With No Child Left Behind up for renewal, current debates have made education policy a widely discussed topic in the Obama administration and in the media. In their article, Walters and Lareau argue the need to re-examine the definition of legitimate educational research. While randomized-controlled trials have in recent years become the benchmark of educational research, Walters and Lareau urge readers to consider wider forms of research, to better understand the challenges of conducting research in schools, and to question the overall effectiveness of the potential role of "good science" in policymaking.
Pamela B. Walters teaches and conducts research on social inequality, with a particular focus on American education. She has served as editor of Sociology of Education and currently co-chairs the Study Committee on Education Research co-sponsored by the Social Science Research Council and the National Academy of Education and directs the Indiana University Center for Education and Society. Walters is the Indiana University Sonneborn Lecture award recipient for 2004.
Annette Lareau is best selling author of Unequal Childhoods, winner of the best book award for the Sociology of Family Section, the Section on Childhood and Youth, and the Sociology of Culture Section (co-winner) of the American Sociological Association. She is a well known and revered author in Sociology who has held various offices in the American Sociological Association, and served as Vice-President for the Eastern Sociological Society.
To read more by Walters and Lareau on education research, view their book Education Research On Trial.
Policy Reform and the Call for Scientific Rigor
Read the author's commentary for the Teachers College Record here: http://www.tcrecord.org/Content.asp?ContentID=15915
It is not an exaggeration to say that the field of education has been under attack. Many, particularly in Washington, D.C., have proclaimed the research to be shoddy. They have...
Published November 26th 2008 by Routledge