Dropout Prevention Systematic Review



The number of students not completing high school is receiving increased attention as a serious challenge facing the North American educational system.

The review of research on dropout prevention programs in Canada between 1990 and 2006 was conducted with the goal of increasing awareness and knowledge of (a) current research on high school dropout prevention and intervention in Canada; (b) instructional techniques and features of successful programs; (c) context-related factors that may moderate program effectiveness and (d) how to select or design programs for high dropout prevention that take into consideration current research evidence.

Almost three quarters of the 151 findings indicated evidence of positive program outcomes.

Almost three quarters of the 151 findings indicated evidence of positive program outcomes with another 13% reporting strong positive program impacts.

Future research should focus on linking outcome impacts (e.g., enrolment status/dropout rates) with studies of contextual change (i.e. wrap around student services, community initiatives, whole school reform, school climate, economic initiatives, etc.) to look beyond ‘'the learner'' as the site of dropout prevention.

Main researcher

Philip C. Abrami, Concordia University

Research report

Call for proposals

Deposit of the research report: November 2008