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Full-Text Articles in Education

Leadership-Influenced Practices That Impact Classroom Instruction Related To Writing: A Case Study Of A Successful Elementary School, Barb Johnson Dec 2007

Leadership-Influenced Practices That Impact Classroom Instruction Related To Writing: A Case Study Of A Successful Elementary School, Barb Johnson

Dissertations

This research studied the practices of educators at an ethnically diverse suburban elementary school which had demonstrated success in the area of student writing, even among at-risk students. The overall research goal was to examine to what extent and how leadership-related practices impacted classroom instruction in a manner that helped produce successful writing scores. A case study approach was used to explore four key leadership-related practices (supervision, curriculum, professional development, and knowledgeable leaders) and their impact on classroom literacy-based instructional strategies.

The study participants included two leaders and fourteen teachers from a single elementary school located in a metropolitan Michigan ...


Perceptions And Intervention Practices Of Speech-Language Pathologists Serving Students With Emotional/Behavioral Disorders, Laura A. Getty Dec 2007

Perceptions And Intervention Practices Of Speech-Language Pathologists Serving Students With Emotional/Behavioral Disorders, Laura A. Getty

Dissertations

A relationship between emotional/behavioral disorders (E/BD) and language deficits has been validated by researchers in special education (Cantwell & Baker, 1991; Beichman, Cantwell, Forness, Kavale, & Kaufmann, 1998; Cohen, Barwick, Horodezky, Vallance, & Im, 1998) as well as researchers in speech-language pathology (Hyter, 2003; Hyter, Rogers-Adkinson, Self, Simmons, Jantz, 2001; Ruhl, Hughes, & Camarata, 1992; Gallagher, 1999; Fujiki, Brinton, Morgan, & Hart, 1999). The exact prevalence rate between E/BD and language deficits was not definitive as it varies between 35% and 97% depending on the study reviewed (Benner, Nelson, & Epstein, 2002). While it has been documented that a relationship exists between children with E/BD and language deficits, a current prevalence rate regarding the speech-language pathologists involvement with this population was nearly 20 years old (Casby, 1989). Furthermore, a gap in the research exists between the most effective therapy interventions for students with E/BD and language deficits.

The purpose of this investigation was two-fold; (a) to determine a prevalence rate of speech-language pathologists in Michigan serving students diagnosed with E/BD and language deficits, and (b) to explore the types of interventions speech-language pathologists were employing with students with E/BD and language deficits. A survey was used to determine the extent to which speech-language pathologists provide services to students with E/BD ...


Intensive Professional Development In Early Literacy Instruction For Preschool Teachers, Rebecca Brinks Dec 2007

Intensive Professional Development In Early Literacy Instruction For Preschool Teachers, Rebecca Brinks

Dissertations

This study assesses the efficacy of using an intensive professional development program to improve preschool teachers' practices related to early literacy. A mixed methods approach was employed to review secondary data from a federally-funded Early Reading First Grant. The population studied consisted of thirty-one preschool teachers at four diverse programs serving low income children located in the mid-western urban community of Grand Rapids, Michigan.

The intensive professional development used in this study resulted in significant improvements in the mean scores for all areas of the Early Language and Literacy Classroom Observation (ELLCO) when comparing baseline to the final scores in ...


Attitudes Toward And Knowledge Of Affirmative Action In Higher Education, Erika Ann Carr Dec 2007

Attitudes Toward And Knowledge Of Affirmative Action In Higher Education, Erika Ann Carr

Dissertations

Affirmative action has become an increasingly important topic in higher education because colleges and universities are key battlegrounds regarding how affirmative action policies are enacted. Senior-level higher education administrators have historically taken the lead in shaping affirmative action policies in higher education, and knowing their own community's standpoints on the policies could assist them in deciding how to proceed in defending affirmative action in the face of increasing opposition.

This study measures individuals' attitudes toward and knowledge of affirmative action within one university in the state of Michigan, where affirmative action was banned through a state-wide election in November ...


