19 episodes

Policymakers talk about solutions, but which ones really work? Join Therese Leung as she talks with MDRC researchers about the best evidence available on education and social programs that serve low-income peop

Evidence First MDRC

    • Non-Profit

Policymakers talk about solutions, but which ones really work? Join Therese Leung as she talks with MDRC researchers about the best evidence available on education and social programs that serve low-income peop

    Using Data-Driven Strategies for Program Improvement

    Using Data-Driven Strategies for Program Improvement

    Government agencies work hard to help the people they serve, whether it’s helping individuals find jobs or improve family well-being. But despite best efforts, some participants still don’t succeed. What are some ways government agencies can improve services and ensure participants remain on the right track?
    In this episode, Kate Gualtieri, MDRC’s Director of Strategy, talks with MDRC Senior Fellow Melissa Wavelet, the former director of the Office of Performance and Strategic Outcomes in the Colorado Department of Human Services, about her experience implementing a variety of data-driven strategies that help city and state government agencies meet their goals and improve the lives of the people they serve. They also discuss Melissa’s work at MDRC on the TANF Data Collaborative, a new initiative sponsored by the Office of Family Assistance and the Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation in the federal Administration for Children and Families, created in an effort to accelerate the use of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) data for program improvement and evidence-building at the federal, state, and local levels.

    • 19 min
    Replicating CUNY’s ASAP Model in Ohio: Interview with Dr. Marcia Ballinger

    Replicating CUNY’s ASAP Model in Ohio: Interview with Dr. Marcia Ballinger

    Nationwide, only 25 percent of full-time, first-time students at community colleges earn a degree within three years. To increase graduation rates for low-income community college students, the City University of New York (CUNY) launched Accelerated Study in Associate Programs (ASAP) — a comprehensive program that provides wrap-around support services to students, including one-on-one advising, help covering transportation and book expenses, and tutoring.
    MDRC’s evaluation of the CUNY ASAP model found that the program doubled graduation rates in New York City. Three community colleges in Ohio successfully replicated the ASAP model as part of the ASAP Ohio Demonstration, and MDRC’s evaluation found positive results in line with those at CUNY.
    Join Katie Beal as she talks with Dr. Marcia Ballinger, President of Lorain County Community College in Elyria, Ohio, about the demonstration and what it takes to scale a comprehensive program like ASAP.

    • 13 min
    Can Aligned Instruction Prevent Pre-K Fadeout?

    Can Aligned Instruction Prevent Pre-K Fadeout?

    High-quality preschool education can have substantial positive impacts on children’s early learning and development, as well as longer-term outcomes like graduating from high school and attending college. But the boost in skills young children experience can fade out as they move on to kindergarten and elementary school, exacerbating the achievement gap between children from more- versus less-advantaged backgrounds.
    This fadeout pattern has drawn greater attention to students’ experiences after preschool, in early elementary school, and helped increase support for improving curricular alignment from preschool to third grade. Alignment refers to the range of policies and practices designed to launch young children on a positive developmental pathway, with the early elementary grades continuing to build on what children learn in preschool. Join Leigh Parise as she talks with MDRC’s Meghan McCormick about measuring quality in preschool programs and the challenges of implementing aligned curricula.

    • 24 min
    The Story of a Practitioner-Researcher Partnership: Studying the Effects of the Grameen America Program

    The Story of a Practitioner-Researcher Partnership: Studying the Effects of the Grameen America Program

    Can giving small loans to low-income people to start or grow their businesses help lift them out of poverty and improve overall well-being? That’s the idea behind microlending – a promising approach implemented by institutions worldwide. But only limited rigorous evidence is available on the model’s effectiveness, especially in advanced economies.
    MDRC is evaluating Grameen America, a program that provides small loans to groups of low-income women in the U.S. using a model designed by Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Muhammad Yunus for the original Grameen Bank program in Bangladesh in the 1970s.
    But carrying out the first random assignment evaluation of Grameen America and its complex model presented unique challenges. In this episode, Katie Beal talks with Marcus Berkowitz, Vice President of Technology and Innovation at Grameen America, and Richard Hendra, MDRC’s Senior Fellow who leads the evaluation, about the partnership between the organizations and how they worked together to overcome those challenges.

    • 11 min
    Steps to Upward Mobility: Lessons from Three Youth Employment Programs

    Steps to Upward Mobility: Lessons from Three Youth Employment Programs

    One out of every 10 young people between the ages of 16 and 24 is neither working nor in school. These “disconnected” young people face an uphill battle finding work and are at risk of economic hardship well into adulthood. Although there are many programs that aim to reconnect young people to education and employment, findings from evaluations of these programs have been mixed. The evidence base has grown substantially in the past several months, though, as studies of three pro­grams — YouthBuild, Year Up, and New York City’s Young Adult Internship Program (YAIP) — have released new findings. MDRC’s Dan Bloom and Cynthia Miller recently wrote a brief that discusses findings from the new studies and their implications for youth programs.

    • 5 min
    How to Improve College Placement Using Multiple Measures

    How to Improve College Placement Using Multiple Measures

    Join Katie Beal as she talks to MDRC’s Dan Cullinan and the Community College Research Center’s Elisabeth Barnett about early findings from a Center for the Analysis of Postsecondary Readiness study of systems that use multiple measures for placement, and about lessons for colleges interested in implementing these systems.

    • 10 min

Customer Reviews

ladylawyer232 ,

A short and sweet shot of evidence!

Really informative and engaging.

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