Agile Mind works with our research partners and with a community of scholars and educators nationwide to apply quantitative and qualitative research to the systematic improvement of our programs and services. Our ultimate goal is to enhance the capacity of schools to ensure that all students experience and thrive in the advanced mathematics and science courses that are essential to their post-secondary education and career success.
The Charles A. Dana Center at the University of Texas at Austin is lead author of the instructional content in our middle school, high school and AP®, and Academic Youth Development programs in mathematics and statistics, as well as Academic Youth Development.
The Dana Center works with our nation’s education systems to ensure that every student leaves school prepared for success in postsecondary education and the contemporary workplace. Toward this goal, the Center collaborates with states and districts to provide sustained technical assistance, convene national networks, and create professional development programs and resources to help educators. It identifies stumbling blocks for students and develops innovative courses to encourage persistence, reshape academic identities, and build critical skills and knowledge. It advocates for rigorous academic standards and helps education systems ensure that all students can master the content and practices described in these standards.
The Center’s work, based on research and two decades of experience, focuses on K–16 mathematics and science education with an emphasis on strategies for improving student engagement, motivation, persistence, and achievement. The Dana Center develops innovative curricula, tools, protocols, and instructional supports and delivers powerful instructional and leadership professional development.
The Learning Sciences Research Institute, University of Illinois-Chicago, is, with the Dana Center, researcher, codesigner, and coauthor of the Intensified Algebra I intervention.
The Institute’s staff design and test innovative interventions, models, tools, and technologies to support teachers and students in 21st century learning environments around the globe. Its “classrooms” break out of the traditional brick-and-mortar model to ensure that learning can happen anywhere. The Institute’s research and design focus on learners from child to adult, in schools, museums, and other settings where minds can grow and skills can be sharpened. A particular focus is on urban communities where school children have long been underserved. Finally, the Institute focuses on how the development of cognition can aid in the analysis and design of effective literacy, mathematics and science instruction, taking into account how the social and cultural dimensions influence learners and outcomes. Its leaders work to inform national education policy that supports those efforts.
The Biological Sciences Curriculum Study (BSCS) center serves as lead author of the instructional content in our high school biology programs. Nationally recognized for its excellence in science education, BSCS is a nonprofit organization that works to improve all students’ understanding of science and technology by developing exemplary curricular materials, supporting their widespread and effective use, and providing professional development. The BSCS Center for Research and Evaluation designs and conducts studies that contribute to curriculum reform and provide evidence of the effectiveness of instructional materials, science teaching, and professional development programs.
The Silicon Valley Mathematics Initiative and the First in Math Consortium, both centered on high performance expectations, ongoing professional development, examining student work, and improved math instruction, are major research-based initiatives that encompass formative and summative assessment systems, pedagogical content coaching, and leadership training and networks. David Foster, the executive director of these programs, is coauthor of our middle school mathematics programs and has been an advisor to our work on formative assessment.
In addition, our research and development benefit directly from the support of:
No matter the soundness of research, what matters most is the success with which we translate it into a powerful experience for our users.
Our programs enable teachers and students to know specifically how learning is progressing. Teachers can evaluate at a glance—in real time—the progress of individual students and groups of students. This reduces administrative work and makes student performance, rather than chasing student effort, the central information a teacher receives. Students, too, can take responsibility for their learning because they receive detailed, up-to-the-moment data about how they are doing.