A recent high-profile study of sharply rising mortality rates for some Americans brought to light the hazards of chronic stress. Principal researcher Kathryn Paez explores why the health of middle-aged white women in particular is suffering.
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19 Nov 2015
The case for using toilets—less fecal pollution leads to better health—might seem self-evident, but 2.5 billion (according to United Nation’s estimates) of the world’s poorest still don’t have them. And it’s harder to press that case than might be imagined. After all, the causal link between fecal contamination and human health is a scientific fact while the decision to buy or use a toilet is governed more by such variables as cost, tradition, and culture than by science. When it comes to behavior change, effective outcomes depend wholly on recipients’ decision-making—a process that’s rarely understood, much less taken into account in project design.
30 Oct 2015
If you want to know which school is the right choice for launching your future, college rankings lists aren’t much help. In USA Today, AIR’s Mark Schneider advises students and families looking for a good return to ignore these myths about choosing a college.
16 Oct 2015
New types of agricultural advisory systems for farmers in Kenya set up plant clinics, like those for human health, where trained plant doctors provide farmers with science-based diagnoses and advice. AIR experts Juan Bonilla and Andrea Coombes comment on the latest evaluation of the Plantwise program and indications that it is having positive effects on farmer wellbeing.
5 Oct 2015
In this podcast, Kim Kendziora talks with Melissa Schlinger of the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL), lead partner in an eight-district demonstration program that aims to establish whether and how large urban school districts can systematically implement social and emotional learning into their work, which AIR has been evaluating since its inception. The results provide insight on how SEL can be a key ingredient to school transformation and success.
11 Sep 2015
While some students happily return to school in the fall, others face stress and disconnection. In this commentary, David Osher argues that criminalizing attendance problems is unproductive, and that we should instead be creating engaging and supportive school environments that meet student needs and address the unique cluster of factors that contribute to each student’s attendance problems.
8 Sep 2015
In this commentary, Pooja Reddy Nakamura, an AIR senior researcher explores the question of when to introduce English to children in multilingual contexts. Rather than introducing it at the first opportunity, she suggests grouping classes by local language achievement skill—not just age—and introducing written English only after the local language threshold has been reached.
25 Aug 2015
Peter Cookson reviews “The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates,” the divergent stories of two poor young African American men who share the same name. Cookson asks, "What kind of policies are needed so that all children can discover what it means to be free?" Can strong families and relationships help prevent more acts of violence and create productive communities?
18 Aug 2015
Research findings about teachers and teacher labor markets sometimes seem to defy conventional wisdom. Dan Goldhaber, director of CALDER at the American Institutes for Research and the Center for Education Data & Research at the University of Washington, explores common assumptions in three Education Week guest blog posts.
29 Jul 2015
Research findings continue to point to the importance of social and emotional learning in children's lives. In this response to David Bornstein's 7/24/15 New York Times article, David Osher describes initiatives in Cleveland and other districts that have improved students' social and emotional competence and school test performance. The key, he notes, is building the capacity of teachers and schools to implement the programs.