Retaining Exploring Students: A Comparison Study Of Decided And Undecided College Students, Betty D. Dennis Dec 2007

Retaining Exploring Students: A Comparison Study Of Decided And Undecided College Students, Betty D. Dennis

Dissertations

U.S. four-year institutions graduate fewer than 50% of its first-time, full-time, degree-seeking students within six years Today, improving college student retention and graduation rates is a primary focus of higher education nationwide. Scholars have found that students who enter college undecided and are still exploring majors need a great deal of support to be retained. Research has also demonstrated that between 20% and 50% of entering freshmen have not selected a major course of study and that colleges and universities are concerned these students are at a higher risk of leaving the institution. What is unclear is whether selecting ...


Michigan Elementary School Facility Quality And Its Impact On Student Achievement, Brett A. Geier Dec 2007

Michigan Elementary School Facility Quality And Its Impact On Student Achievement, Brett A. Geier

Dissertations

Studies on school facility quality and its impact on student achievement have been conducted throughout the nation with varying results. Some studies conclude a significant relationship exists between facility condition and student achievement, while others refute this potential phenomenon. Much of the research concludes that not enough analyses have been conducted to make appropriate generalizations. This research study focused on the condition ofelementary schools in Michigan and utilized the Michigan Educational Assessment Program (M.E.A.P.) examinations in reading and mathematics at the third, fourth and fifth grade levels as the dependent variable to assess the relationship between building ...


Resilient Teachers: A Qualitative Study Of Six Thriving Educators In Urban Elementary Schools, Paul Giroux Dec 2007

Resilient Teachers: A Qualitative Study Of Six Thriving Educators In Urban Elementary Schools, Paul Giroux

Dissertations

This qualitative research study used elements of phenomenological and narrative research methodology to explore the common characteristics and experiences of a sample of resilient elementary teachers working in urban schools. The six research subjects in this study’s sample each had at least eight years of teaching experience, and each participated in a cycle of three in-depth interviews designed to determine their degree of resilience and to develop a portrait of their personal and professional characteristics, experiences, attitudes and beliefs. Once the data collection phase was complete, data was coded and then analyzed to identify which of the characteristics and ...


Exposing Star Teachers Of Children In Poverty, Bobbi Morehead Dec 2007

Exposing Star Teachers Of Children In Poverty, Bobbi Morehead

Dissertations

Public schools have control over whom they choose to hire to serve as teachers. When quality teachers are hired, all students have a better chance at achieving academic success. It is the responsibility of every public school principal to truly understand common patterns, which can assist teachers to become outstanding teachers, defined in this study as Star Teachers. It is also the principals' responsibility to make sure the work conditions of such Star Teachers are conducive to personal and professional renewal.

The passion to educate all children drives the following research questions: (1) How do Star Teachers describe the significant ...


Early Childhood Program Director Leadership Characteristics And Program Quality, Barbara J. June Dec 2007

Early Childhood Program Director Leadership Characteristics And Program Quality, Barbara J. June

Dissertations

This phenomenological research study was conducted to explore and describe how the characteristics, traits, and styles of directors, as described and perceived by the teachers, reflect the factors that are currently addressed in the indicators forming the basis for evaluating program quality. Teacher participants from six sites participated in a survey, questionnaire, and interview to determine director and program profiles. The Program Quality Assessment score was used as a standardized data source.

The data were collected, coded, and analyzed to determine the director and program profiles for each of the sites. The director and program data for each site were ...


What Allows Teachers To Extend Student Thinking During Whole-Group Discussions, Nesrin Cengiz Dec 2007

What Allows Teachers To Extend Student Thinking During Whole-Group Discussions, Nesrin Cengiz

Dissertations

Research indicates that extending students' mathematical thinking during whole-group discussions is challenging, even for the most experienced teachers. That is, it is challenging for teachers to help students move beyond their initial mathematical observations and solutions during whole-group discussions. To better understand this phenomena, the teaching of six experienced elementary school teachers, who had been teaching aStandards-based curriculum for several years and had participated in a multi-year professional development project focused on that curriculum, is explored in this study. In particular, two issues are addressed: what it looks like to extend student thinking during whole-group discussions and how ...


