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Condom Use Among College Students

Description: With the spread of the Human Immuno-Deficiency Virus and sexually transmitted diseases, it is extremely important for sexually active individuals to protect themselves properly if they decide to engage in sexual intercourse. Knowledge of HIV and the Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome has been associated with safer sexual practices, but knowledge alone does not totally explain risky sexual practices. This study examined how 154 college students' knowledge of HIV/AIDS, relationship status, perceptions of condom use, and perceptions of personal risk affect condom use during sexual intercourse. The impact of trust and love justifications along with the approval of peers were also examined. Perceptions of condom use and perceptions of personal risk were compared by gender and ethnicity; how perception of personal risk is related to condom use and condom use intentions was also examined. Condom use intention was found to be a significant predictor of condom use, and a significant difference of means for condom use intentions was reported between individuals who used condoms during their last experience with sexual intercourse and those who did not use condoms during their last sexual experience
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Date: August 2001
Creator: Bradshaw, Joe W.

Dimensions of Social Network Position As Predictors of Employee Performance.

Description: Research of social networks has revealed that certain components of network position can have an impact on organizational effectiveness, yet relatively little research has been conducted on network position and individual performance. This study sought to determine if a relationship exists between an employee's social network position and an individual's job performance. The participant organization was a network of individuals within an Information Technology (IT) department at a major defense company. A social network analysis (SNA) was conducted to determine the employee's network position, measured by centrality and constraint. Centrality refers to the extent to which an individual is connected to others. Constraint refers to how constrained or inhibited an individual is within the network. Performance was measured by annual appraisal ratings provided by the employee's supervisor. Hierarchical regression analysis was performed to determine relationships between the dependent variable (performance) and independent variables of centrality and constraint. Secondary variables also studied in relation to the model included education level, service years (tenure), job grade, and age. The overall model revealed 17% of variance explained. The primary predictors of network position, centrality and constraint, were not statistically significant predictors of performance ratings. Three variables, job grade, tenure and age, were found to be statistically significant predictors of employee performance. Further research is suggested to provide additional insight into the predictive value of these variables.
Date: August 2007
Creator: Burton, Paul

Conflict Resolution Strategies in Young Children: Do They Do What They Say?

Description: This study examined the consistency between verbal responses to hypothetical conflict scenarios and the actual conflict resolutions techniques children apply in everyday play. Twenty-one children were interviewed and observed in order to determine their conflict resolution strategies. During the interview process, each child was asked to finish 6 hypothetical conflict scenarios. During the observation portion, each child was observed in 2 conflict scenarios. Significant (p < .05) differences were found with regards to verbal responses for 3 scenarios, verbal and behavioral responses of females (females exhibited more socially acceptable conflict resolution strategies in their verbal responses, yet less socially acceptable conflict resolution strategies in their behavioral responses), and socially acceptable responses to conflict in verbal strategies. Results were discussed in light of previous research comparing gender differences and peer relationships to conflict resolution strategies.
Date: December 2007
Creator: Leventhal, Julie Erin

A Quantitative Modeling Approach to Examining High School, Pre-Admission, Program, Certification and Career Choice Variables in Undergraduate Teacher Preparation Programs

Description: The purpose of this study was to examine if there is an association between effective supervision and communication competence in divisions of student affairs at Christian higher education institutions. The investigation examined chief student affairs officers (CSAOs) and their direct reports at 45 institutions across the United States using the Synergistic Supervision Scale and the Communication Competence Questionnaire. A positive significant association was found between the direct report's evaluation of the CSAO's level of synergistic supervision and the direct report's evaluation of the CSAO's level of communication competence. The findings of this study will advance the supervision and communication competence literature while informing practice for student affairs professionals. This study provides a foundation of research in the context specific field of student affairs where there has been a dearth of literature regarding effective supervision. This study can be used as a platform for future research to further the understanding of characteristics that define effective supervision.
Date: December 2007
Creator: Williams, Cynthia Savage

Student Scores on Advanced Placement Exams: Gender Variables

Description: The results of the Advanced Placement exams given to students in 2006 were disaggregated according to gender. The level of performance was compared between males and females using Cohen's d. The standardized differences between male and female performance group levels were compared to previous results for the 1992 Advanced Placement (AP) exams. One purpose of this study was to determine whether or not the male-favored results that existed in 1992 still existed in the 2006. This study found that differences still exist in results based on gender and no real progress has been made in reducing the gap in achievement between males and females. A second purpose of this study was to compare and contrast the local data to the national data set to see if scores in Brazosport were similar to scores collected at the national level. To determine if similar results would be obtained at the local level the results of 267 Advanced Placement exams taken by 190 students from Brazsosport Independent School District in 2006 were disaggregated according to gender. The level of performance was compared between males and females using Hedge's g. Because of limited sample size, only 9 Advanced Placement exams were reviewed at the local level. This study found that the results from Brazosport were, in many cases, quite different from those found on the national level and there was no pattern to explain the variation among the differences. This study supports the collection of local data for monitoring gender bias that might exist on Advanced Placement exams. The data collected in the current study indicates that individual district progress in overcoming gender differences that historically have existed in specific scores on the AP exam might be overlooked if only national data is reviewed.
Date: December 2007
Creator: Brown, Staci Deanne

Teacher Turnover among Teachers of Students with Emotional and Behavior Disorders

Description: The purpose of this study was to investigate factors that compel teachers of students with emotional and behavioral disorders (E/BD) to quit or stay in their job. Invitations to participate in the study were sent to a sample of educators from each the four census regions of the United States who currently work or have worked in the past worked with students with E/BD and have participated in one or more of the Council for Children with Behavioral Disorders (CCBD) professional development events. A total of 156 educators responded to the online survey and 9 participated in the focus groups. Quantitative information generated from the survey was analyzed using frequency distributions and ANOVA, whereas, qualitative information were analyzed by summarizing and sorting information into different categories. The results were presented in narrative and tabular form and organized in response to each of the research questions. The projected high teacher turnover as depicted in the findings, were mainly attributed to workplace variables and classroom conditions. Both variables are likely to be associated with high levels of dissatisfaction and lack of commitment eventually leading to decisions by teachers of students with E/BD to leave their job. Most respondents perceived themselves as being adequately prepared for responsibilities associated with teaching students with E/BD. The low variances associated with the grouping variable, career decisions did not explain a significant amount of variance in perceived levels of preparedness with regards to implementation of various program components and instructional activities. Hence, teacher qualifications and perceptions did not play a significant role in career decisions made by teachers of students with E/BD. In addition, findings reveal the need for all future teachers regardless of their certification to take specialized courses in special education to ensure that all teachers understand the unique characteristics and needs of students with ...
Date: December 2007
Creator: Adera, Beatrice Atieno

The Relationships Between Perceived Parenting Style, Academic Self-Efficacy and College Adjustment of Freshman Engineering Students

Description: This study examined the relationships between perceived parenting styles, academic self-efficacy, and college adjustment among a sample of 31 freshman engineering students. Through the administration of self-report surveys and chi-square analyses, strong academic self-efficacy was demonstrated in students who reported authoritative maternal parenting. These findings support previous research on the relationship between academic self-efficacy and parenting styles. Implications were drawn for parents and future research.
Date: May 2008
Creator: Shaw, Nancy Elaine

A Case Study of Intervention with an At-Risk Preschool Child.

Description: This study evaluates archival data from a home intervention with an at-risk preschool child and her family. The intervention model studied was created by the Developmental Research Lab at Texas Christian University. Data was collected prior to and during the first 4 weeks of intervention to assess change in parent-child interaction, behavior and neurochemical profile. Measures used include coding of videotape recordings of the intervention, neurotransmitter levels taken via subject urine samples, Child Behavior Checklist, Parent Stress Index, and ACTeRS Parent Form. Results suggest positive change in parent-child interaction, behavior and neurochemical profile. However, consistent growth was not observed in several neurochemical results. Future studies should assess the entirety of the home intervention model and with a larger sample size.
Date: August 2008
Creator: Johnson, Elizabeth Proffitt

A follow-up study of a masters program for teachers of students with emotional/behavioral disorders.

