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Psychometric Development of the Adaptive Leadership Competency Profile
This study documented the psychometric development of the Adaptive Leadership Competency Profile (ALCP). The ALCP was derived from a qualitative database from the National Science Foundation project (NSF 9422368) and the academic body of literature. Test items were operationalized, and subject matter experts validated 11 macro-leadership competencies and 65 items. Rasch rating scale measurement models were applied to answer the following questions: (a) How well do the respective items of the ALCP fit the Rasch rating scale measurement model for the 11 scales of the ACLP? (b) How well do the person's abilities fit the Rasch rating scale measurement model, using the 11 scales of the ALCP? (c) What are the item separation and reliability coefficients for the 11 ALCP scales? (d) What are the person separation and reliability coefficients for the 11 ALCP scales? This study also sought to discern whether the ALCP could predict leader effectiveness as measured by the likelihood ratio index and frequency of correct predictions indices. The WINSTEPS and LIMDEP programs were used to obtain Rasch calibrations and probit estimates, respectively. The ALCP profiles the frequency and intensity of leadership behavior. Composite measures were calculated and used to predict leadership effectiveness. Results from this study validated 10 competencies and 55 items.
Students' Criteria for Course Selection: Towards a Metadata Standard for Distributed Higher Education
By 2007, one half of higher education students are expected to enroll in distributed learning courses. Higher education institutions need to attract students searching the Internet for courses and need to provide students with enough information to select courses. Internet resource discovery tools are readily available, however, users have difficulty selecting relevant resources. In part this is due to the lack of a standard for representation of Internet resources. An emerging solution is metadata. In the educational domain, the IEEE Learning Technology Standards Committee (LTSC) has specified a Learning Object Metadata (LOM) standard. This exploratory study (a) determined criteria students think are important for selecting higher education courses, (b) discovered relationships between these criteria and students' demographic characteristics, educational status, and Internet experience, and (c) evaluated these criteria vis-à-vis the IEEE LTSC LOM standard. Web-based questionnaires (N=209) measured (a) the criteria students think are important in the selection of higher education courses and (b) three factors that might influence students' selections. Respondents were principally female (66%), employed full time (57%), and located in the U.S. (89%). The chi square goodness-of-fit test determined 40 criteria students think are important and exploratory factor analysis determined five common factors among the top 21 criteria, three evaluative factors and two descriptive. Results indicated evaluation criteria are very important in course selection. Spearman correlation coefficients and chi-square tests of independence determined the relationships between the importance of selection criteria and demographic characteristics, educational status, and Internet experience. Four profiles emerged representing groups of students with unique concerns. Side by side analysis determined if the IEEE LTSC LOM standard included the criteria of importance to students. The IEEE LOM by itself is not enough to meet students course selection needs. Recommendations include development of a metadata standard for course evaluation and accommodation of group differences in ...
Comparison of Computer Testing versus Traditional Paper and Pencil Testing
This study evaluated 227 students attending 12 classes of the Apprentice Medical Services Specialist Resident Course. Six classes containing a total of 109 students took the Block One Tests in the traditional paper and pencil form. Another six classes containing a total of 118 students took the same Block One Tests on computers. A confidence level of .99 and level of signifi­cance of .01 was established. An independent samples t-test was conducted on the sample. Additionally, a one-way analysis of variance was performed between the classes administered the Block One Tests on computers. Several other frequencies and comparisons of Block One Test scores and other variables were accomplished. The variables examined included test versions, shifts, student age, student source, and education levels. The study found no significant difference between test administration modes. This study concluded that computer-administering tests identical to those typically administered in the traditional paper and pencil manner had no significant effect on achievement. It is important to note, however, that the conclusion may only be valid if the computer-administered test contains exactly the same test items, in the same order and format, with the same layout, structure, and choices as the traditional paper and pencil test. In other words, unless the tests are identical in every possible way except the actual test administration mode this conclusion may not be applicable.
An Examination of Factors Related to the Cognitive and Affective Empathy Levels of Adjudicated Youth
With the advent of increased juvenile delinquency in our nation, the need for prevention and rehabilitation is paramount. Juvenile delinquent acts are becoming more serious and violent with offenders perpetrating at younger ages. Analysis suggests an increase in juvenile crime in the near future (Stone, 2000). Pinpointing the cause of delinquency is an arduous task because of the many contributing factors (e.g., impulsivity, aggression, low intellect, poor family attachment, drug, and alcohol abuse). By changing the emotional deficits found in beginning delinquency, the likelihood of developing delinquent behavior may be impeded. Research indicates that adolescents who commit crimes are lacking in empathy (e.g., Aleksic, 1975; Cohen & Strayer, 1996; Ellis, 1982; Gibbs, 1987; Marcus & Gray, 1998), thus, promoting empathy may be an avenue for prevention and rehabilitation. This study examined the levels of empathy of adjudicated youth in four juvenile correctional facilities in Texas. Using the Interpersonal Reactivity Index (IRI), empathy levels of 170 youth were examined. Youth in the study demonstrated low levels of empathy. The study found that empathy levels of adjudicated youth were differentiated by incarcerating facility, IQ, type of offense, disability status, and phase level of a re-socialization training program. Age was not found to be a significant factor for differentiating empathy levels. Youth demonstrated similiar empathy levels at three of the four incarcerating facilities. However, empathy scores were still below average. IQ ranges were differentiated by the IRI, and found to be lower than normed scores. Type of committing offense was discriminated and found to indicate low empathy levels. Youth without an identified disability scored lower than subjects with emotional/behavioral disorders (E/BD) and youth with learning disabilities (LD). This may reflect the pattern of underidentification of juveniles in correctional facilities (Nelson, Rutherford, & Wolford, 1987). Phases of Re-socialization is an instructional therapuetic program with ...
Effects of a Simulation Game on Trainees' Knowledge and Attitudes About Age-related Changes in Learning and Work Behaviors of Older Workers
This investigation was conducted in response to the need for effective diversity awareness programs to help employers create intergenerational-friendly work environments. An experimental pre- and post-test control group randomized block design was employed to answer two research questions about the effects of a simulation game on knowledge and attitudes about age-related changes in learning and work behaviors of older workers. Participants were assessed immediately prior to and following the treatment, followed by a third assessment 60 days later. Necessary measures were taken to control for threats to the study's internal validity. An applicant pool comprised of human resource management and development practitioners and senior undergraduate students enrolled in human resource management courses yielded a sample of 65 participants. Chapter one introduces the study. Chapter two provides a review and summary of relevant literature on ageism in the workplace, training older workers, and simulation games. Chapter three describes the procedures and methods used to answer the research questions. Chapter four presents the results of all analytic procedures related to the investigation. Chapter five provides the conclusions and recommendations based on the findings of this investigation. In this investigation, the treatment group did not score significantly higher on their knowledge of age-related changes in learning and work behaviors of older workers than the control group following treatment. The attitudinal change experienced by the treatment group did not differ significantly from the attitudinal change experienced by the control group. Recommendations for further research include the following: (a) the disordinal interactive effect of the control group's performance on the knowledge measure during the 60-day interval between post assessments warrants further investigation, (b) the statistically significant change in attitude that occurred within each group during the 60-day interval following treatment warrants further investigation, and (c) more reliable instruments need to be developed for measuring the ...
An inquiry into the factors influencing the development of the field of Behavior Disorders: A qualitative approach
This dissertation has explored the origins of the field of Behavioral Disorders via a qualitative approach. In order to collect data, interviews were conducted with respondents who were selected via purposeful sampling. All respondents have had a significant impact on the field of special education as evidenced by scholarship and leadership throughout their careers. Data analysis of the interview transcriptions was accomplished through the utilization of computer software. The data indicated six areas/topics that were seen among respondents as being significant to the development of the field of Behavioral Disorders.
