26 Matching Results

Search Results

Advanced search parameters have been applied.

Instructional Coaching in a Small District: A Mixed Methods Study of Teachers' Concerns

Description: This study utilized a convergent parallel mixed methods design to study teachers' concerns during implementation of instructional coaching for math in a rural PK-12 district in north Texas over a three-year time period. Five campuses were included in the study: one high school (grades 9-12), one middle school (grades 6-8), and three elementary campuses (pre-kindergarten through grade 5). In a school district of 3,400 students and 241 teachers, fifty-two math teachers were surveyed and interviewed for their perceptions and concerns during implementation of instructional math coaching in order to assist central office administration in knowing how to support teachers through the change process. Data included the Stages of Concern Questionnaire (SoCQ) at three points during the study period analyzed through nonparametric statistical analysis. No statistically significant differences were found to exist between campuses. However, a statistically significant difference was found when campuses were grouped by elementary and secondary campuses. Open-Ended Statements of Concern and focus group interview data by campus served as qualitative data to triangulate concerns and to measure situational evidence of rurality influence on teachers' concerns. Convergence of qualitative and quantitative findings indicate concerns clustered in unconcerned, informational, and personal stages. Evidence of rural contextual influences point to limited resources and dense staff relationships in rural schools. This data aids the district under study in supporting teachers through the process of change as an instructional coaching program for math is implemented systemically.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Mayfield, Melissa J
Partner: UNT Libraries

Professional Learning Communities: A Comparative Case Study of Shared Personal Practice

Description: Effective instructional practice has a significant impact on student learning. Shared personal practice within a professional learning team (PLT) is one of the key elements in consistently improved instructional practice. However, this PLT characteristic is often the least evident and the hardest to absorb into PLT culture. This study examined the relational characteristics, facilitating factors, or barriers to shared personal practice within a PLT. Two PLTs in core subject areas across two Texas high school campuses were included in this comparative case study. Data from document analysis, PLC observations, focus group interviews, and in-depth individual interviews were examined thematically to answer the research questions guiding this study. The results of this study revealed that building strong relationships and an emphasis on collective creativity were strong predictors of sharing personal practice. Collective clarity on PLT practices and the purpose of sharing personal practice increased the success and occurrence of sharing personal practice. The results also revealed that the copious tasks of teaching and negative perceptions of being observed by colleagues hindered consistent sharing of personal practice. This study describes the current context of shared personal practice as a foundation for future studies to examine how practice can be transformed.
Access: This item is restricted to UNT Community Members. Login required if off-campus.
Date: August 2017
Creator: Curtis, Anna E
Partner: UNT Libraries

Perceived Impacts of a Study Abroad Experience on In-Service Teachers' Practices

Description: This phenomenological multiple case study provides the details, reasoning, and discussion of the role of study abroad experience and its perceived impact(s) on three in-service teachers. Two research questions were posed: What are the perceived impacts on in-service teachers' practice of a study abroad program experience and how does the in-service teacher's perception of impact change over time within a teacher's career? Results of this study suggest that the teaching practice of in-service teachers who study abroad would benefit, especially in the area of intercultural competence, if this experience is structured in a way where the curriculum of the study abroad program aligns with the content of their future teaching assignment i.e. curricular bridging. Case evidence further suggests that long-term impact of a study abroad experience upon a teacher's practice is related to providing the future teacher an opportunity for to develop and maintain pedagogical relationships with students while abroad. The term ‘submersion' is introduced to help articulate depth of impact during a study abroad program experience.
Date: August 2018
Creator: Felts, Mark T
Partner: UNT Libraries

