Research and Evaluation

The Nebraska Department of Education is committed to providing high-quality evidence to inform statewide educational policy and decision-making. As such, the Research & Evaluation operation is dedicated to pursuing the research priorities of the Commissioner of Education and the Nebraska State Board of Education. What follows is a selection of studies created in this effort.

Research Studies

Student outcomes in school and college remain one of the primary areas of focus for the Nebraska Department of Education. In the quest to understand and improve outcomes for every student in the state, a series of research studies related to student college-going behavior in Nebraska was conducted. These studies, described below, assessed the impact of the Nebraska ACT Pilot Project, Dual Enrollment, and Advanced Placement (AP) Courses, respectively, on college-going for Nebraska high school students.

 


Investigating the Impact of the Nebraska ACT Pilot Project on Student College-Going Behavior

Abstract:
With the goal of increasing college-going among Nebraska high school students, the ACT Pilot Project was conducted by administering the ACT for all 11th graders in 13 selected public high schools in the state. This study utilizes several statistical tools like propensity score matching and logistic regression to assess the impact of being in the ACT Pilot on college-going during the time of the ACT Pilot Project in 2011-12 to 2013-14. Results indicate that participation in the ACT Pilot Project increases the odds of going on to college, although only marginally, for the high school students in the study. Other variables of interest like gender, race/ethnicity, household income status, and performance on the NeSA are greater predictors of college-going. Performance which exceed standards on the NeSA Math is found to increase the odds of going on to college by almost two times; thus suggesting that continued efforts should be directed to improving Math outcomes for Nebraska high school students. Implications of this study’s findings and direction for future research are discussed.

Keywords:
College-going; ACT; ACT Pilot Project; NeSA; College and Career Ready; Assessment; Transitions

Key Findings:

  • Being in the ACT Pilot Project significantly increases the odds of college-going by about 8%.

  • Females have a larger odds of going on to college than males.

  • Hispanic students have a smaller odds of going on to college than White students.

  • Students from low income households have less than half the odds of going on to college compared to those from non-low income households.

  • The performance on all 3 NeSA subjects (Reading, Math, and Science) are significant predictors of college-going, with NeSA Math Performance being the strongest predictor of the odds of going on to college.

Report Link: ACT Pilot Project Study (Published on September 2016)

 


An Examination of Advanced Placement (AP) Course Taking and College-Going in Nebraska

Abstract:
This study examines the relationship between high school students’ participation in Advanced Placement (AP) courses and college-going in Nebraska. Using a series of logistic regression models and propensity score matching method, results of this quasi-experimental study indicate that students who participate in AP courses have significantly higher odds of going on to college compared to those who do not participate in AP courses. Other demographic variables such as gender, race/ethnicity, immigration status, and NeSA performance are also tested as covariates in the statistical models. Findings from this study may be used to provide information to assist Nebraska policy-makers in making decisions with regards to AP programs and to better prepare Nebraska students for post-secondary education.

Keywords:
College-going; Advanced Placement; NeSA; College and Career Ready; Assessment; Transitions

Key findings:

  • It is more likely for Nebraska high school students who participate in AP courses to go on to college compared to those who do not participate in AP courses.
  • Native American students, Black or African American students, and Hispanic students are less likely to go on to college compared to White students.=
  • Students from low-income families are less likely to go on to college compared to non-low income families.
  • Students who score below NeSA performance levels have consistent lower chances of going on to college compared to those who meet the performance levels across all three subjects: Math, Science, and Reading.

Report Link: An Examination of Advanced Placement (AP) Couse Taking and College-Going in Nebraska (Published on December 2016)


The Effects of Question Customization on the Quality of an Open-Ended Question

Abstract:
This study examines the effect of question wording on data quality from an open-ended question. The open-ended question used in the study is from a web-based survey – 2016 Nebraska First Year Teacher Survey. Data quality indicators including item nonresponse, response target, ineligible response, general response, and response length are examined in the study using a series of general linear regression models. Findings from this study may be used in future survey projects with regards to improving data quality. Implications and directions for future research are also discussed in this paper.

Keywords:
First Year Teacher Survey, Survey Methodology, Data Quality Indicators, Open-ended Questions

Key findings:

  • Customized question wording leads to better data quality.
  • Customized question wording produced longer responses.
  • Respondents answering the question in customized wording produced more correctly targeted answers.