Systematic Study Of The Validity Of Clinical Performance Assessments In Entry-Level Athletic Training Education, Gayle A. Thompson Dec 2007

Systematic Study Of The Validity Of Clinical Performance Assessments In Entry-Level Athletic Training Education, Gayle A. Thompson

Dissertations

PPerformance assessment (PA) is essential to determining the competency of clinical skills in allied health education, yet little research has been conducted to determine what validity evidence supports the interpretations made from PA currently utilized in athletic training clinical education. This study examined current PA practice and associated effectiveness of PA used by athletic training clinical practicum course instructors. Current research suggests the most predominant method of PA utilized in athletic training follows a behavioral approach that emphasizes observation of specific skills in standardized ways, as exemplified by the 'check-list' method. An alternative to the behavioral approach is the holistic ...


Vygotsky’S Theory Of The Creative Imagination: A Study Of The Influences On Preservice Teachers’ Creative Thinking Capacities, Stephen J. Worst Dec 2007

Vygotsky’S Theory Of The Creative Imagination: A Study Of The Influences On Preservice Teachers’ Creative Thinking Capacities, Stephen J. Worst

Dissertations

This study investigated the effect of formal instruction in the use of creative thinking skills on preservice teachers' capacities for increased creative activity. It emerged from Vygotsky's theory of the creative imagination. Emphasizing the impact of formal schooling on the growth of creative activity, he implied that individuals who are continually adding to accumulation of knowledge develop an abundant imagination from which creativity flows.

This quantitative study used a quasi-experimental design and attempted to test Vygotsky's assumptions within a sample population of 113 preservice teachers. Torrance Tests of Creative Thinking served as the pre- and post-tests that measured ...


Differences In Bachelors Degree Attainment: Are College Degrees A Function Of Habitus?, Colin S. Mccaleb Dec 2007

Differences In Bachelors Degree Attainment: Are College Degrees A Function Of Habitus?, Colin S. Mccaleb

Dissertations

This study sought evidence that Pierre Bourdieu's habitus influences college graduation and college transferring patterns. Hypothesizing that low socio-economic students have to change their habitus in the elitist environment of higher education, two research questions were advanced to explore this phenomenon, the first asking if there was evidence consistent with the idea that habitus influenced graduation rates, the second question asking if there was evidence consistent with the idea that habitus influenced transferring patterns. Under each research question, several hypotheses were tested using descriptive statistics, analysis of variance, Chi square tests of independence, and logistic regressions. Income and civic ...


Audio-Assisted Reading With Digital Audiobooks For Upper Elementary Students With Reading Disabilities, Kelli J. Esteves Dec 2007

Audio-Assisted Reading With Digital Audiobooks For Upper Elementary Students With Reading Disabilities, Kelli J. Esteves

Dissertations

Audio-assisted reading has been used as an effective instructional intervention for students with learning disabilities (Carbo, 1978; Gilbert, Williams, & McLaughlin, 1996) and with struggling readers (Chomsky, 1976; Hollingsworth, 1978; Hoskisson & Krohm, 1974; Koskinen, Blum, Bisson, Phillips, Creamer, & Baker, 2000; Rasinski, 1990). The strategy involves reading along while listening to an audio recording of a fluent model (Evans, 1997).

The goal of this study was to compare the efficacy of audio-assisted reading with digital audiobooks against the traditional practice of sustained silent reading in terms of reading fluency rates and reading attitude scores with upper elementary students with reading disabilities. Participants in the control group selected literature and read silently for 20-30 minute ...


A Narrative Inquiry Of Teachers’ Perceptions Regarding Their Professional Development Experiences, Theresa Andrea Nugent Dec 2007

A Narrative Inquiry Of Teachers’ Perceptions Regarding Their Professional Development Experiences, Theresa Andrea Nugent

Dissertations

The purpose of this narrative inquiry study was to explore teachers' perceptions of their professional development experiences. Qualitative studies are needed to truly understand through "thick rich" descriptions (Lincoln & Guba, 1985) what is happening (or not) from the viewpoint of the classroom teacher in reference to their professional development experiences and related impact on student outcomes. In an era of accountability, teachers' voices are essential for understanding potential connections between teacher learning, via professional development experiences, and improved student outcomes.

