Research Use RFP 2009: Exploring Knowledge Diffusion Among District Administrators

School district administrators are responsible for making important decisions about instructional policy, such as the evaluation of teacher performance, designing professional development for teachers, and adoption and use of student assessments.

It is unclear whether district administrators have access to relevant research, and how they acquire and use it when it is available. The researchers will examine eight school districts in Kentucky to address a number of related research questions, including: What types of research are accessed and used by educational leaders, and how do the leaders change what they use over time? What social and organizational conditions support and hinder research use in decision-making? How do organizational capacity and social networks change over time, and how do these changes relate to research use? The team will make three week-long site visits per district, collecting data using meeting observations, semi-structured interviews, and social network analysis.

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