Type: Seminar

Accountability and Literacy in Rural India

Open to PhD students and faculty engaged in causal inference in education policy research


Ben Alcott, Cambridge University School of Education

Date & time

Mar 7, 2018, 8:30-10:00 am EST


Abstract: Learning outcomes in rural India remain low, with only around half of eleven-year-olds able to read sentences. One common concern is that curricula remain too ambitious, moving onto advanced texts before many children have learned basic literacy skills. In the current project, we aim to assess the impact of community-based reading interventions that group and teach children according to the current state of their reading skills, rather than where they ostensibly ’should’ be. In addition, we will ask whether involving schoolteachers in these interventions can provide further benefits by filtering such practices into the classroom.

About the speaker: Ben Alcott is a university lecturer within the University of Cambridge faculty’s Research for Equitable Access and Learning (REAL) Centre, where he works on education policies in developing countries. His current research focuses on access to schooling, the quality of state and non-state educational provision, and inequalities in learning outcomes. With this talk Ben returns to UM, where he earned his PhD in Education in 2015.

About CIERS: The objective of the Causal Inference in Education Research Seminar (CIERS) is to engage students and faculty from across the university in conversations around education research using various research methodologies. This seminar provides a space for doctoral students and faculty from social science disciplines to discuss current research and receive feedback on works-in-progress. Discourse across schools and departments creates a more complete community of education scholars, and provides a networking opportunity for students enrolled in a variety of academic programs who share common research interests.

Our regular meeting schedule is Wednesday mornings from 8:30 to 10 am in Weill 3240. Check out our website to learn more and to sign up for the mailing list.