ESSA Statute in Section 8101 defines the term "evidence-based"  as an activity, strategy, or intervention that demonstrates a statistically significant effect on improving student outcomes or other relevant outcomes based on:

  • strong evidence from at least one well-designed and well-implemented experimental study
  • or moderate evidence from at least one well-designed and well-implemented quasi-experimental study
  • or promising evidence from at least one well-designed and well-implemented correlational study with statistical controls for selection bias
  • or demonstrates a rationale based on high-quality research findings or positive evaluation that such activity, strategy, or intervention is likely to improve student outcomes or other relevant outcomes
  • and includes ongoing efforts to examine the effects of such activity, strategy, or interventions

New interim final regulations published July 2017 includes the following details:

  • studies must be relevant
  • studies must have a link between the proposed activities, strategies, and interventions and specific statistically significant effects
  • plans would have to ensure a faithful adaptation of the evidence
  • districts or states may build and test their own interventions, but must submit the evaluator's qualifications and resources to be used for evaluation



Evidence for ESSA Database

ESSA Guidance: Using Evidence to Strengthen Education Investments

What Works Clearinghouse

Find What Works Video Tour

Hattie Effect Size 2016 Update

Evidence for ESSA on Reading and Math Programs - March 2017

What Works in Drop Out Prevention?

What's the Evidence Base to Support Reading Interventions in Grades 1-3?

Navigating Social and Emotional Learning from the Inside Out - What Works?

The Research Is In: The Real Impact of Class Size and School Diversity

A Form of Professional Development that Research Shows Might Actually Help Teachers: Coaching

5 Steps Towards Embracing Evidence-Based Teaching

The Lasting Payoff of Early Ed - Harvard

Study Finds Academic Coaching Boosts Graduation Rates - Stanford

Social and Emotional Learning Interventions Under ESSA - Evidence Review

School Leadership Counts Report - New Teacher Center

Logic Models for Selecting, Designing and Implementing Evidence-Based School Leadership Interventions