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How Class Size Impacts Student Outcomes

$4.00 [1.00 Continuing Education Credit Hours]

Course Number: #02-475

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Course Description

Class size is an important determinant of student outcomes, and one that can be directly determined by policy. This brief, continuing education course, developed using information from the National Education Policy Center School of Education, University of Colorado Boulder, summarizes the academic literature on the impact of class size on student achievement. Policy recommendations are discussed as well as a review of the literature outlining the benefits of class size reduction. Additionally, ways to manipulate other educational inputs that may also be effective in increasing student gains are discussed.

Course Objectives

1. Summarize academic literature and policy recommendations on how class size impacts student achievement.
2. Discuss research findings that illustrate how children who attend small classes in the early grades continue to benefit over their entire lifetime.
3. Outline how smaller class size may benefit student effort, participation, and initiative in current and subsequent grades.
4. Describe alternative schoolwide and classroom policies other than class-­size reduction that may improve student gains.
5. Identify the need for policymakers to weigh the efficacy of class­-size ­reduction policy against other potential uses of funds.


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