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The Use Of Culturally Relevant Pedagogy In Esol Classes, Beth A. O. Haddinger Dec 2023

The Use Of Culturally Relevant Pedagogy In Esol Classes, Beth A. O. Haddinger

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

This dissertation is organized into five distinct chapters addressing multiple aspects of learning and engagement as it relates to English Language Learners (ELLs) in the classroom. First, the problem of practice is identified and explored. We, as educators, must look closely at instructional and systemic issues, actionable elements, broader strategies of improvement, and leverage, which refers to the ability of a program to motivate students and to generate a sense of practical value in academics. The next aspect of this dissertation proposal reviews the existing research literature. This literature review focuses on the specific learning needs of ELL students. Specifically …


Economic Disadvantage, Nativity, And Academic Performance And School Punishment Among Latino/A Children, Yolanda Chavez May 2022

Economic Disadvantage, Nativity, And Academic Performance And School Punishment Among Latino/A Children, Yolanda Chavez

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Cultural explanations of how familial resource inequality negatively impacts the academic well-being of a Latino/a child saturate the literature. This study examines the relationship between economic disadvantage and academic performance and school punishment through Family Stress Process Theory, providing a contextual analysis of resource instability. The additional myriad of legal and social constraints that parental nativity provides for family members can moderate this relationship. Data was drawn from the Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing Study, a longitudinal measure of U.S. couples and their children in 20 large U.S. cities. Regression models indicate the relationship between economic disadvantage and academic performance …


Employing Empathy: Using Video Simulations As An Intervention To Educate Social Work Students, Charles Adam Laffiteau May 2020

Employing Empathy: Using Video Simulations As An Intervention To Educate Social Work Students, Charles Adam Laffiteau

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

A video simulation featuring a Master of Social Work (MSW) student assessing a fictional client, portrayed by a professionally trained student actor, dealing with suicidal ideations was developed to model empathetic and reflective techniques. The video simulation was filmed in collaboration with University of Arkansas Global Campus and is part of an interdisciplinary educational pilot program. This pilot program builds upon traditional role-play scenarios by incorporating experiential learning within the creation of cost-effective simulated interactions that employ student actors as standardized clients. Combining social learning theory and constructivism allows Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) students to observe and analyze the …


College Student Changing Attitudes And Beliefs About The Nature Of And Teaching Of Mathematics And Science, Stephen R. Skinner May 2020

College Student Changing Attitudes And Beliefs About The Nature Of And Teaching Of Mathematics And Science, Stephen R. Skinner

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

With an estimated 17.3 million STEM jobs in the US, there exists a need for a STEMready workforce that is science literate with positive attitudes and beliefs toward the learning and teaching of mathematics and science (Graf, Fry, & Funk, 2018). However, the US has seen a steady decline in the number of high school students interested in STEM-related fields with only 16% of interested students with proven proficiency in mathematics and science and are ready to enroll in college STEM programs (ACT, 2017; Osborne & Dillon, 2008; Stake & Mares, 2001). With the decline in student interest, the US …


Crumbling Foundations: The Case For Prioritizing Self-Care Among Educational Leaders, Joshua Brent Ray May 2019

Crumbling Foundations: The Case For Prioritizing Self-Care Among Educational Leaders, Joshua Brent Ray

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

There is a potentially dangerous disassociation between human behavior, decision-making, and ethics and the notion that these fundamental aspects of what it means to be human originate simply as the functions of an organ. A deeper knowledge of the operation and limitations of the brain suggests biological input could possess the ability to unknowingly alter human behavior and effectiveness. This study utilizes a research-based understanding of the implications of human health and self-care habits on neurological, psychological, and behavioral function to examine the current practices of educational administrators across Arkansas while exploring systemic and job-based factors within the profession that …


The Effect Of Teacher Race On Student Perceptions In Low-Income Schools, Benton M. Brown May 2018

The Effect Of Teacher Race On Student Perceptions In Low-Income Schools, Benton M. Brown

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

In the wake of the Brown v. Board of Education (1954) decision, thousands of teachers of color lost their jobs as black students were integrated into mostly white schools. The number of black teachers in schools across the United States has never recovered resulting in a teaching workforce that is less diverse than the student population that they teach. Many studies have examined the possible impact of this discrepancy including the possibility that this has contributed to the black-white achievement gap that exists in the United States. Other studies have examined the non-academic impacts of a less diverse workforce including …


An Analysis Of Adult Educators’ Experiences With Professional Development Activities, Robbie Scott Cornelius May 2018

An Analysis Of Adult Educators’ Experiences With Professional Development Activities, Robbie Scott Cornelius

