Quantitative studies in education

The article refers to studies in education carried out in Brazil during the last three decades using quantitative approaches. The selection of the works to be examined was based on a survey of all issues published since 1970 by the following journals: Revista Brasileira de Estudos Pedagógicos (Inep/MEC), Cadernos de Pesquisa (Fundação Carlos Chagas), Educação e Realidade (UFRS), Educação e Sociedade (Cedes/Unicamp), Revista Brasileira de Educação (ANPEd), Estudos em Avaliação Educacional (Fundação Carlos Chagas), and Ensaio (Fundação Cesgranrio). Some bibliographical sources were consulted in the search for other studies. The text highlights the importance of theoretical perspectives for the outlining and development of the studies, which should be put in the context of a reflection on education and of problematization. It also points to the need for adjusting the choices of types of analyses used. The work discusses the weak Brazilian tradition of carrying out quantitative studies in education, and the possible role of quantification in educational research. It shows some contributions from quantitative studies to the reflection in the field of education, and also for the basis of some critical perspectives. Those contributions were treated according to some themes, namely: illiteracy, schooling path and school failure; school flux/cutoff analysis; literacy; policies and basic education; financing of education/municipalization; social factors and education; youth and education; educational evaluation; assorted themes.

Educational research; Quantitative methods; Statistics; Demography

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