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2017

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

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Full-Text Articles in Education

Student Voice Initiative: Exploring Implementation Strategies, Blaine G. Alexander Dec 2017

Student Voice Initiative: Exploring Implementation Strategies, Blaine G. Alexander

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Student voice is the process of allowing students to work collaboratively with adults to produce a learning culture that is conducive for optimum growth in every student. In a traditional setting, the adults make the decisions and the students are passive observers in the learning process. Data has shown that this traditional culture is not advantageous to student learning for all students. Research has shown that students are seven times more academically motivated when they have the opportunity to have a voice in their personal learning process (Quaglia, 2016). This case study centered on the Northeast Arkansas Regional Student Voice …


The Impact Of A Positive Environment And Shared Leadership To Empower Collegial School Culture, Ben Pretz Dec 2017

The Impact Of A Positive Environment And Shared Leadership To Empower Collegial School Culture, Ben Pretz

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

The purpose of this study is to develop an empowered collegial school culture to systemically improve the function of the academic institution through the impact of a positive environment and shared leadership. When compared to the other middle schools in the district, Eagle Middle School had the lowest math achievement growth index during the 2014-2015 school year. The discrepancy in math achievement is one element that has created a culture problem for the building. Additionally, the building has a reputation of poor customer service and not serving the community effectively. Because of the poor culture the staff had a lack …


Presidential Fundraising: A Multiple Case Study Of Rural Serving Oklahoma Community Colleges, Jason Daniel Falkner Dec 2017

Presidential Fundraising: A Multiple Case Study Of Rural Serving Oklahoma Community Colleges, Jason Daniel Falkner

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Community college presidents serving rural populations in the state of Oklahoma have been forced to take on new responsibilities related to institutional fundraising due to multiple economic challenges including continued budgetary shortfalls and limited resource allocation. Review of the academic literature addressing this subject exposed a wide variety of rationales associated with this leadership shift, as well as successful presidential approaches to fundraising in modern higher education. This qualitative study of rural community college presidents in Oklahoma examined the rationale for expanded presidential roles in fundraising, while outlining a number of other essential roles, characteristics, professional backgrounds, and stressors that …


Local Item Response Theory For Detection Of Spatially Varying Differential Item Functioning, Samantha Robinson Dec 2017

Local Item Response Theory For Detection Of Spatially Varying Differential Item Functioning, Samantha Robinson

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Mappings of spatially-varying Item Response Theory (IRT) parameters are proposed, allowing for visual investigation of potential Differential Item Functioning (DIF) based upon geographical location without need for pre-specified groupings and before any confirmatory DIF testing. This proposed model is a localized approach to IRT modeling and DIF detection that provides a flexible framework, with current emphasis being on 1PL/Rasch and 2PL models. Applications to both simulated and empirical survey data, utilizing a box-car kernel weighting scheme with several fixed bandwidths on irregular spatial lattices, are presented both to demonstrate the methodology and to illustrate the benefit of localized IRT modeling. …


Potential Relationships Of Community College Faculty Credentials And Measures Of Instructional Effectiveness: Student Survey Of Instruction And Grades, Marc Alan Willis Dec 2017

Potential Relationships Of Community College Faculty Credentials And Measures Of Instructional Effectiveness: Student Survey Of Instruction And Grades, Marc Alan Willis

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

The purpose of this research was to determine what, if any, relationship existed when considering instructor credentials in relation to student surveys of instruction (SSOI), instructor credentials in relation to grade distribution, and the relationship between SSOI and grade distribution. The case study college is a two-year rural institution in Oklahoma employing 53 full-time faculty in Fall 2016. Eighteen of those faculty lack the adequate credentials as required by the Higher Learning Commission, the accrediting body for the college. Very little information was discovered verifying the impact of credentials on effectiveness, and what was located was anecdotal rather than data …


Writing For Keeps-Instruction And Achievement, Jason Adams Dec 2017

Writing For Keeps-Instruction And Achievement, Jason Adams

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

The study was conducted in a small rural Texas district. Students within the district were struggling with successful writing initiatives. Achievement and accountability within the district were below state and regional averages consistently for many years. Writing instruction in the district needed attention to help students and teachers experience writing success. The study aimed to answer the following research questions: (1) What instructional practices do Frazier ISD teachers utilize to teach writing? (2) What aspects of writing do Frazier ISD students struggle to understand? (3) To what extent does the State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR) test impact …


Promoting Biliteracy And Biculturalism In Bilingual-Maintenance Secondary Classes: A Key Measure In The Creation Of A Gateway To Post-Secondary Education For First And 1.5 Generation Latino Students In Northwest Arkansas Public Schools, Jeanette A. Arnhart Dec 2017

Promoting Biliteracy And Biculturalism In Bilingual-Maintenance Secondary Classes: A Key Measure In The Creation Of A Gateway To Post-Secondary Education For First And 1.5 Generation Latino Students In Northwest Arkansas Public Schools, Jeanette A. Arnhart

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

In the context of the Northwest Arkansas (NWA) regional setting, this study examines the effects of the Spanish for Heritage and Native Speakers (SHNS) model from multiple vantage points. Educational capital and biculturation approaches are employed to help theoretically frame post-secondary educational success and ethnic identity, respectively.