Prediction of Community College Students' Success in Developmental Math with Traditional Classroom, Computer-Based On-Campus and Computer-Based at a Distance Instruction Using Locus of Control, Math Anxiety and Learning Style
The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationship between individual student differences and academic success in three pedagogical methods (traditional classroom, computer-aided instruction (CAI) in an on-campus setting, and CAI in a distance education setting) for developmental mathematics classes at the community college level. Locus of control, math anxiety and learning style were the individual differences examined. Final grade, final exam score and persistence were the indicators of success. The literature review focused on developmental mathematics, pedagogical techniques and variables contributing to academic performance. Two parallel research populations consisted of 135 Beginning Algebra students and 113 Intermediate Algebra students. The Rotter I-E Locus of Control Scale, the Abbreviated Mathematics Anxiety Rating Scale, the 4MAT Learning Type Measure, and an instrument to gather demographic data were used. It was the conclusion of this study that the instructional methods were not equal with respect to achievement. In Beginning Algebra, the CAI students received significantly higher final grades than did the traditionally taught students. In Intermediate Algebra traditional students scored significantly higher on the final exam than did the CBI students. There were more students persisting than expected in traditionally taught Beginning Algebra and no significant difference in attrition in Intermediate Algebra. There was no significant prediction of achievement in Beginning Algebra. For Intermediate Algebra math anxiety was a significant predictor for final exam percentage and locus of control was a significant predictor for final grade percentage. Only the instructional method contributed significantly to the prediction of attrition. While these findings are statistically significant, they account for only a small part of student success. However, the results had implications for the future. In particular, further study should be given to the question of whether CAI, and its associated expenses, is prudent for developmental mathematics instruction.
An Online Academic Support Model for Students Enrolled in Internet-Based Classes
This doctoral dissertation describes a research study that examined the effectiveness of an experimental Supplemental Instruction (SI) program that utilized computer-mediated communication (CMC) rather than traditional SI review sessions. During the Spring 1999 semester, six sections of an introductory computer course were offered via the Internet by a suburban community college district in Texas. Using Campbell and Stanley's Nonequivalent Control Group model, the online SI program was randomly assigned to four of the course sections with the two remaining sections serving as the control group. The students hired to lead the online review sessions participated in the traditional SI training programs at their colleges, and received training conducted by the researcher related to their roles as online discussion moderators. Following recommendations from Congos and Schoeps, the internal validity of the groups was confirmed by conducting independent t-tests comparing the students' cumulative credit hours, grade point averages, college entrance test scores, and first exam scores. The study's four null hypotheses were tested using multiple linear regression equations with alpha levels set at .01. Results indicated that the SI participants earned better course grades even though they had acquired fewer academic credits and had, on average, scored lower on their first course exams. Both the control group and the non-SI participants had average course grades of 2.0 on a 4.0 scale. The students who participated in at least one SI session had an average final course grade of 2.5, exceeding their previous grade point average of 2.15. Participation in one SI session using CMC was linked to a one-fourth letter grade improvement in students' final course grades. Although not statistically significant, on the average, SI participants had slightly better course retention, marginally increased course satisfaction, and fewer student-initiated contacts with their instructors.
The Relationship Between Time-On-Task in Computer-Aided Instruction and the Progress of Developmental Reading Students at the University of Texas at Brownsville and Texas Southmost College
This research sought to determine what relationship exists between time-on-task in computer-aided instruction (CAI) using Destinations courseware and progress in reading ability of developmental reading students as indicated by the reading portion of the Texas Academic Skills Program (TASP) test. Time-on-task is the time during which a student actively works on Destinations activities, as recorded by the software management system. TASP, an exam required of all students in Texas public colleges, assesses reading, math, and writing skills. The population was made up of 482 students who took the TASP exam before and after CAI and who used Destinations CAI for remediation of reading skills. Null hypotheses were explored using Pearson correlation and linear multiple regression. The findings for the null hypotheses were the following: Ho1 - Correlation and linear regression correlation showed that time-on-task in Destinations CAI had no significant effect on the TASP scores of the population studied. Ho2 - Correlation and linear regression correlation showed that females made significantly better gains on the TASP test from CAI than males. Ho3 - Correlation and linear regression correlation showed that low-achiever students made no better gains on the TASP test from time-on-task in CAI than high-achiever students. Difference between the two group's gains was not statistically significant. Ho4 - The regression equations predicted the gain in TASP reading scores for less than 1% of the population studied. Only the regression equations for male students and female students separately were statistically significant. The researcher recommends replication of this study each semester to determine the effectiveness of CAI. Regular and systematic evaluation using pretest and posttest data will provide benchmarks so that the value of changes in instructional methods can be measured. This method of research can help to clarify questions that should be answered through other research methods.
Emotional/Behavioral Disturbance and Speech/Language Disorders: Prevalence of the Dual Diagnoses in a School-Age Population
The purpose of this study was to examine the prevalence of the comorbidity of emotional/behavioral disorders (EBD) and speech/language disorders among those students identified as under The Individuals With Disabilities Education Act criteria as emotionally disturbed and speech impaired. The literature reviewed included clinical and school settings that examined a cooccurrence of language disorders in the EBD population. Other research reported a lack of routine involvement of speech/language therapists in the assessment of the EBD population. Implications from clinical studies suggested a need for greater attention to language disorders in a multi- and interdisciplinary assessment. This study investigated the prevalence of the dual occurrence of EBD and speech/language disorders in Grades 2 through 6 in Texas schools in light of the known research. Relationships in ethnicity and socioeconomic status were examined using chi-square test of independence. Aggregate data were obtained from the database of the Texas Pupil Information Management System and from survey questionnaire responses provided by speech therapists in selected districts. The literature review focused on the impact of language in the development of appropriate personal interactions and communication skills, especially those relevant to pragmatic language factors and the implications of language competency in successful personal living and career roles and supported the importance of language as an important contributor to a person's life success and the correlation of EBD disabilities and speech/language disorders. Social skills instruction, the relationship of language, especially pragmatics, and social competencies for this population are included. The results revealed a relationship between ethnicity and speech/language disorders among the students identified with EBD. In considering the population of students identified as EBD and language disordered, a significant relationship was found between ethnicity and socioeconomic status. Recommendations include suggestions for future research, assessment procedures, classroom interventions, and data collection methods.
An evaluation of job satisfaction among salespersons in a small department store using four psychological measures.
The purpose of this study was to examine the potential of three independent psychological scales (Rotter's Locus of Control, Karasek's Job Content Questionnaire [non-injury job stress], and Rosenberg's Self-Esteem Scale) to predict job satisfaction, as measured by Brayfield and Rothe's Index of Job Satisfaction, among salespersons in a small independent department store in Wichita Falls, Texas. An 82-item survey which examined the dynamics of a salesperson's work life was administered to 20 individuals who were full-time employees of the department store. Demographic data were also gathered although these factors were not entered into the regression analysis. A multiple regression procedure examined the responses of the 20 employees who participated in the study. The R-squared coefficient indicates that 41 percent of the variance in Job Satisfaction was explained by the three predictor measures. A major proportion of this unexplained variance may be in variables outside the scope of this study, e.g., salaries, vacation time, benefits, bonuses, or commissions. Results suggest that the independent variables measured by the Locus of Control Scale and the Job Content Questionnaire in combination were the best predictors of job satisfaction with a significance level of .01. The single best predictor was the Job Content Questionnaire, significant at .03. The three instruments (Locus of Control, Self-Esteem, and Job Content Questionnaire) which comprised the independent variables, reached a significance level of .03 in their prediction of job satisfaction (Brayfield-Rothe Index of Job Satisfaction). Study results indicate that a majority of the employees in the sample population were satisfied with their jobs and with the leadership style manifested by the store manager. In addition, job security was believed to be satisfactory. Inasmuch as there is a void in the literature regarding personal characteristics of salespersons as variables that interact with job satisfaction, comparisons of the findings of this research ...
Detecting the Presence of Disease by Unifying Two Methods of Remote Sensing.