Description: Educators today are faced with a worthy goal. Every student, including those with emotional and behavioral disorders (EBD), must be taught by a qualified teacher. However, recruiting, training, and retaining quality special education teachers continue to confound the field. The purpose of this study was to determine if the completion of a NCATE/CEC (National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education/Council for Exceptional Children) approved masters program specializing in EBD from a well-known university increased the confidence in knowledge and skills of special educators, the numbers of special educators, and/or the retention of special educators working with students with EBD. The sample in this study was composed of 199 students who had completed the master's degree in special education who specialized in emotional/behavioral disorders from 1985 to 2005. Data were compiled from 80 students at a response rate of approximately 40%. Additionally, five respondents participated in face-to-face interviews. The data did not lend themselves to the quantitative analysis and thus pose a limitation to the generalizability of this study. However, combined with the qualitative analysis, the study provided a rich analysis of a program whose graduates stay in the field of special education providing services to students with EBD.
Date: August 2008
Creator: Walter, Paulette C.

Heard but not seen: Instructor-led video and its effect on learning.

Description: Educators and instructional designers are seeking ways to increase levels of learning. One of the ways this is being done is through cognitive load theory which attempts to reduce cognitive load through a better understanding of working memory and the factors that impact its function. Past studies have found that working memory processes visual and auditory information using separate and non-sharable resources (dual coding theory) and that by properly utilizing multimedia elements, information processing in working memory is more efficient (multimedia learning). What is not known is the effect that instructor-led video, which uses the visual channel but delivers no information, has on the cognitive load of the learner. Further, will the introduction of multimedia elements make the information processing of the learner more efficient? This study examined three ways in which instructional designers may create a more efficient learning environment through a better understanding of multimedia learning. First, by using the theories of multimedia learning, I examined a more efficient use of sensory memory. By minimizing extraneous load, which communication theory calls noise, on working memory through increased utilization of the visual and auditory channels, the effectiveness of instruction was increased. Secondly, the multimedia effect, defined as using visual helps and guides with spoken and written text, was shown to assist working memory in processing new information into existing schema. Last, by using the personalization principle set forth by Clark and Mayer (2008), I used both the video feed and multimedia together to foster a more social or conversational presentation to the learner.
Date: August 2008
Creator: Holder, David E.

Marital conflict and marital satisfaction among Latina mothers: A comparison of participants in an early intervention program and non-participants.

Description: The purpose of the study was to better understand marital conflict and marital satisfaction among Latina mothers in the Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngsters (HIPPY) program. Latina mothers living in a marriage or in a committed relationship (n = 91) reported levels of marital conflict and marital satisfaction. Between both groups, non-HIPPY mothers reported significantly less marital satisfaction and more conflict associated with affection than HIPPY mothers. A negative correlation (r = -.495, p <.001, n = 91) indicated that more satisfaction was related to less marital conflict. Out of ten marital conflicts, religion, leisure time, drinking, and other women (outside the relationship) best explained how satisfied mothers were in their relationship with their spouse. In this study, participants who were in the HIPPY program may have more support and higher marital quality. Social service programs such as HIPPY may help families build stronger marriages. Further research on Latino/Hispanic culture and values are important when developing culturally sensitive marriage and couples education.
Date: August 2008
Creator: Flores, Marisa J.

Frequency and quality of the implementation of functional behavioral assessments as reported by educators.

Description: The research investigation reported herein examined the quality and experience of the functional behavioral assessment (FBA) process as reported by educators working with students with emotional/behavioral disorders (EBD). The data accrued is based on a 30-item survey and participant telephone interviews examined the overall knowledge of the FBA process by educators and their general experience when conducting a FBA, specifically the procedural timeline, types of education professionals involved, and typical outcomes and results. Survey responses indicated two common barriers in the FBA implementation which often inhibit best practice: lack of true collaborative teamwork and insufficient communication among FBA team members. Survey responses also indicated a level of statistical significance from education professionals working in elementary school settings who self-rated positively higher when conducting a FBA than those education professionals working on either a secondary or special campus. Additionally, participant interviews indicated a growing awareness of the advantages of using the FBA as an early intervention process when dealing with challenging behaviors.
Date: December 2008
Creator: Moreno, Gerardo

Investigating the hypothesized factor structure of the Noel-Levitz Student Satisfaction Inventory: A study of the student satisfaction construct.

