Research Proposals

Requirements for Conducting Research in PPS

Department of Research, Evaluation & Assessment
April Arevalo
501 N. Dixon
P. O. Box 3107
Portland, OR 97208-3107

To submit a request to conduct research in Portland Public Schools, please review the process and requirements below. Requests can be submitted electronically or by mail to the contact listed above.

For research to be conducted in the current school year, proposals must be received by April 15. Proposals received after April 15 will be considered for the next school year.

School Board policy requires that all external research to be conducted in the school district be reviewed and receive approval from the Research, Evaluation and Assessment Department. The process and required elements for this review are listed below. Please allow a minimum of two weeks for the review (upon receipt of request). Many reviews take longer as additional materials or clarifications are requested. That process is outlined below:

  1. All research studies or data requests must be submitted, along with a written research proposal, to the Research, Evaluation & Assessment Department prior to the researchers' contact with schools.
  2. The research proposal must describe: a) the scope and significance of the study, b) the research design, c) the logistics of the study, including the proposed start and end date for the study, and d) all survey or assessment instruments, protocols, and the informed consent form(s) for the study.
  3. The research proposal must include copies of survey or assessment instruments and consent forms.
  4. The criteria that will be used in the evaluation of requests are as follows:

    A. Significance
    -- Focus on matters of high concern and potential usefulness to the District
    -- Promise of a worthwhile contribution to a scientific knowledge base for education

    B. Design
    -- Adequacy of the conceptual framework, the research questions, the data collection and data analysis
    -- Procedures for maintaining confidentiality of information pertaining to individual students or staff must be stated, including approval by the appropriate Institutional Review Board (IRB), and a date when all participant information will be destroyed

    C. Logistics
    -- Minimum disruption of District, school, and classroom operation
    -- Minimum time required of students and staff

All persons working with a project on Portland School District grounds must receive a background check, conducted by PPS Security Services (forms available from review committee AFTER proposal has been approved.)

All persons working with a project on Portland School District grounds must be covered by worker compensation.

The Research, Evaluation & Assessment Department's research review committee will evaluate each request for its adherence to the criteria. The Department may, after initial review, deny the request if, in its view, the design of the study or the value of the information to be produced does not conform to the criteria stated above. Research submissions are reviewed monthly during the school year. 
Upon satisfactory completion of these requirements and proposal acceptance, the Department will provide an approval letter on department letterhead that should be used as an introduction to district or school administrators. Participation by schools in any research is voluntary and administrators and individual participants are not obligated to participate in research or survey requests, regardless of the recommendation by the Research, Evaluation & Assessment Department.

View Sample Proposal   (Word)
View Sample Proposal   (pdf)

View Sample Consent Form  (Word)
View Sample Consent Form  (pdf)