There is currently no effective tool available to quickly and economically measure a change in landmass in the setting of biomedical professionals and environmental specialists. The purpose of this study is to structure and demonstrate a statistical change-detection method using remotely sensed data that can detect the presence of an infectious land borne disease. Data sources included the Texas Department of Health database, which provided the types of infectious land borne diseases and indicated the geographical area to study. Methods of data collection included the gathering of images produced by digital orthophoto quadrangle and aerial videography and Landsat. Also, a method was developed to identify statistically the severity of changes of the landmass over a three-year period. Data analysis included using a unique statistical detection procedure to measure the severity of change in landmass when a disease was not present and when the disease was present. The statistical detection method was applied to two different remotely sensed platform types and again to two like remotely sensed platform types. The results indicated that when the statistical change detection method was used for two different types of remote sensing mediums (i.e.-digital orthophoto quadrangle and aerial videography), the results were negative due to skewed and unreliable data. However, when two like remote sensing mediums were used (i.e.- videography to videography and Landsat to Landsat) the results were positive and the data were reliable.
An examination of computer anxiety related to achievement on paper-and-pencil and computer-based aircraft maintenance knowledge testing of United States Air Force technical training students.
The purpose of this study was to determine whether varying levels of computer anxiety have an effect on computer-based testing of United States Air Force technical training students. The first chapter presents an overview of computer-based testing, defines key terms, and identifies questions addressed in the research. The rationale for conducting this study was that little research had been done in this area. The second chapter contains a review of the pertinent literature related to computer-based testing, computer anxiety, test reliability, validity, and gender differences in computer use. Due to the lack understanding concerning any effects of computer anxiety on computer-based testing, this has been a worthwhile topic to explore, and it makes a significant contribution to the training field. The third chapter describes the qualitative research methodology used to conduct the study. The primary methodology was an analysis of variance comparison for groups of individuals who displayed high or low computer anxiety to their respective mean computer-based or paper-based aircraft maintenance knowledge testing scores. The research population consisted of United States Air Force aircraft maintenance craftsmen students attending training at Sheppard Air Force Base, Texas. The fourth chapter details the findings of the study. The findings indicate that there was no significant difference between the groups of students rated with high computer anxiety and low computer anxiety while testing with computers. Additionally, no significant differences were detected while testing alternative hypotheses covering differences between groups of students rated with high computer anxiety and low computer anxiety testing by traditional paper-and pencil methods. Finally, a reference section identifying the literature used in the preparation of this dissertation is also included.
Learning Style and Preferred Mode of Delivery of Adult Learners in Web-Based, Classroom, and Blended Training
The purpose of this study was to investigate the association between adult learners' preferred learning style and preference for delivery mode. The subjects (n=61) were technical and billing support call center employees from an Internet company in Dallas, Texas. The participants were randomly assigned to one of six groups and given Kolb's Learning Style Inventory to assess their preference for learning style. They received training on three modules of “Influencing Others Positively,” with each module delivered via one of three methods (web-based, classroom, and blended). Participants were also administered two surveys. The first survey collected demographic information and asked which method that they expected they would prefer. The second survey was administered after the course and asked them to rank their preferences for delivery method. It was hypothesized that learning style would be significantly associated with preference for delivery method. The data was analyzed using descriptive statistics and a chi-square test of independence for the variables learning style and preferred mode of delivery. Although the chi-square test of independence did not produce statistical significance, some interesting trends were identified in the data. Specifically, a majority of the participants preferred a blended approach to training delivery (a combination of self-paced web-based training and classroom group exercises). No Divergers preferred classroom training and no Accommodators preferred web-based training. Additionally, a logistic regression analysis indicated that Assimilators were six times more likely than Divergers to prefer a blended approach to training (p=.10). Further studies should utilize other learning style theories, explore different types of learning outcomes and delivery methods, and include a larger sample from different organizations. Training needs assessments should include learning style inventories as part of the audience analysis prior to training development.
Establishing the utility of a classroom effectiveness index as a teacher accountability system.
How to identify effective teachers who improve student achievement despite diverse student populations and school contexts is an ongoing discussion in public education. The need to show communities and parents how well teachers and schools improve student learning has led districts and states to seek a fair, equitable and valid measure of student growth using student achievement. This study investigated a two stage hierarchical model for estimating teacher effect on student achievement. This measure was entitled a Classroom Effectiveness Index (CEI). Consistency of this model over time, outlier influences in individual CEIs, variance among CEIs across four years, and correlations of second stage student residuals with first stage student residuals were analyzed. The statistical analysis used four years of student residual data from a state-mandated mathematics assessment (n=7086) and a state-mandated reading assessment (n=7572) aggregated by teacher. The study identified the following results. Four years of district grand slopes and grand intercepts were analyzed to show consistent results over time. Repeated measures analyses of grand slopes and intercepts in mathematics were statistically significant at the .01 level. Repeated measures analyses of grand slopes and intercepts in reading were not statistically significant. The analyses indicated consistent results over time for reading but not for mathematics. Data were analyzed to assess outlier effects. Nineteen statistically significant outliers in 15,378 student residuals were identified. However, the impact on individual teachers was extreme in eight of the 19 cases. Further study is indicated. Subsets of teachers in the same assignment at the same school for four consecutive years and for three consecutive years indicated CEIs were stable over time. There were no statistically significant differences in either mathematics or reading. Correlations between Level One student residuals and HLM residuals were statistically significant in reading and in mathematics. This implied that the second stage of ...
The Effect of an Electronic Evaluation Questionnaire Format on the Return Rate From Field Supervisors.
The purpose of this study was to examine the usefulness of electronic-based questionnaires as a tool to gather data from field supervisors in the medical profession at various military bases. The study compared the response effects of an electronic evaluation questionnaire with the traditional method of paper-based questionnaires in gathering Level 3 data. The number of returns affects the amount of information available to the course personnel in creating a viable program that ensures the success of service members entering the occupational field and, ultimately, affecting the number of service members who remain beyond their first enlistment. The return rate and amount of missing data were tracked. Supervisors of graduates of a medical program who had observed service members for a minimum of 4-months were participants in the study. The z-test for comparing two proportions was used to determine significance of the study at the .05 level. Findings indicate that there was a significant difference in return rates and the amount of missing data when using the electronic format. Based on this study, the electronic-based questionnaire as a data-gathering tool provided a higher number of returns in a quicker time frame with fewer missing data in the technical training environment. Copyright is held by the author, unless otherwise note
An Assessment of Technology Learning Styles, Skills, and Perceptions Among Teachers of Grades Pre-Kindergarten Through Four.
This study investigated whether a relationship exists between learning style and the self-reported technology-related needs, beliefs, stages of adoption, software expertise, and technology competencies of teachers in a large suburban school district. The Gregorc Style Delineator was used to identify dominant learning style, and the Snapshot Survey was used to measure technology-related needs, beliefs, stages of adoption, and software expertise. Technology competencies were measured using the Technology in Education Competency Survey. Data collected from 499 participants was included in data analysis. The study was conducted at each of the 12 elementary schools of a large suburban district in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. The findings suggest that there is a significant relationship between learning style and the technology-related needs, stages of adoption, software expertise, and competencies of teachers. The relationship between learning style and technology-related needs was significant at the p < .01 level. The relationships between learning style and technology-related stages of adoption, software expertise, and technology competencies were significant at the p < .05 level. Members of the abstract sequential [AS] learning style group reported having significantly fewer needs and significantly higher stages of adoption, software expertise, and competency than members of one or more of the other learning style groups. More research is recommended to determine whether these findings could be utilized to improve teacher staff development in the area of technology. Possible applications may include mentoring programs and the customization of training models to more closely match learning style profiles.
A Comparison of Trainee and Supervisor Perceptions of Transfer Climate in a Union-Based Training Program.
