University of Chicago Big Ideas Generator


Big Question: The UChicago Science of Learning Network: A Research-Practice Collaboration to Improve Student Achievement in Urban Schools

University of Chicago Big Questions

Principal Investigator: Susan Levine, Psychology; Sian Belock, Pscyhology; Amy Claessens, Harris

Funding Type: Workshop

Focus Area: Information

Big Idea: 

Combining insights from research on learning with practitioners’ knowledge of school and classroom contexts holds great promise as a strategy for intervening to increase student achievement. However, the field lacks the necessary infrastructure to support exchange between school practitioners and researchers who study learning.  We propose to create a social network that integrates knowledge from research on the science of learning with the expertise of accomplished school practitioners to generate solutions for improving the academic performance of urban students. The distinctive contribution of the proposed network will be to build a social foundation for research that integrates knowledge from these disparate disciplines. We will convene monthly conversations among University of Chicago researchers, school-level leaders, and four classroom teachers, each focused on a different aspect of student learning in grades PreK-2. The discussions will examine how research on learning can inform the design of new interventions to increase achievement for disadvantaged urban students in the core subject areas of language/literacy and mathematics. These conversations will result in an agenda for new collaborative research comprised of a small number of compelling interventions that can be tested, refined, built into daily practice, and shared with others.

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