An Investigation of Preservice Teachers' Understanding of Buoyancy

Description: The purpose of this study was to examine the conceptual understandings of 55 elementary preservice teachers for the concept of buoyancy. This study used Ausubel’s Assimilation Theory (Ausubel, 1963) as a framework for a 15-week intervention that used pre/post concept maps (Cmaps), pre/post face-to-face semi-structured interviews, and drawings as evidences for change of formation of cognitive structures. Using a convergent parallel design and mixed methods approach, preservice teachers’ conceptions were analyzed using these evidences. Results of the study show that preservice teachers held both scientific conceptions and misconceptions about buoyancy as a force before and after an instructional intervention. Of importance were the existence of robust misconceptions about buoyancy that included inaccurate scientific knowledge about the foundational concepts of gravity, weight, mass, and density. The largest gains in scientific knowledge included the concepts of gravity, surface area, opposing forces, and the buoyant force. These concepts were consistently supported with evidence from post-concept maps, post, semi-structured interviews, and drawings. However, high frequencies of misconceptions were associated with these same aforementioned concepts as well as additional misconceptions about buoyancy-related concepts (i.e., weight, density, displacement, and sinking/floating). A paired t test showed a statistically significant difference (t = -3.504, p = .001) in the total number of scientifically correct concepts for the pre-concept maps (M = 0.51, SD = .879) and post-concept maps (M = 1.25, SD = 1.542). The Cohen’s d effect size was small, .47. Even through gains for the pre/post concept maps were noted, a qualitative analysis of the results indicated that not only were there serious gaps in the participant’s scientific understanding of buoyancy, after the instructional intervention an increased number of misconceptions were presented alongside the newly learned concepts. A paired t test examining misconceptions showed that there was a statistically significant difference (t = -3.160, p = ...
Date: May 2016
Creator: Kirby, Benjamin
Partner: UNT Libraries

Transfer of Instructional Practices From Freedom Schools to the Classroom

Description: The instructional practices of three current classroom teachers who formerly served as Servant Leader Interns (SLIs) in the Children’s Defense Fund Freedom Schools (CDFFS) Program were examined. Haskell (2001) outlined eleven principles of transfer of learning, which were used to survey the levels of transfer established from service in Freedom Schools to practice in the traditional classroom. Individual surveys, The Freedom School Pedagogies Teacher Observation Record (FSPTOR) along with interviews of each participant were used for data collection; all three components were used to triangulate the findings. The findings from this study verified that low transfer was observed when the minimal application of the principles of learning was applied. This study revealed that for transfer to occur at high levels, it is imperative that adherence to all 11 principals is made, and the understanding of transfer, the application of transfer, and reflection on transfer are implemented. If the transfer of instructional practices is a goal of CDFFS for SLIs, the CDFFS program should consider implementing transfer of learning theory in future SLI training.
Date: May 2016
Creator: Stanford, Myah D
Partner: UNT Libraries

Comparative Study of Perceived Barriers to Faculty Participation in Distance Education at a Four-Year University

Description: Bailey, Elizabeth, Comparative study of perceived barriers to faculty participation in distance education at a four-year university. Doctor of Philosophy (Education), December 2015, 103 pp., 21 tables, references. The purpose of this Bailey study was to identify perceived barriers of faculty participation in distance education courses in a four-year university and identify the differences in perceived barriers between the Hebert 2003 study and this Bailey study. The literature review covers numerous studies and articles written within the last 10 years that are related to a variety of barriers perceived by faculty and administrators. There were no statistically significant relationships found between faculty demographics including gender, age, position at the university, tenure status, and number of years faculty have taught in post-secondary education. There were no statistically significant relationships found between the top administrator-ranked motivators and corresponding faculty-ranked motivators, nor between the top administrator-ranked inhibitors and the corresponding faculty-ranked inhibitors. Out of the top four non-participating, faculty-ranked barriers, three were found to have statistically significant relationships with the corresponding administrator-ranked barriers. Statistically significant relationships were found between the faculty-ranked motivators and corresponding administrator identified motivators and between the top ranked barriers identified by non-participating faculty and administrators in Hebert’s study compared to non-participating faculty-ranked and administrator-ranked barriers identified in this study.
Date: May 2016
Creator: Bailey, Elizabeth
Partner: UNT Libraries

Associations between Collaborative Learning and Personality/Cognitive Style among Online Community College Students

Description: This research study investigated associations between online community college students' personal characteristics and experiences in online courses (n = 123). Specifically, students' personalities and cognitive styles were examined alongside the perceived quality and outcomes of collaboration. Negative correlations were found between the conscientiousness personality style and both the quality of collaboration (p = .09) and the outcome of collaboration (p = .05). This finding indicates that conscientious students who, according to the literature tend to have higher academic achievement than other students, perceive negative experiences in online collaborative environments. Conversely, a positive correlation was discovered between the extraversion personality type and the perceived outcomes of collaboration (p = .01). Thus, students with a strongly extraverted personality tend to perceive that they benefits from collaborative learning. Approximately 11% of the variance in the collaborative experience was explained by the combined personal characteristics. The reported frequency of collaboration was positively correlated with both the quality (p < .01) and the outcomes of collaboration (p < .01). While not generalizable, these results suggest that not all students perceive benefits from online collaborative learning. It may be worthwhile to teach students traits associated with the extraversion type like flexibility which is important for collaborative learning. Also, teaching students to adopt traits associated with conscientiousness that improve academic achievement like self-regulation may help improve perceptions of collaborative experiences.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Sheffield, Anneliese
Partner: UNT Libraries

A Case Study of Mathematics Teachers' Use of Short-Cycle Formative Assessment Strategies

Description: A single case study was used to examine two middle grades mathematics teachers' use of short-cycle formative assessment strategies. Data was collected using multiple sources to provide a description of this single case. Participant change in knowledge of short-cycle formative assessment strategies was collected and analyzed through participant pre- and post-interviews and targeted instructional support was provided through professional development sessions designed to meet diverse needs of participants. Participant change in use of short-cycle formative assessment strategies was collected and analyzed through classroom observations using Assess Today observation protocol and targeted instructional support was provided through post-observation conferences with written feedback. Findings from the study verified that changes in teachers' use of short-cycle formative assessment strategies were positively influenced by the targeted instructional support provided to each participant during the study. The study further indicated that an assessment of teacher's present knowledge and use of short-cycle formative assessment strategies should be considered before providing targeted instructional support to maximize the learning potential for each teacher. Future research is needed regarding the importance of building student self-efficacy through teacher use of short-cycle formative assessment, as well as the importance of involving students in the formative assessment process.
Date: August 2017
Creator: Davis, Adreana A
Partner: UNT Libraries

Transfer of Learning in a K-8 STEM Academy Project Based Learning (PBL) Environment

Description: The multiple case study investigated levels and types of transfer observed in a K-8 STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) academy in a project-based learning (PBL) environment. The academy was constructed two years prior to the study and conducive to PBL instruction. The students and teachers were in the second year of using PBL in the subject of science at the time of the study. The grade levels observed were second, fourth, and sixth grade and each grade level had three PBL units examined from the beginning to the end of the unit. The nine case studies, from the three different grade levels, were observed to identify Haskell's levels and types of transfer as determined by project requirements, observation of students, completed projects, and student interviews. The findings from this study showed that while projects moved the students beyond knowledge acquisition to application of knowledge in completed projects such as books, films, dances, etc., higher levels of transfer and more types of transfer were not evident. Therefore, based on the results of this study, the evidence of lower levels of transfer suggests that the PBL units, though inventive and potentially valuable to student learning, were not designed for higher levels of transfer.
Date: August 2017
Creator: Fuller, Mary A
Partner: UNT Libraries

Understanding the Perceptions and Indications of the Goals and Unique Aspects of the Foundations for Success (FFS) Curriculum Model: A Case Study in a North Texas Private Preschool

Description: This quantitative and qualitative case study examined the educators' perceptions of both the goals and unique aspects of the foundations for success (FFS) curriculum model. Specifically, this study was designed to explain the experiences of 55 early childhood educators and administrators who all had similar exposure to the FFS curriculum model. This study sought to understand the educators' perceptions of the specific goals of using pertinent curriculum and instruction terminology and the parallel process of content language, connecting the importance of developmentally appropriate practices (DAP) and learning standards and readiness for kindergarten. In the same way, the perceptions of the unique aspects of the value based curriculum, the use of reflective supervision and the use of design thinking were gathered and interpreted. This study looked closely into program successes, challenges and future implications of the FFS curriculum model. This study also considered the extent to which future implementations of the model could change the current interdependent relationship between early childhood education and the primary grades. The researcher analyzed the perceptions, utilizing the Likert-value survey instrument responses, the open-ended survey responses, along with the focus group responses to triangulate the findings. Common themes shared across all data collection were evaluated and described. The most apparent themes derived from the findings included the following: the importance of relationships; the importance of accountability and the role language plays; the necessity of the consideration of children's interest for optimal development; and the recognition of intentional planning, revisiting and reflection to the process of the FFS curriculum model. Overall, the FFS curriculum model was determined to be a curriculum model that takes educators on a continuous journey of thinking and learning. Evidence was gathered for the FFS curriculum model that implicated the possibility for replication of the model in other schools, as well as further ...
Date: December 2017
Creator: Jackey, Lisa
Partner: UNT Libraries

