Undergraduate Research Labs

The School System Improvement (SSI) Project
Dr.  Linda Reddy
Website: https://ssiproject.rutgers.edu/
Email: lreddy@scarletmail.rutgers.edu

(Sponsor: Maurice Elias)

The way teachers instruct their students, manage behavior in the classrooms, and provide opportunity to learn (OTL) makes a big difference in student performance. However, there is currently no practical approach to measuring how teacher’s classroom practices affect student academic and behavior functioning. Identifying the instructional and behavior management strategies teachers’ utilize daily, as well as their influence on OTL, is crucial for determining which strategies are the most effective in promoting academic, behavior, and social success for students.

However, current teacher evaluation practices and systems do not have empirically validated and reliable means of assessing these constructs, or methods for providing teachers with feedback to enhance their classroom practices. A fair and balanced educator evaluation system is needed to identify and monitor teachers’ classroom practices, as well as help guide school interventions and services necessary to ensure that all children succeed in school.

The School System Improvement (SSI) Project is designed to accomplish these goals:

  1. Utilize the Classroom Strategies Scale (CSS) and Instructional Learning Opportunities Guidance system (MyiLOGS) to enhance teacher evaluation practices, feedback and coaching
  2. Assess teachers' use of important instructional strategies, behavioral management strategies, and OTL in classroooms
  3. Facilitate teachers plans to cover necessary content from state and national content standards, as well as improve their use of classroom time
  4. Lend teacher voice to evaluations of educator effectiveness
  5. Improve the overall quality of education at schools and support teachers in their efforts to provide high quality instructions to their students.

 Research assistants will:

  1. Participate in a large multi-site project in NJ and travel frequently to over 20 different charter schools
  2. Be trained on empirically based instructional and behavioral management strategies implemented by teachers
  3. Be trained on coverage of state content standards and opportunity to learn
  4. Observe teachers and classrooms using empirically based observational measures
  5. Participate in data collection, coding, entry, and analysis
  6. Have opportunities for professional presentations and publications

Requirements: The SSI Project is looking for highly motivated undergraduate students for the Fall 2017 and Spring 2018 semesters. A two-semester commitment is required. A minimum of 12 hours per week between the hours of 9am and 3pm. Personal transportation (such as a car) is required to visit elementary schools. Travel between Rutgers and schools will be reimbursed. 

Application: To apply to the SSI Project, please submit an updated resume to Christopher Dudek or Dr. Linda Reddy. They can be reached at the following:

Christopher Dudek, ME.d.
Sr. Research Analyst - SSI Project
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Tel: 848-445-3845

Linda A. Reddy, Ph.D.
Professor & Principal Investigator – SSI Project
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.