A supportive work climate is critical for successful transfer of learning. Influences in the work environment affect the trainee's ability to apply new skills to the job. The supervisor can be a significant figure in the trainee's perception of a supportive transfer climate. Little is known of the effect of supervisor participation in the training on transfer climate. The purpose of this study was to identify differences in trainee and supervisor self-perceptions of the factors affecting transfer climate. Additionally, this study examined the effects of supervisor participation in the training program on perceptions of transfer climate. The participants in this study were trainees in a union-sponsored instructor training program and their supervisors. The study found perception gaps between the overall perception of transfer climate and supervisor support. The level of supervisor participation in the training program was not to be a factor in the differences between the trainee and supervisor perceptions. No statistically significant difference exists in the perception of other transfer climate factors: supervisor sanctions, peer support, resistance/openness to change, and feedback/performance coaching. In addition, the study found that supervisor participation in the training made little difference in the perceptions of transfer climate by supervisors and trainees. Studies comparing trainee and supervisor perceptions of transfer climate and the effect of supervisor participation in the training on these perceptions are needed from other organizations before extensive generalizations can be made.
The Relationship Between Career and Technical Education and Texas Assessment of Academic Skills and Other Academic Excellence Indicators
This study examined the relationship between Career and Technical Education (CATE) and the Academic Excellence Indicator System (AEIS), the measure of school and learner success in Texas. CATE, an established program, traditionally encourages student achievement and perpetuates best educational practices. AEIS data was collected by the Texas Education Agency. In addition, a survey was used to measure CATE effectiveness and the relationship between effectiveness and AEIS performance. Two-factor mixed repeated measures ANOVAs were used to observe group differences over time. CATE and non-CATE exit level TAAS scores for reading and math at the district level were analyzed for 2000, 2001, and 2002. CATE students had higher group means but there was not statistical significance indicating that CATE students performed as well as non-CATE. Two-factor mixed repeated measures ANOVAs were also used for analysis of differences at the district level for attendance, dropout rates, and graduation rates. There were higher group means for attendance for CATE students and there was also statistical significance indicating that CATE students attended more often then non-CATE students. There was a lower group means for dropout rate and there was also statistical significance between groups over time. This was an inverse relationship indicating that CATE students dropped out less often then non-CATE students at a statistically significant level. The graduation rate analysis showed a higher group mean for CATE students but not statistical significance. CATE students graduated at the same rate as the non-CATE group. Pearson's r was used to correlate the relationship of the effectiveness of CATE programs with AEIS results. There was no statistical significance for reading and math TAAS exit-level tests with CATE effectiveness scores. Again there was no statistical significant relationship between CATE effectiveness and attendance and graduation. However there was statistical significance between CATE program effectiveness and dropout correlation for 2001.
Reading and Math Outcomes for Incarcerated Youth with Emotional and Behavioral Disorders
Helping youths acquire educational skills is one of the most effective approaches to the prevention of delinquency and reduction of recidivism. Access to a high-quality education is particularly important for the growing number of youth committed to juvenile corrections, especially for those who have been diagnosed with a disability. Research has shown a tremendous gap about the academic outcomes of incarcerated juveniles with emotional disabilities. Thus, the focus of this study was to examine the academic outcomes in reading and math for youth with emotional/behavioral disorders (E/BD) released from Texas Youth Commission (TYC) programs between September 2003 and September 2004. The study examined if the rate of academic growth in reading and math as indicated by pre- and post-test scores on the Test of Adult Basic Education (TABE), are different for youth with E/B as compared to youth with other disabilities and youth without disabilities who were adjudicated in TYC programs.
Assessing Allied Health and Nursing Post-Secondary Career and Technical Education Teacher Attitudes and Beliefs About Reading
This study examined allied health and nursing career and technical education (CTE) teacher beliefs and attitudes about reading. Since beliefs and attitudes influence the way teachers teach, it is important to understand what those beliefs and attitudes are, especially in relationship to reading in subject matter classrooms. One hundred twelve individuals responded to a written survey concerning their attitudes and beliefs about reading. A four-factor solution was achieved with a principal components factor analysis. A significant number of variables were associated with the factor labeled Reading Apathy, which appears to be indicative of the condition known as aliteracy among faculty who participated in the study. Professional development activities grounded in novice-to-expert theory are suggested as a way of overcoming the phenomenon. Recommendations for future research involve a more detailed study to further characterize the condition of aliteracy and its impact on student learning.
Leadership preferences of a Generation Y cohort: A mixed methods study.
Presently there are four generational cohorts in the workplace. Born from 1977 to 1997, the youngest cohort group, referred to as Generation Y (or Gen Y) in this study, has 81 million members, of whom over 29 million are already in the workplace. The importance of leader-subordinate relationships in the workplace has been confirmed; in recognizing this, leaders must identify and adapt to the changing era-shaped needs of employees, who cannot fully participate in organizational life if their most urgent needs are not being met. Because Gen Y employees are only now entering the workforce, little is actually known about the workplace needs of this cohort group. This study attempted to determine leadership needs of a Gen Y cohort as a means to enhance workplace relationships in the 21st century organization. A sequential, mixed methods study was employed to explore leadership preferences of a Gen Y cohort. Initially, focus group interviews were used to generate leadership themes. Based on these themes, an instrument was designed, and Gen Y business students from three higher education institutions were surveyed. Confirmatory factor analysis using LISREL software was used to test the themes. The driving force behind this research design was to build a foundation of understanding through inductive research (qualitative) and to test and enrich the foundation through deductive means (quantitative).
Knowledge management in virtual organizations: A study of a best practices knowledge transfer model.
Knowledge management is a major concern for organizations today, and in spite of investments in technology, knowledge transfer remains problematic. This study sought to determine whether a relationship exists among participant group demographics (experience), implementation of an integrated knowledge transfer system (best practices model), knowledge transfer barriers, and knowledge transfer project (Web-based training) outcome in a virtual organization. The participant organization was a network of individuals and groups who practice patient advocacy in the research and treatment of cancer. These advocates volunteer in various capacities and are not collocated nor do they report to any single organizational entity. Volunteer participants were randomly assigned to a treatment or control condition. The treatment participants received a training supplement based upon a best practices knowledge transfer model. All participants reviewed a Web-based communications training module scheduled for deployment by the participant organization. Upon completion of the training program, participants were instructed to practice specific techniques from the program. At the end of this period, participants completed an online survey that measured demographics, perceived barriers to the knowledge transfer, and project outcome. Knowledge transfer barriers were defined as knowledge, source, recipient, and organizational context characteristics that inhibit the expected transfer. Project outcome was a composite score of items measuring completion time, budget, and satisfaction of the user. Multiple regression identified two significant predictor variables, source (the training program and implementation) and experience (amount of time spent in advocacy practice). Additional analyses found knowledge (causal ambiguity and unproven knowledge) and the experimental treatment condition to show a strong relationship with the explained variance of the dependent variable, knowledge transfer project outcome. Results suggest that an online training implementation is a valid tool for certain specific transfer design characteristics. Experience was a negative predictor of outcome, suggesting that participant-specific level of training material may produce improved ...
The Effects of a Career Education Program on the Career Choices of Fifth-grade Students.
The career development of students, demonstrated by students' career interest, is important for a more effective career education program. This study focused on the career choices of fifth grade students through the use of a career interest inventory before and after the use of a career education program. The design was experimental, and the purpose was to determine if there were differences in the career interest of fifth grade students who participated in a career education program compared with the career interest of fifth grade students who did not participate in a career education program. The COPS-PIC Picture Inventory of Careers (COPS-PIC) was used as a pretest and posttest for fifth grade students to determine baseline career interests. The COPS-PIC career inventory results were incorporated into the career education program and served as a career planning guide for incorporating students' input into career choices and exploration of those choices for a better understanding of the process of finding out who they want to be and what type of careers exists. The experimental group was provided instruction and career exploration opportunities for 4 weeks. The control group was not provided career education instruction and career exploration opportunities. This study suggests that fifth grade students who participated in a career education program were able to make more concentrated career choices at higher levels of interest after participating in the career education program. Additional studies that include the use of career interest inventories and a career education program are needed before extensive generalizations can be made.