An Ethnographic Inquiry and Evaluation into the Student's Perspective and Experience with Improvement Science at Algoma School District

Description: Using ethnographic research in the form of an outcomes assessment, this project aims to unpack and evaluate the experiences of students and significance of the key concepts shared during the Live Algoma-Improvement Science course/and associated projects during the 2015-2016 and 2016-2017 school years. Through the use of evaluative techniques such as interviews, focus groups, and a survey, I endeavor to both strengthen and inform the work Live Algoma is doing and highlight to the community and other stakeholders the valuable impact of this initiative on the students. As part of the Improvement Science course, students from the Algoma School District were trained on key concepts such as failing forward, PDSA, and ways of being to empower them to better handle individual project management, life challenges, and goal setting. While this project was expansive in overall scope, this outcome evaluation sought to understand the retention and internalization by program participants of key concepts imparted from the Improvement Science course and related projects. The findings provide strategic and targeted insights into the success of the course and opportunities for refinements in future Improvement Science courses and school and community projects with Live Algoma and the Algoma School District.
Date: May 2018
Creator: Williams, Jodi M.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Urban Elementary School Students' Conception of Learning: A Phenomenographic Mapping of Variation

Description: For decades, urban public schools have been plagued by systemic and structural challenges that continue today. Scholars, policymakers, and the general public have pointed to problems of learning in urban schools and to low expectations for urban students' learning, but little attention has been given to how urban students themselves conceptualize learning. This study sought to fill the void by asking a group of urban students about their views of learning. A phenomenographic approach was employed to examine the qualitatively different ways in which 20 urban elementary fifth-grade students expressed their conceptions of learning and of their learning approaches. Consistent with phenomenography, the study was intended to understand the collective expressions of individuals' conceptions regarding a phenomenon, and emphasis was on the mapping of variation across the conceptions. Semi-structured interviews with open-ended questions, conducted individually, elicited the students' conceptions of the meaning of learning and their learning approaches. In a "search for meaning" approach, analyses were based on students' transcribed responses forming a pool of quotations. These quotations were divided first into "what" and "how" categories—"what" is learning and "how" does learning occur—and then into subcategories. The results were a set of categories organized in a two-level hierarchy. The three "what" conceptions were as follows: learning as increasing knowledge, learning as growing as a person, and learning as applying knowledge. The three "how" conceptions were the following: learning by persevering, learning by using active learning strategies, and learning by participating in social interactions. These conceptions comprised an outcome space representing the six different ways that these urban school students expressed their conceptions of learning inside and outside of school contexts. Whereas much attention in the educational literature has been directed to teachers setting high expectations for urban students, students in this study seemed to be setting high expectations for themselves, ...
Date: May 2018
Creator: English, Sherril H
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Implications of Social Media: Secondary Teachers' use of Social Media for Personal, Professional, and Instructional Purposes

Description: Social media has the potential to be a critical force in creating connected educators. The collaborative nature of social media encourages personal connection, professional enrichment, and learning through co-creation of meaning. Secondary teachers are in a place that would permit them to harness these affordances, not only in their personal and professional environments, but also in their classrooms. This qualitative phenomenographic study aimed to uncover how secondary teachers used social media for personal, professional, and instructional purposes. Further, this study sought to understand secondary teachers' attitudes and beliefs toward social media. Their current state of social media use was also of interest, as were the types of relations secondary teachers had with social media. To better understand the stories and experiences realized by these educators, ten secondary teachers were engaged using a semi-structured interview process. These teachers presented with varying backgrounds, education, and teaching focus. The interviews provided a textual representation of their social media stories. Interview transcripts were transposed into thick rich accounts describing their experiences, thoughts, ideas, and how they understood social media in their personal, professional, and instructional lives. It was found that the current state of social media use by secondary teachers was primarily limited to personal and professional purposes. Teachers used it to connect with family and friends. They used it to connect with like-minded educators and personal learning networks to locate teaching resources. Many expressed that they could see a benefit of students interacting and learning from others through social media. In the end, however, they did not use social media for instructional purposes. The majority voiced concerns about student privacy, a feeling of not being able to control what students were doing on social media, a lack of training for themselves and students, possible inappropriate behavior, and the inability to access social media ...
Date: August 2016
Creator: Quintanilla, Brenda U
Partner: UNT Libraries

