Conducting External Research

Conducting External Research

Research within The School District of Philadelphia

The School District of Philadelphia frequently receives requests from individuals and organizations to conduct research studies with students, teachers, principals, and administrators. While it is District policy to cooperate with researchers whose projects might benefit education, all individuals and organizations interested in conducting research in the District must have their proposals reviewed by the Office of Research and Evaluation's Research Review Committee (RRC).


What Kinds of Studies Does the RRC Review?

In order to be considered by the RRC, research must fit into one of five categories: 1) Academic Study; 2) Ph.D. Dissertation; 3) National Survey; 4) Grant Mandated Evaluation; 5) Program Evaluation. To ensure alignment with Action Plan 3.0, released March 2015, the District is limiting all research falling under categories one, two and three (Academic Studies, Ph.D. Dissertations and National Surveys) to studies that directly align to the District's Anchor Goals.

Please Note: In order to promote rigorous and impartial evaluations, the RRC requires that program providers partner with a third party evaluator. Alternatively, the Office of Research and Evaluation can provide evaluation services at a reduced cost, if the cost of a third party evaluator is prohibitive.


Steps for Proposal Submission

Prior to submitting a proposal, please review the District's Action Plan 3.0, and ensure that the answer to each of the following questions is, "yes."

1. What category of research does my proposal fall into? Does your proposal fall into one of the preferred research categories?

2. If your proposal is an Academic Study, a Ph.D. Dissertation, or a National Survey, does it align with the Anchor Goals outlined in the District's Action Plan?

3. Will findings from this research provide actionable outcomes that can help improve the educational experiences of children in Philadelphia?

4. If requesting data or survey administration: Have you thoroughly explored all publicly available data, including the District-wide survey results, before determining the need to make a specific data request and/or administer your own survey instruments?

*PLEASE NOTE* As of January 2017, all new proposals are now subject to addition guidelines and requirements. If you are a Doctoral student, additional requirements may apply to you. Please contact Kelsey Weir at researchreview@philasd.org with any additional questions.

Ready to Submit?

If you are interested in submitting a research proposal for the committee's review, please CLICK HERE. All research activities must adhere to the District's policies and procedures.

If your research has already been approved by the RRC, please CLICK HERE.

If you are seeking DATA ONLY and are previously approved through the RRC, please CLICK HERE for to submit an online data request. Due to the volume of requests we receive, it will take at least 30 business days for your data request to be filled (beyond the research review process, if applicable). 

For questions or concerns, please contact Kelsey Weir at researchreview@philasd.org. If you would like to meet in person, please schedule an appointment.