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  Partner: UNT Libraries
 Degree Discipline: Special Education
 Collection: UNT Theses and Dissertations
The Impact of Teacher Perception of Cultural Competence on the Instructional Decision Making of English As Second Language (Esl) Students

The Impact of Teacher Perception of Cultural Competence on the Instructional Decision Making of English As Second Language (Esl) Students

Date: May 2014
Creator: Lim, Okyoung
Description: Recent research suggests that culturally responsive teaching (CRT) practices have the potential to increase student educational outcomes, as well as to reduce unnecessary or inappropriate placement referrals. Examination of the core components in CRT, teacher efficacy and cultural competence, is proposed to be a critical step to reduce unwarranted referrals of culturally and linguistically diverse students. However, there is limited empirical support for the relationship between CRT and instructional referrals, and even among existing studies there is inconsistency regarding the relation of these constructs. The purpose of this study is to examine teacher factors (i.e., teacher role, degree earned, years of teaching, ESL certification held, language proficiency and ethnicity) as a predictor of teacher competence, and the role these factors play in teachers’ referral decision making. To investigate these relationships, a national sample of elementary teachers (N = 258) completed a survey addressing their background, profession endorsements, sense of teaching efficiency, and the instructional decisions they would make in the scenarios presented. The results of this study revealed that teacher role (i.e., general, ESL or special educator) and ESL certification were important predictors of teacher competency. A statistically significant mean difference in teacher competency was found between teachers with and ...
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Educational Experiences of Youth with And/or At-risk for Emotional and Behavioral Disorders Residing in Foster Care Settings

Educational Experiences of Youth with And/or At-risk for Emotional and Behavioral Disorders Residing in Foster Care Settings

Date: August 2013
Creator: Lewis, Calli G.
Description: Research examining the academic experiences of youth with emotional and behavioral disorders (EBD) residing in foster care (FC) is scarce. Research is warranted to understand the academic strengths, weaknesses, and school disciplinary experiences of youth with EBD residing in FC. Data from the National Survey of Child and Adolescent Well-being II (NSCAW II) included data on eight participants classified as EBD. Having a limited number of participants classified as EBD in the data set, I used participants’ scores on the Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL) to classify participants who may be at-risk for EBD. Analyses were conducted to determine if significant relationships existed between participants’ internalizing and externalizing scores on the CBCL and their (a) scores on assessments of academic achievement and (b) behavior problems leading to suspension or expulsion. Results indicated that participants’ scores on the CBCL were not predictive of their academic achievement or of their numbers of behavior problems leading to suspension or expulsion.
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A Study of Novice Special Education Teachers’ Preparation to Teach Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders

A Study of Novice Special Education Teachers’ Preparation to Teach Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders

Date: May 2014
Creator: Callaway, Stacey E.
Description: The purpose of this study is to identify novice teachers’ perception of their preparedness to teach a class designed for students with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) after graduation from a traditional university-based special education program or from a special education alternative certification program. Teacher preparedness and the need for highly qualified teachers of students with ASD are relevant topics, as the prevalence rate of ASD continues to increase. This phenomenological qualitative study explores novice teachers’ perceptions of preparedness to teach students with ASD and their knowledge about teaching students with ASD. Semi-structured, in-depth interviews were conducted with six novice special education teachers of students with ASD. Results indicated that novice teachers of students with ASD have knowledge of autism and evidence-based practices (EBP), which they ascertained primarily through experiences such as; working directly with students with ASD, however, preservice education programs provided the participants with cursory information related to knowledge of ASD and EBP.
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Exploring General Education Pre-service Teachers’ Levels of Concern Regarding the Implementation of Response to Intervention

Exploring General Education Pre-service Teachers’ Levels of Concern Regarding the Implementation of Response to Intervention

Date: August 2013
Creator: Barrio Renteria, Brenda Leticia
Description: Schools are increasingly challenged to respond to educational initiatives, implement accountability measures, and incorporate standards-driven curriculum changes introduced by laws such as the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEIA) of 2004. IDEIA signified a shift in the field of education and intensified practitioners’ concerns about the identification and instruction of students with learning disabilities (LD). The revisions to IDEIA proposed alternative models for the evaluation and identification of students with LD, such as response to intervention (RTI). RTI is an educational framework that supports students at-risk for academic failure by focusing on preventative measures. As teachers’ roles evolve in response to innovations such as RTI, teacher preparation programs must adjust their focus and curriculum accordingly. A parallel mixed-methods design was used to explore 100 general education pre-service teachers’ levels of concern regarding the implementation of RTI based on the concerns based adoption model. The sample for the study integrated general education pre-service teachers enrolled in professional development schools (PDS) at two levels of candidacy, PDS1 and PDS2. Data collected was analyzed utilizing canonical correlation analysis (CCA), multivariate analysis of variance (MANOVA), descriptive statistics, and thematic analysis. Results explain general education pre-service teachers’ levels of knowledge had a negative relationship ...
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Examination of Contributing Factors for Successful Postsecondary Transitions to Institutions of Higher Education for Youth with High-incidence Disabilities

Examination of Contributing Factors for Successful Postsecondary Transitions to Institutions of Higher Education for Youth with High-incidence Disabilities

Date: August 2013
Creator: Collins, Emerald R.
Description: Transitions are a natural part of life. Youth grow and develop physically, socially, psychologically, and intellectually during primary and secondary school years. The transition from secondary to postsecondary education is an important transition as youth not only move from high school to college, but also from adolescence to young adulthood. It is a time when young adults naturally desire to become more independent in pursuit of their personal dreams and aspirations. The purpose of this study was to examine the impact that academic, psychological, and social factors on youth with high-incidence disabilities as they strive to make successful postsecondary education transitions. Current trends indicate youth with high-incidence disabilities are graduating from high school and are attending vocational schools, colleges, and universities in increasing numbers. Transition barriers still limit many youth who could otherwise attend institutions of higher education regardless of disability type. Findings suggest academic and psychological factors most significantly predict successful postsecondary education transitions. Recommendations for improved transition planning and parental training are suggested.
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The Use of a Stimulus Control Transfer Procedure to Teach Spontaneous Manding to Children with Autism

