Concerns have been raised repeatedly about the ability of the criminal justice system to collect and analyze evidence efficiently and to be fair in its verdicts. Although significant progress has been made in some forensic science disciplines, the forensic science community still faces many challenges. Federal leadership, particularly in regard to research and the scientific validation of forensic science methods, is needed to help meet the pressing issues facing state and local jurisdictions.
This report reviews the progress made by the National Institute of Justice (NIJ) to advance forensic science research since the 2009 report, Strengthening Forensic Science in the United States: A Path Forward and the 2010 report, Strengthening the National Institute of Justice. Support for Forensic Science Research examines the ways in which NIJ develops its forensic science research priorities and communicates those priorities as well as its findings to the scientific and forensic practitioner communities in order to determine the impact of NIJ forensic science research programs and how that impact can be enhanced.
Improving Student Learning responds by proposing an ambitious and extraordinary plan: a strategic education research program that would focus on four key questions:
How can advances in research on learning be incorporated into educational practice?
How can student motivation to achieve in school be increased?
How can schools become organizations capable of continuous improvement?
How can the use of research knowledge be increased in schools?
This book is the springboard for a year-long discussion among educators, researchers, policy makers, and the potential funders-federal, state, and private-of the proposed strategic education research program. The committee offers suggestions for designing, organizing, and managing an effective strategic education research program by building a structure of interrelated networks. The book highlights such issues as how teachers can help students overcome their conceptions about how the world works, the effect of expectations on school performance, and the particular challenges of teaching children from diverse and disadvantaged backgrounds.
In the midst of a cacophony of voices about America's schools, this book offers a serious, long-range proposal for meeting the challenges of educating the nation's children.
The ethics of human subjects research has captured scientific and regulatory attention for half a century. To keep abreast of the universe of changes that factor into the ethical conduct of research today, the Department of Health and Human Services published an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRM) in July 2011. Recognizing that widespread technological and societal transformations have occurred in the contexts for and conduct of human research since the passage of the National Research Act of 1974, the ANPRM revisits the regulations mandated by the Act in a correspondingly comprehensive manner. Its proposals aim to modernize the Common Rule and to improve the efficiency of the work conducted under its auspices. Proposed Revisions to the Common Rule for the Protection of Human Subjects in the Behavioral and Social Sciences identifies issues raised in the ANPRM that are critical and feasible for the federal government to address for the protection of participants and for the advancement of the social and behavioral sciences. For each identified issue, this report provides guidance for IRBs on techniques to address it, with specific examples and best practice models to illustrate how the techniques would be applied to different behavioral and social sciences research procedures.
This fourth edition presents and comments on four basic principles that statistical agencies must embody in order to carry out their mission fully:
(1) They must produce objective data that are relevant to policy issues,
(2) they must achieve and maintain credibility among data users,
(3) they must achieve and maintain trust among data providers, and
(4) they must achieve and maintain a strong position of independence from the appearance and reality of political control.
The book also discusses 11 important practices that are means for statistical agencies to live up to the four principles. These practices include a commitment to quality and professional practice and an active program of methodological and substantive research. This fourth edition adds the principle that statistical agencies must operate from a strong position of independence and the practice that agencies must have ongoing internal and external evaluations of their programs.
In summer 1998, the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE) of the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) asked the Committee on National Statistics of the National Research Council to convene a Panel on Data and Methods for Measuring the Effects of Changes in Social Welfare Programs. The panel's overall charge is to study and make recommendations on the best strategies for evaluating the effects of PRWORA and other welfare reforms and to make recommendations on data needs for conducting useful evaluations. This interim report presents the panel's initial conclusions and recommendations. Given the short length of time the panel has been in existence, this report necessarily treats many issues in much less depth than they will be treated in the final report. The report has an immediate short-run goal of providing DHHS-ASPE with recommendations regarding some of its current projects, particularly those recently funded to study ''welfare leavers''-former welfare recipients who have left the welfare rolls as part of the recent decline in welfare caseloads.
In carrying out their assignment, panel members came to realize that the properties of data sources and statistical procedures used to produce formula estimates, interacting with formula features such as thresholds and hold-harmless provisions, can produce consequences that may not have been anticipated or intended. It also became evident that there is a trade-off between the goals of providing a reasonable amount of stability in funding from one year to the next and redirecting funds to different jurisdictions as true needs change. In one instance, for example, the annual appropriation included a 100 percent hold-harmless provision, ensuring that no recipient would receive less than the year before. However, there was no increase in the total appropriation, with the result that new estimates showing changes in the distribution of program needs across areas had no effect on the allocations.
Choosing the Right Formula provides an account of the presentations and discussions at the workshop. The first three chapters cover the overview, case studies, and methodological sessions, respectively. Chapter 4 summarizes the issues discussed in the roundtable and concluding sessions, with emphasis on the identification of questions that might be addressed in a panel study.
Children's Health, the Nation's Wealth: Assessing and Improving Child Health provides a detailed examination of the information about children's health that is needed to help policy makers and program providers at the federal, state, and local levels. In order to improve children's health -- and, thus, the health of future generations -- it is critical to have data that can be used to assess both current conditions and possible future threats to children's health. This compelling book describes what is known about the health of children and what is needed to expand the knowledge. By strategically improving the health of children, we ensure healthier future generations to come.