SEDL is providing analytic and technical support to three large-scale randomized controlled trials assessing the efficacy of promising literacy curriculum in afterschool settings on student academic achievement. In the field of educational research, competition among research organizations and researchers can often impede collaborative efforts in the field. One important aspect of the current work has been the creation of the SEDL Afterschool Research Consortium (ARC), which brings together SEDL researchers, key staff from each afterschool research project, and experts in the field to discuss and share accomplishments, challenges, and solutions. This unique arrangement allows a number of researchers with varied backgrounds and experience implementing rigorous research in afterschool settings to collaborate in applying best research practices in the field, to a set of ongoing studies to improve the current studies' efforts and address important challenges to the field of afterschool research. The ARC also plans to develop papers and presentations documenting the lessons learned in order to advance the effective use of rigorous experimental research approaches in applied afterschool settings. This research brief is the first in a series of papers that are intended to provide the field with the insights culled from this collaborative effort.
The full series of briefs includes: