Duelling research reports

reports

“At least once a day I get an email or piece of actual mail touting some new study,” writes Laura Diamond of The Atlanta Journal- Constitution. “The pr person typically writes that this new study provides all the proof for why the nation or Georgia or Gwinnett County should try the latest education fad.”

Diamond also blogs at Get Schooled. Her recent post, “Anything you can research, I can research bettter,” has drawn 30 comments in two days. Here she voices a concern common to many reporters I’ve heard at conferences sponsored by EWA and AERA:

” … With all the contradicting reports and studies out there, what are we to believe? If we can’t trust these studies, how do we make informed decisions about what will work in our schools?”

Comments on the post range from knowledgeable to hysterical, and raise issues of a reporter’s need to understand statistics to a need to consider the source of funding for any given study.

Which study to trust? There are no easy answers, and I have no doubt this subject will be discussed at AERA‘s annual meeting next week.

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