Achievement Gap

About This Guide

This guide presents the resources the education librarian considers to be the most important academic databases to search, the leading journals to follow, and so forth. You’ll also find some tips to help you evaluate sources, organize your work, and accomplish your literature review.

If you are new to this topic, you may want to begin by finding background information through an encyclopedia such as Wikipedia or Britannica Online, though in most cases it is not appropriate to cite these in a college-level paper. Anyone can contribute content in Wikipedia – so watch out for biased viewpoints, incomplete or simply incorrect material.


Use these databases to discover articles, books, and other literature on your topic. Note that if you come across a citation without full text attached, do not assume the library has no access. Learn this nearly foolproof way to Get the Full Text of an Article.

Two largest:

BU Libraries Search
Our Search represents by far the most comprehensive grouping of resources we’ve ever been able to provide. You can find extensive search tips on our site, build an eShelf, and export citations to RefWorks.

Google Scholar
Off-campus users need to set two “Scholar Preferences” to take advantage of library subscriptions: type “Boston University” in Library Links and also choose RefWorks next to Bibliography Manager.

Other important databases:

Education full text (H.W. Wilson)

ERIC Education Resources Information Center.

LexisNexis academic

ProQuest dissertations & theses (PQDT)



Psychology and behavioral sciences collection

PsycINFO (Online)


The best way to discover articles is to search databases (try Search) – you will be searching millions of records at once. But following journal literature periodically is still a very important aspect of scholarship. Depending on the provider, you may be able to set up Table of Contents alerts, save personalized searches, or even contribute to the editorial process.

Find each title below through our Search. The following journals are leading in this field.

Educational Researcher
Journal of Education
Journal of Negro Education


Discovering our print books and eBooks can be done through Search. Additionally, for more comprehensive literature reviews I suggest going beyond what BU already owns by using WorldCat. Current members of the BU community can borrow books that we don’t own through our interlibrary borrowing services. Other important book tools include the Internet Archive, Google Books, and of course

Subject Headings

  • Academic Achievement
  • School Improvement Programs
  • Educational Equalization

Select eBooks

Select Print Books

The 3 Dimensions of Improving Student Performance: Finding the Right Solutions to the Right Problems

Education LB1062.6 .R84 2011

The African American Struggle for Secondary Schooling, 1940-1980 : Closing the Graduation Gap

Mugar LC2717 .R87 2012

Character Compass : How Powerful School Culture Can Point Students Toward Success

Education LC311 .S45 2012

Closing the Teaching Gap: Coaching for Instructional Leaders

Education LB1731 .B276 2012

Deliverology 101 : A Field Guide for Educational Leaders

Education LB2822.82 .B36 2011

Diversity Awareness for K-6 Teachers:  The Impact on Student Learning

Education LB1576 .M3987 2011

Education in the Best Interests of the Child : A Children’s Rights Perspective on Closing the Achievement Gap

Mugar LC213 .H69 2013

Equity and Excellence in Education : Towards Maximal Learning Opportunities for All Students

Mugar LC213 .E676 2011

The Future of School Integration : Socioeconomic Diversity as an Education Reform Strategy

Mugar LC214.2 .F88 2012

Gentrification and Schools : The Process of Integration when Whites Reverse Flight

Mugar LC214.2 .S76 2012

The Highly Qualified Teacher: What is Teacher Quality and How Do We Measure It?

Mugar LB3051 .S882 2011

Improving Formative Assessment Practice to Empower Student Learning

Education LB2822.75 .I52 2012

Kids Don’t Want to Fail : Oppositional Culture and Black-White Achievement Gap

Mugar LC2717 .H37 2011

Leading Technology-Rich Schools : Award-Winning Models for Success

Mugar LB2805 .L392 2012

Making All Kids Smarter: Strategies that Help All Students Reach their Highest Potential

Education LB1062.6 .D45 2011

Pressing Forward: Increasing and Expanding Rigor and Relevance in America’s High Schools

Mugar LA222 .P74 2012

Southern Stalemate : Five Years Without Public Education in Prince Edward County, Virginia

Mugar LC214.22 .V8 B66 2012

Spotlighting the Strengths of Every Single Student: Why U.S. Schools Need a New Strengths-Based Approach

Mugar LB1031 .J63 2011

Transforming  City Schools Through Art: Approaches to Meaningful K-12 Learning

Mugar NX280 .T75 2012

Government Sources


Bureau of Economic Analysis

Bureau of Justice Statistics

Bureau of Labor Statistics

National Center for Health Statistics

Statistical Abstracts of the United States

U.S. Census Bureau

United States Department of Education – Research & Statistics

Institute of Education Sciences (IES)

What Works Clearing House

Evidence Based Practice

National Center for Education Statistics (NCES)

Condition of Education

Digest of Education Statistics

Projections of Education Statistics

National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP)


Massachusetts Department of Education
Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS)


Common Core of Data: Information on Public Schools and School Districts in the United States
Department of Education: Doing What Works: School Improvement
Education Trust

Gap Minder

Rand Corporation