Evolving Curricular Models in Culinary Arts: An Instrumental Case Study of a Technical Field

Description: The purpose of this research study was to examine how chefs and other individuals in the food industry understood the field of culinary arts. This study used an instrumental case study with purposeful sampling of multiple cases. Through a series of open-ended interviews using snowball-sampling strategy that concluded with 45 participants sharing their experiences in culinary education and employment, several themes emerged across all of the interviews: (1) Disempowerment of those who have been successful in the culinary arts; (2) Conflict in the field; and, (3) Needs of employers not being met. Following the analysis of the data, two research questions were inductively formed: (1) How do the participants' understandings vary based upon the three models (apprenticeship, associate degree, and baccalaureate degree) of culinary education? (2) How do these themes vary depending upon the three models of culinary education? What resulted was thick description of the impact of the three models of formal chef education has had on the field of culinary arts, followed by the potential in the development of the baccalaureate degree model as it represented an opportunity for field redefinition in culinary arts. This study produced a set of data revealing that current culinary education has become one that has bred disempowerment, continued conflict in the field of culinary arts, and left needs unfullfilled related to technical skills required for successful employment. The shift from the time-consuming and expensive model of apprenticeship to the development of the associate degree has necessitated a reconsideration of culinary education. What has been offered in this research is the potential for a transformation facilitated within a baccalaureate degree that could intertwine both technical skills and academic knowledge.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Cossio, Allison
Partner: UNT Libraries

Social and Emotional Learning and Preservice Teacher Education: Assessing Preservice Teachers' Knowledge, Beliefs, and Attitudes

Description: In response to the main federal K-12 law, the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) and the teacher education program standards, teacher education programs have tried to address social and emotional learning (SEL) content in their curricula. Adding information on SEL alone may not be enough to overcome the shortenings of many existing early childhood programs. The current study attempted to address these shortenings through the inclusion of specialized SEL strategies and sample activities in addition to traditional content on social-emotional learning and development. This study was organized within a quasi-experimental design framework. One hundred thirty-nine preservice teachers were divided between control and treatment groups. The treatment group was exposed to the intervention (i.e. additional/special SEL strategies and activities) in the modified Nurturing Children's Social Competence class, while the control group was in the traditional version of the same class (i.e. traditional instruction with no additional/special SEL strategies and activities). All students were surveyed using the SEL Beliefs Scale for Preservice Teachers and the SEL Knowledge and Attitudes Scales for Preservice Teachers. The surveys were conducted at the beginning and at the end of the semester. An exploratory factor analysis, MANOVA, and descriptive discriminant analysis were used to analyze the data. Findings revealed that preservice teachers in the treatment group gained greater knowledge about (a) SEL in general, (b) the development of SEL skills in young children, and (c) implementation of the SEL strategies in the classroom. In addition, preservice teachers in the treatment group developed more positive attitudes toward implementation of SEL strategies and the importance of teaching social and emotional skills to young children. Even though SEL beliefs did not predict treatment / control group differences, there were statistically significant differences in the development of SEL beliefs within each group. Preservice teachers in both groups highly believed that creating ...
Date: August 2017
Creator: Dolzhenko, Inna Nickole
Partner: UNT Libraries

Preservice Teachers' Beliefs about Writing and Their Plans to Teach Writing: The Apprenticeship of Observation

