Efficacy evaluations are smaller-scale, formative studies that focus on how a program operates and affects educational outcomes in pilot schools, with both treatment and comparison groups.

Commonly, the research seeks to show if a program has a positive impact on learning, and it can be useful in assessing a program’s likely outcomes with regard to particular learners, such as English language learners, students with disabilities, or students with socioeconomic disadvantages.

These studies may meet What Works Clearinghouse evidence standards with reservations and may be eligible for review for ESSA Tier 2 or Tier 3 levels of evidence.

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