In education, evidence has long played a minimal role in practice. A teenager’s acne cream has had to prove its safety and effectiveness. His algebra program? Not so much. One could argue that the rapid pace of progress in other fields has a lot to do with respect for evidence, while the slow pace of progress in education reflects the opposite.
A clear way to impact education with all populations is to address the issues that have been identified in literature as the “replication crisis.” And, the beauty of the replication crisis is it provides extensive opportunities for meaningful growth in the field of educational psychology.
Last spring, over 4 million high school students took more than 2 million Advanced Placement (AP) tests. According to the College Board, students in AP courses learn more material, are more prepared for college, and finish a bachelor’s degree earlier than non-AP students. But, what is the real impact of AP programs?
In virtually every professional field, a research-to-practice gap exists in which some practices shown to be effective by scientific research are seldom used in applied settings, but some commonly implemented practices are not empirically validated and may be ineffective or even harmful. Thus, great opportunity exists for those who employ research-based practices.