A New Name for a New Reality: The Ounce is Now Start Early Read More

Our Approach

Start Early (formerly known as the Ounce) uses a research, practice, policy partnership approach to conduct research that generates knowledge, drives quality improvement and innovation, and transforms early education practices, systems and policies at scale.

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Start Early conducts rigorous research and program evaluation to elevate the expertise of early childhood professionals and support better learning environments for all young children and their families.

Start Early uses a research-practice-policy partnership approach to integrate quality research and evaluation and continuous quality improvement processes into everything we do. Our practice and policy work supports our research activities, and our ongoing research activities support implementation, improvement, and decision-making among our practice and policy work. This approach also facilitates close relationships and connections between researchers and those doing early childhood program implementation and policy and advocacy work, which are critical to ensuring our research is relevant and effective in the field.

We share and amplify our research with families, practitioners, systems leaders, and policymakers in the early childhood field to drive quality improvement and innovation, inform the development of practices, programs, and policies, advance diversity and inclusion, address racial and economic inequities, and accelerate organizational impact.

Four Key Components of Our Approach

Generate + Curate Knowledge

Our original applied research synthesizes existing knowledge and generates new knowledge to answer questions about critical topics in early education and care, including access to quality early childhood experiences, organizational conditions and instructional leadership, family engagement and professional development.

Innovate + Lead Research and Development

Using our research and program-generated knowledge and ideas, we design, test, and develop innovative interventions, programs and tools and then apply them to the field.

Evaluate + Continuously Improve Quality

We conduct rigorous program evaluations to answer questions about the implementation, outcomes, effectiveness, and efficiency of our programs, projects and policies. We use these answers to iterate and continuously improve upon our work across the organization.

Navigate + Amplify Knowledge

We amplify our findings and data through research-based products and events that are understandable, actionable, and articulate implications and recommendations for advocates, policymakers and practitioners.

Our Projects

Our research and evaluation efforts focus on the following areas. Dig into our research projects below.