Study methods are briefly described and paired with a description of the NWA region as an ideal southern Latino emerging community in which to conduct research on educational outcomes. The manuscript then turns to an ethnographic examination of how and the extent to which curricular, co-curricular and extra-curricular aspects of a Spanish for …


A Phenomenological Study Of The Online Education Experiences Of College Students With Learning Disabilities, Michael Murders Dec 2017

A Phenomenological Study Of The Online Education Experiences Of College Students With Learning Disabilities, Michael Murders

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

The body of research concerning college students with learning disabilities is sparse relative to the percentage of college students with learning disabilities who attend college. Further, the majority of existing research fails to capture the student voice and the lived experiences of the students themselves. The purpose of this study was to explore the experiences of college students with learning disabilities who utilized online education at a public university centrally located in the United States, resembling numerous comprehensive regional universities. Using a qualitative, phenomenological research framework, this study uses in-depth individual interviews to collect data from eight participants. Interviews were …


The Perception Of The Freshman Transition: Taking A Closer Look At The Freshman Academy, Frankie Jo Lizar Dec 2017

The Perception Of The Freshman Transition: Taking A Closer Look At The Freshman Academy, Frankie Jo Lizar

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

The purpose of this study was to examine teacher, student, and parent perceptions of the high school transition program within a Freshman Academy at one Midwest high school using a mixed-methods approach with a convergent design. Interviews were done with teachers that teach primarily freshman students, and perception surveys were used with teachers, students, and parents to answer the following research questions:

a) How do freshman teachers believe the Freshman Academy interventions influence students’ successful transition into high school?

b) What are staff’s perceptions of the Freshman Academy in preparing students for success in high school?

c) What are students’ …


College And Career Ready Through Personalized Learning: Business And Industry Perspective Of The Don Tyson School Of Innovation, Joe R. Rollins Dec 2017

College And Career Ready Through Personalized Learning: Business And Industry Perspective Of The Don Tyson School Of Innovation, Joe R. Rollins

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

This qualitative research study describes perceptions of Northwest Arkansas’ business, industry and post-secondary institutions as to the Don Tyson School of Innovation (DTSOI) and its ability to prepare students for Northwest Arkansas’ college and career needs. Designated as one of the first schools of innovation in Arkansas through ACT 601 of 2013 by the Arkansas Department of Education (ADE), the DTSOI employs Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) in every aspect of curriculum. The DTSOI represents the first school in Arkansas to hold the distinction of holding both school of innovation status as well as being a public, district- conversion …


Behavioral Intervention Teams: An Exploration Of Team Member Perceptions At Oklahoma Regional Universities, Sheila J. Self Dec 2017

Behavioral Intervention Teams: An Exploration Of Team Member Perceptions At Oklahoma Regional Universities, Sheila J. Self

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

The aim of this study was to examine Behavioral Intervention Teams from the perspective of twelve team members at four regional universities in Oklahoma. This study strengthened the knowledge base regarding team-member perceptions of Behavioral Intervention Team effectiveness, functioning, resources, needs, state factors, and campus impacts, and added qualitative data to the existing body of literature. Behavioral Intervention Teams were designed to be a tool for preventing campus violence and addressing behaviors of concern through information gathering, analysis, and intervention. While it may never be known how many acts of violence, suicides, or other student issues have been prevented or …


Attitudes Of Students With And Without Disabilities Toward Physical Education And Their Sports And Activities Preferences In Saudi Arabia, Zuhair Abdaladeem Al Salim Aug 2017

Attitudes Of Students With And Without Disabilities Toward Physical Education And Their Sports And Activities Preferences In Saudi Arabia, Zuhair Abdaladeem Al Salim

