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Program Evaluations

August 20, 2015                                                                                                                                          View Narrative Report

Board of Trustees                                                                                                                                      View Statistical Data

Foundation for Teaching Economics

I am pleased to submit the report of my independent evaluation of the FTE’s 2015 programs serving more than 800 students and teachers. Results from participants’ feedback and tests of understanding demonstrate the impact of FTE programs on participants’ learning and on teaching and economics education.

Impact on student learning: Students in the Economics for Leaders program answered correctly at least 80 percent of the questions on a test of economics understanding given at the end of the week-long program, a 10 percentage point increase from the pre-test. The Economics for Leaders program is also having a significant impact on students’ leadership skills: from 83 to 94 percent of students, on average, said that their leadership skills have improved as a result of the program.

Impact on teacher learning: Teachers who took FTE online courses demonstrated learning gains ranging from 10 to 21 percentage points from pre- to post-test. More than 90 percent of teachers in FTE programs in 2015, who were asked about their understanding of the government’s role in economics, said it changed somewhat or quite a bit as a result of the program. In follow-up surveys, teachers in FTE’s 2014 programs overwhelmingly reported increased confidence in and enthusiasm for teaching economics.

Impact on teaching: FTE programs for teachers are based on content and materials that are, in turn, used by teachers in their classrooms. Teachers in the 2015 programs repeatedly said that they are excited to return to their classrooms to use the simulations and materials with their students. In follow-up surveys, teachers in FTE’s 2014 programs reported overwhelmingly that they have used FTE course content with their students.

In addition to evidence of program impact, student and teacher participants repeatedly and enthusiastically praised FTE instructors and staff for their deep knowledge of and enthusiasm for the subject matter.

A review of the data contained in this report convinces me that, in 2015, the FTE implemented a set of consistently high-quality economics education programs, which have positively and directly affected hundreds of students and teachers.

Sincerely,

Dana L. Kelly, Ph.DSenior Research Analyst

U.S. Department of Education

Washington, D.C.