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Full-Text Articles in Education

Principals’ Perceptions Of Teacher Evaluation Reform From Structural And Human Resource Perspectives, John Wilson Campbell, Mary Lynne Derrington May 2019

Principals’ Perceptions Of Teacher Evaluation Reform From Structural And Human Resource Perspectives, John Wilson Campbell, Mary Lynne Derrington

Journal of Educational Supervision

Driven by Race to the Top funding and quickly designed and deployed in 2010-2011, a new teacher evaluation policy in Tennessee altered principals’ supervisory practices regarding their use of time for observation and reporting, their interaction with teachers, and the methods for giving teachers performance ratings. In addition, student test score data were integrated into final ratings, and professional consequences were linked with those ratings. Researchers in this study followed fourteen school principals over a five-year period to understand how their perceptions of new evaluation policy components affected their implementation. Data were analyzed using the structural and human resource frames ...


Teachers' Professional Knowledge And Formative Assessment Practices: An Empirical Study From Middle School Earth Science Instruction In The Context Of An Educational Improved Community, Laura Millay Dec 2018

Teachers' Professional Knowledge And Formative Assessment Practices: An Empirical Study From Middle School Earth Science Instruction In The Context Of An Educational Improved Community, Laura Millay

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

While there is widespread agreement that effective formative assessment supports student learning in science, the knowledge teachers need in order assess learning remains sparsely studied. In 1999, Magnusson, Krajcik, and Borko (MKB) proposed that Pedagogical Content Knowledge (PCK, Shulman 1986, 1987) is a distinct knowledge domain that synthesizes three base domains that include science subject matter, pedagogy, and context. The MKB model identified Assessment Knowledge as one of five components of PCK. Since 1999, several studies have used the MKB framework, but have left Assessment Knowledge underdefined. In 2012, Avargil, Herscovitz, and Dori proposed a revision based on empirical study ...


Learning Ideas - Understanding Accessible Educational Materials (Aem) And Their Use: Tips For K-12 Educators, University Of Maine Center For Community Inclusion And Disability Studies Dec 2018

Learning Ideas - Understanding Accessible Educational Materials (Aem) And Their Use: Tips For K-12 Educators, University Of Maine Center For Community Inclusion And Disability Studies

Professional Development

Students arrive in classrooms with a variety of skills, interests and needs. For many learners, the typical curriculum—including instructional methods, classroom materials, and assessments of knowledge—may contain barriers to educational participation and achievement. Students who are unable to access print materials face particular challenges. Accessible educational materials reduce barriers and provide rich supports for learning. By using accessible educational materials, educators enable all learners to gain knowledge, skills and enthusiasm for learning.


Understanding Student Development Of Science Literacy Skills In An Undergraduate Environmental Science Course, Molly Picillo Aug 2018

Understanding Student Development Of Science Literacy Skills In An Undergraduate Environmental Science Course, Molly Picillo

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Educators are expected to instill a variety of skills in their students that are necessary to be competent citizens of society. One such set of skills, science literacy skills, broadly encompass the ability of an individual to evaluate reliability of data and information and critically analyze and interpret them (Gormally Brickman, Hallar, & Armstrong, 2009). These skills are utilized in everyday decision-making and given their pertinence, there is a need for citizens to be scientifically literate. Thus, educators need tools and assessments to help students develop these skills and analyze their science literacy. The aim of this study was to develop science literacy interventions that could be easily incorporated into college curricula, providing instructors with exemplars of classroom interventions with the intent to improve students’ science literacy skills. Therefore, the broad research question for this investigation was: How do science literacy interventions impact student proficiency in science literacy skills in college general education courses? I measured effectiveness of the interventions using the Test of Science Literacy Skills (TOSLS, Gormally Brickman, & Lutz, 2012) pre- and post-survey scores, as well as student feedback from pre- and post-survey, follow-up interviews. The TOSLS surveys were given as part of a participation grade to students in a general education undergraduate college course (n = 148). A subset of students volunteered to be interviewed regarding specific questions from the TOSLS survey, after both the pre-survey (n = 12) and the post-survey (n = 5), to further investigate student understanding and interpretation. Interventions were designed by modifying previous assignments from earlier years’ offerings of the class and were conducted both during class and outside of class as homework extensions. These interventions were created by evaluating scores and interviews on the TOSLS survey deployed as a pilot study in a previous semester of the undergraduate course. Based on these pilot data, four survey questions encompassing different science literacy skills of particular difficulty were targeted for intervention. The interventions were: (1) An interactive clicker-based lesson involving graph selection methods; (2) Data summits involving graph interpretation and source evaluation; and (3) A role-play after which students discussed sources of bias.