Description: College student satisfaction is a concept that has become more prevalent in higher education research journals. Little attention has been given to the psychometric properties of previous instrumentation, and few studies have investigated the structure of current satisfaction instrumentation. This dissertation: (a) investigated the tenability of the theoretical dimensional structure of the Noel-Levitz Student Satisfaction Inventory™ (SSI), (b) investigated an alternative factor structure using explanatory factor analyses (EFA), and (c) used multiple-group CFA procedures to determine whether an alternative SSI factor structure would be invariant for three demographic variables: gender (men/women), race/ethnicity (Caucasian/Other), and undergraduate classification level (lower level/upper level). For this study, there was little evidence for the multidimensional structure of the SSI. A single factor, termed General Satisfaction with College, was the lone unidimensional construct that emerged from the iterative CFA and EFA procedures. A revised 20-item model was developed, and a series of multigroup CFAs were used to detect measurement invariance for three variables: student gender, race/ethnicity, and class level. No measurement invariance was noted for the revised 20-item model. Results for the invariance tests indicated equivalence across the comparison groups for (a) the number of factors, (b) the pattern of indicator-factor loadings, (c) the factor loadings, and (d) the item error variances. Because little attention has been given to the psychometric properties of the satisfaction instrumentation, it is recommended that further research continue on the SSI and any additional instrumentation developed to measure student satisfaction. It is possible that invariance issues may explain a portion of the inconsistent findings noted in the review of literature. Although measurement analyses are a time-consuming process, they are essential for understanding the psychometrics characterized by a set of scores obtained from a survey, or any other form of assessment instrument.
Date: December 2008
Creator: Odom, Leslie R.

The Big Five Personality Characteristics of World of Warcraft Players

Description: This study is a comparative analysis of the personality characteristics of a sample of World of Warcraft players (n = 147) and a large normative sample (n = 20,993). The 120-item International Personality Item Pool, based on the five factor model, is used. Independent t-tests were conducted and statistical significance was found for some factors; however, the effect sizes were small, indicating a limited practical difference between the two groups.
Date: May 2009
Creator: Winter, Jessica L.

A Comparative Study of Advanced Placement and Learning Differenced Students: Comparing Internal Attribution and Correlation to Hopefulness.

Description: The goal of this research was to determine if there are significant differences in the attribution styles for positive and negative events between students of differing ability and the correlation of these attribution styles to hopefulness. The study examined twelfth grade advanced placement (AP N = 45) students and twelfth grade students with documented learning differences enrolled in college preparatory classes (CP-LD N = 14). Both groups of students came from high socioeconomic backgrounds. The students' internal attributions related to hopefulness were measured with the Hope Scale (Snyder, 1994) which assesses the constructs of agency (will), pathway (way), and produces an overall hopefulness score. Results indicate that AP and CP-LD students had similar measures of internal attribution for positive events, but significantly distinct measures of internal attribution for negative events. However, the AP students show no statistically significant difference from CP-LD students in their measures of agency, pathway, or overall hopefulness.
Date: May 2009
Creator: Hayden, Johanna

An Analysis of Job Satisfaction for Special Educators Who Instruct Students with Emotional/Behavioral Disorders: How Working Conditions Impact Commitment.