Report Link: The Effects of Question customization on the Quality of an Open-Ended Question (Published on February 2017)


An Evaluation of the Impact of Dual Credit and Dual Enrollment on College-Going in Nebraska

Abstract:
The focus of this study is to investigate the effects of enrolling for and earning dual credit on the college-going behavior of Nebraska public high school students. Dual enrollment or being enrolled for dual credit is defined as the state when a student is enrolled in a course eligible for earning both high school and post-secondary credit, but may or may not necessarily earn it. Dual credit or earning dual credit, on the other hand, is when a student is enrolled in a course eligible for earning both high school and post-secondary credit and earns it. This study utilizes statistical techniques such as propensity score matching and logistic regression to investigate the impact of dual enrollment and earning dual credit on college-going. Results indicate that enrolling for and earning dual credit significantly increase the odds of going on to college. Among other variables that are strong predictors of college-going, gender, enrollment in Advanced Placement (AP) classes, high ability learner status, and performance on the NeSA Math assessment stand out. Implications of this study’s findings and suggestions for future research are discussed in the following report.

Keywords:
College-going; Dual Credit; Dual Enrollment; NeSA; College and Career Ready; Assessment; Transitions; Earning dual credit; Enrolling for dual credit; Advanced Coursework; AP; Advanced Placement

Key Findings:

  • Enrolling for and earning dual credit in high school are strong predictors of college-going.
  • Enrolling for Advanced Placement classes increase the odds of going on to college.
  • Being a high ability learner or a gifted student helps increase the odds of going on to college.
  • Among all 3 NeSA subjects, performance on NeSA Math strongly predicts college-going. Exceeding standards on NeSA Math is associated with increased college-going odds.

Report Link: An Evaluation of the Impact of Dual Credit and Dual Enrollment on College-Going in Nebraska. (Published on July 2017)

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Fall 2015 CIP Workshops

Fall 2015 CIP Workshops

 

 

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January 2015 ESUPDO Analyzing Perception Data

Data Cadre

January 2015 ESUPDO Analyzing Perception Data Training

 

 

 

January 2015 ESUPDO Analyzing Perception Data 2017-07-21T17:53:29+00:00

Contact

SLDS Contact Information

Dean Folkers
Senior Administrator
Data, Research, and Evaluation
Nebraska Department of Education
301 Centennial Mall South
P.O. BOX 94987
Lincoln, NE 68509-4987
TEL (402) 471-4740
FAX (402) 471-0774
dean.folkers@nebraska.gov

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Data Reporting System

Data Reporting System (DRS)

The Data Reporting System (DRS), located at http://drs.education.ne.gov/  provides student achievement results for Nebraska, school districts and individual school buildings.

The DRS also displays federal accountability results, student characteristics data, early childhood education data, career education data, special populations data, and education staff data in three main content areas, Quick Facts, Guided Inquiry, and Advanced Inquiry.

The public website masks or hides data for groups with 10 or fewer students to protect confidential information about individual students as required by federal law.

The secured website displays unmasked school district and school building data – data available only to authorized individuals, primarily Nebraska school district and education consortium officials. This data may be accessed through the Nebraska Department of Education Portal once appropriate activation has been granted at http://portal.education.ne.gov

DRS and the Continuous Improvement Process

Student Performance Diagnostic Questions developed by AdvancEd ™ can be answered using the DRS.  These Continuous Improvement questions are appropriate for both AdvancEd ™ and Frameworks schools.

Student Performance Diagnostic Questions  © 2013 AdvancED

Areas of Notable Achievement

Areas in Need Of Improvement

1. Which area(s) are above the expected levels of performance?

1. Which area(s) are above the expected levels of performance?

2. Describe the area(s) that show a positive trend in performance.

2. Describe the area(s) that show a negative trend in performance.

3. Which area(s) indicate the overall highest performance?

3. Which area(s) indicate the overall lowest performance?

4. Which subgroup(s) show a trend toward increasing performance?

4. Which subgroup(s) show a trend toward decreasing performance?

5. Between which subgroup is the achievement gap closing?

5. Between which subgroup is the achievement gap becoming greater?

6. Which of the above reported findings are consistent with findings from other data sources?

6. Which of the above reported findings are consistent with findings from other data sources?

 

Step-by-step exercises have been developed to help users navigate the Public website.
Download Public DRS Exercise 
Download Public DRS Exercise answer key

Step-by-step exercises have also been developed to answer the Student Performance Diagnostic Question.

1. Which areas are above/below the expected levels of performance? 

Download Exercise 1

2. Describe the area(s) that show a positive/negative trend in performance. 

Download Exercise 2

3. Which area(s) indicate the overall highest/lowest performance? 

Download Exercise 3

4. Which subgroup(s) show a trend toward increasing/decreasing performance?

Download Exercise 4

5. Between which subgroup is the achievement gap closing?

Download Exercise 5

 

Additional Resources

Download Creating a Chart in Excel

 

 

 

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Sustainability

Data, Research and Evaluation Team


DRE Workgroups

  • NDE Helpdesk – Supporting the work of the Department and School Districts with data collections and submissions, technical questions, as well support for the multiple interfaces with Nebraska Schools. Specific support expertise includes the Nebraska Student and Staff Record System (NSSRS), the Grants Management System (GMS) and other NDE Portal applications. The NDE Help Desk will provide all users with a single, helpful, and friendly first point of contact for the Nebraska Department of Education web portal applications.

