American Institutes for Research to Lead New Research Network on Career and Technical Education

AIR has been awarded a federal grant to lead the development and sharing of research, information, and best practices about career and technical education. The Extending the Reach of the Career and Technical Education (CTE) Research Network builds on the work AIR led under a previous grant.

AIR will serve as the Network Lead for the new research network, which is funded by a $3.75 million grant from the Institute of Education Sciences (IES), the nonpartisan research and statistics arm of the U.S. Department of Education. As the Network Lead, AIR will:

  • Create a dynamic peer-learning community to coordinate and move the CTE research field forward through cross-team collaborations;
  • Conduct an evidence review on work-based learning across secondary, postsecondary, and adult education populations;
  • Facilitate annual training institutes targeted to early career researchers, with new content for conducting CTE research with an equity focus and communicating research evidence to inform policy and practice; and
  • Lead the dissemination and promotion of the Network’s activities, findings and products.

"Career and technical education programs have the power to engage students and prepare them for the workforce and postsecondary education, but there is a need for more research on what makes CTE programs effective,” said Jessica Heppen, AIR president. “I’m so pleased that AIR will continue to lead this important work and grateful for the continued investment in CTE research and dissemination.”

Katherine Hughes, a principal researcher at AIR, will serve as the principal investigator for this grant. Shaun M. Dougherty, a professor of education and policy at Boston College’s Lynch School of Education & Human Development, will serve as a co-principal investigator. Partnering organizations are the Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE), Boston College, and the Career and Technical Education Policy Exchange at Georgia State University.

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