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

This study was designed to explore Adult Basic Education (ABE), Adult Secondary Education (ASE), and English as a Second Language (ESL) teachers’ experiences with professional development. The study sought to determine whether adult learning principles were evident in the facilitation of professional development activities. The study instrument was administered online to members of the Coalition on Adult Basic Education (COABE), with a total of n=348 respondents to the survey. The survey consisted of demographic questions, questions related to professional development experiences, and an open response question. The majority of respondents were teachers/instructors (n=232, 66.7%), held a master’s degree (n=187, 54.4%), …


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 …


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) …


Implementation Of A Standards-Based Grading Model: A Study Of Parent And Teacher Perceptions Of Success, Amber Dee Wheeler May 2017

Implementation Of A Standards-Based Grading Model: A Study Of Parent And Teacher Perceptions Of Success, Amber Dee Wheeler

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

The purpose of this study is to explore the perceptions of parents and teachers regarding the success of a standards-based grading initiative in meeting its goals. Furthermore, findings from this study will be used to inform decisions made in future grade level implementations. Standards-based grading meets all criteria for a problem of practice. The literature situates standards-based grading as a high impact strategy that can affect the entire system. This mixed-methods study will be used to determine practical changes for a school implementing standards-based grading. This study found parents positively responded to the change, and parents understood their child’s current …


Strategies Of Reading As A Second Language Instruction Across Curriculum In Secondary Grades, Anisa A. Ben Idris May 2017

Strategies Of Reading As A Second Language Instruction Across Curriculum In Secondary Grades, Anisa A. Ben Idris

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

This study explored what themes of best practices teachers report using in real classrooms to teach reading skills to ESL students across curricula. It examined teachers’ applications of the following five themes in their instruction as a regular routine described as best practices in the literature for teaching diverse students: (1) providing comprehensible input, (2) teaching learning strategies of metacognition to bridge the gap between school literacy practices and home literacy practices (3) lowering the affective filter, (4) implementing formative assessment, and (5) cooperating between teachers and ESL facilitators. The study involved teachers from two high schools in one school …


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 …


Factors Contributing To The Problem Of Student Absenteeism In A Rural School, Angela Denean Durborow May 2017

Factors Contributing To The Problem Of Student Absenteeism In A Rural School, Angela Denean Durborow

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Student attendance would seem to be a vital link in measuring student success in school. If students are not in school, they miss instruction from the teacher. Without instruction it seems incredibly difficult to complete the work needed to pass classes and be successful in school. The research explored the problem of practice of student absenteeism in a rural school. The study was conducted using mixed methods research methodology, specifically a sequential mixed methods research design. The research questions were as follows: (1) What explicit or implicit messages are parents and the school sending about school attendance? (2) What is …


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.


Bridging The Gap: An Exploratory Study On Classroom-Workplace Collaborations, Katelynn Dixon May 2017

Bridging The Gap: An Exploratory Study On Classroom-Workplace Collaborations, Katelynn Dixon

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

“Bridging the gap” between theory and practice has historically been challenging. There is a definite lag between textbook knowledge and “real-world” application. For decades colleges have been adopting different Executive-In-Residence (EIR) models to help with this concern. Various EIR models include bringing industry professionals into the classes as guest speakers, hosting a series of one-on-one meetings, and conducting seminars and workshops. There is little to no research on EIRs in the Hospitality and Tourism field. In today’s modern time, the hospitality industry is a forerunner in the service industry, thus making this research extremely beneficial to the body of knowledge …


Error Analysis: A Case Study On Non-Native English Speaking College Applicants’ Electronic Mail Communications, Casey Kraichoke May 2017

Error Analysis: A Case Study On Non-Native English Speaking College Applicants’ Electronic Mail Communications, Casey Kraichoke

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

The purpose of this study is to discover major writing problems international college applicants make when composing electronic communications by analyzing the nature and distribution of their writing errors. Additionally, the researcher seeks to discover if there is a relationship between non-native English speakers’ (NNS) writing errors and demographics, which include: gender, country of origin, country of origin’s official language, program level, and program of study. The researcher hypothesizes that countries with English as an official language and the language of instruction in higher education are the most significant predictor of non-native English speakers’ writing errors in terms of count …


On The Right Track: Exploring Influences Contributing To Successful Track-Switching Of Indians Working For A U.S. Company, Rose-Marie Speck May 2017

On The Right Track: Exploring Influences Contributing To Successful Track-Switching Of Indians Working For A U.S. Company, Rose-Marie Speck

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

The purpose of this study was to explore how Indian managers assessed the influences leading to their transition from technician to manager when working for a company in the U.S. This study was based on interviews with fifteen Indian managers who had track-switched from a technical job to a management position in the U.S. in a U.S. company. The interviewees were asked five questions about what they believed made them successful in track-switching, and the consensus among interviewees was that for a technician to track-switch effectively, the technician had to have excellent technical skills. In addition to technical skills, the …


Measuring Racial Competence In Athletic Academic Support Staffs, Aquasia Thornhill May 2017