  • Research and Evaluation – Focusing on conducting research and evaluation projects that support a deeper understanding of the data, best practice, and supports for improving teaching and learning in Nebraska schools. The research group is also heavily involved in supporting the training and technical assistance of Nebraska schools in submitting data as well as in promoting the use of data and training for data literacy, analysis, and use among ESUs, districts, and schools.

  • Staff Data – Integrating the collection, refinement and use of the staff data to meet federal and state reporting requirements, ensuring effective integrations with programs (including teacher certification and school approval and accreditation), and working to publish a variety of useful reports are the primary responsibilities of the Staff Data work group.

  • Student Data – The key focus of the Student Data work group includes ensuring the collection, refinement, and use of the student data to meet federal and state reporting requirements; the effective integration with programs; and taking the lead on the annual State of the Schools Report (SOSR) and the Data Reporting System (DRS).

  • P-20 Data System – The integration of data sources across the spectrum for longitudinal analysis and reports provides an opportunity for information to inform both policy and practice. The efforts of the P-20 data systems include engagement of public postsecondary institutions in support of the long term engagement ot student success.

Data Sources:

State of the Schools: /state-of-the-schools-reports/

Data Reporting System: http://drs.education.ne.gov/Pages/default.aspx

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Policy Advisory Committee

Policy Advisory Committee (PAC)

The purpose of this group is to provide support for the overall implementation and evaluation of the grant and to assist in the discussion to buy or build a dashboard system for the state.

 

DateAgendaNotes
December 12, 2012December 12, 2012December 12, 2012
January 30, 2013January 30, 2013January 30, 2013
March 13, 2013March 13, 2013March 13, 2013
April 24, 2013April 24, 2013April 24, 2013
June 26, 2013June 26, 2013June 26, 2013
October 24, 2013October 24, 2013October 24, 2013

 

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ADVISER Dashboard

Nebraska Department of Education (NDE) is a recipient of the Statewide Longitudinal Data System (SLDS) grant awarded in 2012.  The SLDS grant program has helped propel the successful design, development, implementation and expansion of longitudinal data systems.  These data systems are intended to enhance the ability of states to efficiently and accurately manage, analyze, and use education data, including individual student records. The SLDSs should help states, districts, schools, educators, and other stakeholders to make data-informed decisions to improve student learning and outcomes; as well as to facilitate research to increase student achievement and close achievement gaps.

NDE entered into a no-cost license agreement with the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation (MSDF) to adopt the Ed-Fi standard (www.ed-fi.org) to develop a statewide dashboard solution customized for Nebraska educators’ needs.
    
The Nebraska ADVISER Dashboard is a web-based view of student and staff data that provides educators with a quick and easy way to personalize instruction and make data driven decisions. The acronym ADVISER stands for “Advanced Data Views Improving Student Educational Response”. The Nebraska ADVISER Dashboard consolidates data from multiple systems which enables educators to efficiently analyze large amounts of information.

The ADVISER Data Dashboard is an optional tool for use by Nebraska public school districts. It will be designed to provide flexibility to upload information from different sources on different schedules to support local data analysis and research. Further work is currently being developed to incorporate Data Warehouse and Accountability Data Mart features.

The first stage of the implementation in the 2013-2014 school years involved the limited production releases (LPRs) of dashboard prototypes to 9 districts that elected to participate in pilot releases of the data dashboard and these were namely: Bancroft Rosalie, McCook, Ponca, Boone Central, Neligh-Oakdale, South Sioux City, Fairbury, Omaha and Valentine. LPRs also known as “Pilot Districts” were part of the development process for the data dashboards from an early stage, and their feedback has played a foundational role in the organization and functioning of the dashboards. The Pilot Districts represented a range of enrollment sizes, geographic locations, and student information system (SIS). This range was intended to help NDE troubleshoot potential issues that might arise for a broad spectrum of future Early Adopter Program districts.

The second stage of the early adoption stage known as Early Adopter Program I (EAP I) had 31 select districts that plan to roll out the data dashboards in the 2015/16 year. The remaining districts will implement ADVISER in 2016/17 in the EAP II and the statewide rollout in 2017/18.

Please refer to the following links to know more about the ADVISER:

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