ERIC Number: ED322170
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1986
Using, Abusing, and Understanding Research: A Guide for Administrators.
Campbell, Patricia B.
This pamphlet provides suggestions for school administrators concerning how to best use and interpret educational research. Research and evaluation can provide educational administrators with information necessary to make and justify decisions about programs, testing, and teacher performance. Administrators must remember that: abstracts and journal research notes do not provide enough information to allow assessment of research quality; political considerations, societal biases, and stereotypes can influence research and evaluation results; and not all studies are done well or accurately. Research can be, and has been, used to perpetuate inequality. Bias may be more subtle today than in the past, but it is still a factor. Research conducted on males is generally applied to females; research conclusions about white students is applied to people of color. Myths that must be examined include: (1) research and evaluation are objective and uninfluenced by societal attitudes and the views of the researchers/evaluators; (2) standardized tests are accurate and objective; (3) seeing is believing; and (4) research is of little value to administrators. In evaluating research, one must ask if: the researchers'/evaluators' opinions and biases are apparent; tests and measures are fair and appropriate; study populations are described; conclusions and recommendations come directly from the results; the study falls prey to the post hoc fallacy; implications are discussed for both sexes and minority students; and if the funding source has an interest to protect. Suggestions are provided for reducing bias in research. (SLD)
Descriptors: Administrator Role, Data Interpretation, Educational Research, Elementary Secondary Education, Ethnic Stereotypes, Evaluation Utilization, Guidelines, Minority Groups, Research Design, Research Methodology, Research Problems, Research Utilization, Sex Differences, Sex Stereotypes, Social Bias
Women's Educational Equity Act Publishing Center, Education Development Center, 55 Chapel Street, Newton, MA 02160.
Publication Type: Guides - Non-Classroom
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Administrators; Practitioners
Authoring Institution: Women's Educational Equity Act Program (ED), Washington, DC.
Note: For related documents, see TM 015 305-308.