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Saudi Arabia is one of the biggest countries in the Middle East, and it has paid particular attention to public education to prepare students to become good citizens. Physical education (PE) can have a vital influence on all children and adolescents’ lifestyles, including those with disabilities. The purpose of this study was to examine attitudes of Saudi Arabian students with and without disabilities toward PE as well as their sport and activities preferences. A second purpose was to investigate the effect of school levels and student participation in physical activity after school on students’ attitudes in PE. A final purpose …


The Relationship Between Exposure To Specialized Staff In A Classroom Setting And Observable Behaviors Among Students With Special Needs, Rachel Marie Prisco Aug 2017

The Relationship Between Exposure To Specialized Staff In A Classroom Setting And Observable Behaviors Among Students With Special Needs, Rachel Marie Prisco

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

This study aims to identify differences in the later integration of children with mild to moderate special needs based on their exposure to specialized staff regardless of the type of preschool they attended. This is done by observing the behaviors exhibited by those students with special needs and the proportion of the student’s day in a traditional classroom. One of the most noted issues with students who have special needs is their lack of appropriate early intervention with specifically-trained staff. This may attribute to those students delay in social emotional skills, and cognitive skills. Transitions, specifically those from one classroom …


The Impact Of Social Situations On College Students’ Perceptions Of Sexual Consent, Casey Jane Ward Aug 2017

The Impact Of Social Situations On College Students’ Perceptions Of Sexual Consent, Casey Jane Ward

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

The majority of research examining sexual consent among college students focuses on how young adults communicate sexual consent during interactions immediately preceding a sexual encounter. However, preliminary research suggests that college students perceive that individuals begin to communicate sexual consent within social settings (e.g., at a bar) and through nonsexual interactions (e.g., text messaging); this has been labeled “outside the bedroom” consent. In order to further explore “outside the bedroom” consent, college students (n= 789) were randomly assigned to read four of sixteen vignettes. Within each vignette, four variables were manipulated: gender of the initiator (male or female), the social …


From Foster Care To College: Student Stories Of Success, Tory Nicole England Aug 2017

From Foster Care To College: Student Stories Of Success, Tory Nicole England

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

The purpose of this qualitative study was to understand the different factors that empower young adults that were in foster care to be successful in a college environment. It has been documented that foster youth have significant challenges during secondary education (Conger & Rebeck, 2001; Geenen & Powers, 2006). Due to these challenges, foster youth attend and graduate higher education at a lower rate than their peers. The perspectives of foster youth currently enrolled in higher education is critical to determining which factors and programs have helped with their educational success. Five participants completed semi-structured interviews about their secondary education, …


Developing A Competency-Based Framework To Guide Elementary School Teachers' Efforts In Helping Bullied Children, Samantha Gregus Aug 2017

Developing A Competency-Based Framework To Guide Elementary School Teachers' Efforts In Helping Bullied Children, Samantha Gregus

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

The current study aimed to develop a competency-based framework designed to assist elementary school teachers in their efforts to help bullied children. Drawing from extant research, Gregus and Cavell (2017) created an initial draft of the framework that contained 25 components representing a mix of knowledge, attitudes, and skills. In Study 1, I obtained input on the framework from practicing elementary school teachers (n = 26) and researchers who study school bullying (n = 14). Teacher input was gathered via a series of focus groups and researchers responded using an online survey. Both teachers and researchers viewed the framework positively …


Factors Contributing To The Success Of First-Generation College Students At A Research University, Mary Margaret Hui Aug 2017

Factors Contributing To The Success Of First-Generation College Students At A Research University, Mary Margaret Hui

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

First-generation college students are students whose parents do not have a college degree, and they face numerous barriers in college. Yet, several first-generation college students (FGCS) are successful and are on-track to graduate with a bachelor’s degree in four years. Their success is important because education is associated with increased income, quality of life, and social mobility, making educational attainment even more significant in Arkansas, which has both low educational attainment and high poverty. Little is known about what can be done to close the achievement gap. It is important to analyze what helped FGCS succeed so that higher education …


The Parent/Teacher Relationship And The Effectiveness Of The Teaching Important Parenting Skills (Tips) Program For Enhancing Parents' Knowledge About Child Development, Meghan Anderson Aug 2017

The Parent/Teacher Relationship And The Effectiveness Of The Teaching Important Parenting Skills (Tips) Program For Enhancing Parents' Knowledge About Child Development, Meghan Anderson

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Parent involvement in education has been highly encouraged because of its strong associations with positive developmental outcomes for children. Teaching Important Parenting Skills: TIPS for Great Kids! (TIPS) is a program in Arkansas that relays research-based information cards to parents through the support network of the teachers. This study examines how effective the TIPS program was in enhancing parent’s knowledge on child development and observes the influence of the parent-teacher relationship. Although no significant correlation was found between the parent/teacher relationship and parent knowledge, a significant correlation was discovered between the parent/teacher relationship and whether parents read the TIPS card …