Although the results indicated no statistically significant changes in the average scores between the pre-survey and post-survey (t test, p = 0.82, α = 0.05), interviewed students recalled ...


Teacher Performance Evaluation And Professional Growth In The Era Of "Educator Effectiveness" In Maine, Jonathan E. Doty May 2018

Teacher Performance Evaluation And Professional Growth In The Era Of "Educator Effectiveness" In Maine, Jonathan E. Doty

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Maine is one of many states that undertook reform to teacher supervision and evaluation in the wake of public attention (e.g., Waiting for Superman) and federal pressure (e.g., NCLB Flexibility Waivers). The Maine Legislature passed An Act to Ensure Effective Teaching and School Leadership (2012), shifting from local discretion to greater state influence on the functions of formative supervision and summative evaluation. As school districts created systems to meet the state’s mandates, they combined growth and employment functions and navigated persistent challenges described in the literature on evaluation and supervision.

The purpose of this study was to ...


Assessing Trainee Understanding Of Health Equity & Diversity, Betsy P. Humphreys, Susan Russell, Alan Kurtz, Rae Sonnenmeier Nov 2017

Assessing Trainee Understanding Of Health Equity & Diversity, Betsy P. Humphreys, Susan Russell, Alan Kurtz, Rae Sonnenmeier

Poster Presentations

The NH-ME LEND Program engages in quality improvement efforts aimed at increasing trainee’s understanding of health equity and cultural competence. This poster 1) provided an overview of the curricular components related to health equity and diversity, 2) reported on six cohorts of trainees’ self-assessments in these areas, and 3) shared trainees’ personal reflections on their growth. Finally, ongoing program improvements efforts in these areas were discussed.


Using Contrasting Cases To Build Metacognitive Knowledge About The Impact Of Salient Distracting Features In Physics Problems, Thanh K. Le Aug 2017

Using Contrasting Cases To Build Metacognitive Knowledge About The Impact Of Salient Distracting Features In Physics Problems, Thanh K. Le

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Student reasoning on physics problems is often context dependent. A possible explanation is that salient distracting features (SDFs) in physics problems may cue students’ “spontaneous” reasoning. This cued reasoning is often accepted without question, even though it may be unproductive and may even preclude the use of relevant knowledge. One possible approach to address such reasoning difficulties is to strengthen students’ metacognitive skills, particularly their metacognitive knowledge. While metacognitive knowledge plays an important role in facilitating effective regulation, little is known about how to build student metacognitive knowledge. This dissertation explores the use of contrasting cases (e.g., a number ...


Contrast Dependent Knowledge Development In Contrast Supported Scientific Observation, Maura B. Foley Aug 2017

Contrast Dependent Knowledge Development In Contrast Supported Scientific Observation, Maura B. Foley

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Knowledge of contrasts between phenomena can influence how people think and reason about them, so learning contrasts is important in school science. Building knowledge through a process of construction is a common framework through which school science is taught. However, telling phenomena apart through differentiation also plays an important role in learning and may be underused as a teaching framework. An effective way to learn contrasts is to use them to perceptually differentiate similar-looking phenomena presented side-by-side. However, little is known about the persistence/usefulness of knowledge generated during perceptual differentiation over short periods of time and its usage in ...


