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9 Examining Variation in Curriculum Effects
Pages 305-318

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From page 305...
... Emerging research on preschool curriculum also suggest variation in curriculum effectiveness. Given the diversity of early childhood conditions under which curricula are delivered, research about curriculum effectiveness should describe the specific contexts, settings, and populations under which the curriculum effect was observed.
From page 306...
... IDENTIFYING SOURCES OF EFFECT VARIATION The overarching missions of many researchers of early childhood education is to identify curriculum, practices, and policies that improve students' life outcomes. When curriculum effects replicate over multiple studies with diverse settings, populations, intervention deliveries, and contexts, researchers and decision-makers have increased confidence that findings are likely to generalize to their specific population or context of interest.
From page 307...
... The challenge arises when a researcher or decision-maker mistakenly interprets incongruent study findings to conclude that a curriculum effect fails to generalize when the true reason may be because one of the studies lacked statistical power to detect curriculum effects. A central goal for a research agenda supporting a new vision for preschool curriculum examines the extent to which curriculum effects are generalizable -- and when they are not -- to variations in student populations, contexts, settings, and outcomes.
From page 308...
... Program supported a series of experimental evaluations (Preschool Curriculum Evaluation Research Consortium (2008) in the early 2000s examining the relative performance of curricular approaches.
From page 309...
... However, the original PCER evaluation studies were conducted 20 years ago, and the curricula represented in the control condition have been revised since then. Research Design for Identifying Effects Research design describes the methodological approach used for determining curriculum effectiveness.
From page 310...
... WITHIN- AND BETWEEN-STUDY APPROACHES FOR EXAMINING SOURCES OF EFFECT VARIATION In the research literature, the programmatic and study design features are sometimes described as moderators of intervention effects. Moderators may be examined by comparing curriculum effects for different subgroups of participants within the same study (within-study approaches)
From page 311...
... Prioritizing strong internal validity in evaluation studies, however, can introduce biases into the evidence base for summarizing intervention effectiveness. Although experimental designs are viewed as the gold standard approach for yielding unbiased intervention effects, these approaches require intervention conditions that can be manipulated or randomly assigned to participants (Shadish, Cook, and Campbell, 2002)
From page 312...
... . In meta-analysis, with enough study effects, the researcher may examine whether variations in curricular approaches, participant characteristics, settings -- as well as study design characteristics -- are related to the size and direction of intervention effects.
From page 313...
... . Research teams reported minimum detectable effect sizes that ranged from 0.34 to 0.69 across composite student outcome measures, suggesting that individual studies were mostly underpowered for detecting statistically significant effects unless the magnitude of the effects was at least larger than a third of a standard deviation (Preschool Curriculum Evaluation Research Consortium, 2008)
From page 314...
... For example, it may be possible that the effectiveness of different types of curriculum approaches vary by the type of preschool program that it is delivered under and for different types of children enrolled in the program. To make such a conclusion would require prospective research designs that intentionally vary multiple systematic sources of effect variation.
From page 315...
... Ideally, evidence generated using these methods would: • accurately and reliably represent children's skills and knowledge, regardless of their cultural background, language, and abilities; and • represent curriculum -- and curriculum components -- that are feasible and desirable for delivery in real-world settings and compatible with the goals and objectives of educators and program administrators who select the curriculum. • employ methods and study design features to identify programmatic factors that moderate curriculum effectiveness Because effectiveness is determined by comparing outcomes from children participating in the curriculum with outcomes obtained from an alternative condition, it is crucial that comparisons represent conditions that program administrators, educators, and parents are also likely to face.
From page 316...
... Strategies for interpreting and reporting intervention effects for subgroups. Prevention science: The Official Journal of the Society for Prevention Research, 14(2)
From page 317...
... https://www.brookings.edu/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/consensus-statement_final.pdf Preschool Curriculum Evaluation Research Consortium.
From page 318...
... . Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A: Statistics in Society, Volume 171, Issue 2, April 2008, Pages 481–502, https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-985X.2007.00527.x Prepublication Copy, Uncorrected Proofs


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