Methodological change in school effectieveness and improvement research.
In, International Congress for School Effectiveness and School Improvement, Limassol, Cyprus,
04 - 07 Jan 2011.
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School Effectiveness and School Improvement have played an important part in developing and refining methods in educational research. However, we would hypothesize that this development has also led to a certain crystallization of these methods, to the extent that it is now possible to talk of a methodological orthodoxy in both effectiveness and improvement research. To test this hypothesis, we looked at articles published in 'School Effectiveness and School Improvement' between issue 1 of 2005 and issue 2 of 2010. Results show that both quantitative and qualitative studies are dominated by a limited range of data collection methods. Over 80% of qualitative studies reported on are case studies, with the remainder being other interview methods. Of quantitative studies, almost 60% are survey studies, and just under 23% use secondary data, such as international studies and national or local accountability data sets. Almost 16% of studies used quasi-experimental designs. In terms of data analysis, in quantitative studies almost 50% of papers use multilevel methods, while a further 35% use 'traditional' statistics, such as regression and parametric or non-parametric tests. In qualitative methods the vast majority of studies used some form of thematic analysis. Implications of these fidnings and recommendations for future research are provided
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