Workplace Violence Prevention Training: An Analysis of Employees' Attitudes
The purpose of this study was to determine employees' attitudes and perceptions toward the effectiveness of workplace violence prevention training within a U.S. Government service agency with 50 offices located in Minnesota and Wisconsin. Chapter 1 presents an overview of the phenomenon of workplace violence, the movement toward prevention programs and policies and the implementation of prescreening processes during hiring and violence prevention training. Chapter 2 contains a thorough review of pertinent literature related to violence prevention training and the impact of occupational violence on organizations. This topic was worthy of research in an effort to make a significant contribution to training literature involving organizational effectiveness due to the limited amount of research literature covering the area of corporate violence prevention training and its effect on modifying attitudes and behaviors of its customers. The primary methodology involved the assessment of 1000 employees concerning their attitudes and perceptions toward the effectiveness of workplace violence prevention training. The research population were administered a 62 item online assessment with responses being measured, assessed, and compared. Significant differences were found calling for the rejection of the three study hypotheses. Chapter 4 described the findings of the population surveyed and recommendations were identified in Chapter 5.
Descriptive Analysis of Comments Obtained during the Process of Regulating the Reauthorization of the Individuals with Disabilities Act of 2004
This study examined the comments submitted by the public to the United States Department of Education (USDE), the Office of Special Education Programs, in response to the 2004 amended IDEA, prior to the development and publication of proposed regulations under 34 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) parts 300 and 303 to implement programs under IDEA. Specifically, this study analyzed the types of individuals (e.g., parents, advocates, administrators, lawyers, support staff personnel) and interest groups along with the number of submissions, types of comments made, and specific provisions in the legislation that received the most comments during the period open to the public prior to the publication of the proposed regulations. In addition, an exploration of the existence of differences in comments submitted by states and regions was analyzed in terms of types of individuals, interest groups, types of comments, and specific provision of the 2004 amended IDEA. Content analysis approach utilizing qualitative data collection and analysis procedures was used for this study. The sample consisted of 2,199 comments submitted to the USDE via the U.S. Postal system, e-mail, and verbal testimony transcripts obtained during one of the public meetings held throughout the United States during the 60 day period open for commenting. The findings of this study revealed a large number of a particular type of respondent types, the majority of the comments were neutral in nature, and the largest percentage of comments received were directed at one particular section of the Act.
Examination of Web-based teaching strategies at the University of North Texas.
This study examined the degree to which University of North Texas (UNT) instructors involved in Web-based instruction are implementing teaching strategies as identified in Chickering and Gamson's (1987) model, seven principles for good practice in undergraduate education. In addition, the study examined training received by instructors in developing and delivering a Web-based course and the relationships between their training and reported use of the teaching strategies in the seven principles. The study also examined the relationship between the number of Web-based courses taught and the use of the teaching strategies. Seventy-two surveys were distributed, with a return rate of 90.3%. Results of the first three research questions were as follows: (a) Self-taught (49%) and UNT Center for Distributed Learning (CDL) (31%) were the most frequently used types of training in preparation for teaching a Web-based course, whereas peer taught (17%) and conferences/workshops (3%) were the least used; (b) the average number of Web-based courses taught by the instructors was M = 8.26; and (c) the most frequently used principles were "Gives prompt feedback" and "Communicates high expectations." UNT CDL assists faculty with the development and delivery of online courses, offering a series of training courses to better prepare faculty to use Web-CT. The relationship between the training received and the instructors' reported use of the teaching strategies was examined using correlations and a MANOVA analysis. The correlations resulted in both positive and negative relationships between the four types of training and three of the principles. The MANOVA procedure found significant differences between self taught instructors and instructors that received most of their training through the CDL in relation to the principle "Respects diverse talents and ways of learning." The final research question examined the relationship between the number of courses taught and instructors' reported use of the teaching strategies, revealing ...
State and local level implementation of schoolwide positive behavior support: An examination of the Texas Behavior Support Initiative (TBSI).
This study examined the current status of schoolwide positive behavior support efforts in Texas. The study specifically (a) examined the impact of statewide positive behavior interventions and supports (PBIS) training on the rates of discipline records, in-school ¬suspensions, out-¬of¬-school suspensions, disciplinary alternative education placements, and expulsions of public schools in Texas; (b) investigated the overall effectiveness of schoolwide positive behavior support; and (c) determined the differences between rates of discipline records, in-school ¬suspensions, out-¬of¬-school suspensions, disciplinary alternative education placements, and expulsions in schools participating in the Texas Behavior Support Initiative (TBSI): Schoolwide PBS Project when compared with matching schools who did not participate in the project. This study demonstrated that schools can significantly reduce problem behavior in their schools when implementing PBIS with fidelity. Creating effective systems of PBIS required training, coaching, and on¬site technical assistance by trained and experienced PBIS facilitators.
Comparison of Evangelical Christian Children's God-Concepts and Logical Thinking Ability.
God-concepts of 24 third to sixth grade evangelical Christian children were compared with the children‘s logical thinking abilities in a mixed-method study. Measurements included the Children‘s Interview and the Group Assessment of Logical Thinking (GALT). God-concepts among the children were Biblical, comforter, communicates, creator, empowering, protector, provider, purposeful, human characteristics, lives in heaven, male, counselor, God is Jesus, all-knowing, loving, perfect, powerful, real, and parental. The majority of concrete thinkers conceptualized God as a gracious guide. The majority of transitional thinkers viewed God also as a gracious guide as well as a distant divinity. Implications were given for religious educators to develop a model for age-appropriate instruction and curriculum and to equip parents to promote spiritual development with children at home.
The historical significance of professional contributions of a leader in the field of emotional and behavioral disorders in special education: A qualitative case study of Richard J. Whelan.
Historical documentation of the impact of PL 88-164 on the field of emotional and behavioral disorders (E/BD) and the development and implementation of teacher-training programs for children and youth identified as E/BD is limited. This study was designed to document the historical significance and professional contributions of Dr. Richard J. Whelan, Professor Emeritus, University of Kansas and his work in the development of teacher preparation training programs in the field of E/BD in institutions of higher education (IHE). The second purpose of this study was to document the legislative and program initiatives that have impacted the services, education, teaching, and research initiatives in the field of E/BD as interpreted by Dr. Whelan. The final purpose of this study was to examine the views of Dr. Whelan regarding the need for future developments in the field of E/BD. Legislative and policy efforts continue to change the climate in which children are educated. The field of special education relies on the efficacy of the training programs in IHE to provide appropriate teaching and research efforts in a manner that is consistent with the current needs of students with E/BD, their families, and the schools in which they seek to be educated. As this study revealed, understanding the history of the field, the foundational framework from which research and evidence-based practices have emerged, is paramount to forward movement in the field and necessary to the measurement of effective interventions and strategies in support of the students, their families, and those who choose this field as their lifework. It is the foundation from which educational theory is developed, researched, revised, and reflected.
The Supply and Demand of Physician Assistants in the United States: A Trend Analysis
The supply of non-physician clinicians (NPCs), such as physician assistant (PAs), could significantly influence demand requirements in medical workforce projections. This study predicts supply of and demand for PAs from 2006 to 2020. The PA supply model utilized the number of certified PAs, the educational capacity (at 10% and 25% expansion) with assumed attrition rates, and retirement assumptions. Gross domestic product (GDP) chained in 2000 dollar and US population were utilized in a transfer function trend analyses with the number of PAs as the dependent variable for the PA demand model. Historical analyses revealed strong correlations between GDP and US population with the number of PAs. The number of currently certified PAs represents approximately 75% of the projected demand. At 10% growth, the supply and demand equilibrium for PAs will be reached in 2012. A 25% increase in new entrants causes equilibrium to be met one year earlier. Robust application trends in PA education enrollment (2.2 applicants per seat for PAs is the same as for allopathic medical school applicants) support predicted increases. However, other implications for the PA educational institutions include recruitment and retention of qualified faculty, clinical site maintenance and diversity of matriculates. Further research on factors affecting the supply and demand for PAs is needed in the areas of retirement age rates, gender, and lifestyle influences. Specialization trends and visit intensity levels are potential variables.
