Complex Systems View of Educational Policy Research

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Education researchers have struggled for decades with questions such as “why are troubled schools so difficult to improve?” or “why is the achievement gap so hard to close?”  We argue here that conceptualizing schools and districts as complex adaptive systems, composed of many networked parts that give rise to emergent patterns through their interactions, holds promise for understanding such important problems. Although there has been considerable research on the use of complex systems ideas and methods to help students learn science content, only recently have researchers begun to apply these tools to issues of educational policy.

By providing tools to characterize and quantify relationships between individuals and to investigate how individual actions aggregate into macro-level outcomes, a complex systems approach can help integrate insights from different types of research and better inform educational policy. Education research must establish not only what works  but also how and why it works.

About Giorgio Bertini

Research Professor. Founder Director at Learning Change Project - Research on society, culture, art, neuroscience, cognition, critical thinking, intelligence, creativity, autopoiesis, self-organization, rhizomes, complexity, systems, networks, leadership, sustainability, thinkers, futures ++
This entry was posted in Complex adaptive system, Complex network, Education, Educational research, Networks and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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