Reference Desk

The REL West Reference Desk provides quick-turnaround answers to pressing education questions from administrators, practitioners, policymakers, and other community stakeholders in our region. These responses reflect the latest research and available evidence, and may include references, abstracts, referrals, and/or reliable website sources that address the topic in question. A growing selection of Reference Desk responses to questions that may be of interest to the region is posted here.

To request research-based information, education stakeholders may directly or visit the national Ask-A-REL website and select REL West.

Requests and Responses

  1. TIME AND LEARNING: What does the research say about summer learning loss and the effectiveness of summer school for at-risk students? Jul 2011
  2. PRESCHOOL: What does the research say about the economic impact of preschool? Jun 2011
  3. SMALL SCHOOLS: What research is available on small schools? Feb 2011
  4. TIME AND LEARNING: Are there any research studies that have evaluated the extended school year? Feb 2011
  5. ATTENDANCE: Is there research on the positive relationship between attendance and student achievement? Jan 2011
  6. SENIOR YEAR: What does research say about the senior year of high school in terms of later success? What is the Move-On-When-Ready Program? Jul 2010
  7. ASSESSMENT and SPECIAL EDUCATION: What is the research base for students with disabilities using a calculator as a testing accommodation? Jun 2010
  8. TEACHER QUALITY: How are Teacher Leader positions structured in school districts across the country? Jun 2010
  9. TEACHER QUALITY: Could you provide information on teacher professional development incentive programs? Jun 2010
  10. TEACHER EVALUATION: What methods are available for measuring teacher effectiveness? Jun 2010
  11. COLLEGE AND CAREER READINESS: Is there research on early indicators of college- and career-readiness, and information on how to support students in this goal? May 2010
  12. TECHNOLOGY and SPECIAL EDUCATION: What are some evidence-based technology interventions for young children with learning disabilities? Mar 2010
  13. MATH: Could you provide research and resources on inquiry-based math instruction? Feb 2010
  14. NATIVE AMERICAN STUDENTS: Will you provide curriculum, supports, and policies developed specifically for Native American students? Nov 2009
  15. SCHOOL-BASED BUDGETING: What is school-based budgeting and management? What effects have been seen and what implementation considerations are involved? What are some examples of places that have implemented this reform? Aug 2009
  16. DISTANCE LEARNING: What are some policy impediments to expanding access to online courses in California? Jun 2009
  17. BUDGETING: How can districts identify which cuts to make when facing budget shortfalls? May 2009
  18. STUDENT MOBILITY: Is there research on reducing the negative impacts of student mobility on learning, and information on how school staff can help mobile students progress academically? May 2009
  19. TEACHER COMPENSATION: Are there practical lessons learned from states with differentiated pay programs? Mar 2009
  20. DROPOUT PREVENTION: What are some examples of municipal/school district collaborations around the issue of dropout prevention? Jan 2009
  21. ASSESSMENT: Which states are using computer adaptive testing? What are the possible benefits of this approach and lessons learned from statewide implementation? Jun 2008
  22. Please provide information about the National Center on Education and the Economy's Move-On-When-Ready Program. Additionally, what does research say about the senior year of high school in terms of later success? Jul 2010
  23. What is the research base for students with disabilities using a calculator as an accommodation? Jun 2010
  24. Could you provide research and information on how best to support students in being college- and career-ready and indicators for college and career readiness? Has anyone identified readiness indicators earlier than high school? May 2010
  25. Will you provide curriculum, supports, and policies developed specifically for Native American students? Nov 2009
  26. What is school-based budgeting and management? What effects have been seen and what implementation considerations are involved in this reform approach? What are some examples of places that have implemented this reform? Aug 2009
  27. How can districts identify which cuts to make when facing budget shortfalls? May 2009
  28. Is there research on reducing the negative impact of student mobility on learning, and information on how school staff can help mobile students progress academically? May 2009
  29. What are some evidence-based practices with technology interventions for assisting young children with emerging or established learning disabilities? Mar 2009
  30. Are there practical lessons learned from states with differentiated pay programs? Mar 2009
  31. What are some examples of municipal/school district collaborations around the issue of dropout prevention? Jan 2009
  32. Which states are using computer adaptive testing, and what are the possible benefits of this approach and considerations and lessons learned from statewide implementation? Jun 2008


How can we help you?

Do you want to know the latest research or where to turn for information? This free collaborative service from the 10 RELs provides references, referrals, and brief responses to education questions. To ask a question, visit the national portal and select REL West -- or directly.

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