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CUIN 7303 - Professional Seminar I

This guide is intended to introduce you to information and tools relevant to educational research

Asking Questions of the Data

We know that educational inequalities can be related to factors across 4 domains

(a) teacher: ex. years of experience,
(b) student: ex. attendance, graduation, disciplinary action,
(c) school: ex. access to technology, APA course offering, after-school programming
(d) geographic community: ex. household income, educational attainment, home ownership, educational technology,employment

For domains A-C, we can access this kind of information primarily from the district websites as well the TEA.

For domain D, we can access this kind of information from sources like Social Explorer which contains Census and American Community Survey data, or Reference USA which shares information about different businesses and organizations in an area.

So what can we do with all this data? How can we ask questions and explore the data to find out what might be going on?

School Profiles

Let's say we have 2 schools with different TEA ratings:

These are the summary profiles for the 2 schools. They give an overview of a number of the available metrics.

From these profiles we can see that the teachers have similar levels of advanced degrees, they have similar levels of experience, maybe a bit of variation with more teachers having 5-10 years of experience at JF. Teacher attendance is the same.

Students at JY consistently have attendance rates at or below 90%

JF has more economically disadvantaged students but fewer at risk students generally.

JY has many more Career and Technical Education options, but JF has a much larger magnet population.

There's an interesting 4 year graduation rate story, JY has had a relatively steady rate, maybe a little drop recently, while JF had a much lower rate and steady rose to much higher rates.

Metric Jack Yates Jones Future
CTE Programs ^  
Magnet Population   ^
At Risk Students ^  
Economically Disadvantages   ^
Teacher Attendance = =
Student Attendance   ^
Teachers with Advanced Degrees = =
English Language Learners   ^


Social Explorer


Jack Yates is in zip: 77004

Jones Future is in zip: 77033

They are within 5 miles of each other.

Nearly half of residents 25 and older in 77004 have a bachelor's degree or better, in 77033 this is under 10%.

The median house value in 77004 is nearly 4 times higher than that in 77033 (271,100 vs 64,100 in the 2018 5 year ACS), whereas 62.35% of those houses in 77033 are owner occupied vs 77004's 33.51% based on 2018 5 years ACS numbers



Jack Yates is in zip: 77004

Jones Future is in zip: 77033

JY has 61 churches, 8 banks, and 23 non profit organizations in the area.

JF has 35 churches, 1 bank and 2 non profit organizations in the area.

So what kinds of questions do we still have? What bears further investigation? Can we find literature that might answer questions we don't have data to answer or infer what the situation might be? Might there be larger projects we might propose to investigate these questions?