Description: Teachers of students with emotional/behavioral disorders (E/BD) find that myriad concerns for effective teaching (e.g., salaries, increased paperwork, classroom management) challenge their ability to meet personal and professional needs. The push for certified teachers and limited training to work with students with special needs create stressors that can prohibit effective teaching in the workplace. Teacher moral drops and half of newly hired employees leave the profession. Equally important, student outcomes are affected. Demographic information, program practices, and commitment information from special education teachers across the country were examined in this study. These areas of study helped to determine the best indicators for teacher job satisfaction and barriers that threaten satisfactory working conditions. An online survey was designed to capture 29 areas to explore qualifications and working environments for these teachers. Of the 600 targeted teachers, 332 individuals participated in Likert-like scales to determine their degree of satisfaction or dissatisfaction for working conditions, use of intervention strategies, and areas of commitment. Closed-ended and multiple-choice questions were used. Descriptive analyses and tables aided in understanding this study. The resulting factors indicated that, although some respondents pointed to job dissatisfaction within the subset of questions, participants who worked for more than 6 years were less likely to vacate their positions than teachers working for less than six years.
Date: August 2009
Creator: Adkins, Beverly

The Effects of Positive Behavioral Supports in Schools since the Implementation of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act of 1997 based on 2001 SLIIDEA Data

Description: Congress in 1997 recognized that there were some issues and concerns that had emerged surrounding the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and sought to address these issues and concerns by mandating a national evaluation on the implementation and progress toward improving outcomes for students with disabilities. The Study of the State and Local Implementation of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act was designed to address how the amendments of IDEA were being implemented by states, school districts, and schools. This mixed methods study examined the first year of data collected from the six-year Study of the State and Local Implementation of IDEA (SLIIDEA) and analyzing 20 case studies that used interviews of special education personnel and principals, conducted at the local school level. Data from the national survey were examined in light of findings from the case studies. The case studies brought out the varying opinions on implementation success at the local level. Further case studies for each year of the study would be helpful in determining the level of implementation locally and the significant insights of local school personnel on whether these initiatives have worked.
Date: August 2009
Creator: Miller, Cindy

Maternal employment: Factors related to role strain.

Description: Past literature suggests that working mothers are at an increased risk for experiencing role strain compared to other employed adults. The current study investigated attitudes and beliefs of 783 working mothers of 15-month-old children using data from the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development's Study of Early Child Care and Youth Development. Working mothers' levels of role strain was associated with perceived social support, attitudes toward maternal employment, job and parental role quality, financial stress, and depression. Negative attitudes toward maternal employment predicted maternal separation anxiety, while positive attitudes toward employment did not affect separation anxiety. These findings have implications for the importance of decreasing role strain in working mothers.
Date: August 2009
Creator: LoCascio, Stephanie

Stratified item selection and exposure control in unidimensional adaptive testing in the presence of two-dimensional data.

Description: It is not uncommon to use unidimensional item response theory (IRT) models to estimate ability in multidimensional data. Therefore it is important to understand the implications of summarizing multiple dimensions of ability into a single parameter estimate, especially if effects are confounded when applied to computerized adaptive testing (CAT). Previous studies have investigated the effects of different IRT models and ability estimators by manipulating the relationships between item and person parameters. However, in all cases, the maximum information criterion was used as the item selection method. Because maximum information is heavily influenced by the item discrimination parameter, investigating a-stratified item selection methods is tenable. The current Monte Carlo study compared maximum information, a-stratification, and a-stratification with b blocking item selection methods, alone, as well as in combination with the Sympson-Hetter exposure control strategy. The six testing conditions were conditioned on three levels of interdimensional item difficulty correlations and four levels of interdimensional examinee ability correlations. Measures of fidelity, estimation bias, error, and item usage were used to evaluate the effectiveness of the methods. Results showed either stratified item selection strategy is warranted if the goal is to obtain precise estimates of ability when using unidimensional CAT in the presence of two-dimensional data. If the goal also includes limiting bias of the estimate, Sympson-Hetter exposure control should be included. Results also confirmed that Sympson-Hetter is effective in optimizing item pool usage. Given these results, existing unidimensional CAT implementations might consider employing a stratified item selection routine plus Sympson-Hetter exposure control, rather than recalibrate the item pool under a multidimensional model.
Date: August 2009
Creator: Kalinowski, Kevin E.

