Via de nieuwsbrief “Best evidence in brief” ontdekte ik een interessant rapport van The Institute of Education Sciences waarin het effect werd onderzocht van extra lessen en cursussen bovenop de gewone lesuren (summer schools, voor en na schooltijd, tijdens weekends, enz.) . Uit een meta-analyse van 30 studies (in totaal werden 7000 studies gescreend maar enkel deze 30 voldeden aan de standaarden die door de onderzoekers voorop werden gesteld!) blijkt dat dit niet altijd voor positieve resultaten zorgt. Hierna vind je de voornaamste conclusies van het rapport.
The primary findings from this review indicate that increased learning time programs were effective when:
- Certified teachers delivered the increased learning time academic instruction. Increased learning time programs that employed certified teachers had a statistically significant but small positive effect on students’ literacy achievement and math achievement. In contrast, programs that employed instructors who were not certified (such as graduate students and volunteers) had no effect on students’ academic achievement.
- Program facilitators used traditional instruction. Traditional instruction includes organized and focused lessons, clear articulation of learning objectives, and a sequenced demonstration of skills. Increased learning time programs that used traditional instruction had a statistically significant but small positive effect on students’ literacy and math achievement. In contrast, programs based on guided practice (that is, time and supervision as students work independently on their tasks) without initial, explicit instruction did not improve students’ academic achievement.
- Program facilitators used experiential instruction. Experiential education uses hands- on activities, project-based learning, and field trips as the main learning activities. Increased learning time programs that incorporated experiential education had a statistically significant but small positive effect on students’ social-emotional skill development, including self-esteem, prosocial behavior, and self-regulation.
- Specific student subgroups were targeted. Broad program inclusion criteria using clas- sification categories such as “low-income households” are not sufficient to inform effective program design. In the research reviewed, effective programs targeted specific subgroups of students (for example, students performing below literacy standards) based on district, school, and program assessments and teacher reports and offered a curriculum designed to address students’ needs, such as:
- Students struggling to meet grade-level standards in English language arts. Increased learning time programs in reading and writing had a statistically significant but small positive effect on literacy achievement for students at or above academic standards and a statistically significant and substantively important positive effect on literacy achievement for students below academic standards. •
- Students with ADHD. Afterschool activities for middle school students with ADHD produced a statistically significant but small positive effect on their social-emotional skill development (see caution below).
De onderzoekers voegen wel enkele belangrijke kanttekeningen toe aan hun conclusies:
The results of this report point to the need for additional studies to improve the knowledge base on increased learning time programs. Effective implementation features were identified based primarily on evaluations of increased learning time programs implemented outside the regular school day. Of the 30 studies in the analysis, 26 evaluated out-of- school programs and summer schools. Additional rigorous research evidence on expanded learning time schools and year-round schools is needed to inform increased learning time practices as part of the regular school schedule. Additional work is also needed to help practitioners understand the tradeoffs when adopting different types of programs.
The conclusions of the analysis reported here are based primarily on outcomes of elementary and middle school students. Only one study reported an effect on high school students. Furthermore, experts suggest that increased learning time programs for high school students should be conceptualized differently from programs for elementary and middle school students in terms of goals, content, structure, and organization (Friedman & Bleiberg, 2007).Additional rigorous research is needed on the effects of increased learning time programs on high school students’ academic and nonacademic outcomes, including their career and college readiness.
Finally, this review and meta-analysis identified only studies that examined increased learning time programs in urban and suburban locales. No recently conducted rigorous studies on the effects of increased learning time programs in rural settings were found. Future studies should examine whether the effects found for increased learning time programs in urban and suburban settings apply in rural settings as well.
Het volledige rapport kun je hier downloaden.