In an ongoing study, RAND researchers are evaluating the effectiveness of Carnegie Learning’s Cognitive Tutor Algebra I (CTAI) curriculum, a technology-based curriculum that combines classroom instruction with individualized instruction by a computer-based tutor. While the effectiveness of the curriculum in raising student achievement is the main focus of the study, the affordability of the curriculum is another factor that districts may wish to consider in deciding whether to adopt it; so, as a complement to the effectiveness study, the authors of this report examined the costs of implementing the CTAI curriculum and comparison algebra I curricula. The authors report on the per-student costs for each curriculum in three categories: materials, which include textbooks and software; software implementation resources, such as computers; and teacher training. They find that, overall, adoption of the CTAI curriculum was likely to cost a district significantly more than what was typically spent on the other algebra I curricula used by participating schools.
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