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					Evidence-based Practice:

A Workshop for Training Adult Basic Education, TANF and One Stop Practitioners and Program Administrators

Welcome
Focus of this workshop:

 How can you promote evidence-based practice in adult education programs?

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Introductions
 Name  Program name
 Your role in the program

 One strength of your program
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Objectives

By the end of this workshop, you should be able to..
 Discuss your own attitudes about research and its connection to practice and policy  Define some basic concepts and terminology about research design and methodology
 Describe the connection between evidence-based practice and program/classroom improvement

 Describe what empirical evidence looks like and how it can be integrated with professional wisdom to make decisions about instruction and services for adult students  Implement a plan for improving reading instruction in your programs utilizing evidence-based practices  Cite strategies you can use to continuously access, understand, judge and use research to make decisions about practices in your classrooms and programs
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Agenda
Today’s activities include:
 Introductory Activity: Welcome, Objectives and Agenda  Attitudes Towards Research: Discussion Activity

 Introduction to Research Design  Understanding Research and Identifying Evidence-based Practice
 Using Evidence-based Practice to Improve Your Programs

 Next Steps: Action Planning  Accessing, Understanding, Judging and Using Research in Your Own Programs  Evaluation and Closure
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Attitudes Towards Research
 How do you feel about research and its role in improving practice?

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Evidence-based Practitioners Are…
 Questioners
 Consumers

 Producers

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Your Stance as Evidence-based Practitioners
Questioners…
 Believe that practice should be based on evidence and professional wisdom.  We ask,
 Why should I use this technique or strategy and what is the evidence that supports it?  Is it based on evidence I have about students’ performance, on other practitioners’ evidence (professional wisdom), or on research evidence?

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Your Stance as Evidence-based Practitioners
Consumers…
 Believe that new evidence is critical to our work and proactively seek research evidence.  Learn enough about research and its findings to integrate what has been found to be effective with our own knowledge of students, and then change our practice accordingly.
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Your Stance as Evidence-based Practitioners
Producers…
 Believe that we should not only be consumers but also researchers in our own classrooms.  Generate knowledge that can be shared with others through
 program and classroom research,  co-research with university-based researchers or  documenting how we implemented evidencebased practices.
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Introduction to Research Design

Random Selection Quantitative Data

Validity

Analysis

Means Median Mode
Reliability
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Findings & Implications

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Research Design:
The Research Question

Does practice in trying to flip the ball into the cup lead to improvement in that skill?

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Research Design:
Limitations of the Study

   

Validity Was the number of subjects enough to reach a reasonable conclusion? Were the control and experimental groups chosen fairly? Was the sample typical of the population we want to know about? Was the right measurement chosen to test whether skills increased?
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Research Design:
Limitations of the Study

Reliability  Were the measurements accurate?
 Were all subjects measured the same way?

 Were data accurately recorded?
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Research Design:
Experimental Research
So this is experimental, gold standard research (except for sample size—small “n”). Research question Random sampling Control group Baseline quantitative data (pre-test) Intervention Outcome quantitative data (post-test) Findings Analysis Rival hypotheses Conclusions Implications Validity and reliability
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Research Design:

Research Options for Our Study
 True experiments: Randomized trials that test a specific strategy or approach.

Experiments answer "What works?" questions.
 Correlational studies: Research that looks at the relationship between different variables and outcomes.

Correlational studies answer "What influences what?“ questions.
 Case studies: Highly detailed descriptions of individuals or small groups.

Case studies answer "What's going on?" questions.
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Evidence-based Practice:
Scientifically Based Research Must*…
 employ systematic, empirical methods that draw on observation or experiment;  involve rigorous data analyses that are adequate to test the stated hypotheses and justify the general conclusions;  rely on measurements or observational methods that provide valid data across evaluators and observers, and across multiple measurements and observations; and
 be accepted by a peer-reviewed journal or approved by a panel of independent experts through a comparatively rigorous, objective, and scientific review. What does all this really mean?
*From What is Scientifically based Research? A Guide for Teachers, at http://www.nifl.gov/partnershipforreading/publications/html/science/stanovich.html

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Evidence-based Practice:
Recognizing Effective Research
 Has the study been published in a peer-reviewed journal or approved by a panel of independent experts?  What does this mean?  How would you know?
 Have the results of the study been replicated by other scientists?  What does this mean?  How would you know?

