First Analysis of UW System Hmong Undergrads Finds Low & Declining Enrollments, Grad Rates

February 14, 2020   |   By Janet L. Kelly

A team of HMoob (Hmong)* American undergraduates mentored by UW–Madison education researchers in WCER’s Center for Research on College to Workforce Transitions has completed the first analysis of University of Wisconsin System student data disaggregated by race and ethnicity for the state’s largest Asian ethnic population.They find that except for UW–Oshkosh and UW–Green Bay, UW System enrollment of HMoob Americans is proportionally low and declining, particularly at the state’s flagship UW–Madison campus.


Teacher-Guided Play Seen as Key to Deeper Student Learning

February 14, 2020   |   By Karen Rivedal, WCER Communications

An errant paper airplane, and a teacher’s insightful response to it, led to one of the best examples of successful play-based learning in a classroom that Angela Pyle, a faculty member in early childhood education at the University of Toronto, has witnessed in her extensive research.

Termed “inquiry play,” it’s a type of teacher-guided play in which an instructor seizes on young students’ expressed passions for a topic or activity, even if it means shifting gears to pursue an unexpected interruption as a multi-faceted learning opportunity.


Beyond the “English Learner” Label: Recognizing Latina/o/x Students’ Multilingual Repertoires

February 12, 2020

In this talk, Ramón Martínez delves beneath the label of “English Learner” to reveal the complexity of Latina/o/x students’ everyday language. He highlights how their everyday linguistic dexterity overlaps with the kinds of language and literacy privileged in academic settings. He shares examples and findings from his ethnographic research in a Los Angeles school that can inform the design of robust learning environments for Latina/o/x children and youth.


Internships can ease the path from college to career — but they often don’t.

February 12, 2020

It’s becoming increasingly clear how critical internships are in landing a job after college and accelerating one’s career. So I was very interested when I learned that Matthew Hora, a researcher at the University of Wisconsin at Madison who studies the path from college to career, had turned his attention to internships because I knew he would challenge some common assumptions.


5 obstacles that stop many students from taking an internship

February 4, 2020   |   By Matt Hora

The inability to take internships is a problem because internships serve as an important signal that students are ready to enter the workforce. In a recent study, students who listed an internship on their resume received 14% more offers for an interview than those who did not.


Teaching and Attending to Culture, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Program Evaluation

February 3, 2020

The American Evaluation Association’s 2019 Promising New Evaluator, Ayesha Boyce, who also co-directs UNC Greensboro’s assessment, evaluation and research services, will present strategies on embodying program evaluation with the values of a more just society. She will address how it can become a social, cultural, and political force to address issues of inequity while still maintaining methodological rigor and trustworthiness.


The Heterogeneity Problem: New Approaches to Parsing the Variance in Mental Health Research

January 29, 2020

Damien Fair tackles the heterogeneity problem encountered in psychiatric research and clinical investigations due to the assumption that categories in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual represent homogenous syndromes. The speaker will provide considerations, concepts, and approaches for investigators examining human cognition, education, and mental health.


African Americans Take on More Education Debt—And the Payoff Is Complicated

January 28, 2020   |   By Jaymes Pyne and Eric Grodsky

When seeking graduate and professional degrees, African Americans take on over 50% more debt than white students. On the upside, African Americans also see a bigger payoff to earning such degrees. Whether or not that payoff is enough to make up for the additional debt burden is unclear.


African Americans take on more debt for grad school – but the payoff is also bigger

January 23, 2020   |   By Eric Grodsky, University of Wisconsin-Madison and Jaymes Pyne, Stanford University

When seeking graduate and professional degrees, African Americans take on over 50% more debt than white students. On the upside, African Americans also see a bigger payoff to earning such degrees. Whether or not that payoff is enough to make up for the additional debt burden is unclear. These are some key takeaways from a study we released in January 2020 by Eric Grodsky from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Jaymes Pyne, Stanford University.


Does America Really Want More Black Teachers? If So, Supporting HBCUs is the Answer.

January 21, 2020   |   By Tina and Trina Fletcher

In 2016, the National Center for Education Statistics reported 75% of students who earned a Bachelor’s degree in education were White and according to scholar Dr. Gloria Ladson-Billings’ book Crossing Over to Canaan, America’s teacher educators are 88% White. Nonetheless, a 2016 study by Cherng and Halpin found that students of all races prefer teachers of color.


Recent education appointments, including new WCER Director Courtney Bell

January 16, 2020   |   By Julia Piper, The Chronicle of Higher Education

Courtney Bell, a principal research scientist with the Educational Testing Service, a private, nonprofit educational testing and assessment organization, will become director of the Wisconsin Center for Education Research in the School of Education at the University of Wisconsin at Madison on July 1.


WIDA Receives $4 Million to Support Multilingual Learners with Cognitive Disabilities

January 14, 2020   |   By Katie Stenz, WIDA

Educational tools and resources for assessing a small but important group of students, multilingual learners challenged with the most significant cognitive disabilities, now will become reality thanks to a $3.998 million U.S. Department of Education grant awarded to WIDA.


WEC Evaluators Recommend Sharing Best Practices as Student Career Planning Spans State

January 14, 2020   |   By Karen Rivedal, WCER Communications

Capstone experience of completing and presenting a final project was most often named by students as the “most beneficial” activity for them to do, along with job-shadowing, in the state-required Academic and Career Planning (ACP) program, a WEC evaluation shows.


UW-Madison researchers use video game to teach kids mindfulness

January 14, 2020   |   By Tajma Hall, Ch. 15 NBC-WMTV

UW-Madison’s Center for Healthy Minds partnered with the University of California to create a video game that teaches middle schoolers mindfulness and breathing awareness.


Education deserts: How geography impacts access to higher ed

January 13, 2020   |   By Matt Zalaznick

A new map published by the Jain Family Institute seeks to draw more attention to another college access hurdle: geography. Considering most students go to college close to home, the Institute’s researchers have developed the “School Concentration Index” to measure the number of options students have in different parts of the country and how a lack of competition in more rural areas may impact affordability.