Investigating Student Learning Of Analog Electronics, Kevin L. Van De Bogart May 2017

Investigating Student Learning Of Analog Electronics, Kevin L. Van De Bogart

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Instruction in analog electronics is an integral component of many physics and engineering programs, and is typically covered in courses beyond the first year. While extensive research has been conducted on student understanding of introductory electric circuits, to date there has been relatively little research on student learning of analog electronics in either physics or engineering courses. Given the significant overlap in content of courses offered in both disciplines, this study seeks to strengthen the research base on the learning and teaching of electric circuits and analog electronics via a single, coherent investigation spanning both physics and engineering courses.

This ...


A Qualitative Study Of Rural School Returners' Journeys To Secondary Credential Completion, Brenda Elaine Swan Gammon Nov 2016

A Qualitative Study Of Rural School Returners' Journeys To Secondary Credential Completion, Brenda Elaine Swan Gammon

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Dropping out of school has a negative impact on an individual’s life and a person’s ability to contribute to the country’s society and economy. Returning to schooling and obtaining a diploma or equivalent is fraught with obstacles. Many people try several times to complete the degree; fewer succeed. The plight of rural students including rural school returners is often overlooked because their problems are overshadowed by the problems of urban areas.

The purpose of this qualitative study, involving three extensive interviews of five rural school returners, was to build upon existing research on high school dropouts through ...


Thinking Beyond The Fried Egg Model: How Accurately Do Students Perceive Cells In A Living Context?, Milissa Knox Dec 2015

Thinking Beyond The Fried Egg Model: How Accurately Do Students Perceive Cells In A Living Context?, Milissa Knox

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

This exploratory study investigated three aspects of introductory undergraduate biology students’ understanding about cells. The study, which took place at the University of Maine with voluntary students in Basic Biology (“BIO100”) in the summer and fall of 2009, examined (1) students’ pre-course perceptions of cells as they exist in a living context and (2) gains in students’ perception and knowledge about cells after completing the one-semester course (BIO100). Results are based on lecture exam scores, pre-post surveys developed as a part of this thesis, and interviews with two groups of biology students. A total of 498 students participated in the ...


"It's Not Just The Money" Figures 6-10, Philip A. Trostel Oct 2015

"It's Not Just The Money" Figures 6-10, Philip A. Trostel

'It's Not Just the Money' Data Sets

No abstract provided.


Identifying And Addressing Specific Student Difficulties In Advanced Thermal Physics, Trevor I. Smith Jan 2011

Identifying And Addressing Specific Student Difficulties In Advanced Thermal Physics, Trevor I. Smith

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

As part of an ongoing multi-university research study on student understanding of concepts in thermal physics at the upper division, I identified several student difficulties with topics related to heat engines (especially the Carnot cycle), as well as difficulties related to the Boltzmann factor. In an effort to address these difficulties, I developed two guided-inquiry worksheet activities (a.k.a. tutorials) for use in advanced undergraduate thermal physics courses. Both tutorials seek to improve student understanding of the utility and physical background of a particular mathematical expression. One tutorial focuses on a derivation of Carnot's theorem regarding the limit ...


Do Relationships With Helpful And Not-Helpful Teachers Make A Difference? Perspectives From Nine At-Risk Adolescents, Emanuel Pariser Jan 2011

Do Relationships With Helpful And Not-Helpful Teachers Make A Difference? Perspectives From Nine At-Risk Adolescents, Emanuel Pariser

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Every year in the United States close to 25% of students fail to graduate with the classmates with whom they began high school. The economic, social and personal impact of not completing high school is staggering on the individual and society. The literature fails to adequately document relational factors in the classroom that can alter the academic trajectory of at-risk students. This dissertation explores how nine at-risk adolescents view the impact of relationships with helpful and not-helpful teachers on their academic success. My three research questions were: (a) what qualities do at-risk students attribute to helpful and not-helpful teachers; (b ...