One-to-one technology and mathematics achievement for eighth grade girls and boys in the state of Maine.
This study analyzed the eighth grade mathematics portion of the spring 2004 Maine Educational Assessment (MEA) achievement test and the survey questions that were also administered. The analysis was on a school-wide level (n = 182). The two survey questions used were: “Which statement best describes the use of calculators in your mathematics classes?” and "Which statement best describes how you use your laptop in mathematics class: getting data from the Web, finding mathematics problems online, creating graphs?" Correlational analysis, partial correlation, and regression were used to determine if there was any association between calculator usage, laptop usage, and mathematics achievement for girls and for boys in the first state-wide group of students to have one-to-one laptops in Maine. Calculator usage was found to be positively associated with mathematics achievement for both girls (partial correlation coefficient of .189 (p = .011)) and for boys (partial correlation coefficient of .193 (p = .010)) even after controlling for school size and socio-economic status. Though no significant association between laptop usage and mathematics achievement for either girls or boys was found, this may be more a reflection on the survey question being a weak measure than the usage of laptops. In a post-hoc analysis of findings, schools were rank ordered based on the average mathematics achievement score regardless of gender; the top 25% (n = 45) and the lower 25% (n = 45) of the schools were evaluated. In the top 25%, there was no statistically significant difference between school-wide girls' and boys' mathematics achievement scores. However, in the lower 25% of the schools, there was a statistically significant difference (p = .01) between the school-wide average of girls' and boys' mathematics achievement scores, with the girls' score being 1.49 points higher (p = .01, d = .447) than the boys'. Recommendations for ...
Meta-Analysis of Reading Interventions for Students with Learning and Emotional Disabilities
Developing effective literacy skill has become an increasingly critical skill in today's information age. Students with emotional/behavioral disorders (E/BD) routinely lack these skills and are not being taught how to read effectively. The field of special education needs more comprehensive and specific information about how to most effectively teach reading skills to students with E/BD. When reading interventions are conducted using student with E/BD, the interventions are generally drawn from the LD field. The assumption is that the reading interventions that have worked with students with LD will work equally well with the E/BD population. This study performed a meta-analysis to examine whether reading interventions are equally effective on the E/BD and LD populations. In addition, it will examine whether the instruction mode (e. g., peer, self, or teacher directed), gender, or grade group affects the success of the intervention. The meta-analysis found that the reading interventions for both disability groups had high effect sizes. In addition, neither disability group, teaching method, gender, nor grades were predictive of the variance in the effect size. These results indicate that reading programs that have been designed for students with LD are also effective for students with E/BD and furthermore, reading programs can improve the academic achievement of students with behavioral disorders. Recommendations for teacher training and future research are given based on these results.
Parental Understanding of Discipline Issues, Functional Behavioral Assessment, and Behavior Intervention Plans: Using a State-wide Survey to Examine Parents' Reports Related to Discipline
The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) mandated that each child who qualifies for special education must have an individualized education program (IEP). Disciplinary issues and procedures under IDEA have been a source of concern among parents, schools, and advocates from disability groups. At issue are fundamental concerns about the protection of rights for students with disabilities, which must be balanced with the ability of school personnel to maintain safe school environments that benefits all students. This research examined the four survey questions related to discipline from a state-wide survey conducted by Education Service Center (ESC) Region 9 through a comparison of selected disability categories as they compare to the responses received from parents of students with the disability category of emotional/behavioral disorders (E/BD). In addition, the research examined the open-ended questions from surveys to determine the types of concerns reported by parents. Data accrued from a focus group of parents receiving special education services are also reported. Parents of students identified as having an E/BD rated their understanding of the school's discipline policy lower than parents of students from other eligibility categories. Almost 67% of parents of students identified as having E/BD stated that they knew that their child might be eligible for alternative discipline procedures. Parents of students identified as E/BD reported at a much higher percentage that they were aware that services must be continued if the child was removed from the instructional setting for discipline problems. In a focus group discussion, a majority of the parent's (67%) responded that they felt like they understood the school's discipline policies. When given a chance to respond through an open-ended questionnaire, parents addressed a variety of problems, such as children being continually suspended for behaviors related to their disability or the behavior intervention plan not being implemented.
A comparison of traditional and IRT factor analysis.
This study investigated the item parameter recovery of two methods of factor analysis. The methods researched were a traditional factor analysis of tetrachoric correlation coefficients and an IRT approach to factor analysis which utilizes marginal maximum likelihood estimation using an EM algorithm (MMLE-EM). Dichotomous item response data was generated under the 2-parameter normal ogive model (2PNOM) using PARDSIM software. Examinee abilities were sampled from both the standard normal and uniform distributions. True item discrimination, a, was normal with a mean of .75 and a standard deviation of .10. True b, item difficulty, was specified as uniform [-2, 2]. The two distributions of abilities were completely crossed with three test lengths (n= 30, 60, and 100) and three sample sizes (N = 50, 500, and 1000). Each of the 18 conditions was replicated 5 times, resulting in 90 datasets. PRELIS software was used to conduct a traditional factor analysis on the tetrachoric correlations. The IRT approach to factor analysis was conducted using BILOG 3 software. Parameter recovery was evaluated in terms of root mean square error, average signed bias, and Pearson correlations between estimated and true item parameters. ANOVAs were conducted to identify systematic differences in error indices. Based on many of the indices, it appears the IRT approach to factor analysis recovers item parameters better than the traditional approach studied. Future research should compare other methods of factor analysis to MMLE-EM under various non-normal distributions of abilities.
Perceptions of parents of students with autism towards the IEP meeting.
The purpose of the study was to investigate how parents of students with autism perceived individualized education program (IEP) meetings. I determined factors that contributed to the belief held by parents that their children were or were not being properly served by IEP meetings. Parental relationships with educators, IEP meeting experiences, IEP outcomes, and treatment by educators were revealed through participant input. Parents were asked to share their experiences of previous IEP meetings. Additionally, parents provided input regarding practices that school districts could take to improve IEP meetings, and actions that parents could take to serve as better advocates for their children. Research findings indicated that parents did not perceive themselves as being treated as equals during IEP meetings. Parents believed that their input was not valued or welcomed by educators. Not having an equal voice toward their child's education prevented parents from positively influencing outcomes in their child's IEP meetings in terms of obtaining quality services and building positive relations with educators. Parents further revealed that educators failed to implement proper IEP protocol. According to parents, student objectives agreed upon in IEP meetings were often not always fully implemented for students receiving special education services. Research findings concluded that parents new to the IEP process often experienced difficulty understanding special education law, and were unaware of services that school districts should provide for their children.Suggestions for improving IEP meetings include: educators valuing parents as equal partners during IEP meetings, educators properly adhering to IEP objectives set forth in IEP meetings, and both educators and parents taking measures to becoming more knowledgeable of special education law and the IEP process.
An Investigation of the Impact of Technology Expenditures on Student Achievement in Texas Districts
The purpose of this study was to explore the relationship between money spent on technology hardware, software, and training on district-wide achievement as measured by Texas standardized achievement tests, the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT), and the American College Test (ACT). A series of studies were carried out to develop a model of the relationship between Texas district TAKS, TAAS, ACT, and SAT scores for all subjects and district expenditures on technology hardware, technology software, and technology training. The findings of this study showed that although the mixture of uneven distribution of training, incentives, and equipment in these Texas districts clouds the issue of effective integration as it does for all districts (Anderson & Becker, 1998), and the mean level of per pupil technology expenditure for participating districts is of an amount ($192 per student) deemed unlikely to have substantial impact on student outcomes (Anderson & Becker, 1998), there are strong positive links between levels of expenditure and student achievement on the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills and the American College Test that indicate that establishing guidelines for levels of expenditure, schedules of acquisition of materials and equipment, and timeframes for training and implementation may be vital to the success of technology integration in these districts and potentially for all districts in the nation. More study into effective funding levels, schedules of acquisition of materials and equipment, and timeframes of implementation is necessary to create truly successful programs of technology integration in school districts.
