The most recent publications appear first.

Young people are more likely to develop into effective learners, productive adults, and engaged citizens when their learning environments afford them certain kinds of experiences. For example, students are more likely to succeed when they experience a sense of belonging in school or experience schoolwork as personally relevant.

How can schools systematically ensure they provide every one of their students with the important developmental experiences they need to succeed and thrive? To answer this question, we offer a conceptual framework that integrates insights from empirical literatures in education, psychology, and developmental science; innovations from early warning indicator methods; and our own experiences as researchers working in partnership with practitioners to build more equitable and developmentally supportive learning environments.

We posit that schools currently pay a great deal of attention to the results of effective learning (e.g., high test scores), but not nearly enough attention to the causes of effective learning (e.g., assignments that are relevant enough to motivate students). We propose that schools could foster learning and development more systematically and more equitably if they started to measure, not just downstream learning outcomes, but also the upstream developmental experiences that make those outcomes more likely to unfold.

The Becoming Effective Learners Student Survey (BEL-S) was designed by the University of Chicago Consortium on School Research to illuminate relationships among important student, classroom/instructional, and academic outcome variables. In the present study, the researchers used these surveys and administrative data to test the relationships among categories of student noncognitive factors and students' course grades. They tested whether four categories of noncognitive factors (academic mindsets, learning strategies, academic behaviors, and academic perseverance), as measured by self-report surveys in the context of specific classes, predicted students’ end-of-semester course grades in those classes. They also investigated the relationships between classroom environments and students’ self-reported noncognitive factors and their end-of-semester course grades.

Amid growing recognition that strong academic skills alone are not enough for young people to become successful adults, this comprehensive report offers wide-ranging evidence to show what young people need to develop from preschool to young adulthood to succeed in college and career, have healthy relationships, be engaged citizens, and make wise choices. It concludes that rich experiences combining action and reflection help children develop a set of critical skills, attitudes, and behaviors. And it suggests that policies should aim to ensure that all children have consistent, supportive relationships and an abundance of these developmental experiences through activities inside and outside of school. The report offers evidence to show how, where, and when the "key factors" to success develop from early childhood through young adulthood, emphasizing the kinds of experiences and supportive relationships that guide the positive development of these factors.

The original components of the deeper learning framework represent important processes
and products of deeper learning instructional practices. What was missing from the
framework, however, were the motivational components that influence a student’s
engagement in learning. Why and under what conditions might students choose to employ
problem-solving skills or engage in collaborative work to meet a learning goal? The inclusion of academic mindsets in the deeper learning framework puts due emphasis on a crucial set of learning variables.

Over the past 20 years, changes in the U.S. economy have raised the stakes for educational attainment, resulting in dire economic consequences for workers without a high school diploma and some college education. American adolescents have responded by dramatically increasing their educational aspirations; almost all high school students in the U.S. now say they expect to go to college. Recent research on noncognitive factors has not only suggested their importance for student academic performance but has also been used to argue that social investments in the development of these noncognitive factors would yield high payoffs in improved educational outcomes as well as reduced racial/ethnic and gender disparities in school performance and educational attainment.