An Analysis Of The Model And Enacted Curricula For A History Of Science Course In A Nationwide Teacher Education Program, Noushin Nouri Aug 2017

An Analysis Of The Model And Enacted Curricula For A History Of Science Course In A Nationwide Teacher Education Program, Noushin Nouri

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

The UTeach program, a national model for undergraduate teacher preparation, includes Perspectives on Science and Mathematics, a class designed to share content about the History of Science (HOS) with preservice teachers. UTeach provides a model curriculum as a sample for instructors teaching Perspectives. The purpose of this study was (a) to describe and evaluate the model science lessons provided; (b) to compare the relationship of the various versions of the Perspectives class with the model curriculum; (c) to determine the factors that led to instructors’ success or failure in implementation of the model curriculum; and (d) to highlight the instructors’ …


Evaluating The Policies That Lead To Stem Educational Attainment At The University Of Arkansas For Transfer Students, Bryan Hill Aug 2017

Evaluating The Policies That Lead To Stem Educational Attainment At The University Of Arkansas For Transfer Students, Bryan Hill

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

The US has a critical need to produce more STEM graduates and that need is exponentially more critical in Arkansas. Arkansas currently ranks last in the percent of STEM degrees conferred compared to overall degrees awarded. Students intending to pursue a STEM four-year college degree who start at a two-year college are significantly less likely to succeed in earning that degree. Arkansas passed Acts 672 and 182 aimed at strengthening the success of students who transfer from two-year colleges into four-year institutions. This study sought to evaluate the effectiveness of the Acts by determining if the University of Arkansas (UA) …


Factors Used To Determine The Teaching Load For Chairs In Public Community Colleges, Mandel G. Samuels Aug 2017

Factors Used To Determine The Teaching Load For Chairs In Public Community Colleges, Mandel G. Samuels

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

As the complexities of the departmental chair continued to increase, so did the importance of having a process to use to fairly assign the teaching load for departmental chairs. In 1982 Carolyn Branch conducted a survey to identify the factors that were being used. She received input from the chief academic officers that a process, procedure or formula was needed (Branch, 1982). The factors identified in Branch’s research did not lead to the development of a process for chief academic officers to use.

There has been no published research on this topic since Branch’s research in 1982. Therefore, I decided …


Curricular Analysis Of The University Of Arkansas Composition I Pilot Course: Engl 1013, Community Ethnography, Morgan Lindsay Scholz Aug 2017

Curricular Analysis Of The University Of Arkansas Composition I Pilot Course: Engl 1013, Community Ethnography, Morgan Lindsay Scholz

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

This thesis analyzes a new first-year writing course that is under consideration for implementation as the standard Composition I course at the University of Arkansas. The course utilizes an ethnographic approach to teaching critical writing skills to students. This thesis presents evaluation through a metacognitive lens and explores the course through a case study approach. This thesis also examines the expectations and concluding reflections of three stakeholder groups: students, instructors, and administrators.


Education Policy Factors Contributing To Special Education Identification, Sivan Tuchman May 2017

Education Policy Factors Contributing To Special Education Identification, Sivan Tuchman

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Vital to the discussion around special education is the topic of identification and de-identification as having a disability that impacts one’s education. Variation in special education enrollment across geographic locations, racial groups, and schooling sectors causes researchers to question the process and incentives involved in identification and de-identification. The studies that comprise this dissertation aim to analyze the effects that educational policies have on special education identification and subsequent enrollment. Specifically, the studies cover the special education finance, school accountability, and school choice policies.

The special education finance reform effort of switching from a prospective to a capitation funding system …


Assessment Of The Arkansas Horse 4-H Program: Perspectives From Multiple Stakeholders, Fawn Lee Kurtzo May 2017

Assessment Of The Arkansas Horse 4-H Program: Perspectives From Multiple Stakeholders, Fawn Lee Kurtzo

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Assessment of the Arkansas horse 4-H program utilized stakeholders’ perceptions to describe inputs, outcomes, preferences and impacts provided by the Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service. Stakeholders’ perceptions were captured through three studies. Studies included the following: a pre- and post-test evaluation of the 2016 summer horse camp, purposive interviews with county agents (n = 6), volunteer leaders (n = 4), and parents (n = 4) of horse 4-H clubs, and a statewide survey provided to Extension staff (n =26) and volunteer leaders (n = 28) affiliated with horse 4-H clubs.

