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Relationship Between Flow Experience, Flow Dimensions, and the Equivalence of Challenges and Skills in the Web-Based Training Environment

Description: This study applied components of Csikszentmhalyi’s flow theory to the Web-based Training (WBT) environment. Specifically considered were how the equivalence of a learner’s perceived challenges and skills for an activity can effectively predict the emergence of flow in the WBT environment. Also considered was the ability of flow dimensions — defined in flow theory — to predict and model the occurrence of flow during WBT activities. Over a period of about one hour, students (n=43) from a southwestern US university engaged in WBT learning activities pertaining to on-line coursework or self-study. A special Web-based software installed on the students’ computers sporadically reminded them to complete a series of on-line questionnaires which collected data on their flow experience, learning activities, and flow dimensions. The data collection method employed by this study is effectively an electronic, Web-enabled version of, and functionally equivalent to, the Experience Sampling Method (ESM) used in other flow studies. This study employed questionnaires used in prior flow studies to collect data regarding respondents’ flow experiences and flow dimensions, and developed an on-line instrument to collect data on students’ learning experiences based on instructional events found in computer-based lessons from Gagné. Significant findings (p<.05) from this study suggest that, in the WBT environment studied, as the relative level of challenge and skill of a learning activity increases, so does the level of flow experienced by the individual. This study also found that flow dimensions are good predictors of flow experience. The results of this study should have important implications for WBT users and instructional designers. Since flow is a positive experience that most individuals wish to repeat, understanding how to facilitate the occurrence of flow, from both the WBT user’s and instructional designer’s perspective, is likely to be beneficial to the rapidly emerging field of WBT.
Date: August 2000
Creator: Catino, Robert J.

Social Skills and Problem Behavior Assessment of General and Special Education Vocational Students

Description: The purpose of this study was to analyze students' specific ITP-related social skills goals, student self-reported social skills, and the relationship between teacher and employer ratings of vocational students social skills and problem behaviors. This study examined (48) vocational students, (24) general education vocational students and (24) special education vocational students in grades nine through twelve. The students' vocational teachers and employers also participated in the study. This represented (144) individual assessment of social skills and problem behaviors utilizing the Social Skills Rating System -Student version (SSRS-S) and the Social Skills Rating System Teachers -version (SSRS-T). The findings indicated no specific social skill goals were deliminated in the students' ITP's. However, the findings did indicate the general education vocational students rated themselves higher, on average, on the empathy subscale than did the special education students. The analysis of data comparing standardized social skill scores, social skill subscale scores, standardized problem behavior scores, and standardized problem behavior subscale scores between teachers and employers for general and special education vocational students indicated employers rated special education students higher on the cooperation subscale only. No other differences were found.
Date: August 2000
Creator: Monahan, Michael

A study of freshman interest groups and leadership practices at Texas Woman's University

Description: This study investigated the level of leadership practices and retention rates of freshman students at Texas Woman's University. The data for the study were collected using the Leadership Practices Inventory, Student Version. The sample for the study consisted of 151 freshman students. The students were each placed in one of three control groups. Group A students (the treatment group) were in the Neighbors Educated Together Program (NET). Group B students (control group) were in one of two university-sponsored programs (COLORS or University 1000), and Group C students (control group) were the residual group of first-time college freshmen. These three groups were surveyed prior to their participation in the NET program or a university-sponsored program and again at the end of 14 weeks. In addition, retention rates were examined on the 12 class day of the spring semester. The study found statistically significant differences (p <. 05) on the pretests and posttests between Group C, residual students, and the other two groups on the Enabling the Followers to Act subscale, the Inspiring a Shared Vision subscale, and Encouraging the Heart subscale. Group A, NET students, and Group B, COLORS/University 1000 students, showed no statistically significant differences between groups. The difference from the residual group could indicate that students who self-select into programs such as NET, COLORS, and University 1000 are more likely to engage in practices measured by the subscale prior to enrollment in the respective programs. No statistically significant differences were found on the Challenging the Process or Modeling the Way subscales. The lack of significance shows that there are no differences in practices for any of these groups prior to enrollment at the university or as a result of participation in a university-sponsored program such as NET, COLORS, or University 1000. A chi-square test was performed following the 12 ...
Date: August 2001
Creator: Mendez-Grant, Monica S

Texas Public School Principals' Application of Procedures in Identification and Prevention of Sexual Harassment

Description: The procedural survey on sexual harassment procedures sent to 300 Texas principals had a response rate of 48.3 %. The mean score on the procedural survey for all 300 principals was 69.30 %. Eighteen research questions were addressed in detail in Chapter 4. Only five showed a significant correlation or effect size. Question 5 asked if there was a correlation between gender and the mean score of the survey instrument regarding sexual harassment procedures. The mean score of women was significantly higher than men. Question 6 asked if there was a correlation between the number of students in a school and the mean score of the survey instrument regarding sexual harassment procedures. This revealed that a significant correlation appeared between principals who worked at larger schools. Question 10 asked if there was a correlation between the location of the school, whether rural, urban, or metroplex and the mean score of the survey instrument. Principals of urban and metroplex schools scored significantly higher. Question 13 asked if there was a correlation between the hours of sexual harassment training attended in the last year and the mean score of the survey instrument regarding sexual harassment procedures. The results of this analysis revealed that a correlation approaching a medium effect size of .237 was present. Question 18 asked if there was a correlation between the total number of hours a principal had attended training and the mean score of the survey instrument. Neither the Pearson's correlation or the Spearman's rho was statistically significant. However, due to the large variation in responses on the sum of hours of training about sexual harassment, it was suspected that there might be a covariate accounting for sub-populations within the principals who participated in the survey. For ages 30-43.5, as the number of total training hours increased, the ...
Date: May 2002
Creator: Cramer, Conita K. Markel

Unintended Outcomes: The Effects of an Entity's Educator Preparation Accreditation on Access to Certification for Individuals of Color

Description: The purpose of this dissertation was twofold. First, the study sought to determine if the Texas Academic Skills Program (TASP) Reading score predicts success on the Examination for the Certification of Educators in Texas (ExCET). Second, the study addressed the effect on individuals of color of raising the minimum TASP Reading score entrance requirement for admission to teacher preparation programs. Data were collected from the ExCET Office of a Carnegie I metropolitan university. The defined sample consisted of 961 participants who had a TASP Reading score and had taken an Elementary Comprehensive ExCET, an Elementary Professional Development ExCET or a Secondary Professional ExCET between September 1999 and January 2001. Linear Regression, Box Test, Predictive Discriminate Analysis, and frequency distribution tables were used for analyses. This investigation examined the effects of the independent variable of TASP Reading score on the performance of participants on the dependent variable, the ExCET. Four null hypotheses were tested at the .05 level of significance. The TASP Reading score was a statistically significant predictor for success on the Elementary Comprehensive ExCET, Elementary Professional Development ExCET, and the Secondary Professional Development ExCET. However, the Predictive Discriminate Analysis indicated that a TASP Reading score of 220 predicted that no candidates would fail the Elementary Comprehensive ExCET, 6 participants would fail the Elementary Professional Development ExCET and 19 participants would fail the Secondary Professional Development ExCET. Five hypotheses addressed the effect of raising the TASP Reading score to 250. Findings of four hypotheses showed that raising this admission standard would impact the number of individuals of color granted admission to the teacher preparation program. These results call for the recommendation that governing agencies address the impact of state teacher education program accreditation that often results in the policy of relying on the TASP Reading score as one of the ...
Date: August 2001
Creator: Rozell, Diann

Virginia Carter Smith: Her Career and Contributions to Advancement in Higher Education

Description: Most research studies of women in the college and university advancement profession measure the number of women in advancement positions, report their corresponding salaries and reflect on the differences between male and female employees in the same position. Little research explores how women achieve high ranking advancement positions and very few provide an analysis of the characteristics, influences and careers of successful female advancement professionals. This dissertation describes the life and work of Virginia Carter Smith, founding editor of the Council for Advancement and Support of Education's award winning publication CURRENTS. The career and contributions of Virginia Carter Smith are relevant and helpful to advancement professionals in colleges, universities and K-12 institutions. This study explores Smith's formative years as a child, describes her educational and extra-curricular preparation and identifies individuals who influenced her life and provided direction for her future. It also examines Smith's role in the formation and direction of CASE and CURRENTS. Smith successfully launched CURRENTS in 1975 when few women held senior-level positions in advancement-related fields. With Smith's contributions, CASE became the dominate professional organization for advancement professionals working in educational institutions, and CURRENTS continues to be an exemplary professional development periodical for individuals working in advancement. This study also examines how Smith promoted qualified individuals, particularly women, to senior-level positions in colleges and university advancement offices. Hundreds of women and men in the profession claim that Smith's served as a role model or mentor to them. Smith contributed to the increase of women in advancement offices nationally over the last twenty years. Her high standards for herself and for other development officers helped professionalize the field for everyone.
Date: May 2000
Creator: Russell, Kimberly A.