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NCJ Number: 220354 Find in a Library
Title: Correctional Education: Getting the Data We Need
Journal: Journal of Correctional Education  Volume:58  Issue:3  Dated:September 2007  Pages:284-292
Author(s): Steven Klein; Michelle Tolbert
Date Published: September 2007
Page Count: 9
Type: Issue Overview
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This paper describes an effort to address the lack of policy-relevant data on correctional education: the Correctional Education Data Guidebook and Web site and the research projects that led to their development.
Abstract: To promote data collection coordination, the U.S. Department of Education sponsored the development of a guidebook and Web site containing recommended strategies for collecting and organizing State correctional education data. Using these resources, States can align their reporting systems voluntarily around an agreed-upon set of definitions and reporting frameworks. The Correctional Education Data Guidebook and Web site were developed by a working group composed of correctional administrators from 12 States. The guidebook and Web site contain a brief discussion of items related to important policy issues in correctional education. For each item, the guidebook and Web site offer variables and coding instructions for gathering and analyzing data on these issues. Federal and State corrections agencies presently collect a great deal of information, but these data often languish in databases for a number of reasons, partly because they are not comparable across States. Coordinating Federal and State data collection efforts using common reporting tools can help improve the validity, reliability, and usefulness of correctional education data. In addition, it reduces the costs and burdens associated with data collection. The end desire is to have better and more comprehensive data about correctional education, leading to more informed policy decisions. The guidebook and Web site grew out of two research projects. The first looked at existing Federal data sources to determine what kind of information was available nationally on correctional education and to examine the scale and effectiveness of correctional education programs offered in Federal and State prisons. The second project investigated the feasibility of generating State data sufficiently comparable so that they could be aggregated to construct a reasonable picture of correctional education nationwide. References
Main Term(s): Correctional education programs
Index Term(s): Correctional reform; Corrections agencies; Corrections effectiveness; Data collection devices; Data collections; Inmate Education Assistance Programs
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