Skip to Content

NEA Research, Tools, & Talking Points on Achievement Gaps

Research on Closing Achievement Gaps

  • The Workplace Matters: Teacher Quality, Retention, and Effectiveness (2006)
    Workplace Matters Summary (PDF, 315KB, 6pp); Workplace Matters Full Report (PDF, 505KB, 32pp)
    Schools serving large student populations with achievement gaps may also have trouble retaining teachers. Author Susan Moore Johnson describes what research says about workplace conditions that support effective instruction and professional growth. It also suggests that more talented teachers can be retained through improvements in workplace conditions, particularly at hard-to-staff schools.
  • Theories of Learning and Teaching: What Do They Mean for Educators (2006)
    Theories of Learning and Teaching Summary (PDF, 410KB, 6pp); Theories of Learning and Teaching Full Report (PDF, 478KB, 34pp)
    This report by Suzanne M. Wilson and Penelope L. Peterson describes what current research says about the learning process and details nine concepts of learning, knowledge, and teaching that have formed the basis for recent education reform.
  • Closing the Student Achievement Gap by Closing the Teaching Quality Gap: Reframing the Debate (2005) (PDF, 222KB, 17pp) 
    A research brief from NEA's Visiting Scholars Series, presented by Barnett Berry from the Center for Teaching Quality, Inc. on April 7, 2005.

Tools for Closing Achievement Gaps

  • Diversity Toolkit  (2008)
    The Toolkit is an educator's guide to tools and resources that foster inclusion in the classroom and workplace. It provides basic information, a short list of strategies and tools, and suggestions for how to find out more.

Talking Points on Issues Affecting Achievement Gaps

  • High School Attendance, Graduation, Completion and Dropout Statistics  (2006)
    This research-based brief fills in the blanks on who stays and who goes, the benefits of a GED, and provides information on both the personal and societal costs of dropping out. It also highlights linked references for more information on the subject.
  • Small Schools (2005)
    This brief lists key research facts about small schools, including their bigger benefits to disadvantaged students. Benefits to all have been found to include raised student achievement, increased attendance, and improved school climate.
  • English Language Learners (2005)
    This brief of research-based talking points discusses the number and types of English language learners, or "ELLs," in schools, the specific challenges they face, what kind of programs are available to them, and how well they are doing academically.
  • High School Reform (2005)
    This brief discusses findings from a research review of national and state trends in high school reform, including sets of characteristics that high performing high schools share in common, such as a focus on closing achievement gaps.