Measuring Racial Competence In Athletic Academic Support Staffs, Aquasia Thornhill

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Critical Race Theory, a theoretical framework that has been gaining much recognition in sport literature, is a useful and beneficial tool in discussing race and racism. To better understand the context in which academic support staff appreciate the functionality and significance of race, the present study measures the racial competence of athletic academic support staffs. This research study explores the need to integrate a model such as Critical Race Theory that promotes “racial competency” among academic support staffs working closely with student-athletes of color, and measures Color-Blind Racial Attitudes that may have effects on the types of interactions individuals are …


Successful Secondary Agricultural Programs Outside The Classroom: A View Of Champions, Andrew Bolton Dec 2016

Successful Secondary Agricultural Programs Outside The Classroom: A View Of Champions, Andrew Bolton

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

The purpose of this study was to study select secondary agricultural education programs and determine common traits among these programs which lead them to be successful in a number of different areas including: Career Development Events (CDE) winners, Leadership Development Events (LDE) winners, agricultural science fair winners, chapters of elected state FFA officers, proficiency award winners, national chapter awards, and state fair market show results. This study utilized a modified Delphi approach consisting of three rounds to reach consensus on the importance of traits related to successful SAE and FFA programs. Many traits were identified but the most important traits …


Leveling The Playing Field: Teacher Perception Of Integrated Stem, Engineering, And Engineering Practices, Bridgette Fincher Dec 2016

Leveling The Playing Field: Teacher Perception Of Integrated Stem, Engineering, And Engineering Practices, Bridgette Fincher

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

The purpose of this study was to describe the perceptions and approaches of 14 third-through-fifth grade Arkansan elementary teachers towards integrative engineering and engineering practices during 80 hours of integrated STEM professional development training in the summer and fall of 2014. This training was known as Project Flight. The purpose of the professional development was to learn integrated STEM content related to aviation and to write grade level curriculum units using Wiggins and McTighe’s Understanding by Design curriculum framework. The current study builds upon on the original research.

Using a mixed method exploratory, embedded QUAL[quan] case study design and a …


Increasing Superintendent Longevity In Kansas, Cory Lee Gibson Dec 2016

Increasing Superintendent Longevity In Kansas, Cory Lee Gibson

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

This study aims to illuminate the factors that may impact a superintendent’s longevity in the same district. Specifically, this study is motivated by four research questions: (1) What factors do superintendents in Kansas attribute to remaining in the same position greater than six years? (2) What factors do superintendents in Kansas attribute as the causes for leaving a district? (3) What is the current level of satisfaction of Kansas school superintendents within their current roles? and (4) What are some changes in policy or practice that may increase superintendent longevity in Kansas?

According to Dale Dennis, Kansas Deputy Commissioner of …


Preparedness To Counsel Transgender College Students: Perceptions Of College Mental Health Clinicians, Valerie G. Couture Dec 2016

Preparedness To Counsel Transgender College Students: Perceptions Of College Mental Health Clinicians, Valerie G. Couture

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

The purpose of this study was to assess the perceived preparedness levels of college mental health clinicians to counsel transgender college students. Multicultural counseling competency is required of professional counselors and transgender individuals are considered to be part of the multicultural population. A survey was completed by college mental health counselors (N = 84) from across the United States. The results showed a moderate amount of preparedness overall with no significant differences based on years of counseling experience nor graduation from a CACREP accredited program. Results did show the participants believed they do have a professional duty to be knowledgeable …


Examining Exemplary P-20 Partnerships Using A Mixed Methods Approach, Elizabeth Erin Smith Dec 2016

Examining Exemplary P-20 Partnerships Using A Mixed Methods Approach, Elizabeth Erin Smith

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Historically, P-12 schools and institutions of higher education have operated independently of each other, creating a gap that acts as a barrier between high school and postsecondary institutions. This gap is blamed for many societal issues including high college remediation rates, low college-going rates among minority groups, and low six-year college graduation rates. P-20 partnerships, agreements between P-12 schools and institutions of higher education with the purpose of improving the P-20 education system, have emerged as a way to address these problems.

From laboratory schools in the 19th century to modern-day professional development schools, P-20 partnerships in teacher education have …


An Analysis Of Secondary Integrated Stem Lesson Plans: Common Characteristics, Learning Expectations And The Impact From The Teacher's Definition Of I-Stem, Jacob Hayward Dec 2016

An Analysis Of Secondary Integrated Stem Lesson Plans: Common Characteristics, Learning Expectations And The Impact From The Teacher's Definition Of I-Stem, Jacob Hayward