The 2016 summer camp evaluation found the goals to improve horsemanship, …


Exploring The Impacts Of Study Abroad On Hospitality Student’S Perceptions Of Emotional Intelligence, Diversity And Sustainability, Jordan Glynn Griffin May 2017

Exploring The Impacts Of Study Abroad On Hospitality Student’S Perceptions Of Emotional Intelligence, Diversity And Sustainability, Jordan Glynn Griffin

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

This study investigated if there was a significant difference in hospitality students who did and did not participate in a study abroad program to determine if study abroad had an impact on their emotional intelligence, diversity, and sustainability awareness. The results of this study will assist both hospitality education and study abroad by providing information.

A descriptive, four-section survey was distributed online via Qualtrics utilizing snowball sampling. A total of 110 respondents participated in the study; 72 nonstudy abroad and 38 abroad. The respondents completed the questionnaire that measured emotional intelligence, career longevity, perceptions of diversity, sustainability awareness, and demographic …


Monolingual And Bilingual Children's Language-Based Social Preferences In A Predominantly Monolingual Environment, Rachel Marie Stevens May 2017

Monolingual And Bilingual Children's Language-Based Social Preferences In A Predominantly Monolingual Environment, Rachel Marie Stevens

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Monolingual children consistently display Social preferences for individuals who speak their native language with a native accent compared to individuals who speak a foreign language or speak their native language with a foreign accent. Two explanations have been proposed for these language-based preferences. The first explanation is that language cues a child to in-group membership and children prefer to affiliate with individuals who are members of the same in-group. The second explanation is that children display preferences for their native language and accent because that is what they are most familiar with, and children prefer familiarity over the unknown. The …


Examining The Phenomenon Of Dropping Out Of High School Through The Perspectives And Experiences Of The African American Male, John L. Colbert May 2017

Examining The Phenomenon Of Dropping Out Of High School Through The Perspectives And Experiences Of The African American Male, John L. Colbert

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

We expect all students to achieve and succeed in school, yet current data shows that 23.6% of African American students in Arkansas drop out of school (Bailey & Dziko, 2008). The African American male high school dropouts are much higher than the number of male dropouts from other ethnic groups. As the researcher reviewed the current data about African American dropouts, it was the impetus behind this study. Although many have discussed and written about African American male dropouts in educational forums, essays, short stories, dissertations, and even movies, few have captured the experiences of the African American males in …


Utilizing The Nsse To Examine Behavior And Characteristic Differences Between First-Year Students Who Persisted With First-Year Students Who Did Not Persist, Alice Ruth Griffin May 2017

Utilizing The Nsse To Examine Behavior And Characteristic Differences Between First-Year Students Who Persisted With First-Year Students Who Did Not Persist, Alice Ruth Griffin

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

This study examined the differences between first-year students who persisted with first-year students who did not persist to the second year at a mid-size, doctorate-granting, public, research university in the mid-south. Specifically, the study utilized the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE) to compare the level of student-faculty interaction, experiences with the campus environment, and engagement in collaborative learning. Additionally, the study examined whether the differences in the three student engagement behaviors varied by gender, race/ethnicity, and first-generation college student status. Three theoretical frameworks were used as the foundation for the study including Tinto’s model of institutional action, Astin’s theory …


The Quiet Discrimination Of Lowered Expectations: A Study On The Independent Living Needs Of Severely Disabled Individuals In Kansas, Joe Dalgarn May 2017

The Quiet Discrimination Of Lowered Expectations: A Study On The Independent Living Needs Of Severely Disabled Individuals In Kansas, Joe Dalgarn

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Increasing the independence of individuals with severe disabilities is of increasing concern to schools and federal agencies. Improving quality of life for high needs individuals with disabilities is an objective of transition programs, which allow consumers to adapt from one aspect of life to the next. The purpose of this study is to examine the relationships between variables (a) vocational assessment and exploration; (b) workplace readiness training; (c) independent living skills; and (d) self-advocacy and self-care and the independence level of individuals with severe disabilities residing and receiving their education within an institutionalized setting. Finally, this study will examine the …


A Path To Academic Success: Learning Disabilities, Finding A Way, John S. Cooper May 2017

A Path To Academic Success: Learning Disabilities, Finding A Way, John S. Cooper

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

This thesis will highlight the difficulties students with learning disabilities have in the post-secondary environment. Special interest is given to how colleges and universities help these students become successful and graduate from college. Two universities are examined, the University of the Ozarks and the University of Arkansas. Each school has its own programs that provide accommodations to students with learning disabilities. The thesis will follow a student from each university, as they attend classes and Social activities.