Community College Student Participation In Undergraduate Research: An Explanatory Case Study For Faculty And Research Mentors, Dana L. Peterson Aug 2009

Community College Student Participation In Undergraduate Research: An Explanatory Case Study For Faculty And Research Mentors, Dana L. Peterson

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

This study adapted the current model of science undergraduate research experiences (URE's) and applied this novel modification to include community college students. Numerous researchers have examined the efficacy of URE's in improving undergraduate retention and graduation rates, as well as matriculation rates for graduate programs. However, none have detailed the experience for community college students, and few have employed qualitative methodologies to gather relevant descriptive data from URE participants. This study included perspectives elicited from both non-traditional student participants and the established laboratory community. The purpose of this study was to determine the effectiveness of the traditional model ...


Student Transfer: The Effect Of Timing On Academic Achievement, Michael D. Wing May 2008

Student Transfer: The Effect Of Timing On Academic Achievement, Michael D. Wing

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

America’s population is highly mobile. Some students move between school years, during the summer months, while others transfer after the school year has begun. Classrooms throughout the United States are likely to have students moving-in and transferring-out at any point; mobility occurs before, during, and after the school year begins. Research indicates that mobility has an effect on academic achievement. The major purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of the timing of student transfer on academic achievement. Students who transferred Early (during the summer) and students who transferred Late (during the school year) were compared to ...


High School Achievement In Maine: Where You Come From Matters More Than School Size And Expenditures, Fern Desjardins, Gordon A. Donaldson Jr. Jan 2008

High School Achievement In Maine: Where You Come From Matters More Than School Size And Expenditures, Fern Desjardins, Gordon A. Donaldson Jr.

Maine Policy Review

Fern Desjardins and Gordon Donaldson report on their research examining the relationship between academic achievement in Maine’s public high schools and school size, per-pupil operating costs, and socioeconomic status. Using aggregated Maine Educational Assessment (MEA) scores, their study confirmed previous research that socioeconomic status (using both family and community measures) is the most important factor associated with achievement, while school size is not a critical factor. Additionally, the authors found that per-pupil operating costs are higher in the state’s largest and smallest high schools. The authors suggest that the creation of larger districts and larger schools, as supported ...


You Don’T Always Get What You Want: Lessons To Be Learned From The Demise Of Maine’S Local Assessment System, Rebecca H. Berger Jan 2007

You Don’T Always Get What You Want: Lessons To Be Learned From The Demise Of Maine’S Local Assessment System, Rebecca H. Berger

Maine Policy Review

The recent repeal of Maine’s local education assessment requirement was met with mixed reactions ranging from relief to outrage. That there were such differing responses points to the fact that “assessment” in education is understood in diverse and sometimes contradictory ways. In this article, Rebecca Berger looks retrospectively at how the problems associated with implementing Maine’s local assessment system (LAS) were caused by a lack of understanding of important aspects of assessment as it relates to standards-based reform in education. Using examples from her case study of one Maine school district, Berger notes three areas of ongoing concern ...


Investigating Student Understanding Of Sound As A Longitudinal Wave, Earl C. Coombs Jan 2007

Investigating Student Understanding Of Sound As A Longitudinal Wave, Earl C. Coombs

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

The field of physics education research (PER) has highlighted the discrepancy between what is taught during traditional instruction in physics, and what students understand afterward. PER has also provided alternatives to traditional instruction that are research-based and have been shown to be more effective in bringing students’ level of understanding of physics more in line with that of the scientific community. One topic that has received attention is the propagation of sound. We confirmed that students in the introductory algebra-based and calculus-based physics courses at the University of Maine have difficulties with sound propagation similar to those documented by others ...


Evaluating Factors Contributing To Engineering Technology Students' Introductory Physics Experience, Daniel A. Reed Jan 2007

Evaluating Factors Contributing To Engineering Technology Students' Introductory Physics Experience, Daniel A. Reed

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

The UMaine’s introductory algebra-based physics course PHY 107 is dedicated to students from the School of Engineering Technology (SET). These SET students come from a wide range of backgrounds and are studying a hybrid of curricula for an engineer and a technician with a leaning toward engineering. In order to appropriately serve this population we must attempt to understand who these students are. One of the legends surrounding this group is that their struggles with physics stem from having a lower level of mathematics ability than the typical introductory physics student. Through the use of a math diagnostic, the ...


