Assessment and Research

Assessment & Research

Connected Learning Research Network

Connected learning, as the name implies, strives to produce an entire learning ecology for youth that uses digital technology across disciplines and locations. Connected learning includes formal and informal learning spaces, camps, affinity groups, leisure or recreational spaces, online and on ground groups of learners. It focuses on civic engagement, interest drive approaches to learning and the importance of social sharing. Connected Learning Research Network is based at the University of California’s Humanities Research Institute, at the University of California, Irvine. You can download free research reports and research agendas as well as peruse ongoing projects and join the initiative.

Design-Based Implementation Research (DBIR)

Designing effective, scalable, and sustainable policies and programs in education is challenging. Programs that work in one setting may not work in another. Programs supported through grants may not last once funding ends. Many programs require more resources and know-how than individual researchers and educators can provide to make them work for all students.

Design-Based Implementation Research (DBIR) is an approach to organizing research and development intended to address these challenges. It is an emerging approach to relating research and practice that is collaborative, iterative, and grounded in systematic inquiry. DBIR builds the capacity of systems to engage in continuous improvement, so that we can accomplish the transformation of teaching and learning we seek. To learn more about DBIR, please visit

Participatory Assessment Lab, Indiana University

Directed by Dr. Dan Hickey, Professor of Learning Sciences at Indiana University, the Participatory Assessment Lab pursues new projects in transformative assessment and credentialing such as the Open Badges in Higher Education project. Dr. Hickey also writes and maintains a blog called: Re-Mediating Assessment.  The blog explores ePortfolios, eCredentialing, competency-based learning, learning networks and digital badges.

Research + Practice Collaboratory

This important collaborator brings together research and practice through a collaborative process of mutual support focusing on problems in STEM education. The future of research will need to bridge these two communities of practice to genuinely mover learning forward. Evidence based practice demands this kind of partnership between researchers and teachers in a continual feedback exchange.