 Is there consensus in the research community that the study's findings are supported by a critical mass of additional studies?  What does this mean?  How would you know?
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Evidenced-based Practice:
Analysis Group Task  In your small group, you have 10 minutes to read the assigned research brief and discuss it with members of your group to be sure that you understand:
     Who the learners were What the research question was What the researchers found What you think these findings mean for teaching reading to adult students Whether or not you think this study is scientifically based research and why

 You should feel comfortable enough with what the research says to be able to describe it to someone else.
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Evidence-based Practice:
Discussion Group Task  Each group member has five minutes to describe the information in the article to the other group members, including…
    Who the learners were What the research question was What the findings were What your analysis group thought the findings mean for teaching reading to adults Whether or not your analysis group thought the study was scientifically based



 Encourage discussion
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Evidence-based Practice:
Definition

Evidence-based practice is defined as…

the integration of professional wisdom with the best available empirical evidence in making decisions about how to deliver instruction.
Grover Whitehurst, Director of Institute of Education Sciences

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Uses for Research
 Research justifies what we are already doing well.  Research helps us improve something that we are already doing.  Research suggests a solution to a problem we have.
 Research uncovers an interesting and intriguing practice.
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Using Evidence-based Practice to Improve Your Program:

Your Current Program Improvement Process In your local program groups, discuss a recent program change:
 Who initiated the change?  What problem did the change try to address?  Who was involved in finding and deciding on a solution (change)?

 Who was involved in implementing the change?  How did you know the change did or did not work?  Who was involved in evaluating whether the change should be permanent?
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Using Evidence-based Practice to Improve Your Program:
A Case Study Read the case study and then discuss…  Are there any differences between your program’s change process and the program process described in the case study?
 Are there parts of the case study process that might improve your own program’s process?

 Are there parts of your program’s process that might improve the case study process?

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Action Planning:

Creating a Plan for Evidence-based Reading Instruction  Stay in your local program groups.
 Identify one of the evidence-based reading practices that might contribute to your program or solve a problem you have had related to reading instruction.  Look at the handout Action Plan for Evidencebased Reading Instruction.

 Draft an action plan to try out the strategy or practice in your program. Refer back to your notes from the last activity about program improvement process.
TIME: 15 minutes
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Your Program’s Own Strategy for Evidence-based Practice
 Accessing research (finding it)  In response to needs identified through program self assessment or data analysis  In reading current research  Understanding what it says and means  Judging whether it holds promise for improving your services  Using it in your program
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Your Program’s Own Strategy for Evidence-based Practice
To make a habit of accessing, understanding, judging and using research for program improvement, you need a structure and a process  Who (in or out of your program) is involved?  How do they continually access, understand, judge and use research to make a change?  What do they need to do it?
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When You Get Home
 Review the action plan for evidence-based reading practice.  Review your draft strategy for evidencebased practice (accessing, understanding, judging and integrating research into your program on a continual basis).  Discuss plan and strategy with colleagues.  Refine/revise plan and strategy, and begin to implement!
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Force Field Analysis:

Making Our Plans and Strategies Work
A Force Field Analysis is a tool for thinking about how to implement a strategy or plan.
 Brainstorm the restraining forces: those that will make it harder to implement your strategy for evidence-based practice.

 Brainstorm the positive forces: those that will make implementation easier.  Discuss how you might reduce negative forces and strengthen the positive forces.

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Accessing Research Findings
www.ncsall.net National Center for the Study of Adult Learning and Literacy

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Accessing Research Findings

www.nifl.gov/lincs/ The National Institute for Literacy’s Database

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Accessing Research Findings

www.cal.org/caela/ The Center for Adult English Literacy Acquisition
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Accessing Research Findings
www.tesol.org/s_tesol/index.asp

Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages
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Evaluation
 What was good (useful, helpful) in this workshop?  What suggestions do you have for how to improve the workshop?  Thank you for participating!

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posted:12/20/2009
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