The Effect Of Mandatory Continuing Education On Practice Quality And Competency Of Professional Land Surveyors, Anthony Richard Vannozzi Jan 2006

The Effect Of Mandatory Continuing Education On Practice Quality And Competency Of Professional Land Surveyors, Anthony Richard Vannozzi

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Mandatory Continuing Education (MCE) has always been a "hot button" topic in the professions and land surveying is no exception. Though most other professions (i.e. medicine, education, accountancy, dentistry, nursing, etc.) have included scientifically based research as part of their debate on whether to make continuing education mandatory, no empirical studies in land surveying were found. Though the land surveying literature is replete with anecdotal discussions on the topic, (commentaries, editorials, policy statements, magazine articles, etc.), and tremendous energy is being expended within the land surveying profession in debating and making decisions regarding the MCE issue, the lack of ...


Measuring Student Understanding Of Density, With Geological Applications, Emily L. Klingler Jan 2006

Measuring Student Understanding Of Density, With Geological Applications, Emily L. Klingler

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Density is an important physical concept in all of science. Substantial education research on the teaching and learning of density has occurred in physics, chemistry, and biochemistry; there has been little education research about density in the earth sciences. This study investigates the extent to which targeted instruction influences student understanding of density, and the frequency and accuracy with which students apply it in explanations of earth science phenomena. All data for the study were collected from students in The Environmental Geology of Maine (ERS 102) at the University of Maine during the spring and fall 2004 and spring 2005 ...


Girls In The Woods: An Exploration Of The Impact Of A Wilderness Program On Adolescent Girls' Constructions Of Femininity, Anja Whittington Jan 2005

Girls In The Woods: An Exploration Of The Impact Of A Wilderness Program On Adolescent Girls' Constructions Of Femininity, Anja Whittington

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Historically, the wilderness and outdoor recreational activities have been portrayed as a masculine domain. In spite of this, women's participation in wilderness programs has increased, illustrating what research has proven-that women reap positive mental, physical, and spiritual outcomes from participating in outdoor experiences. Research on the benefits for female participants focuses primarily on women's experiences; however, little research investigates the outcomes of girls' participation. More specifically, the literature neglects the study of how participation in outdoor wilderness programs challenges conventional notions of femininity. The goal of this study was to 1) add girls' voices to the research on ...


Creating Flexibility In Teacher-Certification Policy To Ensure Quality And Equity, Flynn Ross Jan 2005

Creating Flexibility In Teacher-Certification Policy To Ensure Quality And Equity, Flynn Ross

Maine Policy Review

As do many states, Maine has requirements and standards aimed at having “well-qualified” teachers. While few dispute the need for such standards, Flynn Ross brings attention to one case in Portland where use of a standardized exam to certify new teachers was preventing well-qualified—but culturally and linguistically diverse—teachers from becoming certified. She chronicles the successful attempts of one group to petition the Maine State Board of Education to allow greater flexibility in the testing standards. In doing so, she points to a larger truth that well-intentioned policy goals may seek to achieve a greater good, but may at ...


Exploring Data And Methods To Assess And Understand The Performance Of Ssi States: Learning From The Cases Of Kentucky And Maine, Jaekyung Lee, Walter Mcintire, Theodore Coladarci Mar 2004

Exploring Data And Methods To Assess And Understand The Performance Of Ssi States: Learning From The Cases Of Kentucky And Maine, Jaekyung Lee, Walter Mcintire, Theodore Coladarci

University of Maine Office of Research Administration: Grant Reports

This study examined two major questions. Do national and state assessments provide consistent information on the performance of state education systems? What accounts for discrepancies between national and state assessment results if they are found?