This research project involved a purposeful sample of 8 1st-grade and 2nd-grade teachers, identified by their principals as "committed" to ...


Gender Disparity In Nigerian Education: Women’S Experience Of Barriers To Equal Educational Opportunity, Eugene Okoli Dec 2007

Gender Disparity In Nigerian Education: Women’S Experience Of Barriers To Equal Educational Opportunity, Eugene Okoli

Dissertations

Discrepancies between males and females in access to schooling, school completion rates, and participation in employment opportunities are still more the norm in some regions of the world than others. Limited access to education plagues women in Nigeria as well as in Sub-Saharan Africa. Disparity in access to educational opportunity is a pressing gender equity issue in Nigeria (World Bank, 2003).

Relatively few studies have focused on obtaining the viewpoints of women who experience this phenomenon. To hear the voices of these women regarding how they gained or were denied access to education in the Nigerian context, a cross-section of ...


Work Stress, Non-Work Stress And Mental Health Among School-Based Speech-Language Pathologists: Effects Of Social Support, Lena Gloria Caesar Aug 2007

Work Stress, Non-Work Stress And Mental Health Among School-Based Speech-Language Pathologists: Effects Of Social Support, Lena Gloria Caesar

Dissertations

This study utilized secondary data from the Work and Well-being of SLPs survey (Caesar, 2004) to examine possible sources (predictors) of work stress, job satisfaction, and psychological distress among 409 speech-language pathologists (SLPs) employed in public school settings in Michigan. This study also investigated the relationship of work-related and non-work-related stress to the mental health status of SLPs and sought to determine the mediating and/or moderating effects of varied types of social support on the mental health of respondents. Data analysis was done in three stages. First, each of the dependent and independent variables were described statistically. Secondly, correlation ...


Cognitive Vs. Supportive Therapy For Distressed Collegians, Jean Clore Aug 2007

Cognitive Vs. Supportive Therapy For Distressed Collegians, Jean Clore

Dissertations

Rates of depressive symptoms, psychological distress, and low self-esteem appear to be growing on college campuses. Determining how best to help distressed collegians is an important public health concern, as these individuals appear to be at significant risk for further deterioration, disrupted quality of life, and impaired ability to succeed in college. This study compared the effects of (a) six sessions of cognitive therapy (CT; training in two cognitive modification strategies—building positive self-thoughts and disputing negative self-thoughts) to (b) six sessions of non-directive, supportive therapy (ST). Fifty-three students from a large mid-western university reporting low self-esteem and significant levels ...


An Investigation Of Successful And Unsuccessful Students’ Problem Solving In Stoichiometry, Ozcan Gulacar Aug 2007

An Investigation Of Successful And Unsuccessful Students’ Problem Solving In Stoichiometry, Ozcan Gulacar

Dissertations

In this study, I investigated how successful and unsuccessful students solve stoichiometry problems. I focus on three research questions: (1) To what extent do the difficulties in solving stoichiometry problems stem from poor understanding of pieces (domain-specific knowledge) versus students' inability to link those pieces together (conceptual knowledge)? (2) What are the differences between successful and unsuccessful students in knowledge, ability, and practice? (3) Is there a connection between students' (a) cognitive development levels, (b) formal (proportional) reasoning abilities, (c) working memory capacities, (d) conceptual understanding of particle nature of matter, (e) understanding of the mole concept, and their problem-solving ...


Community College Retention: The Role Of Late Registration Policies, Kay L. Keck Aug 2007

Community College Retention: The Role Of Late Registration Policies, Kay L. Keck

Dissertations

The study provided for a clearer understanding of the impact of late registration on community college retention and student persistence. Of particular interest were the results of the examination of the course-specific side of late registration. The most significant findings of this study were: (1) Students who registered and began a course on time had a greater likelihood to successfully complete the course. The consequences students associated with late registration included missing critical first class day information and feeling rushed and unprepared to begin the class; (2) A majority of late registrants were successful in the late registered course, and ...


