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Evaluating the Khan Academy

Evaluating the Khan Academy:
SRI's Research on the Use of Khan Academy in Schools

featured presenter: Dr. Robert Murphy, Director of Evaluation Research, Center for Technology & Learning, SRI
chair: Michael Trucano, Sr. ICT & Education Specialist, The World Bank

room G8-011, 8th floor, World Bank 'G' Building, 1776 G Street, NW
3 June 2014: 11am - 12:30pm

Over the past five years, there has perhaps been no educational technology initiative that has been more celebrated around the world than the Khan Academy. Starting life as an NGO in 2006 as a way to provide short video tutorials on YouTube for students, Khan Academy is now a multi-million dollar non-profit enterprise, reaching over ten million students a month in both after-school and in-school settings around the world with a combination of offerings, including over 100,000 exercise problems, over 5,000 short videos on YouTube, and an online 'personalized learning dashboard'. Large scale efforts to translate Khan Academy into scores of languages are underway, with over 1000 learning items currently available in eleven languages (including French, Xhosa, Bangla, Turkish, Urdu, Portuguese, Arabic and Spanish). Founder Sal Khan's related TED video ("Let's use video to reinvent education") has been viewed over three million times, and the Khan Academy has been the leading example cited in support of a movement to 'flip the classroom', with video lectures viewed at home while teachers assist students doing their 'homework' in class.

As efforts to distribute low cost computing devices and connectivity to schools pick up steam in developing countries around the world, many World Bank education projects are considering the wide scale use of Khan Academy content.

What do we know about how Khan Academy is actually being used in practice in schools?

Please join us in welcoming Dr. Robert Murphy, who led the team at SRI that recently published findings from its Research on the Use of Khan Academy in Schools. Dr. Murphy will share key lessons and observations gained as a result of this and other research projects at SRI investigating how technology is actually being used in a variety of educational settings (and how it is not, despite some of the attendant hype).

About the presenter:
Robert Murphy, Ph.D., is director of evaluation research in SRI International's renowned Center for Technology in Learning. Dr. Murphy’s research focuses on the design and implementation of large-scale experimental and quasi-experimental evaluations of widely adopted educational programs and technologies. Dr. Murphy is currently the co-principal investigator on a task order for the U.S. Department of Education studying the policies associated with and the use and effectiveness of online instruction in K-12 educational settings. He is also the principal investigator on two separate projects that seek to understand the ways schools and teachers are blending online instruction with more traditional practices to support teaching and learning. This work is being funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Michael and Susan Dell Foundation. Dr. Murphy has played key design and leadership roles on two recent national random assignment control studies funded by the U.S. Department of Education. He was SRI’s deputy project director for the Evaluation of the Effectiveness of Educational Technology Interventions (EETI) and SRI’s project director for the Evaluation of Early Elementary Mathematics Curricula (EEMC). Both of these rigorous studies involved the study of curriculum materials and programs currently in use in thousands of classrooms nationwide. He is the co-author of Learning Online: What Research Tells Us About Whether, When and How (April 2014) and received his PhD in human development and social policy from Northwestern University (USA).

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