About Us

Welcome from Janet Holt, Executive Director


The Illinois Education Research Council is making an impact in Illinois by conducting independent P-20 education research that informs education policy. Our policy research follows important educational trends in Illinois and is disseminated through our research reports, presentations to the Illinois P-20 Council and its subcommittees, conference presentations, and at our annual Focus on Illinois Education Research Symposium.

The IERC is fortunate to be one of the research centers at SIUE under the direction of Jerry Weinberg, Associate Provost for Research and Dean of the Graduate School, whose support has provided collaborative opportunities and has strengthened the IERC.

Some of our recent contributions to the educational policy in Illinois include:

The IERC Teacher Pipeline Study (IERC report 2013-3), funded by the Spencer Foundation, on how diversity and academic qualifications of the pool of potential teachers changes at each stage in the pipeline from high school to teaching provided hard data to the P20 Teacher – Leader subcommittee and informed this state initiative.

A 2006 study on the outmigration of college students in Illinois (IERC report 2006-1) and its recent follow-up study (IERC report 2014-1) have been used by IBHE in citing the need to recruit students back to the Illinois workforce and the economic impact of this loss. This study was also used by ISAC in the Pay It Forward, Pay It Back study that it delivered to the General Assembly on December 1, 2014.

The 5Essentials Study (IERC report 2014-2), funded by ISBE, examined how districts are using the 5Essentials data for school improvement planning – this study is informing revisions in how school climate data is collected in schools across the state.
Please take a minute to visit the links to our policy reports, the bios of our research staff and our ongoing research projects to learn about the contributions of the IERC to the educational community in Illinois.

The Mission in Action

The Illinois Education Research Council, housed at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, was established in 2000 to provide Illinois with education research to support P-20 education policy making and program development. The IERC undertakes independent research and policy analysis, often in collaboration with other researchers, that informs and strengthens Illinois’ commitment to providing a seamless system of educational opportunities for its citizens. Through publications, presentations, participation on committees and an annual research symposium, the IERC brings objective and reliable evidence to the work of state policy makers and practitioners. It has legislated responsibility to provide and coordinate research to inform the work of the Illinois P-20 Council, which is composed of representatives from the Governor’s office and the General Assembly, designees from the three education sectors (elementary, secondary, and higher education), and business, union, and community leaders.

Administrative Structure

The IERC is led by its Director, who appoints and receives advice from an Advisory Board drawn from Illinois’ educational researchers, education providers, state education agencies and other stakeholders. The Advisory Board meets twice a year to review progress and advise on priorities and projects. The IERC is administratively housed in The Graduate School at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville.