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2015

Theses/Dissertations

Science and Mathematics Education

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Full-Text Articles in Education

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 ...


The Effects Of An Overnight Environmental Science Education Program On Students' Attendance Rate Change For Middle School Years, Jennifer Elizabeth Basham Dec 2015

The Effects Of An Overnight Environmental Science Education Program On Students' Attendance Rate Change For Middle School Years, Jennifer Elizabeth Basham

Dissertations and Theses

Programs that engage middle students in participatory, real-world, and hands-on field based instruction can be a powerful asset to the educational experiences for students; motivating and inspiring some to appreciate and value school in a different way. Overnight environmental science programs have a unique opportunity to support students by creating experiences where students can participate in learning in vastly different ways from what they may engage with in the traditional 4-walled classroom, while concurrently developing a relationship with the natural world. Decreasing educational budgets and increased need to substantiate educational programs in terms of their impact on students has added ...


Isn’T Citizen Science A Hoot? A Case-Study Exploring The Effectiveness Of Citizen Science As An Instrument To Teach The Nature Of Science Through A Local Nocturnal Owl-Monitoring Project, Tess Marie Kreofsky Dec 2015

Isn’T Citizen Science A Hoot? A Case-Study Exploring The Effectiveness Of Citizen Science As An Instrument To Teach The Nature Of Science Through A Local Nocturnal Owl-Monitoring Project, Tess Marie Kreofsky

Dissertations and Theses

Citizen science projects present a distinctive opportunity for professional and volunteer scientists to coordinate their efforts to gather unique sets of data that can benefit the scientific and local communities. These projects are assumed to be an effective educational tool to teach nature of science (NOS) to participants (Brossard, Lewenstein, Bonney, 2005). This case study evaluates the effectiveness of participation in a citizen science project as a way to learn about NOS. Through enhancement of the Tryon Creek Owl Monitoring Project the researcher reviewed the characteristics of a citizen science project that were thought to be necessary to impact the ...


Implementing Technology In An Algebra Classroom, Jennifer M. Damick Dec 2015

Implementing Technology In An Algebra Classroom, Jennifer M. Damick

Education and Human Development Master's Theses

The drive to place technology in the secondary mathematics classrooms has been on the rise and has shown over time to improve learning outcomes. How to support teachers with the implementation of technology in the midst of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) reform and teacher accountability is important. This thesis provides varied use of technology along with different technological instructional strategies for an Algebra I course. Presenting technological pedagogical content knowledge (TPCK) in the Algebra I context can support teachers’ implementation of technology into their instruction.

Keywords: Common Core State Standards (CCSS), NCTM Standards, Pedagogical Content Knowledge (PCK), Technological ...


The Effects Of Metacognitive Writing On Student Achievement In Advanced Placement Calculus, Lindsay M. O'Neal Dec 2015

The Effects Of Metacognitive Writing On Student Achievement In Advanced Placement Calculus, Lindsay M. O'Neal

Education Dissertations

Grounded in metacognitive theory (Flavell, 1976) and historical foundations that reach back as far as the writings of Plato (1973), the last few decades have seen an increase in research regarding the impact of metacognitive practice on student learning, often through the use of reflective writing. Studies have focused on a range of aspects, from how to measure metacognition to the effect metacognitive practice has on the academic achievement of students in a variety of subject areas. Specifically with regard to mathematics, researchers have studied the impact of reflective strategies on primary, secondary, and university level students.

The purpose of ...


Exploring And Training Spatial Reasoning Via Eye Movements: Implications On Performance, Victoria A. Roach Dec 2015

Exploring And Training Spatial Reasoning Via Eye Movements: Implications On Performance, Victoria A. Roach

Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

This dissertation sought to determine if eye movements could serve as an indicator of success in spatial reasoning, and if eye movements associated with successful completion could be applied to strategically improve spatial reasoning.

Using the line images of Shepard and Metzler, an electronic test of mental rotations ability (EMRT) was designed. Two versions of the test were created, allowing for both a timed (6 seconds per question) and untimed testing environment. Four experiments were designed and completed to relate mental rotation ability (MRA) scores from the EMRT, to patterns in chrononumeric and visual salience data. In each experiment, participants ...


Read 180 Participation, Ell Service Length, And Year On Literacy And Mathematics Achievement For Middle School Students, Paul A. Griep Dec 2015

Read 180 Participation, Ell Service Length, And Year On Literacy And Mathematics Achievement For Middle School Students, Paul A. Griep

Dissertations

The purpose of this dissertation was to add to the limited available research. In both hypotheses, the independent variables were whether or not the student used the READ 180 program, the number of years the student received ELL services in the United States (6 years or less or more than 6 years), and the year tested (2011 or 2012). The dependent variables for the first hypothesis were literacy and mathematics achievement measured by scaled scores obtained on the seventh grade Arkansas Augmented Benchmark Literacy and Mathematics examinations. The dependent variables for the second hypothesis were literacy and mathematics achievement measured ...


Investigating The Impact Of Reflexive Practices On College Students In A Science Laboratory Course, Chandrani Mishra Dec 2015

Investigating The Impact Of Reflexive Practices On College Students In A Science Laboratory Course, Chandrani Mishra

Dissertations

Emphasis on professional practices to develop students’ professionalism is currently a major focus of higher education. Studies have shown the benefits of reflexive practices in classroom to facilitate the development of students’ professional attitude or identity in some fields. Reflexive practices involve students in self-reflection where he/she reflects on his/her own actions. Little investigation about the benefits of reflexive practices in the development of students’ scientific identity in a science class led to my investigation. Development of a scientific identity of students and their overall interest and motivation in science is deemed essential for retaining students in STEM ...


Learning Support Effectiveness In Mathematics At A Tennessee University, Mark Dula Dec 2015

Learning Support Effectiveness In Mathematics At A Tennessee University, Mark Dula

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Every year thousands of students graduate from high school and move on to higher education, but many of them are not yet prepared for college level courses. The Tennessee Board of Regents does not currently allow 4-year institutions to teach courses that are below college level, so many institutions are using programs such as learning support courses to assist a growing population of underprepared students. The purpose of this study was to determine if the 1-term and 2-term retention rates for students with the same ACT mathematics subsection scores were different between students who took a regular section of Probability ...


Identities And Motives Of Naturalist Development Program Attendees And Their Relation To Professional Careers, Jennifer A. Mraz Dec 2015

Identities And Motives Of Naturalist Development Program Attendees And Their Relation To Professional Careers, Jennifer A. Mraz

Dissertations

In recent years, there has been much concern over the decline of biologists who actually identify themselves to be naturalists, which negatively impacts the field of conservation and the study of biology as a whole. This could result in a decrease in individuals who participate in naturalist-like activities, such as informal environmental education and environmental volunteerism. The purpose of my study was to determine what discourse identities were held by naturalist development program participants, how these discourse identities related to their volunteer motives in environmental settings, and how discourse identity related to professional careers. I defined identity through the lens ...


Building Depth Of Understanding Of The Concept Of Number Sense And Algebra In Students Grades 7 And 8, Catherine Janes Dec 2015

Building Depth Of Understanding Of The Concept Of Number Sense And Algebra In Students Grades 7 And 8, Catherine Janes

Graduate Master's Theses, Capstones, and Culminating Projects

Mathematics instruction offers both challenges and rewards to students. Teachers tend to focus on transmission of knowledge. Student creativity and problem-solving skills are not typically activated with common teaching practices. When students are engaged in mathematics they are recognizing patterns, making connections on their own, coming up with creative solutions, and discussing mathematical ideas with peers and adults. The purpose of this study was to identify, employ, and evaluate strategies that engage students in these practices and assist them in developing a deep understanding of mathematics concepts such as number sense and algebra.

The review of the literature began with ...


Teacher Perceptions On Changing Instructional Practices In Mathematics With The Implementation Of The Common Core State Standards, Esther M. Underwood Dec 2015

Teacher Perceptions On Changing Instructional Practices In Mathematics With The Implementation Of The Common Core State Standards, Esther M. Underwood

Graduate Master's Theses, Capstones, and Culminating Projects

As schools across the U.S. begin to implement Common Core State Standards in Mathematics (CCSSM), teachers must shift their instructional practices from a traditional emphasis on procedures and algorithms to a conceptually based model in which students engage more meaningfully with mathematical concepts. The purpose of this study is to examine participants’ perspectives about the influence of CCSSM on their instructional practices, and the challenges they face in effectively implementing these changes. The literature reveals the need for professional development, standards aligned materials, and ongoing support of teachers in order for them to make substantial changes to their instructional ...


A Comparison Of Beliefs And Attitudes About Body Image, Eating And Weight Between Incarcerated And Non-~Incarcerated Females, Anne R. Lindsay Dec 2015

A Comparison Of Beliefs And Attitudes About Body Image, Eating And Weight Between Incarcerated And Non-~Incarcerated Females, Anne R. Lindsay

UNLV Theses, Dissertations, Professional Papers, and Capstones

Abstract

Incarceration and substance abuse are two of the largest public health issues in America. While the U.S. makes up only 5% of the world’s population, it accounts for 25% of its prisoners. Incarceration affects more than 2.2 million individuals who will eventually return to their families and communities with ongoing family, social and health issues. Women in prison are a particularly vulnerable and underserved population, generally of low education and socio-economic status and although they account for a small percent of the prison population, many are mothers of young children who are likely to become incarcerated ...


Implementing Blended Classroom Pedagogy To Deepen Student Understanding In High School Biology, David J. Krebs Dec 2015

Implementing Blended Classroom Pedagogy To Deepen Student Understanding In High School Biology, David J. Krebs

Education and Human Development Master's Theses

The blended classroom model offers excitement and increased student engagement to an aging education system. The objective of this project is to demonstrate how teachers can best deepen student learning founded within 3 main focuses; first, transitioning away from passive lecture centered environments towards active student centered environments, second, to embrace technology as an educational tool, and third, to implement effective hands-on learning protocols. In this comprehensive literature review both benefits and concerns to applying blended classroom frameworks in a 9th grade living environment setting are addressed and reveal it’s effectiveness specifically stating higher student achievement and positive ...


Making Mathematics Memorable, Meaningful, And Fun: Activities To Enhance Precalculus, Nat White Dec 2015

Making Mathematics Memorable, Meaningful, And Fun: Activities To Enhance Precalculus, Nat White

Theses and Dissertations

To master material, students need to make it their own. As teachers, we should structure their interactions with mathematics in ways that are memorable, meaningful, and fun. One way to do this is to provide activities that stretch beyond the textbook and lead students to think and talk to one another about mathematics. This thesis contains a set of activities designed to enhance a precalculus course, along with solutions and feedback on each activity.


4-H Wildlife Habitat Education Program: A Qualitative Study On Career Exploration, Ronnie Lee Cowan Dec 2015

4-H Wildlife Habitat Education Program: A Qualitative Study On Career Exploration, Ronnie Lee Cowan

Masters Theses

There are documented studies on the Wildlife Habitat Education Program (WHEP) that relate to building life skills of participants. However, no literature was found that measured the perceptions of the participants towards a career in wildlife after participating in WHEP. To add validity to the program a focus group was conducted at the Tennessee 4-H wildlife judging contest to describe the WHEP participants’ perceptions of careers in wildlife after the completion of the annual program. Focus group participants indicated that participating in WHEP peaked their interest in wildlife and provided an opportunity to experience the importance of natural resource management.


Investigating Teachers' Content Knowledge And Pedogogical Content Knowledge In A Middle School Physical Science Curriculum On Force And Motion, Daniel Patrick Laverty Dec 2015

Investigating Teachers' Content Knowledge And Pedogogical Content Knowledge In A Middle School Physical Science Curriculum On Force And Motion, Daniel Patrick Laverty

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Teaching is a profession that requires the incorporation of many types of knowledge in order to create effective instructional experiences that promote student learning. Teachers need to blend their knowledge of the content with the methods for delivering that content and an understanding of their students' thinking. With increasing concern in the United States over student achievement in science and mathematics, there is ongoing discussion about which elements of teacher knowledge most directly correlate with effective instruction. How do specific strands of teacher knowledge blend to influence student learning outcomes? This study explores the roles of teacher content knowledge (CK ...


"Socratic Circles Are A Luxury": Exploring The Conceptualization Of A Dialogic Tool In Three Science Classrooms, Michelle Renee Copelin Dec 2015

"Socratic Circles Are A Luxury": Exploring The Conceptualization Of A Dialogic Tool In Three Science Classrooms, Michelle Renee Copelin

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Research has shown that dialogic instruction promotes learning in students. Secondary science has traditionally been taught from an authoritative stance, reinforced in recent years by testing policies requiring coverage. Socratic Circles are a framework for student-led dialogic discourse, which have been successfully used in English language arts and Social studies classrooms. The purpose of this research was to explore the implementation process of Socratic Circles in secondary science classes where they have been perceived to be more difficult. Focusing on two physical science classes and one chemistry class, this study described the nature and characteristics of Socratic Circles, teachers’ dispositions ...


Teacher Participation And Motivation Inprofessional Development, Krystal A. Hill Dec 2015

Teacher Participation And Motivation Inprofessional Development, Krystal A. Hill

Theses and Dissertations

Although professional development is accepted as important for making educational improvements, some have been unsuccessful due to how the teachers choose to participate, and the lack of motivation in teachers to attend or implement the suggested changes. A case study of secondary mathematics teachers in a required professional development is used to look at teachers' motivation and participation during the professional development. This study compared mathematics teachers' motivation to attend with ways of participating in order to determine how these influence a teacher's intent to change. It was found that certain aspects of motivation and participation does influence a ...


Mathematical Interactions Between Teachers And Students In The Finnish Mathematics Classroom, Paula Jeffery Prestwich Dec 2015

Mathematical Interactions Between Teachers And Students In The Finnish Mathematics Classroom, Paula Jeffery Prestwich

Theses and Dissertations

The Finnish school system has figured prominently in the PISA international assessments for over 10 years. Many reasons are given for Finnish success yet few of them focus on what is happening in the mathematics classroom. This study addresses the question of “What does mathematics instruction in the Finnish mathematics classroom look like?” Eight Finnish mathematics classes, from 6th – 9th grade were recorded, translated, and analyzed using the Mathematical Quality of Instruction (MQI) 2013 video coding protocol. Other aspects and observations of these classes also are discussed. Although the study is small, this study gives a view into the nature ...


Matched, Somewhat-Matched Or Mismatched? Predictors Of Degree-Job Match Among Stem Graduates, Taghreed Ahmed Alhaddab Nov 2015

Matched, Somewhat-Matched Or Mismatched? Predictors Of Degree-Job Match Among Stem Graduates, Taghreed Ahmed Alhaddab

Seton Hall University Dissertations and Theses (ETDs)

The current third-generation globalization caused structural, organizational and functional changes in the STEM workforce along with changes in human capital flow. The new globalization shift produced new world order causing the STEM workforce to adopt new frameworks, new skills, and new policy approaches to maintain economic strength and achieve growth and prosperity. Available data indicate that the U.S. secondary and postsecondary education system prepares and produce more than an adequate number of STEM graduates. The perceived crisis in the number of U.S. STEM graduates was not confirmed by any data or policy report. Thus, attention should not be ...


Understanding Climate Change And Sea Level: A Case Study Of Middle School Student Comprehension And An Evaluation Of Tide Gauges Off The Panama Canal In The Pacific Ocean And Caribbean Sea, Juan Carlos Millan-Otoya Nov 2015

Understanding Climate Change And Sea Level: A Case Study Of Middle School Student Comprehension And An Evaluation Of Tide Gauges Off The Panama Canal In The Pacific Ocean And Caribbean Sea, Juan Carlos Millan-Otoya

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

The present study had two main objectives. The first was to determine the degree of understanding of climate change, sea level and sea level rise among middle school students. Combining open-ended questions with likert-scaled questions, we identified student conceptions on these topics in 86 students from 7th and 8th grades during 2012 and 2013 before and after implementing a Curriculum Unit (CU). Additional information was obtained by adding drawings to the open-ended questions during the second year to gauge how student conceptions varied from a verbal and a visual perspective. Misconceptions were identified both pre- and post-CU among ...


Academic And Peer Status In The Mathematical Life Stories Of Students, Carol Ann Wise Nov 2015

Academic And Peer Status In The Mathematical Life Stories Of Students, Carol Ann Wise

Theses and Dissertations

Mathematics students often define themselves by their grades, test scores, how they compare to other people, how comfortable they feel in mathematics class, and so on. These experiences are all part of a student's mathematical life story. Students assume positions with particular rights and duties for themselves and for the actors in the stories they tell. Those positions reflect certain types and levels of status. Those types and levels of status have been shown to either inhibit or open a student's access to learning mathematics. Thus, a student's status in mathematics education is an issue of equity ...


The Impact Of Early Numeracy Intervention On Kindergarten Students, Jennifer L. Hill Oct 2015

The Impact Of Early Numeracy Intervention On Kindergarten Students, Jennifer L. Hill

EDL Sixth Year Theses

The purpose of this study was to explore the effectiveness of early numeracy intervention with kindergarten students. In order to grow a stronger understanding of how providing mathematics intervention can benefit students, the intervention was provided to kindergarten students aimed to seek answers to how providing the earliest possible intervention can positively impact the achievement gap and a child’s understanding of number. This study explored the impact early numeracy intervention had on five kindergarten students and compared their growth to those of their peers not receiving intervention to determine the positive impact providing Response to Intervention had on kindergarten ...