The Use of a Stimulus Control Transfer Procedure to Teach Spontaneous Manding to Children with Autism

Date: December 2013
Creator: Ward, Karen D.
Description: Current research indicates that the inability to spontaneously communicate needs or wants may result in the acquisition of unconventional forms of requesting such as aggression and tantrums. This in turn limits the amount of access that students with autism have to neurotypical peers and social environments. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of using a stimulus control transfer procedure on the acquisition of spontaneous mands. Four school-aged children with autism, two boys and two girls, participated in the study. A multiple baseline design across participants was utilized to demonstrate a functional relation between the stimulus control transfer procedures and the rate of spontaneous mands. Measurement variables included the frequency of spontaneous versus multiply-controlled mands during discrete trial training on a variety of verbal operants. Effectiveness of the intervention was analyzed through visual analysis and the magnitude of effect was assessed through effect size. Visual analysis indicated that three of the four participants learned to spontaneously mand for items out of view and demonstrated generalization across targets, staff and environments. The effect size for three participants were large (d = 1.94; d = 2.2; and d = 1.4), whereas the outcome of intervention for one participant (d ...
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The Extent of Autism Knowledge of Novice Alternatively Certified Special Education Teachers in Texas

The Extent of Autism Knowledge of Novice Alternatively Certified Special Education Teachers in Texas

Date: December 2013
Creator: Alward, Jennifer A.
Description: An increase in the prevalence rate of autism is not necessarily matched by a concurrent increase in the rate of highly qualified special education teachers. The low ratio of highly qualified teachers to the number of students with autism has resulted in chronic teacher shortages in this area. Alternative certification is used as a mechanism to alleviate the demand for highly qualified teachers in special education. However, alternative certification routes have often left novice teachers underprepared for teaching students with autism, more specifically in the implementation of evidence-based practices necessary for instructional effectiveness. The purposes of the study were: a) to assess the knowledge of novice alternatively certified (AC) teachers in the area of autism education; and b) to determine the extent to which age, credit hours of instruction, formal hours of instruction, amount of professional development, and number of students with autism predict the variance in knowledge scores. Participants included all novice (i.e., first-and second-year) alternatively certified special education teachers in the state of Texas. Data were collected through an electronic survey instrument disseminated state-wide to approximately 33 individuals. Multiple regression was conducted in order to determine the strongest predictors of autism knowledge scores. In addition, a multi-way ANOVA ...
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Preschool Teachers' Self-reported Levels of Preparation for Classroom Behavior Management

Preschool Teachers' Self-reported Levels of Preparation for Classroom Behavior Management

Date: August 2013
Creator: Lohmann, Marla J.
Description: Research indicates that serious behavior problems begin during the early childhood years. The study examined the perceived preparedness of teachers related to behavior management as well as preschool teachers' usage of evidence-based prevention and intervention strategies. The data indicates that preschool teachers feel prepared for managing aggression in their classrooms and report utilizing evidence-based prevention and intervention strategies regularly. Additionally, the data shows a weak relationship between teacher variables and the likelihood of feeling prepared for managing aggression or utilizing evidence-based strategies. The results can be used to gain a better understanding of special education preschool teachers' training needs in regard to behavior management and managing behavior problems in the preschool classroom.
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A Longitudinal Study of Graduation, Retention, and School Dropout for Students in Regular and Special Education

A Longitudinal Study of Graduation, Retention, and School Dropout for Students in Regular and Special Education

Date: May 1998
Creator: Smith, Karen S., 1948-
Description: This study examined differences in retention, graduation, and dropout between students in grades 9-12 in special education and regular education in the state of Texas for school years 1992-93 through 1995-96. The purpose was to gather information regarding the possible adverse effects of increased academic standards and mandatory testing on students with disabilities. The results indicate that when compared to students in regular education, students with disabilities are significantly more likely to be retained and are not experiencing the same decline in dropout rates as regular students. There is no indication that students with disabilities have been adversely affected by school reform but the size of the school district may play a significant role in whether or not students with disabilities dropout of school.
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Reliability of Authentic Assessment in Fourth-Grade Narrative and Descriptive Written Language for Students with and without Learning Disabilities

Reliability of Authentic Assessment in Fourth-Grade Narrative and Descriptive Written Language for Students with and without Learning Disabilities

Date: August 1994
Creator: Herron, Shelley R. (Shelley Rene)
Description: The purpose of this study was to determine reliability estimates of authentic assessment for fourth-grade narrative and descriptive writing samples for students with and without learning disabilities. Three types of reliability estimates were established: (a) inter-rater, (b) score stability, and (c) alternate-form. The research design involved 40 teachers, trained in holistic scoring by Education Service Centers 10 and 11 in Dallas and Fort Worth, Texas, who scored 16 writing samples. Approximately 2 weeks later the teachers rescored 8 of the same writing samples. In addition to scoring the writing samples, the teachers also completed a demographic questionnaire. The writing samples, which consisted of eight narrative and eight descriptive writings, were selected based upon teachers' holistic scores and scores from 1993 writing sample of the Texas Assessment of Academic Skills. Based upon these scores, two narrative and descriptive writings of above-average, average, and below-average writings were selected. In addition, two narrative and descriptive writing samples of students with learning disabilities in written language were selected.
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