Palau Research Alliance

The Palau Research Alliance is comprised of leaders from the Ministry of Education, Palau Community College, the Ministry of Health, and the Ministry of Justice. These agencies work together to help Palauan youth achieve and lead a healthy future for Palau. The alliance is guided by the five conditions of collective impact (Kania & Kramer, 2011):

  1. Common Agenda: members have a shared vision for change including a common understanding of the problem and a joint approach to solving it through agreed upon actions
  2. Shared Measurement: collecting data and measuring results consistently across member organizations ensure efforts are aligned
  3. Mutually Reinforcing Activities: member activities must be differentiated while still being coordinated through a mutually reinforcing plan of action
  4. Continuous Communication: consistent and open communication is needed to build trust, assure mutual objectives, and create common motivation
  5. Backbone Support: creating and managing collective impact requires a separate organization(s) with staff and a specific set of skills to serve as the backbone for the entire initiative and coordinate participating member organizations.

Research alliance projects currently underway in Palau include:

Patterns and Results of the Practice Teacher Certification Examination in Palau
Description: Entities within the freely associated states are at varying stages of developing and implementing teacher certification processes; as a result, the percentage of certified teachers in the region is low and teacher effectiveness is a concern. This study explores the performance of teachers in Palau on an internationally developed assessment of reading, writing, and math for teacher certification. This study involves the administration of a demographic survey and the practice ETS Praxis I PPST tests of reading, writing, and math to teachers employed with the Palau Ministry of Education. The paper-and-pencil tests was administered over a period of two days by Palau Ministry of Education and proctored by staff from the Ministry of Education and Palau Community College. Performance of the Palau teachers by teacher characteristics will be examined as well as strengths and weaknesses in the content categories of the practice ETS Praxis I PPST in reading, writing, and math. The findings from the study will inform Palau’s decision to move forward with full implementation of the Praxis I PPST as part of its teacher certification process.

Research Questions:

  1. How do teachers from Palau perform on the practice ETS Praxis I PPST tests of reading, writing, and math?
    • What are the relationships between teacher demographic and professional characteristics and teacher performance on the practice ETS Praxis 1 PPST tests of reading, writing, and math?
  2. What content categories on the practice ETS Praxis 1 PPST tests of reading, writing, and math show content area strengths and weaknesses of teachers from Palau?
    • What are the relationships between teacher demographic and professional characteristics, and teacher performance on the practice ETS Praxis 1 PPST’s content categories from the reading, writing, and math tests.

Conducting Action Research to Achieve Collective Impact in Palau
Through this technical assistance project, REL Pacific will support the agencies that comprise the Palau Research Alliance to understand how to collectively impact children in Palau and how to sustain their work and collaboration in the future. The goals of this project are (1) to promote and extend the use of the research process to a topic of interest; (2) assist multiple agencies in taking ownership for leading initiatives in Palau; and (3) increase alliance capacity for sustainability.

Research Question:

  1. What structures and processes are necessary to sustain action research and collective impact activities that support the alliance’s vision of youth in Palau creating and achieving a healthy future for Palau?

Republic of Palau Ministry of Education Practice Praxis Data Analysis
Description: For this project, completed in 2013, REL Pacific conducted a series of trainings with Republic of Palau Ministry of Education personnel focused on how to produce and present descriptive statistics on the results of the practice ETS Praxis I Pre-Professional Skills Test (PPST®). This was the first administration of a practice ETS Praxis I Pre-Professional Skills Test (PPST®) to teachers in Palau. The training showed MOE personnel how to use Microsoft Excel to calculate and present descriptive statistics using practice ETS Praxis I PPST scores and to visually display these results in easy-to-read tables and graphs. This project complements a study currently underway in Palau, Patterns and Results of the Practice Teacher Certification Examination in Palau.

Research Questions:

  1. What is the average number of questions answered correctly on each of the three sections (reading, writing, and math) of the practice Praxis?
  2. What percent of teachers answered each item on the practice Praxis correctly?

Member organizations:

  • Ministry of Justice
  • Palau Community College
  • Palau Ministry of Education
  • Palau Ministry of Health

Watch a video on projects from the Palau Research Alliance: