UNT Libraries - 213 Matching Results

Search Results

The Success Factors of African American Males in Master of Arts Teaching Programs

Description: The problem of not enough African American males enrolling in masters level teaching programs was addressed in this study. This phenomenological study examined the experiences of African American males in master of arts teaching (MAT) programs to understand why they enrolled and what factors led to persistence throughout their program enrollment. Six African American males currently enrolled in MAT programs in the southern, southwestern, and western regions of the United States participated. Data gathered for each participant included an individual, semi-structured interview and a demographic survey. Audio-recordings were used to capture the fullness of the interviews, and transcription software was used to code, analyze, and sort the data to help identify themes. This study looked through the lens of Strayhorn’s graduate student persistence and Albert Bandura’s self-efficacy theories. Factors that influenced African American males to enroll into a program were (a) education as a necessary credential, (b) desire to give back to society, (c) minority scholarship support, (d) making a connection to passion, and (e) desire to enhance teaching skills. External and internal factors were identified as assisting the males to persist within their programs. Academic institutions and policy makers may find the results useful for understanding the unseen educational barriers likely to limit African American males from enrolling in MAT programs, the issues likely to occur during the process of obtaining the degree, and the factors likely to be assistive to them for achieving program completion.
Date: May 2014
Creator: Smith, Dantrayl

The Relationship of Counselor Education Program Applicants’ Cognitive Complexity to Other Admission Criteria

Description: Counselor cognitive complexity is a counselor’s ability to recognize and organize multiple characteristics that might affect client needs. I examined whether various admissions criteria–Graduate Record Examination (GRE) Verbal, Quantitative, and Analytical Writing scores; previous coursework grade point averages; and faculty co-leaders’ admissions group interview ratings–for 182 applicants to a southwestern U.S. CACREP-accredited master’s counseling program predicted cognitive complexity scores on a modified Counselor Cognitions Questionnaire (CCQ). Participants were predominantly ages 20 to 30 years (91.8%), female (91.8%), and White (81.3%). Multiple regression analyses showed statistical significance with small effect sizes: the admissions criteria together significantly predicted cognitive complexity differentiation (p = .033), accounting for 6.6% of variance, and cognitive complexity integration (p = .003), accounting for 9.8% of variance. The small effect sizes and low variance percentages support the idea that cognitive complexity measured by the modified CCQ is a substantially different phenomenon from commonly-assessed academic aptitude and personality characteristics. If future researchers confirm these findings with additional samples, subsequent researchers could determine whether one or both domains of cognitive complexity, either alone or in combination with one or more of the commonly used admissions criteria, could help counselor educators better predict which applicants will be successful in master’s programs and the counseling field.
Date: August 2013
Creator: De La Garza Jr., Mario A.

The Effects of Adlerian Play Therapy on Maladaptive Perfectionism and Anxiety and in Children

Description: I used singlecase A-B-A experimental design to examine the effectiveness of Adlerian play therapy (AdPT) for children identified with clinical levels of perfectionism on the Conners Parent Rating Scale-Revised and Conners Teacher Rating Scale-Revised. Participants were 2 children, a 10 year-old Hispanic male and a 7 year-old Caucasian female. To examine the effect of AdPT on maladaptive perfectionism and anxiety, the Child-Adolescent Perfectionism Scale and the Revised Children’s Manifest Anxiety Scale were administered to the children twice weekly over 3 phases of the study: baseline (6 administrations), intervention (12-16 administrations), and maintenance (6 administrations) for a total of 24 to 29 data points. Additionally, parents and teachers completed the Conners Rating Scales-Revised5 times: (1) prior to study, (2) following baseline/prior to treatment, (3) midpoint of treatment, (4) following treatment, and (5) following maintenance phase.During the intervention phase, the male and female participants attended 21 and 16 play therapy sessions, their mothers attended 6 and 5 parent consultations, and their teachers attended 6 and 3 teacher consultations, respectively. Analysis of the child self-report assessments indicated mixed and inconclusive results regarding the effects of AdPT on target behaviors. However, results of the parent and teacher reports indicated clinically significant reductionsin maladaptive perfectionism and anxiety over the five points of measurement for both participants. The participants’ maladaptive perfectionism moved from the clinical to the normal range. Implications for practice and future research are indicated.
Date: August 2013
Creator: Akay, Sinem

First-generation College Students: Their Use of Academic Support Programs and the Perceived Benefit

Description: The purpose of this study was to determine the extent to which academically successful first-generation college students, compared to academically successful non-first-generation college students, used academic support programs provided by UNT and to measure their perception of the benefits of these programs. Differences were examined using information gathered from a Graduate Student Survey administered to students graduating in fall 2006 from the University of North Texas. Analysis of the data from the survey indicated that there was no statistical significance between the use and perception of benefit of academic support programs between the two groups. Overall, students that used academic support programs provided by the university believed they benefited from the programs they utilized. Both groups indicated that they believed the Math Lab provided the most benefit. The Graduating Student Survey also examined input, environment and output factors of academically successful first-generation and academically successful non-first-generation students. Again, both groups indicated similar responses to the questions asked. First-generation college students in this study were successful in graduating from the University of North Texas and utilized some of the resources provided by the university to do so.
Date: December 2007
Creator: Thompson, Jessica Loren

An investigation of the effective supervision and communication competence of chief student affairs officers in Christian institutions of higher education.

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: Wilcoxson, Douglas A.

The Effects of a Human Developmental Counseling Application Curriculum on Content Integration, Application, and Cognitive Complexity for Counselor Trainees.

Description: Although professional counselors have distinguished themselves among helping professionals through a focus and foundational framework in normal human growth and development over the life-span, a majority of programs neglect to incorporate training opportunities enabling students to translate developmental theory to clinical practice. In this mixed-method study, the researcher explored the effects of a human developmental counseling application curriculum and examined cognitive complexity levels among counselor trainees. Qualitative results support gains in both the integration and application of developmental content while quantitative results offer partial support for cognitive complexity gains among trainees. This study identifies a curricular training experience in which counselor trainees' integration and application human developmental theory as well as cognitive complexity, are notably enhanced.
Date: December 2007
Creator: Muro, Lamar

Relationship between child centered play therapy and developmental levels of young children: A single case analysis.

Description: This study used a single case design to explore the relationship between individual child-centered play therapy on children with developmental delays by examining its effectiveness in: 1) increasing measured developmental age; 2) reducing problematic behaviors related to developmental delays; and 3) increasing developmentally appropriate behaviors. Three participants were assessed weekly with both developmental and behavioral measures during the three phases of the study: baseline, intervention, and follow up. Additionally, parents of the participants completed behavioral measures at pretest, midpoint, and posttest administrations. The participant's weekly standard scores were graphed and results were examined separately using visual analyses. Changes between phases: non-intervention baseline, intervention, and non-intervention follow-up were examined; specifically, the level, trend, and variability of the data across the phases were examined. Each of the three participants served as their own control group in this single case analysis and their results, and all three of the participants demonstrated improvement on the developmental measures after receiving the play therapy intervention. Results from this single case analysis suggest the need for further replication, use and reporting of single case interventions and designs, to promote the efficacy of counseling interventions and to potentially enhance the literature and research base for evidence based interventions.
Date: December 2007
Creator: Garofano-Brown, April

College Counseling Center Professional Staff Involvement in Professional Organizations.

Description: College counselors today face increasing challenges, with fewer resources than in the past. Little has been known as to whether college counselors take advantage of resources and benefits available through involvement in professional organizations in these increasingly challenging professional times. College counseling center professionals in one state in the Southwest were surveyed regarding their professional organization involvement (N = 152). Participants were selected by targeting specific 4-year institutions with undergraduate populations and specific counseling professionals who work in college counseling centers within these schools. Most college counselors surveyed were involved in professional organizations, and involved in a variety of ways within these organizations. Many professional organizations catering to college counselors were identified. Specific motivations for involvement and hindrances to involvement were identified. In addition, no significant difference was found among the involvement of professional counselors versus psychologists.
Date: December 2007
Creator: Greenhaw, Kimberly J.

Faculty Research Productivity at Addis Ababa University

Description: This study explores the research productivity of Addis Ababa University (AAU) faculty. AAU was established in 1950 and is the oldest modern higher educational institution in Ethiopia. Recently AAU took steps to transform itself to become a pre-eminent African research university. One of the characteristics of a research university is the focus on the amount of research conducted by the institution's faculty. Academic institutions measure research productivity primarily based on published work. The purpose of this study was to analyze the research productivity of AAU faculty, and to examine the differential predictive effects of individual and environmental variables on faculty research productivity. This quantitative study used a theoretical framework and instrument, Faculty at Work. Four hundred questionnaires were distributed to Addis AAU faculty in person and 298 questionnaires were returned resulting in a 74.5% response rate. After exclusion of 12 cases with missing information, 286 cases (71.5% response rate) were analyzed. Most of the respondents were men (M = 92.1%, F = 7.9%). The average age of AAU faculty was 44. A hierarchical multiple regression was used to examine the ability of six sets of independent variables (sociodemographic, career, self-knowledge, social knowledge, behavior, and environmental response) to predict research productivity (publication output). Results indicated that there are productive researchers at AAU, and the theoretical framework explained 67.6% of the variance in publication output.
Date: May 2011
Creator: Stafford, Mehary T.

The Relationship Between Supplemental Instruction Leader Learning Style and Study Session Design

Description: The purpose of this qualitative study was to examine the learning styles of supplemental instruction leaders at a large, public university during the fall 2010 semester and determine whether or not their personal learning styles influenced the way they designed and developed out-of-class study sessions. The total population of supplemental instruction leaders was 37, of which 24 were eligible to participate in the study. Of the 24 eligible supplemental instruction leaders, 20 completed the entire study. Participants in the study included nine male and 11 female supplemental instruction leaders with a median age of 22.25 years-old. Seventeen participants indicated their classification as senior, two as junior, and one as sophomore. Of the participants, 16 indicated white as a race or ethnicity, one indicated Asian, two indicated African American, and one indicated both American Indian/Alaska Native and white. Supplemental instruction leader learning style was assessed using the Kolb Learning Style Inventory. Leaders were then interviewed, and their study sessions were analyzed. Through triangulation of data from learning style, interviews and actual study session documents, four major themes emerged. The four themes were: 1) incorporation of personal experience into study session design, 2) the sense of impact on student learning, 3) a feeling of the need to incorporate varied activities into study session design, and 4) the concept that students must take ownership over their own learning. No consistent pattern emerged among the themes; however, the results attributed out-of-class study session design to both the incorporation of personal learning style preferences as identified through the Kolb Learning Style Inventory and training conducted by the institution. Implications for future research include the need for continued research addressing how and if supplemental instruction leader learning style influences out-of-class study session design. Also, as institutions of higher education seek to expand academic support services to ...
Date: May 2011
Creator: Adams, Joshua

Transformative Learning in Online Theological Education: A Case Study of an Online Program at a Theological Seminary

Description: Using Mezirow's (1991) transformative learning theory as a framework, this qualitative case study investigated conditions conducive to transformative learning experiences among theological students in an online program at a seminary. Learning Activities Survey developed by King in 1998, a Community of Inquiry framework proposed by Garrison, Anderson, and Archer in 2000, and semi-structured interviews were employed. Emails were sent to 85 students (81 current In-Ministry M.Div. students and four recent graduates), and 38 (44.7%) took the online survey. A typical participant in this survey was a married White male in his 30s. Of the 38 survey respondents, 30 (78.9%) indicated having experienced transformation during their study. Among those 30, class assignment (66.7%) and a person (60.6%) were two factors that influenced them the most in their transformative learning experiences. Data collected from the online survey and two online courses shed light on the semi-structured interviews conducted with 11 students. A qualitative analysis software ATLAS ti. and Strauss and Corbin's grounded theory were utilized to analyze the data. This resulted in a proposed integrative learning condition model which proposed two conditions conducive to transformation, being in-ministry and using integrative learning strategy. These two conditions were significantly influenced by physical presence. A surprising result was that physical presence does not indicate a three- or four-year stay on campus at a traditional seminary, but is a by-product of a blended, online program which gives students more opportunities to develop quality relationships both during their on-campus intensives and in their local ministries. This study provides empirical evidence supporting the idea of online theological education using a blended model which promotes integrative learning strategy and learners being in-ministry.
Date: May 2011
Creator: Tran, Nghi

Effectiveness of Play Therapy on Problem Behaviors of Children with Intellectual Disabilities: A Single Subject Design

Description: A growing disparity between the mental health needs of children and their lack of treatment served as the basis of this study. To address this existent gap, I proposed that child-centered play therapy (CCPT), a holistic treatment that fosters children's emotional, developmental, and social growth would serve as a viable treatment. The purpose of this study was to examine the effect of CCPT on problem behaviors among children identified with an intellectual disability. Specifically, a single case, A-B-A design (N = 2) was used to examine changes in participant's problem behaviors as measured on the Aberrant Behavior Checklist (ABC) across conditions. Trained raters used the ABC to rate participant's problem behaviors 3 times per week during the course of this study. Participants completed 2 weeks of a no-intervention phase, 5 weeks of play therapy 3 times per week, and 2 weeks of a no-intervention maintenance phase. Additionally, participants were administered the Gesell Developmental Observation to assess their maturational age during the baseline and maintenance phases. Parents also completed the ABC during two intervals: baseline phase, and maintenance phase. Analysis of results indicated that problem behaviors decreased for both participants. Results from the percent of non-overlapping data (PND), an indice for effect size further revealed that play therapy was a very effective treatment for participants. Follow-up interviews suggested that play therapy is a viable intervention for children with intellectual disabilities and problem behaviors. Clinical observations and implications for future research are presented.
Date: May 2011
Creator: Swan, Karrie L.

Does Campus Type Really Matter? National Patterns of Alumni Giving in the 2008 Voluntary Support of Education Study

Description: This quantitative study utilized secondary data furnished by 652 institutions of higher education which participated in the 2008 Voluntary Support of Education (VSE) national study managed by the Council for Aid to Education. This study investigated the relationships among private and public status across baccalaureate, masters and doctoral degree typologies and total alumni giving, restricted giving and unrestricted giving per full time equivalent (FTE) for the 2007/08 academic year. The independent variable included the three degree-granting sub-categories of institution as categorized by either public or private status. The dependent variables included total computed alumni giving for 2008 per FTE, restricted alumni giving for 2008 per FTE and unrestricted giving by alumni for 2008 per FTE. ANOVA main effects were calculated and statistical significance determined using the &#945; < .05 level. Tukey Post-Hoc calculations were computed and Cohen's f 2 was used to determine effect sizes. Total alumni giving per student FTE differed at statistical significance across the six institution types, F (5, 651) = 37.181, p < .001, f 2 = .29. Total restricted giving per student FTE differed at statistical significance across the six types, F (5, 651) = 28.90, p < .001, f 2 = .22. Total unrestricted giving per student FTE differed at statistical significance across the six types, F (5, 651) = 35.371, p < .001, f 2 = .27. This study's restricted giving index documents alumni make differentiated choices concerning gifts based on institution type. Recommendations are issued for further research and professional practice.
Date: May 2011
Creator: Simon, Jason Foster

Contemporary Research on Child-Centered Play Therapy (CCPT) Modalities: A Meta-Analytic Review of Controlled Outcome Studies

Description: The present meta-analytic study estimated the overall effectiveness of child therapy interventions using CCPT methodology and explored the relationships between study characteristics and treatment effects. Fifty-two studies between 1995 and the present were included based on the following criteria: (a) the use of CCPT methodology, (b) the use of control or comparison repeated measure design, (c) the use of standardized psychometric assessment, and (d) clear reports of effect sizes or sufficient information for effect size calculation. Hierarchical linear modeling (HLM) techniques were utilized to estimate the overall effect size for the collected studies and explore relationships between effect sizes and study characteristics. Dependent variable included 239 effect sizes, and independent variables included 22 study characteristics. The mean age of all child participants in the collected studies was 6.7. In 15 studies, the majority of participants were Caucasian. An equal number of studies were made up of non-Caucasian participants, including 3 with majority African American, 4 with majority Hispanic/Latino participants, 5 with majority Asian/Asian American participants, and 3 with other ethnic populations. Study collection included 33 studies with majority of boys and 11 studies with majority of girls. HLM analysis estimated a statistically significant overall effect size of 0.47 for the collected studies (p < 0.001). This result indicated that the overall improvement from pre to post treatment demonstrated by children in experimental groups was approximately 1/2 standard deviation better than by children in control groups. A statistically significant amount (49.2%) of between-study variance was found (p < 0.001), indicating the heterogeneity among the 52 studies Statistically significant relationships were found between effect sizes and study characteristics including child age, child ethnicity, clinical level of referral, treatment integrity, presenting issue, source of data, population, and caregiver involvement. Effect size findings for CCPT and its moderators should be interpreted in light of ...
Date: May 2011
Creator: Lin, Yung-Wei (Dennis)

An Exploratory Study of Students' Use of Facebook and Other Communication Modalities in Order to Receive Student Affairs Information

Description: This qualitative study explored Facebook as a communication tool for student affairs and compared it as a source with other communication modalities to describe the 18-24 year old student preference on receiving information about student affairs departments and activities. The research questions were designed to provide feedback on the current purpose[s] of student use of Facebook for student affairs services as well as reporting additional services and activities that would be considered through the use of Facebook. Differences in use among institutional types were also explored. The results of 395 online survey responses were compared to focus groups consisting of student ambassadors at a two-year public, four-year private, and four-year public institution. The online survey participants were asked to respond to specific modes of communication based upon each service or activity. The focus groups were asked the same questions in an open-ended format and the results were compared to the online results. The results indicate that depending on the event or activity, the students preferred a different method of communication, not necessarily Facebook for information on student affairs programming. These results also differed among institutional types. Two-year institutions have the greatest potential to increase their presence on Facebook. One theme that emerged from the open-ended response question in the online survey was that institutions participating on Facebook should limit content so that it is more social in nature and leave academically related issues to institutionally driven communication modalities. There are numerous options to communicate information to students and finding the best one may be more challenging than actually disseminating the information. With the administrative challenges and lack of student responses encouraging Facebook usage, institutions of higher education are not encouraged to spend enormous resources in this one particular communication modality. Given the high number of responses from the online survey ...
Date: May 2011
Creator: Huppe, Alicia

A Critical Analysis of Ph.D. and Ed.D. Dissertation Abstracts Published during 2009 and 2010

Description: The completion of the dissertation certifies the completion of the academic rigors of the doctoral degree and verifies the candidate's achievement of independent scholarship. The Carnegie Project on the Education Doctorate was a 5-year effort to define the distinct purpose of the Ph.D. and Ed.D. in education. The Carnegie Project sought to ensure that the academy moved forward on two fronts: rethinking and reclaiming the research doctorate, the Ph.D., and developing the distinct professional practice doctorate, the Ed.D. The project determined that there has been a blurring of the distinctions between these two degrees over the past half-century which invites examination of their purpose and their content. Given this, this qualitative study examined Ph.D. and Ed.D. dissertation abstracts to determine if abstracts differ in terms of these selected factors: research design, data analysis, use of theoretical frameworks, subjects or participants, the setting or context of the study, and to compare Ph.D. and Ed.D. abstracts to the abstract format recommended in literature to explore if there are differences in the abstracts and to determine to what extent abstracts in either degree are congruent with the recommendations. This study used a digital dissertation database to study 100 Ed.D. dissertation abstracts and 100 Ph.D. dissertation abstracts on the topic of higher education. The design was qualitative and used a frequency of terms and an accepted understanding of concepts between two researchers to reach a conclusion regarding the contents of the abstracts. Two researchers separately coded a selection of dissertations for each degree to establish an acceptable level of credibility for the coding of the abstracts. Multiple findings describe similarities and differences between these two degrees and the extent of the convergence of Ed.D. and Ph.D. abstracts with recommended abstract components in the literature. The study concludes that many dissertations do not include all ...
Date: May 2011
Creator: Newsom, Thomas W.

Experiences Learning Interpersonal Neurobiology: an Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis

Description: Neuroscience is increasingly part of the national dialogue regarding mental health. The field of interpersonal neurobiology may offer a framework for helping mental health professionals identify and apply the most relevant neuroscience principles to counseling. This study explored mental health professionals’ experiences learning IPNB. I conducted semi-structured interviews with participants (n = 6), all of whom were licensed mental health professionals and had completed a year-long study in the application of IPNB through Nurturing the Heart with the Brain in Mind. I analyzed the data, along with a research partner, according to interpretative phenomenological analysis (IPA) protocol. Four super-ordinate themes emerged from the analysis: (1) learning process as dynamic and engaging, (2) deepening knowledge and understanding of self and others, (3) personal and professional growth, and (4) impact on therapeutic practice. A number of sub-ordinate themes also emerged through the analysis , including experiential learning; learning through group process; influence of the past on the present; increased understanding of the change process; increased compassion, empathy, and acceptance for self and for others; increased confidence; using IPNB to educate clients; using IPNB to conceptualize clients; and using IPNB to select interventions. Finally, I identified three higher-order constructs that appeared embedded within and across themes: learning as ongoing, person of the participant, and person of the instructor. The findings in this study suggest that participants’ learning of IPNB had a significant impact on their personal and professional development, specifically in areas related to characteristics of effective counselors. The findings also suggest that these meaningful changes occurred in a learning environment characterized by emotional engagement, experiential activities, and group process. Limitations to this research, as well as further discussion of the results are included. Implications for future research, clinical practice, and counselor education are also offered.
Date: August 2014
Creator: Miller, Raissa

Silent Voices: the Experiences of Deaf Students in Community College

Description: Most students with hearing loss attend community college, yet very little research on this population of students exists in higher education. This dissertation is one of the first to explore the experiences of mainstreamed d/Deaf students in community college. This research was conducted in order to gain a better understanding of how students who are d/Deaf interact navigate the mainstream postsecondary environment. Purposeful sampling was used to gather data from 19 individuals who attended postsecondary institutions not designed specifically for d/Deaf students. These participants were enrolled in an urban community college district in the southwestern U.S. and were receiving accommodations from their campus accessibility office. The sample included six Black females, one Black male, five Latinos, three Latinas, two White males, one White female, and two females who identified as multiracial. Data were collected through 30-60 minute semi-structured interviews in American Sign Language or spoken English, and a brief demographic survey. The interviews conducted in American Sign Language were then interpreted into English; one participant did not know ASL, and relied on oral communication. The theoretical framework of this study was Bronfenbrenner’s ecological theory. Individual development does not occur inside a vacuum; utilizing this theory allows for the analysis of how a student interacts with his or her environment, and how the environment affects the student. Findings from this study provide insight on participants’ reasons for enrolling in college, their perception of academic rigor as compared to high school, and familial support during their college experience. Participants reported financial difficulty, despite their utilization of the state’s tuition waiver program for students with hearing loss. The need for communication access, and especially the quality and quantity of sign language interpreters featured prominently in participant responses. Participants also expressed a desire for more interaction between students with hearing loss and the general ...
Date: August 2014
Creator: Johnson, Serena Gail

