In spring 2015, Digital Promise and the University of California-Davis School of Education conducted a study of how six school districts across the U.S. pilot educational technology products, with the goal of sharing promising practices other districts could adopt to evaluate products and make purchasing decisions. Researchers collected qualitative and quantitative data through observations, surveys, and focus groups.

Four districts piloted a new product to learn how well it would meet their needs, while two districts gathered data and stakeholder feedback to refine their existing pilot processes. Three broad themes emerged from the study. First, it is important to create a clear pilot goal and timeline, and a clear procurement plan. Second, pilots are more successful when all stakeholders establish open communication and transparency from the start of the project. Finally, collecting both student and teacher feedback leads to better decision-making.

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Pilot to Purchase Project