Data came from national and state assessments in grade 4 and grade 8 mathematics from 1992 to 1996 in Maine and Kentucky: National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), Kentucky Instructional Results Information System (KIRIS), and Maine Educational Assessment (MEA). Here is a very brief summary of major research findings:

1. NAEP and state assessments reported inconsistent results on the performance level of students in Maine ...


Migration Of University Of Maine 2002 Graduates, Ewa Jadwiga Kleczyk Aug 2003

Migration Of University Of Maine 2002 Graduates, Ewa Jadwiga Kleczyk

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

In the context of today's tight labor market and increasing demand for highly skilled workers, Maine is considering how to attract and retain college graduates in the state. The educational system and economic opportunities such as the job market, wage levels, and taxes, as well as other factors impacting the migration trends of college graduates are evaluated. Understanding the patterns of educated people's relocation decisions, and the reasons influencing them, are concerns not just of government officials. Students with bachelor and advanced degrees are thought to be an asset to the community and the state since they add ...


School Size Choices: Comparing Small And Large School Strengths, Janet C. Fairman Jan 2003

School Size Choices: Comparing Small And Large School Strengths, Janet C. Fairman

Maine Policy Review

Janet Fairman discusses the thorny issue of school quality, suggesting that small schools have certain strengths compared to larger schools. Data from her study of small high schools in Maine, as well as research literature, suggest that compared to large schools, small schools allow for greater personal attention to students, have greater flexibility in scheduling, programming and instructional decisions, and often have stronger school-community connections that support student achievement and serve important community needs. Using quantitative measures of quality, Fairman notes that school size alone explains very little of the variation in 11th grade Maine Educational Assessment (MEA) scores, while ...


Factors Influencing Grade Six Students' Perceptions Of Teachers, Susan Smith Laplante Jan 2003

Factors Influencing Grade Six Students' Perceptions Of Teachers, Susan Smith Laplante

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Less than one percent of U.S. school districts have invited student feedback in the school improvement process (Matthews, 2000). Students have valuable perceptions of how teachers interact with them and these perceptions can be a usefbl tool to improve schools (Tyack & Cuban). The purpose of this study was to examine sixth grade students' perceptions of teachers and the relationship of these perceptions to achievement, gender, socioeconomic status and grade configurations. This study utilized sixth graders' responses to sixteen items selected fiom the Students Speak: My Education and My Future Aspirations survey developed at the National Center for Student Aspirations ...


Perceived Attributes To The Development Of A Positive Self-Concept From The Experiences Of Adolescents With Learning Disabilities, Charles P. Bernacchio Jan 2003

Perceived Attributes To The Development Of A Positive Self-Concept From The Experiences Of Adolescents With Learning Disabilities, Charles P. Bernacchio

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

The Perceived Attributes to Positive Self-concept Study examined the experiences of adolescents with learning disabilities to determine the ways in which living with a disability may have shaped their development of a positive self-concept. This study considered the perceptions held by adolescents themselves, their parents, and their teachers as valuably contributing to their own development of a positive self-concept. The research questions for the study included: "How does the experience of living with a disability affect the perceptions of adolescents with learning disabilities held by themselves, their parents and their . teachers? " "How do the experiences of living with a disability ...


Barriers To Postsecondary Education In Maine: Making College The Obvious And Attainable Next Step For More Maine Students, Colleen J. Quint, Lisa Plimpton Jan 2002

Barriers To Postsecondary Education In Maine: Making College The Obvious And Attainable Next Step For More Maine Students, Colleen J. Quint, Lisa Plimpton

Maine Policy Review

The question of why more high school students do not go on to college has been the focus of recent research at the Mitchell Institute. Quint and Plimpton summarize this research, which involved more than 2,500 Maine students, educators and parents. They find that financial barriers are only one piece of a complicated puzzle. Other barriers include parental attitudes, whether any family members have attended college, the high school experience (i.e., what track the student is placed in), the quality of career planning in school and at home, and the level of active planning for college (while many ...