Reflective Educational Research

Past Research and Evaluation Studies

Boston Public Schools’ 1st 1:1 laptop program (2009-2011) - Lilla G. Frederick Pilot Middle School

In collaboration with Boston Public School, this multi-year research investigation examined one of the first urban 1:1 technology program in the nation. As a pilot program, the Frederick Wireless Learning Program used research and evaluation to capture the implementation and effects of the program on a wide range of teaching and learning outcomes across the middle school curriculum. Voices of student participants, teacher participants, and school leaders were systematically captured and analyzed using a variety of methods including pre-laptop and post-laptop surveys, student drawings, and interviews. In addition, the relationship among various technology practices and measures of student achievement were explored in depth.

NYC Public Schools/Time to Know (2010-2013)

As one of the first research and evaluation studies of 1:1 computing in NYC public schools, this study used a pre/post matched comparison group design over two years to address a variety of quantitive and qualitative outcomes. Teacher and student practices across participating 1:1 computing settings were documented and compared with student and teacher practices in matched comparison/control classrooms (where no additional technology resources have been leveraged).The study served two underlying objectives: The first objective addresses formative issues and focuses on the fidelity of the implementation of the 1:1 resources and project. The second objective addressed summative impact and documented the extent to which participants employed 1:1 resources and measured the impact on teacher and student outcome measures (attendance, engagement, student achievement, etc.).

Berkshire Wireless Learning Initiative (2005-2008)

The Berkshire Wireless Learning Initiative (BWLI) was a 3-year research and evaluation study of the first 1:1 student computing program in Massachusetts. The research explored the enhancement of curriculum delivery to improve student achievement and help middle school students develop higher-order thinking and problem-solving skills through increased access and use of technology in school. Through this pre/post comparative study, 2,700 laptop computers were deployed to students and teachers to be used as a tool to enhance teaching and learning. Specifically, the evaluation team used a series of teacher surveys, teacher interviews, student surveys, student drawings, and qualitative classroom observations to document and track the impacts of 1:1 computing on teaching and classroom practices. Student achievement results were also examined to document the impacts of specific technology use on student learning across the four schools as well as in four comparison sites through a non-equivalent comparison group study.

Boston Public Schools' Laptops for Learning (2008-2009)

In partnership with Boston Public Schools and Apple Computer, the Laptops for Learning study was one of the largest and most in-depth research studies of urban teachers' use of technology to date. Using previously validated web-based surveys, researchers from Boston College worked collaboratively with Boston’s Office of Instructional and Informational Technology to document the variety of ways teachers use technology, as well as what factors promote or impede teachers' various uses of technology in over 140 schools.

Newton Public Schools' 21st Century Pilot Study (2007-2010)

Through the integration of 1:1 student and teacher laptops as well as additional digital tools (such as interactive white boards) in a pilot classroom, a 13-month research and evaluation study was conducted to examine how such digital resources impacted teaching and learning in a traditional middle school environment.

Technology Promoting Student Excellence (2003-2005)

Evaluation Study of New Hampshire's first 1:1 student computing pilot program. As one of the first state sponsored 1:1 computing programs in the US, the TPSE research and evaluation study detailed the first nine months of student computing across NH middle schools. Pre and post survey data from over 400 7th grade students and their teachers provided insight into the changes that accompanied the transition, implementation and effects of a 1:1 student computing program. Student surveys included measures of students' access to technology in school, use of technology in school across subject areas, personal comfort level with technology, access to technology at home, and various uses of technology at home. The teacher survey included measures of technology use in and out of the classroom, demographic information, teachers' comfort level with technology, and teachers' attitudes toward technology. Results included many benefits of 1:1 computing including: increased teacher and student use of technology across the curriculum, increased student engagement and motivation, and improved teacher-student interactions. In addition, participating teachers reported improvements in student achievement and students' ability to retain content material.

USEiT Study (2000-2004)

Working across 200 schools in 25 districts, this DOE-funded study examined the relationships among district and school-level supports for instructional technologies, classroom uses, and impacts on students and learning.

International Research Collaborative (2011-2019)

The International Research Collaborative Technology Use and Belief Study was a unique partnership between educational researchers, data scientists, and international school leadership to more closely examine and evaluate the role and impacts of educational technology on teaching and learning. Developed and conducted across international schools in over 20 countries, the IRC supported participating schools through state-of-the-art research tools to collect, quantify, and interpret the perspectives of students, teachers, and parents. For participating schools, such results will provide a general audit of teacher and student access, beliefs, and practices (with and without technology) that support learning. To provide a broader perspective and lens, schools could also track their data longitudinally over time and compare their own results to other international schools in the Collaborative.

Andover Public Schools compare shared laptop carts to a 1:1 student computing model

This study examined how classroom practices changed when technology is increased so that every student has full access to a computer in their classroom (1:1 student computing). To fully address this question, researchers compared 1:1 classrooms to the district’s shared laptop cart model and examined the changes in student products, interactions amongst students, and interactions with their teachers.

Mendon-Upton Regional School District iPad Evaluation Study Laptop Learning in Upper Elementary Classrooms

Continuing our inquiry into 1:1 student computing programs, this study originated from a question posed by Andover Public Schools (Massachusetts): "How does teaching and learning change when upper elementary students (4th and 5th graders) are provided with their own laptop computer?" A year-long study compared laptop equipped classrooms to the district’s "status quo" classrooms – where carts of laptop computers were rotated across multiple teachers at fixed intervals. Using a mixed methods approach that included pre-post student drawings, teacher and student surveys, interviews and structured classroom observations, the study measured changes in the way students produces work, interacted with each other, and interacted with their teachers.

Drawing on Education

Over decades of research, students' classroom drawings have proven to be a unique and valuable research tool providing perspective and understanding on how students view themselves, their teacher and classroom, and their own learning. The Drawing on Education project provides ideas and resources for any teacher, school, or researcher to use student drawings as a simple reflective tool to spur meaningful insights towards student perspectives and experiences.