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Education and Psychology

Performance pay for teachers topic of national conference at Vanderbilt University Feb. 28-29

Feb. 21, 2008—Paying teachers based on their performance in the classroom is a trend gaining momentum across the United States. But does it work? The complex issues surrounding that question will be the topic of a national conference, "Performance Incentives: Their Growing Impact on American K-12 Education," hosted by the National Center on Performance Incentives at Vanderbilt University Feb. 28-29.

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Experts to discuss why gifted children need challenge in the classroom

Feb. 1, 2008—Motivating and challenging gifted students in the classroom will be the focus of a free public lecture Feb. 6 at 6:30 p.m. at the downtown Nashville Public Library, located at 615 Church St. Free parking is available at the library.

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Kids learn more when mom is listening

Jan. 23, 2008—Kids may roll their eyes when their mother asks them about their school day, but answering her may actually help them learn. New research from Vanderbilt University reveals that children learn the solution to a problem best when they explain it to their mom.

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Step away from the keyboard – handwriting still important; Vanderbilt expert available to comment for National Handwriting Day, Jan. 23

Jan. 22, 2008—Handwriting might be a lost art to many, but it plays a critical role in how we learn and express ourselves, Vanderbilt handwriting expert Steve Graham says. Jan. 23 is National Handwriting Day.

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New book presents strategies to improve student writing

Jan. 2, 2008—A new book co-authored by Vanderbilt University education faculty seeks to reverse the downward trend in the quality of student writing. Powerful Writing Strategies for All Students presents a detailed program that teachers can use to help students master writing and improve their self-confidence.

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New smartpen and paper to help teach blind college students

Dec. 3, 2007—Subjects like physics, calculus and biology are challenging for most students, but imagine tackling these topics without being able to see the graphs and figures used to teach them. A new smartpen and paper technology that works with touch and records classroom audio aims to bring these subjects to life for blind students.

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Study finds schools don’t target nearly proficient students in response to No Child Left Behind

Oct. 31, 2007—Contrary to popular belief, schools are not devoting more time and resources to students that fall just below federal standards in response to No Child Left Behind, a new study from Vanderbilt University has found.

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New scholarship program to boost research in testing, student assessment

Oct. 30, 2007—A new endowed scholarship program at Vanderbilt University‘s Peabody College aims to produce the next generation of leaders in the closely watched field of educational testing and student assessment.

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Top 10 social skills students need to succeed

Sep. 27, 2007—Reading, writing, 'rithmetic and... good manners? Researchers have found that 10 basic social skills such as taking turns, listening and simply being nice are just as important to children's academic success as the subjects they study, and that students can and should be learning these skills in the classroom.

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New book explores effectiveness, challenges of charter schools

Sep. 24, 2007—As perhaps the fastest-growing sector in the school choice movement, charter schools claim to offer a bigger bang for the public education buck. The question is, is it true? According to Charter School Outcomes, a new book by some of the leading charter school researchers in the country, it depends.

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Citing academic gains, researchers encourage testing educator performance pay

Sep. 4, 2007—New research from Vanderbilt University and the University of Missouri-Columbia suggests that performance pay for teachers and administrators often has a positive impact on student achievement and should be explored by states and school districts. Their findings are the result of a review of six large current or planned performance-pay programs and the U.S. Department of Education's $500 million Teacher Incentive Fund implemented under the federal No Child Left Behind Act.

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Educators must move beyond excuses to empower urban African American males

Aug. 29, 2007—Helping African American males succeed in urban schools can seem like an intractable problem, but applying some basic principles that empower teachers and students is a key part of the answer, finds Vanderbilt University education researcher H. Richard Milner. In a new article in the journal Theory Into Practice, he argues that teachers and school leaders must move beyond making excuses to turn around failing schools.

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