Mail And Web Surveys: A Comparison Of Demographic Characteristics And Response Quality When Respondents Self-Select The Survey Administration Mode, Dawn M. Mackety Aug 2007

Mail And Web Surveys: A Comparison Of Demographic Characteristics And Response Quality When Respondents Self-Select The Survey Administration Mode, Dawn M. Mackety

Dissertations

The purpose of this study was to use a nonexperimental, quantitative design to compare mail and web surveys with survey mode self-selection at two data collection waves. Research questions examined differences and predictabilities among demographics (gender, ethnicity, age, and professional employment) and response quality (pronoun use, item nonresponse, response extremity, yea-saying, item completion errors, response length, response equivalency, anecdotal comments, and multiple response use) by survey mode and response wave. Analyses were conducted using chi-squares, ANOVAs, t -tests, and binary logistic regressions.

A questionnaire in mail and web formats containing 48 forced-choice and open-ended items was administered to a nonrandom ...


Evaluation Of Researchers And Their Research: Toward Making The Implicit Explicit, Chris L. S. Coryn Aug 2007

Evaluation Of Researchers And Their Research: Toward Making The Implicit Explicit, Chris L. S. Coryn

Dissertations

Due to its very nature, the evaluation of research permeates nearly every aspect of the work of researchers. They evaluate the work of others or have their own work evaluated. They evaluate hypotheses that come to mind, the previous literature, the quality of data, the explanatory power of theories, or the design of experiments or instruments. And this is not always casual evaluation. It is highly skilled evaluation, and becoming a first-rate or world-class researcher is a process of improving the quality of these evaluations. However, deciding when someone is or has become a first-rate or world-class researcher is an ...


Effective Critical Thinking Teaching Strategies As Perceived By Affiliated Program Evaluation Faculty, Dhaifallah Almatrodi Aug 2007

Effective Critical Thinking Teaching Strategies As Perceived By Affiliated Program Evaluation Faculty, Dhaifallah Almatrodi

Dissertations

Critical Thinking (CT) skills are important for effective evaluation. In order to increase CT competency and use in evaluation to improve evaluation results, training programs for evaluators should incorporate CT instruction.

This study focused on three areas of interest relative to CT strategies, teac practices, and assessments to measure CT performance. Six research questions were identified to investigate Program Evaluation (PE) faculty's perceptions of effective CT teaching strategies. They are: (1) How many CT teaching strategies are faculty members aware of in teaching graduate students?; (2) How often PE faculty utilize CT teaching strategies in their teaching profession?; (3 ...


Metaevaluation Case Study Of Four Evaluations Of Osha Vpp Programs, Jafar Momani Aug 2007

Metaevaluation Case Study Of Four Evaluations Of Osha Vpp Programs, Jafar Momani

Dissertations

The purpose of this study was to investigate the controversy about shifts in the U.S. Administration's policy related to the Labor Department (OSHA) shift from enforcement to partnerships and voluntary protection programs (VPP). A metaevaluation of four OSHA VPP evaluation reports was conducted and included the investigation of objectives, methodologies, strengths, weaknesses, and areas for improvement. Conducting a crosswalk of the 1994 Joint Committee evaluation standards (JCS) and the Government Accountability Office (GAO) standards was an opportunity to provide additional validity to the evaluation standards, evaluation reports findings and conclusions, and to highlight the importance of the shared ...


Community College Partnerships With Business And Industry, Maryann Sharpley Lavendar Jun 2007

Community College Partnerships With Business And Industry, Maryann Sharpley Lavendar

Dissertations

The purpose of this study was to describe, analyze and interpret the expectations and outcomes of industry partnerships with community colleges to determine their value, emerging themes that have contributed to their success or demise, and whether the goals initially set forth in establishing these partnerships was achieved. This study is based upon resource dependency theory, which proposed that if government and state funding given in support of community college education was diminishing, then the need is to better understand the value of and how community college and industry partnerships are working toward continuation. Resource dependency theory revolves around the ...