Analysis of School Discipline with a Focus on Characteristics of Hispanic Adolescents with Learning Disabilities from a Low-Socioeconomic Area

Description: The research reported herein examined the emotional and behavioral characteristics of adolescent Hispanic students with and without learning disabilities from a middle school in north central Texas. The data were based on all students enrolled at the campus (N = 986), but focused on 55 students of Hispanic descent with learning disabilities and 55 students without. The data accrued for this study utilized a school discipline database. In addition, a 43-item behavioral rating scale was completed on each student of the more focused group. Methods of data analysis were derived from descriptive statistics, one-way analysis of variance, and multiple regression measurements. The results indicate that Hispanic students with learning disabilities often exhibit more disruptive behaviors.
Date: December 2009
Creator: Garcia-Rodriguez, Gina D.

The Effect of Participation in Advanced Placement And/or Dual Credit on Four-year Graduation Rates.

Description: Advanced Placement and dual credit programs are designed for high school students and are used to earn college credit and possibly gain college admissions advantages. The present research examined the impact of participation in one or both programs on four-year college graduation rates. Findings indicated significant differences between the programs as well as with students who did not participate in either program. Students in AP achieved the highest four-year graduation rate, followed by students in dual credit, both programs, and neither program. These findings indicate the need for further study to determine whether the programs substantially contribute to four-year graduation rates and what the implications are.
Date: December 2009
Creator: O'Keefe, Lynette Marie

Comparing the Effects of Home Versus Clinic-Based Parent Training for Children with Autism

Description: Research with parents on managing child problem behavior typically measures either child or parent behavior. This study was designed to evaluate the effectiveness of training parents to implement a function-based behavior intervention plan (BIP) in a non-trained natural environment utilizing a Multiple Probe Design across Participants. Participants included four parent-child dyads. Measurement variables included parents' use of effective and ineffective strategies and child problem behavior. Intervention involved training parents to understand and implement the BIP using effective strategies, modeling the effective procedures, and providing feedback following parent implementation of procedures. Results showed that the intervention was very effective in promoting skill generalization of parents and decreasing child problem behavior. The findings have implications for research and clinical practice.
Date: May 2010
Creator: Crone, Regina M.

Determination of the Optimal Number of Strata for Bias Reduction in Propensity Score Matching.

Description: Previous research implementing stratification on the propensity score has generally relied on using five strata, based on prior theoretical groundwork and minimal empirical evidence as to the suitability of quintiles to adequately reduce bias in all cases and across all sample sizes. This study investigates bias reduction across varying number of strata and sample sizes via a large-scale simulation to determine the adequacy of quintiles for bias reduction under all conditions. Sample sizes ranged from 100 to 50,000 and strata from 3 to 20. Both the percentage of bias reduction and the standardized selection bias were examined. The results show that while the particular covariates in the simulation met certain criteria with five strata that greater bias reduction could be achieved by increasing the number of strata, especially with larger sample sizes. Simulation code written in R is included.
Date: May 2010
Creator: Akers, Allen

Alternative Certification: A Comparison of Factors Affecting the Motivations of General and Special Educators

Description: This study was developed to examine the motivations of individuals who chose alternative routes to teacher certification and what they believe were the strengths and weaknesses of their alternative certification preparation (ACP). Data accrued from this study were based on a 55-item online survey and participant information from an online focus group. The study compared the differences between general and special educators in regards to the motivating factors affecting the decision to become a teacher, remain a teacher, and in choosing a non-university-based ACP, as well as the perceived strengths and weaknesses of the ACP. The results from the survey suggest there are differences in the motivating factors affecting general and special educator's decision to become a teacher and to remain a teacher. Additional survey results suggest there are no differences in the reason these two groups chose a non-university-based ACP. The results of the survey and the online focus group were comparable for these two groups. The remainder of this dissertation includes a review of literature related to teacher shortages and teacher preparation including alternative certification. Additionally, information on the results and analysis of the study are discussed, as well as recommendations for future research.
Date: August 2010
Creator: Hogan, Kathleen Ann