Student Involvement and Self-authorship Among African American Undergraduate Students at a STEM-focused University

Description: The purpose of this qualitative study was to explore the association between student involvement and self-authorship among African American undergraduate students enrolled at a medium-sized, North Texas STEM-focused university. Self-identified African American undergraduate students at the university completed an online, researcher-developed survey focused on co-curricular involvement activities, degree of involvement in those activities, and perceived self-authorship indicators. From the completed survey pool (N = 49), 10 females and 5 males participated in follow-up focus group sessions. The survey data analysis was limited to descriptive statistics of student involvement and demographic data. Survey results showed that African American undergraduate students at the university were actively involved in co-curricular activities and generally satisfied with their involvement experiences. The focus groups provided a more in-depth picture of the involvement experiences showing that students believed that their commitment to co-curricular activities contributed significantly to their interpersonal and intrapersonal growth—characteristics of self-authorship. The survey and qualitative data combined suggested a positive association between the involvement of African American undergraduate students in co-curricular activities at the university and the development of self-authorship characteristics in those students. Findings from this study support the practice of intentional outreach to African American undergraduate students in order to promote their active involvement in campus activities and events.
Date: August 2014
Creator: McNulty McCoy, Netreia Z.

Self-determination of Military Students in Postsecondary Education

Description: The purpose of this quantitative study was to examine undergraduate military veteran students’ self-determination and academic effort in relation to their nonveteran college peers. A total of 734 undergraduates attending 4-year institutions in Texas completed a survey, including: 76 veterans (63% males, 37% females); and 658 non-veterans (26% males, 74% females). This research created a more holistic survey of self-determination by adding the 8-item New General Self-Efficacy Scale to the 10-item Self-determination Scale. The survey also included 13-items drawn from the National Survey of Student Engagement. A factor analysis with a varimax rotation of the items identified six factors: competence, autonomy, relatedness, reflection, learning strategies, and quantitative reasoning resulting in a significant Bartlett’s test of sphericity (2 (465) = 12324.53, p < .001). The first hierarchical ordinary least squares (HOLS) analysis results showed that undergraduate veteran students have statistically significant higher levels of self-determination than students without military experience with a small effect size (R2 = .022%, p < .001); however, a meta-analysis of self-determination revealed a large effect size of d = 1.33 between veterans (M = .81, SD = .12) and freshmen undergraduates (M = .65, SD = .12). The second HOLS analysis revealed that self-determination is a positively related, statistically significant factor in academic effort potentially adding 6.8% variance explained to the multi-factored general causal model of college impact (GCMCI).
Date: August 2014
Creator: Placido, Robert B.

Play Therapy for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder: a Single-case Design

Description: The purpose of this study was to explore the impact of child-centered play therapy (CCPT) on the social competence, empathy, and self-regulation of children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The constructs of social competence, empathy, and self-regulation were measured using the Social-Emotional Assets Rating Scale (SEARS). This study utilized a single-case design; the researcher collected data throughout the duration of the study, including baseline, treatment, and follow-up phases. The sample included 5 children ranging from ages 6 to 8 years old: 3 Caucasian males, 1 African-American female, and 1 Latin-American female. Mothers of the participants completed the parent form of the SEARS once per week throughout all phases of the study. During the treatment phase of the study, the children participated in CCPT approximately 2 times per week for 30 minutes each time. Visual analysis of the data indicated play therapy was beneficial for three participants, as they demonstrated improvements in social competence, empathy, and self-regulation. Two participants responded to the intervention with mixed results. Discussion includes implications for clinical practice and future research as well as limitations of the study.
Date: August 2014
Creator: Ware, Jenifer N.