Flipping In A Technological Rich Classroom, John W. Budge Oct 2015

Flipping In A Technological Rich Classroom, John W. Budge

EDL Sixth Year Theses

The purpose of this study was to explore eighth grade students’ perception of a flipped classroom environment. It is difficult to engage and motivate eighth grade students. This study was created in order to determine if a flipped classroom would spark more interest and therefore eventually lead to an increased ability. More specifically, this study investigated how students perceive their learning is progressing in a flipped math classroom, and how engaged are they using the technology compared to the traditional classroom setting. The classroom environment was switched to a flipped classroom at the start of a new unit in October ...


Science Literacy: Collection Of Earth Science Lessons Emphasizing Writing In Science, Amanda Klein Oct 2015

Science Literacy: Collection Of Earth Science Lessons Emphasizing Writing In Science, Amanda Klein

Education and Human Development Master's Theses

The purpose of this project is to create lessons and projects for high school Earth Science classes encompassing science literacy, specifically focused on writing. With the recent release of the Next Generation Science Standards, science literacy has gained importance in science education. This being said, teachers need the pedagogical skills to implement and teach science literacy.

For this project, a literature review of science literacy was conducted which lead to a focus on writing in science. Past research of writing in science classrooms revealed that more than half of high school science teachers claim that they do not feel prepared ...


The Influence Of Types Of Homework On Opportunity To Learn And Students' Mathematics Achievement: Examples From The University Of Chicago School Mathematics Project, Yiting Yu Sep 2015

The Influence Of Types Of Homework On Opportunity To Learn And Students' Mathematics Achievement: Examples From The University Of Chicago School Mathematics Project, Yiting Yu

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

ABSTRACT

Public views on assigning students mathematics homework have been controversial. Although homework is designed for students to complete during non-school hours (Cooper, 1989), many see homework as excessive pressure on students. Most research placed their focus on the influence of the time spent on homework or the amount of homework on student achievement. Few studies have addressed the impact of types of mathematics homework. The purpose of this study is to examine the role of homework types in influencing opportunity to learn (OTL) on student achievement.

This quantitative study used subsets of a large existing dataset collected by University ...


Conditions Supporting The Development Of Scientific Argumentation In High School Chemistry Classrooms: The Role Of Question Prompts And An Interactive Simulation, Tugba Keser Aug 2015

Conditions Supporting The Development Of Scientific Argumentation In High School Chemistry Classrooms: The Role Of Question Prompts And An Interactive Simulation, Tugba Keser

Doctoral Dissertations

The purpose of this case study was to provide benefit to preservice and inservice science teachers, who have an interest in applying scientific argumentation in their high school chemistry instructions, by investigating role of question prompts and an interactive simulation supporting the development of scientific argumentation. In particular, the study examined the quality of students’ arguments changing over time in scientific argumentation when they constructed and defended their arguments using the “Gas Properties” computer simulation. For this purpose, forty-seven11th grade students from four classes first worked in pairs and then, all the pairs returned the classroom for discussion. One ...


The Use Of Argumentation In Socio-Scientific Issues: Enhancing Evolutionary Biology Instruction, Heath R. Marchand Aug 2015

The Use Of Argumentation In Socio-Scientific Issues: Enhancing Evolutionary Biology Instruction, Heath R. Marchand

Education and Human Development Master's Theses

With the adoption of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), further emphasis in science education is being placed on preparing students to become more informed voters regarding social, ethical, economic and political topics that affect contemporary society. Parallel to this shift is a stronger emphasis on integrating evolutionary theory as a unifying concept in the biological sciences. Given that evolution is one of the aforementioned topics commonly discussed and debated about in social and political arenas, ensuring that instruction provides students from all backgrounds a comprehensive understanding of its principals is becoming increasingly important in contemporary science education. Chapter II ...


The Design And Validation Of A Group Theory Concept Inventory, Kathleen Mary Melhuish Aug 2015

The Design And Validation Of A Group Theory Concept Inventory, Kathleen Mary Melhuish

Dissertations and Theses

Within undergraduate mathematics education, there are few validated instruments designed for large-scale usage. The Group Concept Inventory (GCI) was created as an instrument to evaluate student conceptions related to introductory group theory topics. The inventory was created in three phases: domain analysis, question creation, and field-testing. The domain analysis phase included using an expert consensus protocol to arrive at the topics to be assessed, analyzing curriculum, and reviewing literature. From this analysis, items were created, evaluated, and field-tested. First, 383 students answered open-ended versions of the question set. The questions were converted to multiple-choice format from these responses and disseminated ...