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INQUIRE: Quality Initiatives Research and Evaluation Consortium

The Quality Initiatives Research and Evaluation Consortium (INQUIRE) is designed to facilitate the identification of issues and the development and exchange of information and resources related to the research and evaluation of quality rating and improvement systems (QRIS) and other quality initiatives.

This project is funded through the Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation (OPRE) in the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) and managed through a contract with Child Trends.

Purposes of INQUIRE

Key Topics for INQUIRE

Current INQUIRE Working Groups

Current QRIS conceptual models and validation efforts emphasize child outcomes. While child outcomes will always remain a centerpiece of QRIS research and validation, this working group is engaging in discussion about the expectations for other dimensions and outcomes in QRIS. To date, these other outcomes have not been fully articulated, and research and evaluation on these outcomes has not been conducted. The purpose of this working group is to create an updated QRIS theory of change that reflects the current evidence base and provides guidance for new research and evaluation efforts.

Facilitator: Kathryn Tout

This group grew from the request of state administrators for a literature review demonstrating the strength of the evidence for the impact of quality on child outcomes. Building on previous OPRE-funded in-depth reviews, the purpose of this group is to provide input on the rubric for and the review of the literature. The group is also thinking about ways to present these data in a format that will be readily available to policymakers and QRIS administrators.

Facilitator: Kelly Maxwell

This working group is developing ways to better guide and support states in understanding what reliability is, how to think about reliability within the QRIS context, and provide information about all of the aspects of reliability to consider within different state systems.

Facilitator: Beth Rous

This group is working together to collaborate and share resources about QRIS validation studies happening across the US. This group is discussing design elements and revisions for validation studies that can be implemented to maximum prediction of the outcomes intended.

Facilitator: Shannon Lipscomb

This working group has been developing a set of data tools that can support state efforts on early childhood data. The guidance has been developed in coordination with the Common Education Data Standards (CEDS). The tools include a comprehensive data matrix, a data dictionary, and examples of linking data with key policy questions.

Facilitators: Carlise King & Kathryn Tout

This working group is focusing on the "I" in QRIS. This group is discussing topics related to quality improvement , including: financial incentives and tiered reimbursement, the types of QI strategies being using in ELC states and connections to validation studies, and supports for effective technical assistance across different levels of the system.

Facilitators: Rena Hallam & Anne Douglass

INQUIRE Products and Relevant Research

INQUIRE Products and Relevant Research

INQUIRE Data Tools

Are you a researcher or evaluator with expertise in quality initiatives? JOIN INQUIRE!

Project Officer:
Ivelisse Martinez-Beck

Office of Planning, Research, and Education

To learn more, contact:
Kathryn Tout
Child Trends

Child Trends