Data Literacy For Teachers: What is it, what do we know about how to make it happen and why is it important? Albany, NY June 18, 2014 Ellen B. Mandinach, WestEd Why is Data Literacy Important? • Emphasis by policymakers • Philosophical shift to continuous improvement • Evidence not gut feelings • No longer a passing fad • Helping teachers to help all children learn Why Now? • Emerging technological solutions from complex data systems to data dashboards • Proliferation of diverse data sources • The building of human capacity has not kept up with the development of the technological infrastructure • Even if educators know they should become data-informed, there are still many challenges Data Use is NOT New It has been around for a long time This is How We Are Thinking About the Construct What is Data Literacy for Teaching? (from Mandinach, Friedman, & Gummer, in press) The ability to transform information into actionable instructional knowledge and practices by collecting, analyzing, and interpreting all types of data (assessment, school climate, behavioral, snapshot, longitudinal, momentto-moment, etc.) to help determine instructional steps. It combines an understanding of data with standards, disciplinary knowledge and practices, curricular knowledge, pedagogical content knowledge, and an understanding of how children learn. Now To Get Down Into the Weeds Our Conceptual Framework Developing a Conceptual Framework Take Home Messages from Prior Work • Lack of clarity in the terminology – data literacy means different things to different people • Developmental continuum for educators’ acquisition of data literacy skills and knowledge is unknown • Process to elevate the importance to schools of education to have them help build human capacity is complex How best to integrate data literacy into higher education – stand-alone or cross program? • Courses or integrated suites of courses? • • Professional development is not enough • Recognition of the systemic nature of the issue And Another Issue: An Important Distinction •Data literacy is not the same thing as assessment literacy. •They are two different constructs. •Experts see assessment literacy as part of data literacy because data literacy refers to the use of many sources of data, not just assessment data. Looming Questions and Issues What we still don’t know •Lack of clarity in the terminology •Developmental continuum for educators’ acquisition of data literacy skills and knowledge is unknown •Process to elevate the importance to schools of education to have them help build human capacity is complex • How best to integrate data literacy into higher education – stand-alone or cross program? •Recognition of the systemic nature of the issue •Courses or integrated suites of courses? Change Will Require Many Stakeholders The Systemic Nature of the Issue Who are the Key Players? •State Education Agencies •State Licensure Agencies •Professional Organizations •Schools of Education •Testing Organizations •Local Education Agencies •Others A Real Possibility •Residency programs can become leaders in the field •More flexibility, less constraints •Less inertia that traditional schools of education This Work is Not for the Faint Of Heart I Hope You Understand My Point – You Can Make IT Happen! What’s the difference between elephants mating and establishing the importance of data literacy?