Distance Education in the Preparation of Special Education Personnel: An Examination of Videoconferencing and Web-based Instruction
This study examined the effectiveness of employing videoconferencing and Web-based instruction in the preparation of special education personnel. Due to the acute shortage of special education personnel, it was anticipated that the use of videoconferencing and online instruction would provide a convenient way for students to attend class without having to travel to the actual location of the educational site. Further, it was believed that this initiative would result in higher student enrollment in special education teacher certification programs, consequently leading to an increase of personnel in the field. Moreover, the increase in personnel would enhance the ability of educational institutions to address the dismal academic, social, and behavioral outcomes of students with disabilities. Information for the study was collected from surveys that investigated how students perceived the use of videoconferencing and web-based instruction in the preparation of special education personnel. Ninety-four graduate students responded to the videoconferencing surveys while 88 responded to the Web-based instruction surveys. Six respondents were randomly selected to participate in face-to-face interviews designed to investigate the effectiveness of both approaches. Findings indicated that videoconferencing and Web-based instruction are convenient ways for students to attend class although videoconferencing sites may not be conveniently located to all learners. Furthermore, the effectiveness of these media depends on several factors: the instructor, the course structure, the learners' learning styles, the quality and quantity of interaction between learners and the instructor, and whether technological problems interfere with the learning process. The study determined that the more structured and organized the course, the more significant the learning outcomes. Also, the maturity level of the students lends itself to accountability toward achieving the desired learning goals. Technological problems and the lack of user-friendly technology lower the effectiveness of videoconferencing and Web-based instruction. Further research will be valuable in improving theories and approaches ...
The use of journaling as a means of reflection for greater technology implementation among teachers.
The purpose of this multiple case-study was to determine whether the use of reflective journals during graduate coursework impacts the level of technology implementation in instructional settings for experienced teachers. This study examined the relationships between: (1) levels of reflection demonstrated in journal responses, (2) the level of technology implementation, and (3) teachers' attitudes about technology implementation. The coding scheme used to determine levels of reflection in the journals was based on the framework of Leung and Kember. The LoTi questionnaire, developed in 1995 by Chris Moersch, was used to determine the levels of perceived technology implementation. The goal of this study was to provide information that may be utilized to plan more effective technology staff development. By providing insights on how to evaluate written work consistently for reflective thinking and on teachers' perceptions of technology implementation, university programs and school districts can develop better strategies for technology professional development. The findings suggest that teachers who demonstrated the characteristics of high levels of reflection also demonstrated characteristics of higher levels of technology implementation. Four of the five cases demonstrated a relationship among their scores on the Level of Reflection, Level of Technology Implementation (Loti), and Current Instructional Practice (CIP) measures. This study adds to the research regarding evaluation of reflection, the use of journals for reflection, and the impact of this strategy on technology implementation. The results of this qualitative study illustrate the process of using the theoretical framework of Lueng and Kember to evaluate the levels of reflection in written journal responses during professional development programs. The findings suggest that the use of reflective journals, in the context of the action research process during technology training, has a positive impact on technology implementation for practicing teachers.
Parental Understanding and Satisfaction with Special Education Services in the State of Texas
Parental participation in educational issues is relevant in assisting parents in understanding and becoming satisfied with their child's educational experience. Parental involvement is not only an ethical issue for teachers, but mandates have been established for special educators through various public laws. When involving parents in their children's education, it is relevant to consider various factors associated with students who are culturally and linguistically diverse. Parental satisfaction plays an important role in many cultures in obtaining parental involvement in decision-making meetings. If parents experience negative interactions, parental participation can be diminished. In other cultures, the satisfaction level raises parental trust in allowing school staff to make the appropriate choices for their children. Family values and beliefs among the various cultures should be a consideration when encouraging parents to participate in their child's educational process. Several barriers exist when involving different cultural groups; therefore, it is essential for educators to become aware of these barriers and learn strategies to overcome them. This study addresses parental understanding and satisfaction among ethnic group and throughout various disability groups by evaluating parental responses from a statewide survey and three focus groups.
A study of the relationship between work experience and occupational work ethic characteristics of baccalaureate nursing students.
The primary purpose of this study was to test the theory of experiential learning by measuring to what extent work experience predicts the work ethic characteristics of students in baccalaureate nursing programs at three regional universities in Texas, including Midwestern State University in Wichita Falls, Tarleton State University in Stephenville, and West Texas A&M University in Canyon. Work experience is the amount full-time or part-time on-the-job experience. Work ethic attributes are referred to as considerate, ambitious, dependable, and cooperative. Results generated in this study failed to reject the null hypotheses, which means that work experience, does not provide evidence of the ability to predict the development of work ethic characteristics in baccalaureate nursing students who participated in this research study. Knowledge generated in this study provided alternative directions for future research with respect to the relationship between work experiences and work ethic characteristics in nursing students. Such research may be useful to nursing educators and trainers in the design and delivery phases of the educational process for nurses.
The Effects of ARCS-based Confidence Strategies on Learner Confidence and Performance in Distance Education.
The purpose of this research was to manipulate the component of confidence found in Keller's ARCS model to enhance the confidence and performance of undergraduate students enrolled in an online course at a Texas university using SAM 2003 software delivery. This study also tested whether the aforementioned confidence tactics had any unintentional effect on the remaining attention, relevance, and satisfaction subscales of the ARCS model as well as on learners' overall motivation for the class and the instructional materials. This study was conducted over a 5.5-week period with an initial sample of 81 total students. Two quantitative surveys were used to measure confidence and motivation: (a) the Course Interest Survey (CIS), and (b) the Instructional Materials Motivation Survey (IMMS). The results indicated that the treatment group showed statistically greater gains than the control group in terms of learner confidence on the CIS but not the IMMS. In terms of performance, the treatment group outperformed the control group on all of the individual posttest measures and on the overall aggregate mean performance score. The results showed no statistically significant difference on the attention subsection of the ARCS model. However, statistically significant differences were noted for the relevance and satisfaction subscales of the model. There was also a statistically significant difference in overall learner motivation as measured on both surveys. This research study suggests the feasibility of improving overall learner motivation and performance through external conditions such as systematically applied confidence tactics. The research further supports claims about the effectiveness of the ARCS model as a viable tool for enhancing online learner motivation and performance. What was unclear in this study was whether individual subsections of the ARCS model, such as confidence, can be independently manipulated.
Effect of Individualized Curricular Accommodations, Incorporating Student Interest and the Impact on the Motivation and Occurrence/ Nonoccurrence of Disruptive Behavior Displayed By Students with Emotional/behavioral Disorders.
As a result of the reauthorization of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act of 1997, schools must now consider positive behavioral interventions and strategies to address problem behavior of students with Emotional/Behavioral Disorders (E/BD). Given the poor behavioral, academic, and social outcomes for these students, there is a compelling need to identify effective, proactive interventions. Current literature has well established the ineffectiveness of traditional, punitive, and consequence-laden strategies to deal with behaviors. Research has shown the manipulation of antecedent stimuli, in the form of curricular adaptations, can provide a positive, proactive means of managing behavior. Specifically, curriculum modifications, based on student interest, are proposed as a positive, proactive strategy used to manipulate antecedent stimuli to improve the behavior of students with E/BD. The purpose of this study was to investigate the manipulation of antecedent stimuli through the implementation of individualized, curricular adaptations, based on student interest, to reduce the problem behavior of students exhibiting disruptive behaviors. A second purpose was to explore the effect of those adaptations on the behavior motivation of students with E/BD. In this study, curriculum modifications based on student interest were used to reduce disruptive behavior, increase desirable behavior, and effect change in the motivation for problem behavior among four elementary school boys with E/BD. Use of an ABAB reversal design, including interval data collection, and the use of a behavior rating scale and a motivation assessment scale were used to establish baseline data and determine effectiveness of the intervention. Results indicate that each student demonstrated a reduction in disruptive behavior, an increase in desirable behavior, and changes in motivation for behavior.
