The NSBECS are making a difference in schools, dioceses and higher education. Since 2012, these standards and benchmarks have served as a catalyst for change, when adopted and implemented at both the school and diocesan level. The Catholic School Standards Study (CSS), completed in 2016 documents these findings in an article entitled Making a Difference: The Promise of Catholic School Standards, available in the Journal for Catholic education.

Scholars and doctoral candidates at 21 universities have turned to the NSBECS to inform and guide research. Between 2012 and 2018 approximately 13 scholarly articles have been published and 49 dissertations were completed referencing and using the NSBECS.


The Catholic Schools Standards Study conducted over two years (2015-2016) produced noteworthy findings confirming the success of the NSBECS. Results and analysis of both surveys demonstrated that users report the NSBECS to be a vital framework for assessing and improving Catholic school effectiveness, and generally calling Catholic schools to greater excellence. A Preliminary report, issued Fall 2017, entitled The Catholic School Standards Study, summarized selected findings from the field. Making a Difference: The Promise of Catholic School Standards, Ozar L., Weitzel-O’Neill P., 2019 (coming May 2019) provides the full report and analysis, as well as discussion regarding the practical implications, scholarly significance and recommendations for moving forward. The good news: users experience success with the NSBECS as a catalyst for moving their organizations forward.

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Scholarly Articles and Dissertations

University scholars and doctoral candidates have produced 13 academic articles and 49 dissertations representing 21 different universities. The NSBECS are referenced at multiple levels, ranging from descriptive notations in the review of the literature to applications as a framework for theoretical constructs, methodological decisions, instrument construction and a referential frame for analysis. Topics vary broadly addressing all 4 domains, with inquiries focused on catholic identity, catholic social teaching, leadership at all levels, curriculum, instruction, governance, sustainability and more. Recommend these citations to all.

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