"Give me something—anything—that shows that the product works for my students.”

Bart Epstein
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In Malvika Bhagwat's excellent EdSurge essay this week, Why You’re Thinking About Efficacy All Wrong (And How to Fix It), she highlights how a growing number of educators and administrators are asking more sophisticated questions about efficacy research before making purchase decisions.

She reports that increasing numbers of educators are saying to Newsela, “Help me see how this product works for us, given our technology access and demographics,” before they will buy.

I am pleased to see more evidence that our educators are becoming increasingly sophisticated when it comes to demanding contextually relevant information before making purchases. Nobody should be satisfied by seeing a single positive study done in a school that is nothing like theirs. Knowing that a particular edtech product “works” with some students in some circumstances is less important than understanding why the product works and does not work in different implementation environments.

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