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Education Policy

What are the effects of increasing private school choice vouchers on public school students? What is the role of social-emotional development in students’ lives? How do high school counselors work and understand their role? Which education interventions are most effective in terms of costs and achievement? These are just some of the issues that IPR education policy researchers address in their quest to create a larger pool of rigorous research and policy-relevant solutions for the pressing problems in education faced by teachers, students, parents, taxpayers, and policymakers.

A Message From Jonathan Guryan, Program Chair

Jonathan Guryan

Struggling schools, declining school funding, persistent achievement gaps, and recruiting and retaining effective teachers are just a few of the critical issues that school districts across the nation face every day. More rigorous research is needed to understand the issues facing schools and educators and to create effective solutions to address them. IPR’s Education Policy program groups fellows from a variety of disciplines and aligns with others, including those on Quantitative Methods.

Working Papers

Recently published articles and working papers in this program area include:

Julia Behrman, Emily Marshall, and Florian Keusch. 2024. A Conjoint Survey Experiment on Childbearing Preferences in the United States (WP-24-08).

Sarah Collier Villaume, Aurelie Ouss, Jonathan Guryan, and Emma Adam. 2024. A Meditation on Multidisciplinarity, in the Context of a School-Based Meditation Intervention (WP-24-04).

Paulo Bastos, Julian Cristia, Beomsoo Kim, and Ofer Malamud. 2023. Good Schools or Good Students? Evidence on School Effects From Universal Random Assignment of Students to High Schools (WP-23-45).

All Papers

Faculty Experts

Faculty consider issues associated with education from different vantage points that include economics, sociology, psychology, biomedical sciences, and quantitative research methods.

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Research Training Institute on Cluster-Randomized Trials

Faculty Organizers: Larry Hedges and Elizabeth Tipton

This two-week, in-depth training institute covers a range of specific topics in the design, implementation, and analysis of data for use in cluster-randomized trials, allowing researchers to account for the group effects of teachers and classrooms when measuring an intervention’s effects on individual student achievement. Support comes from the National Center for Education Research, housed in the U.S. Department of Education's Institute of Education Sciences.

Improving Evaluations of R&D in STEM Education 2024 Summer Institute

Northwestern University, with support from the National Science Foundation is providing support for the 2024 Summer Research Training Institute on Improving Evaluations of Research and Development projects in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) education.

Policy Study: Linking Social-Emotional Learning to Long-Term Success

In a study published in Education Next, IPR labor economist Kirabo Jackson, IPR graduate research assistant Sebastián Kiguel, and their colleagues consider what role social-emotional development has in students’ lives. The researchers examine surveys of social-emotional development given to Chicago Public School students in combination with administrative and test-score data, focusing on over 55,500 students who were in ninth grade in 2011–17. They find that school improvement of students’ social-emotional growth has a greater effect on students’ outcomes than schools raising students’ test scores.

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