Today’s podcast is about the book titled Research-Based Strategies. This book follows and supports the work of Dr. Ruby Payne and her seminal work, A Framework for Understanding Poverty. Some of you are probably familiar with Dr. Payne’s first edition of Research-Based Strategies, the original edition of what we will fondly call RBS today. I see lots of hands up. Great. It appears as if the majority of people are familiar with RBS, so what we’ll do today, with that in mind, is to focus on how the book is different from the original, and we’ll also, for those of you who have not read the original edition, we’ll talk about the contents as well.

As you can see, this is an updated version. I had the honor of helping Dr. Payne to update the book. It’s practically brand new, so we’re really excited about this. In the title we do want to underscore the words research-based because this is very highly research based. For each strategy, once we start looking at the strategies inside of the book, you will see a list of researchers, and these researchers will be those whose primary interest was that particular strategy.

We have a new feature, and this feature is the work of Dr. John Hattie, who talks about effect size. I’m sure you’re familiar with effect size, but we’ll review it very briefly for those of you who might need a review. John Hattie and others (he was not the first, but he’s one of the most well known), collected and studied and analyzed research projects, and they determined how effective a particular strategy might be based on the research related to that strategy.

John Hattie’s work is best known because he developed a rating scale, and he gave the strategies a score. Now, he also scored influences on students’ lives, but we have little control over some of those influences, so we won’t discuss them today. But we all know that there are some influences on a child’s life that can actually set them back. In other words, at the end of the year they’re worse off than perhaps they were in September. Some of those negative influences that have a score of less than zero might be, for example, moving under bad circumstances or depression.

A score of zero means that we could use those strategies all year long, and at the end of the year, the students will be exactly where they were in September. In other words, they neither help nor harm the students’ performance.

We can see the third scores are the critical scores. A strategy that has an effect size of 0.4 is an average strategy. What this means is if we use strategies every day that have a rating of 0.4, then by the end of the year, the students’ performance will be one year above and beyond where they were in September. So strategies with a score of 0.4 are good. They’re very good. And our focus can be on strategies with a score of 0.4 or higher.

Listen to the podcast for more.