A Study Of Career Preparation Activities Used In Michigan’S Public High Schools, Brian L. Pyles Jun 2007

A Study Of Career Preparation Activities Used In Michigan’S Public High Schools, Brian L. Pyles

Dissertations

This study assessed the status of Michigan's Career Pathway high schools 2 years after state Career Preparation funding was terminated early, in order to determine the institutionalization of Career Pathway activities. In particular, this study examined the use of Career Pathway curriculum guides, Educational Development Plans (EDPs), student Career Pathway designations, student career assessments, work-based learning activities, alternative scheduling, college credits earned in high school, instructional strategies, teacher professional development, and Career Pathway high school planning committees. This study also ascertained the perceived helpfulness of having students declare a Career Pathway and using EDPs as a guide in the ...


Experiences Of Michigan Elementary National Board Certification Candidates, Kristen L. Dewitt Jun 2007

Experiences Of Michigan Elementary National Board Certification Candidates, Kristen L. Dewitt

Dissertations

Since 1987, over 55,000 teachers have achieved National Board Certification (NBC), which is claimed to be the highest symbol of teaching excellence and an identifier of accomplished teaching. To become certified, teachers must demonstrate a clear understanding of rigorous standards as defined by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards.

This phenomenological study examined ten Michigan elementary National Board Certified Teachers and candidates in hopes of better understanding the roles that motivation, support and pressure played in their decisions to seek NBC, and the influence the process had on their teaching. Four critical findings were identified.

The first critical ...


An Evaluative Model For Incorporating Diversity Training Into Teacher Preparation, Amy Sue Desonia Jun 2007

An Evaluative Model For Incorporating Diversity Training Into Teacher Preparation, Amy Sue Desonia

Dissertations

In 1949, W.E.B. DuBois noted, "Of all the rights for which the world has struggled and fought for 5,000 years, the right to learn is undoubtedly the most fundamental (Foner, 1970, pp. 230-231)." Yet, inequity, so deeply embedded in the United States public education system, severely inhibits the free exercise of this right by many. Teachers struggle to teach, and students struggle to learn. Preparing pre-service teachers for diversity in pre-kindergarten through 12th grade (PK-12) classrooms throughout the United States is becoming increasingly urgent based on demographic trends--students will progressively become more diverse as they represent different ...


The Association Between School Choice And School Climate: Comparing School Climate In Private Relgious, Charter, And Public Schools, Mark Krommendyk Apr 2007

The Association Between School Choice And School Climate: Comparing School Climate In Private Relgious, Charter, And Public Schools, Mark Krommendyk

Dissertations

The association between school climate and school choice was examined by conducting discriminant function analyses on data gathered from the 1999-2000 Schools and Staffing Survey. This study asked the question, "Does school climate in private religious, charter, and public schools differ?" Teacher and principal responses to survey questions were grouped to measure six characteristics of school climate. The school climate characteristics measured were: (1) supportive principal leadership, (2) teacher collegiality, (3) teacher-principal relationships, (4) teacher satisfaction, (5) student behavior, and (6) teacher empowerment. The study found that the school climate in private religious schools could be statistically distinguished from the ...


Principals’ Leadership And Its Association With Whether Or Not Their Schools Meet District/State Peformance Goals, John Mark Rainey Apr 2007

Principals’ Leadership And Its Association With Whether Or Not Their Schools Meet District/State Peformance Goals, John Mark Rainey

Dissertations

The study focuses on the principals’ leadership and empowerment as a curriculum leader in meeting district and state mandated performance goals. The No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act of 2001 represents a key increase in the role of the federal government in public education.

The research questions in the study addressed the levels of principals’ instructional leadership and empowerment as associated with number of years as teacher, number of years as principal, participation in an aspiring principal program, school size, school locale, and whether their school passed district or state accountability test.

As to principals’ leadership, principals reported that they ...