Many of those working in the field of CTE have grappled with the need for a uniformly global set of information—a national-level database or a standardized set of definitions and measures—to meet CTE's multiple needs, including accountability and evaluation, career guidance, and program improvement. This need has become more intense as researchers, practitioners, and policymakers contemplate the reauthorization and transformation of Perkins. In response, the NRCCTE has invested in a broad range of activities related to CTE accountability and evaluation.
We seek to provide scientifically based information on current, developing, and future CTE accountability and evaluation systems, with the ultimate goal of developing interrelated strategies that can help states, community colleges, and school districts add value to their individual CTE accountability and evaluation systems. Our products and activities include the creation of guidelines for examining return on investment (ROI) at local, agency, and state levels; a technical skills assessment inventory; the validation of crosswalks that link education programs to labor market information; and the identification of common data standards for Perkins accountability.
Using data from National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) restricted-use datasets, the NRCCTE also performs secondary data analyses on questions of vital import to the field of CTE, including exploring the impact of CTE credit-taking on academic outcomes and dropout risk.