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

This qualitative study investigated teachers’ understanding of their definition of I-STEM (Integrated STEM education), how those understandings manifested into lessons and associated lesson artifacts, how they assessed students in such lessons, and what factors or rationales supported their ability to conduct or not conduct I-STEM lessons. A survey was sent to the members of four professional organizations representing I-STEM disciplines to solicit their participation in this project. Ten teachers ranging from grades 9-12 participated in this study. Of those who responded, six teachers identified with National Science Teachers Association (NSTA), three teachers selected International Technology and Engineering Education Association (ITEEA), …


"That's Empowering!": The Influence Of Community Activism Curriculum On Gifted Adolescents' Self-Concepts, Ashley D. Beason-Manes Dec 2016

"That's Empowering!": The Influence Of Community Activism Curriculum On Gifted Adolescents' Self-Concepts, Ashley D. Beason-Manes

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

The first of the following manuscripts addresses the experiences of a group of gifted middle school students as they engaged in community action projects that provided them opportunity to become activists in their school, neighborhood, and larger community. This study pays special attention to participants’ self-concepts as measured by the Harter Self-Perception Profile for Children (2012) and through participant interviews. The study finds evidence of students’ co-cognitive components of giftedness when themes of courage, sensitivity to human concerns, and sense of destiny are applied. Main themes from Harter’s scale are also applied, and participant interviews reveal evidence of academic and …


How Select Groups Of Preservice Science Teachers With Inquiry Orientations View Teaching And Learning Science Through Inquiry, Peggy Diana Ward Dec 2016

How Select Groups Of Preservice Science Teachers With Inquiry Orientations View Teaching And Learning Science Through Inquiry, Peggy Diana Ward

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Although hailed as a powerful form of instruction, in most teaching and learning contexts, inquiry-based instruction is fraught with ambiguous and conflicting definitions and descriptions. Yet little has been written about the experiences preservice science teacher have regarding their learning to teach science through inquiry. This project sought to understand how select preservice secondary science teachers enrolled in three UTeach programs in Arkansas conceptualize inquiry instruction and how they rationalize its value in a teaching and learning context. The three teacher education programs investigated in this study are adoption sites aligned with the UTeach Program in Austin, TX that distinguishes …


Educational Technology And Innovation Capacity In Arkansas Public Schools, Allie Nicole Taylor Aug 2016

Educational Technology And Innovation Capacity In Arkansas Public Schools, Allie Nicole Taylor

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

We all have high hopes for our educational system. As they stress the need for 21st century learning, governments recognize the importance of innovation and creativity in schools and invest resources to develop learning environments that foster these qualities. This thesis adapts Crosling, Nair, and Vaithilingam’s (2015) model to provide a framework for studying factors that contribute to a creative learning ecosystem (intellectual capital development, 21st century literacies, climate for innovation, and integrity of the system), the quality of the educational system, and the system’s innovation capacity. A survey of 126 Arkansas high school teachers, indicates that two variables, student’s …


Experiences Of Agricultural Education Preservice Teachers Engaging In Critical Friendships, Sable Sellick Aug 2016

Experiences Of Agricultural Education Preservice Teachers Engaging In Critical Friendships, Sable Sellick

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Like educators in other disciplines, agricultural education preservice teachers must find ways to improve as teachers using methods such as reflection or peer observation. Critical friendship combines both, promoting reflection through the use of a critical friend who observes an individual’s teaching and provides constructive criticism to help the individual advance their practice. This qualitative study sought to use the critical friendship concept to assist agricultural education preservice teachers in reflecting on their teaching techniques. Participants were randomly assigned to one of two groups; one group selected a critical friend in agricultural education, and the other group selected a critical …


Teachers And The Development Of Student Noncognitive Skills, Albert Cheng Aug 2016

Teachers And The Development Of Student Noncognitive Skills, Albert Cheng

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Scholars of education policy are increasingly aware of the independent role that noncognitive skills (e.g., self-regulation, Social skills, and other personality or character traits) play in long- and short-run student well-being. However, little is known about how these skills are effectively developed. One theory is that noncognitive skills are developed through role modeling by teachers. A student, by virtue of observing and sharing a Social connection with his or her schoolteachers, begins to emulate noncognitive skills that they exhibit. In this dissertation, I test this theory. I focus specifically on noncognitive skills related to conscientiousness and measure them using new …


Social Learning Remixed: Peer-Based Learning And Social Status In An Online Community Of Practice, Christopher Erin Mikkelson Aug 2016

Social Learning Remixed: Peer-Based Learning And Social Status In An Online Community Of Practice, Christopher Erin Mikkelson

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

People have engaged in peer-to-peer learning within communities of practice (CoPs) for centuries. Thanks to web 2.0 technology, people in the 21st century can now learn together and enact Social status even if they have never met face-to-face. Online communities of practice have since formed around a wide variety of activities, one of which is remixing. Remixing is defined as combining or editing existing materials to produce something new, but leaving each part recognizable as a separate entity. Remixing has recently been recognized as form of digital literacy because users must understand each component to make a good remix. Much …