Too Simple to Fail presents a startling dissection of what is wrong with our educational system and a set of simple, common-sense steps for improving it. This simplicity, Bausell argues, characterizes both the schooling process and the science of education, as witnessed by legions of researchers who have discovered precious little that their grandmothers didn't already know. Yet surprisingly, based upon the author's own studies and a review of the past 30+ years of educational research, these discoveries boil down to a simple but powerful theory: The only way schools can increase learning is to increase the amount of relevant instructional time for all students.
Here, Bausell demonstrates that classroom instruction is hopelessly obsolete, as are our current testing practices, both contributing to the widening opportunity gap between socioeconomic and racial groups. But with an understanding of what is wrong with education today comes the revelation that the answer to these deficiencies has been available to us all along in the form of the tutorial model, the most effective instructional paradigm ever developed. Only in recent years has it become feasible to simulate this extremely effective instructional medium as a universal option that, in effect, would allow schools to provide relevant instruction as a rule and not an exception. If implemented, a new world of opportunity and potential will finally be available to children, whose learning is so crucial for our future.
The new model presented in this book has implications for identifying not only what is wrong with the way we educate our young, but also why it is wrong, and how the educational process can be made more efficient, effective, and fair.
About the Author:
R. Barker Bausell, Ph.D., a professor at University of Maryland, Baltimore, was born into a family of teachers and originally trained as an educational researcher, becoming one of the first investigators to contrast tutoring to classroom instruction under carefully controlled, randomized conditions. He also experimentally manipulated teacher experience, teacher training, teacher knowledge, parental teaching, and numerous other schooling variables before authoring, with his mother and wife, the three volume Bausell Learning Guides: Teach your Child to Read, to Write, and Math based upon their recognition of the preeminent importance of the home learning environments to children’s educational futures. He has served as the editor in chief of the peer-reviewed journal Evaluation & the Health Professions for over three decades and is the author of several other books, including Snake Oil Science; Power Analysis for Experimental Research, A Practical Guide for the Biological, Medical and Social Sciences; Designing Meaningful Experiments: 40 Steps to Becoming a Scientist; and A Practical Guide to Conducting Empirical Research.