Determining the Reliability and Use of the Center for Community College Student Engagement Survey of Entering Student Engagement As a Tool to Predict Student Success in a Large Urban Community College District

Description: As community colleges have gained more recognition as a viable pathway for students to enter higher education, they have faced greater accountability that has prompted both practitioners and policy makers to attempt to find solutions and tools, such as National Survey of Student Engagement, Community College Survey of Student Engagement, and Survey of Entering Student Engagement (SENSE), to aid in improving student success outcomes. This study addressed the validity and reliability of the SENSE instrument using a three-pronged approach via student data collected over 3 years of SENSE administrations at a large urban community college (n = 4,958). The instrument was first factor analyzed against the SENSE benchmarks for effective educational practice through generalized least squares and principal component exploratory factor analysis. Although the instrument did not deliver a chi-square factored fit for the six benchmark categories, consistent loadings were observed. Second, construct reliability was tested for each benchmark category, and the survey as a whole using Cronbach’s alpha. All categories did not yield sufficient coefficient scores for establishing construct reliability. However, the overall survey produced a Cronbach’s alpha of .85, clearly indicating construct reliability for all items combined. Third, correlations between SENSE perception scores and community college students’ grade point averages, fall to fall retention, semester credit hours, course completion for developmental and college gateway courses, and degree and certificate completion were calculated. Although no strong correlations were observed, the SENSE may be useful to community colleges seeking to increase completion rates.
Date: December 2014
Creator: Harris, Sheryl

A Historical Study of the Paris Small Business Development Center in Paris, Texas: 1986-2006

Description: This historical study chronicled events of the development and implementation of the Paris Small Business Development Center at Paris Junior College in Paris, Texas from 1986-2006. Data was collected from primary and secondary sources and oral histories through personal interviews. The analysis included a brief history of higher education and the service mission and situated the study in the broader context as an extension program in higher education. This study provided a brief history of the U.S. Small Business Administration and America’s Small Business Development Center Network as a background for the study. This study is significant to scholars in the field of higher education for a number of reasons. It provides a historical analysis of a service program that extends the college to the community and demonstrates higher education and its role in economic development. It adds to the current body of research by advancing an understanding of a past to contemporary knowledge. Finally, by integrating historical perspectives from multiple disciplines in higher education, what happened and the context in which it happened can be more fully appreciated. This study also contributes to practical knowledge as it deepens the understanding of significant events and processes that contributed to the success of an outreach program in higher education.
Date: December 2014
Creator: Smith, Donna Gayle

Evaluation Practices of Community College Faculty Development Programs

Description: The purpose of this quantitative study was to determine the current state of community college faculty development program evaluation and identify possible influences on evaluation practices. Data from 184 survey responses and the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) were analyzed to answer three research questions. Multiple regression was used to determine if a relationship existed between the dependent/outcome variable (evaluation utilization score) and the independent/predictor variable (accrediting agency affiliation: MSCHE, NEASC, NCA, NWCCU, SACS, and WASC) and/or control variables (institution locale, student FTE, expenses per student FTE, percent spent on instruction, and percent of full-time faculty). Results were not statistically significant, F (12, 163) = 1.176, p = .305. The mean evaluation scores were similar for all six accrediting agencies ranging from 60-69. The rural variable was statistically significant with p = .003 and alpha = .05, but it only accounted for 3.6% of the variance explained. Logistic regression was used to determine if a relationship existed between the dependent/outcome variable (use of evaluation) and the above-specified independent/predictor variable and/or control variables for six faculty development program activities. Results revealed that significant predictor variables for the use of evaluation vary based on the faculty development program activity. Statistically significant predictors were identified for two of the six activities. The percent spent on instruction variable was statistically significant for financial support for attending professional conferences (p = .02; alpha = .05). The NCA affiliation and student FTE variables were statistically significant for orientation for new faculty (p = .007; alpha = .05 and p = .027; alpha = .05 respectively). The analysis of the evaluation methods was conducted using descriptive statistics and frequencies. The most frequently used evaluation methods were questionnaire and verbal feedback. NCA was identified as having the greatest number of institutions using the most frequently used evaluation ...
Date: December 2014
Creator: Bunyard, Magen Lynn