform, school leadership, teacher effectiveness, technology, and vocational training. RAND also explores life skills, such as media, health, and financial literacy, as well as how time spent outside the classroom impacts student outcomes.

  • Jessica Coley, a principal-in-training in Prince George's County, Md., stands by some student project work in her school, photo by Karen Sayre

    Essay

    Investing in Principals Helps Students Succeed

    Jul 5, 2019

    Hiring good principals is one of the most important things a district can do for its students, second only to hiring good teachers. Students whose schools participated in a principal pipeline initiative outperformed their peers by six percentage points on reading tests and nearly three points in math.

  • Woman holding a laptop and looking at various news and media images, photo by metamorworks/Getty Images

    Report

    Media Literacy Education as a Tool for Mitigating 'Truth Decay'

    Jul 11, 2019

    Can media literacy education help counter the diminishing role of facts and analysis in American public life? To find out, RAND experts analyzed what we know—and don't know—about the subject.

Explore Education and Literacy

  • Word truth written with wooden letters on rustic surface

    Commentary

    In Reckoning with Today's Truth Wars, Look to America's Past

    The declining regard for factual evidence may be a defining characteristic of our current age. Previous eras suggest it is within society's power to restore respect for objective facts. Humankind just needs to put it on the agenda.

    Jun 19, 2018

  • Audio Podcast of Truth Decay Event at RAND

    Multimedia

    Truth Decay and Trust in Institutions

    In this Events @ RAND podcast, the Pew Research Center's Carroll Doherty joins RAND's Jennifer Kavanagh for a discussion about the causes and consequences of Truth Decay and declining trust in institutions.

    Jun 7, 2018

  • Infographic

    Enriching Kids: The Benefits of Using Public Funds to Pay for Out-of-School (OST) Time Programs

    This infographic provides an overview of the opportunity and attainment gaps between high-and low-income students and how public funding for after-school programs can help address these gaps.

    May 31, 2018

  • A woman and two men in hard hats on a construction site

    Report

    Bridge to Opportunities: Connecting Probationers to High-Wage Jobs

    Probation agencies face significant challenges to helping their clients find jobs, and earn living wages. One program focused on the construction industry aimed to improve the earning potential of individuals on probation in Sacramento County, California.

    May 25, 2018

  • Audio Podcast of Truth Decay Event at RAND

    Multimedia

    Truth Decay and Civil Discourse

    In this Events @ RAND podcast, Jennifer Kavanagh addresses the connection between Truth Decay and the erosion of civil discourse, as well as Truth Decay's effects on policymaking and the future of democracy.

    May 24, 2018

  • Group of college students in class

    Commentary

    The Case for Corequisites: What Are the Ingredients of Success?

    More than two-thirds of community college students and 40 percent of four-year college students take at least one developmental education course. States and colleges across the United States are experimenting with innovative approaches to developmental education to improve graduation rates for struggling students.

    May 23, 2018

  • Journal Article

    Boosting School Readiness: Should Preschool Teachers Target Skills or the Whole Child?

    Children gain more cognitive skills in early childhood programs that provide supplemental academic instruction in mathematics and literacy content for a small portion of the day, compared with programs that take an exclusive whole-child approach.

    May 22, 2018

  • Seen from behind, a woman holding hands with her daughter on a city sidewalk

    Report

    Will School Renovations Impact Students, Teachers, and Communities?

    Baltimore will renovate or replace more than two dozen public school buildings. How could these changes affect students, school staff, school conditions, and the surrounding community?

    May 22, 2018

  • Group of people using their phones outdoors

    Blog

    Regulation or Research? How to Reduce Truth Decay in the Media

    What is social media's role in the decline of trust in the media? Is government intervention needed to help stop the spread of misinformation? A panel of researchers discussed the connection between the media and Truth Decay at a RAND event in Boston.

    May 22, 2018

  • IT professional checking on servers

    Commentary

    Ending the 'Brogrammer' Culture: How to Close the Gender Gap

    Despite recent progress, women are significantly outnumbered in technology, comprising only 30 percent of the workforce worldwide. It's up to society, governments, and technology companies to close the gap. Improving internet access, education, and career opportunities for women could help.

    May 17, 2018

  • Michael Rich discussing RAND's "Truth Decay" research

    Multimedia

    Truth Decay: A Narrated Video

    "Truth Decay" is the diminishing role of facts and analysis in American public life. RAND is studying the causes and consequences of this phenomenon, and how they are interrelated. We invite other research organizations and individuals to join us in finding potential solutions and responses.

    May 16, 2018

  • Vial and syringe providing immunization from Truth Decay

    Article

    How to Increase Immunity to Truth Decay

    Americans have always held differing views about policy issues. But more and more, they disagree about basic facts. This is a symptom of what RAND calls “Truth Decay,” and it's doing severe damage to democracy in the United States.

    May 16, 2018

  • Multimedia

    How Truth Decay Happens

    “Truth Decay”—the shrinking role of facts and analysis in American public life—threatens democracy, policymaking, and civic discourse. RAND is studying this phenomenon to help understand what drives it and how to address it.

    May 15, 2018

  • Audio Podcast of Truth Decay Event at RAND

    Multimedia

    Truth Decay and the Media

    In this Events @ RAND podcast, a panel of experts discusses the connection between the media and Truth Decay. They address the effects of changes in the information environment, including the rise of social media, the shift to a 24-hour news cycle, increasing partisanship of some news sources, algorithms and filters, and media literacy.

    May 8, 2018

  • Journal Article

    School Practices to Promote Social Distancing in K-12 Schools: Review of Influenza Pandemic Policies and Practices

    Little information is available to schools to develop policies and procedures on social distancing during a flu pandemic. Additional research is needed to assess the feasibility and effectiveness of these policies and procedures.

    May 4, 2018

  • Lesson in school

    Report

    How Schools Could Support Teachers' Implementation of State Standards

    Most states have adopted more rigorous college and career readiness standards in the past decade. How do schools support teachers' implementation of these standards? School leaders need more training and support to better understand content and approaches aligned with their state standards.

    May 3, 2018

  • University students walking on campus road

    Testimony

    Five Options for Long-Term Sustainability of Pennsylvania's State System Universities

    Pennsylvania's State System of Higher Education faces significant challenges to its long-term sustainability, including population shifts and limited state funding. There are options to address these issues and avoid closures, but major structural changes will be needed.

    Apr 25, 2018

  • College students in a lecture hall

    Report

    Sustaining Pennsylvania's State System Universities

    The Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education is facing considerable challenges, such as demographic shifts, limited state funding, and strong competition. Options are available to address the system's long-term sustainability and viability, but major changes would be needed.

    Apr 25, 2018

  • Dissertation

    Finding the Force of the Future: Improving Air Force Officer Outreach through an Investigation of School and Community Attributes

    Seeks to improve understanding of the factors indicative of applications to the Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps' High School Scholarship Program.

    Apr 17, 2018

  • A young woman looks nervous in a job interview

    Commentary

    Bridging the Growing College Divide Among Young Americans

    Over the last decade, more Americans age 25 to 34 earned four-year college and graduate degrees, but the number of those without college degrees also increased. New ways of communicating educational options and outcomes to young people are needed.

    Apr 13, 2018