The Effects of Web-Based Learning Versus Traditional Instructor-Based Learning on Student Knowledge and Satisfaction Based on Student Learning Styles
The purpose of this study was to compare the effects of Web-based learning (WBL) versus those of traditional instructor-based learning (IBL) on student knowledge and satisfaction based on student learning styles. Other goals were to determine if WBL is more effective for those with a particular learning style. The study examined a sample of undergraduate students who were enrolled in the college algebra offered as both oncampus instructor-based (traditional) and Web-based at the university of North Texas (UNT). A total of 36 Web-based students and 58 instructor-based students participated in this study. This study utilized a posttest-only intact group. The Kolb Learning Style Inventory (LSI) measured the learning styles of students. This study used learning methods (Web-based learning (WBL), instructor-based learning (IBL)), and learning styles (Diverger, Converger, Assimilator, and Accommodator) as independent variables. Student knowledge and student satisfaction was measured at the end of the course as independent variables. Based upon the results of the LSI, post-learning exam, and satisfaction a series of two-way analysis of variance (ANOVA 4x2) techniques and independent variable tests was used for each of the dependent variables, knowledge and satisfaction, based on a student's learning styles. The results revealed that students' learning styles were statistically significant for knowledge when learning on the Web versus instructor-led. In addition, the learning style was important factor for Web-based learning. The results indicated students with Assimilator and Converger as learning styles received better result with the Web-based learning method. Furthermore, this study found there is significant difference in student satisfaction based on learning on the Web versus instructor-led. The outcome of the study could be of particular interest in educational institutions; especially those that want to transfer some of their traditional courses onto the Web. The finding also has implications for training organizations as they seek efficient and effective ...
Equivalency of paper-pencil tests and computer-administered tests.
Are computer-administered versions of a multiple choice paper-pencil test equivalent? This study determined whether there were any significant differences between taking a traditional pencil-paper test and taking the same test using a computer. The literature has shown that there are intervening variables that have caused differences when not controlled. To prove equivalency between test modes, scores have to have similar means, dispersions, and shapes; the ranked-order of the scores must also be similar. Four tests were given over the course of a 16-week semester. The sample was divided, half taking paper-pencil tests and half taking the same test administered by a computer. The mode of administration was switched with each test administration. The analysis showed that, when the intervening variables were controlled, the two modes of administration were equivalent. The analysis used a 2x4 ANOVA, which showed no difference between test modes, but showed that each test administration was significantly different. The Levene statistic was used to test whether dispersions were equivalent and confidence intervals were established to test the kurtosis and skewness statistics. Finally, each of the test scores were transformed into their Normal Curve Equivalents so that Pearson's coefficient could be used to determine the equivalency of the ranked-orders.
A Factor Analytic Study of Competencies Needed by Entry-level Automotive Technicians
This study centered on competencies needed by entry-level automotive technicians. Many students in automotive technician programs immediately seek employment upon program completion. This study is one step toward identifying areas in the automotive technician curriculum that need the most training emphasis.
An Investigation of Selected Factors Affecting Automotive Service Excellence Test Outcome and Job Placement Rate
Under investigation in this study was the effect of ASE certification of automotive technician training programs and other selected factors on ASE test outcome and job placement rate. This research ponders whether the time and money invested in certifying technician training programs is returning desired improvements in this automobile manufacturer's dealer service staff. The study focussed on technicians employed at Chrysler dealerships around the United States. The 2 samples totalling 387 males between the ages of 22 and 30 were drawn from 1,007 graduates of automotive technician training programs. Technicians that completed a formal training program beyond the high school level certified by the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) were compared to others whose training was not certified by ASE. Comparisons were made on the basis of ASE Automobile Technician Test scores and on the length of time from training program completion to employment. This research sought to identify the significance of association between three main predictors - the status of training program ASE certification, work experience and year of training program completion - and the most desirable levels of ASE test outcome (at or above 90% on the ASE test) and job placement rate (immediately following completion of training). The logistic regression procedure in SAS was used to analyze categorical data in testing the statistical hypotheses. Resulting odds ratios provided indications of significant associations between ASE program certification, technician experience and year of program completion and each of the dependent variables, ASE test outcome and job placement rate. The findings indicated that ASE automotive training program certification status was a significant predictor of ASE test outcome and of job placement rate. Recommendations for further study suggest a look at how technician skill levels affect implementation of the Clean Air Act or dependency on foreign sources of fuel, ...
An Empirical Comparison of Random Number Generators: Period, Structure, Correlation, Density, and Efficiency
Random number generators (RNGs) are widely used in conducting Monte Carlo simulation studies, which are important in the field of statistics for comparing power, mean differences, or distribution shapes between statistical approaches. Statistical results, however, may differ when different random number generators are used. Often older methods have been blindly used with no understanding of their limitations. Many random functions supplied with computers today have been found to be comparatively unsatisfactory. In this study, five multiplicative linear congruential generators (MLCGs) were chosen which are provided in the following statistical packages: RANDU (IBM), RNUN (IMSL), RANUNI (SAS), UNIFORM(SPSS), and RANDOM (BMDP). Using a personal computer (PC), an empirical investigation was performed using five criteria: period length before repeating random numbers, distribution shape, correlation between adjacent numbers, density of distributions and normal approach of random number generator (RNG) in a normal function. All RNG FORTRAN programs were rewritten into Pascal which is more efficient language for the PC. Sets of random numbers were generated using different starting values. A good RNG should have the following properties: a long enough period; a well-structured pattern in distribution; independence between random number sequences; random and uniform distribution; and a good normal approach in the normal distribution. Findings in this study suggested that the above five criteria need to be examined when conducting a simulation study with large enough sample sizes and various starting values because the RNG selected can affect the statistical results. Furthermore, a study for purposes of indicating reproducibility and validity should indicate the source of the RNG, the type of RNG used, evaluation results of the RNG, and any pertinent information related to the computer used in the study. Recommendations for future research are suggested in the area of other RNGs and methods not used in this study, such as additive, combined, ...
The Effects of Career Group Counseling on the Self-Concept of At-Risk High School Students as Measured by the Piers-Harris Children's Self-Concept Scale
The purpose of this study was to determine the effectiveness of career group counseling in raising the self-concept of at-risk high school students. The following subgroups were represented in the sample: male and female students, white and non-white ethnic groups, and students from sophomore, junior, and senior classifications. Two groups of students in the Lewisville Independent School District meeting the criteria for at-risk as defined by House Bill 1010 were administered a pretest and posttest using the Piers-Harris Children's Self-Concept Scale. The experimental group was from the Lewisville Learning Center. The control group was students enrolled in the Coordinated Vocational Academic Education (CVAE) classes at Lewisville High School. A treatment sample of 25 students received career group counseling. A nontreatment sample of 25 students did not receive any group counseling. The t-test for independent samples was used to analyze the data. The pretests for the experimental and control groups showed no significant difference at the .05 level. The treatment sample received 30 hours of group counseling in the Fall semester of 1994. At the end of 30 hours of counseling a posttest was administered to the treatment sample and to the control sample. The t-test for independent samples was used to analyze the data. While career group counseling appeared to impact the students in the experimental group, the limitations of sample size and population may have effected the results. The treatment was significant at the .05 level and the null hypothesis was rejected. The findings showed that career group counseling was not an effective tool for increasing positive self-concept. It is concluded that self-concept was not effectively enhanced through group interaction conducted by the school system in this study. Further research is recommended.
A Correlational Study Using the Behavior Dimensions Rating Scale & the Behavior Assessment System for Children with Two Groups of Elementary School-Aged Students in Special Programs
This study examined the correlation between two commercially available behavior rating scales. The two scales used were the Behavior Dimensions Rating Scale (BDRS) and the Behavior Assessment System for Children (BASC). Students from a special education behavior management class (primarily students with emotional disabilities) were rated on the two scales and students from a general education behavior management class (primarily students with conduct problems without disabilities) were rated on the two scales.