Description: Preservice teachers (PSTs) bring a plethora of knowledge and experiences to their educator preparation courses. The PSTs have also formed ideas about how to teach based on their observations during the thousands of hours they spent as students in the classroom from kindergarten through high school graduation. This phenomenon, coined by Lortie, is called the apprenticeship of observation. Past research has focused on the apprenticeship of observation in general while neglecting to specifically explore how this phenomenon influences PSTs in regards to writing. Guiding this study were three research questions: (1) what are the PSTs' beliefs about writing instruction and themselves as writers, (2) how have PSTs' experiences as students affected their beliefs about themselves as writers, and (3) how do PSTs' experiences as students influence their plans to teach writing? After conducting a thematic analysis, there are four findings that stemmed from the data. First, PSTs come to their educator preparation programs with beliefs about themselves as writers. Particularly, the PSTs believe they are either writers or non-writers, Next, PSTs believe that writing instruction should be high-quality and foster student interest. Additionally, data suggested that PSTs' past experiences as students in a writing classroom influenced the PSTs' beliefs. Particularly, the PSTs' experiences around feedback and the control they had over writing were the most discussed. Lastly, past experiences stemming from the PSTs' apprenticeship of observation formed the basis for the plans the PSTs had about teaching writing. These findings have implications for both teacher educators and the PSTs they teach. It is imperative that teacher educators take steps to uncover the beliefs and past experiences of the PSTs as these serve as a lens through which the PSTs look through during their writing methods courses. Teacher educators must also use this information as a springboard for instruction. Finally, teacher ...
Date: December 2017
Creator: Thompson, Emily Kyle
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Effect of a Change Facilitator on Project-Based Learning Curriculum and Design

Description: This study sought to understand concerns and levels of use of a group of teachers in the process of developing a project-based learning (PBL) program, and the effect of a change facilitator on these processes. The research was guided by the following research questions: One, what are the concerns of teachers regarding the planning of a PBL curriculum? Two, what are the levels of use of teachers in the process of planning the PBL curriculum? Three, how does a change facilitator affect the process of change in the planning of a PBL curriculum? The population of this study consisted of seven subject area high school teachers and one district level administrative staff member. This study used the concerns-based adoption model (CBAM) to study the PBL innovation. CBAM is a conceptual framework that describes, explains, and predicts teachers' concerns and behaviors throughout the change process in education. In this study, the teachers progressed through the levels of use on a timeline at a rate that was much more rapid that what is typical for implementation of an innovation in an educational setting. This rapid progression was the function of the teacher population studied and the change facilitator that led the PBL curriculum design process. With the leadership of the change facilitator, the goals of the PBL curriculum innovation were realized, and the team created a PBL curriculum with multidisciplinary PBL products that could be implemented after the development phase.
Date: May 2017
Creator: Fry, Jana
Partner: UNT Libraries

Artistic Decision Making and Implications for Engaging Theatrically Gifted and Talented Students in Non-Arts Classes

Description: This cognitive ethnographic study explored the mental processes that professional actors used when making artistic choices while engaged in creative practices to begin a conversation about how the theatrically gifted and talented population is viewed, researched, and educated in non-arts subjects. Professional actors at two sites were observed, videotaped, and interviewed over several rehearsals during play production. The major thematic findings indicated that artistic decision making results from actors engaging in a cyclical process of private work, affective validation, and collaboration. Implications for teaching theatrically gifted students call for classroom environments and processes that echo theatrical rehearsal structures, while engaging the imagination through personal connection and discovery.
Date: May 2017
Creator: Willerson, Amy
Partner: UNT Libraries

School System Improvement through Building Leadership, Adult Learning, and Capacity: A Consideration of Instructional Rounds as a Systemic Improvement Practice

Description: The problem of the study was determining the supportive conditions related to instructional rounds (rounds) to understand better what conditions may allow for sustained systemic improvement over time. Three Texas school districts were studied to understand the perceptions of district leaders, principals, teacher leaders, and teachers with regard to the sustainability of instructional rounds as a systemic improvement practice, the supportive conditions necessary for sustainability, the salient characteristics that differentiated rounds from other improvement practices, and the potential of rounds to build organizational capacity. Observation of network rounds visits and document analysis was conducted to determine alignment of perception with observation and documents. Findings include perceptions, themes, and critical factors for the sustainability of rounds as an effective systemic improvement practice. Supportive conditions emerged as the most significant perception expressed by the participants. Implications for action for school districts beginning or continuing implementation of instructional rounds are suggested based upon findings from participant perceptions and observation of networks. Suggestions for future research are shared. With supportive conditions in place, instructional rounds has the potential to serve as an effective systemic improvement practice.
Date: December 2017
Creator: Warnock, Teresa Georgeanne
Partner: UNT Libraries

Leaving the Classroom: A Multiple Case Study on the Experiences of Black Women who Transitioned from Teaching to a Non-Teaching Role

Description: This qualitative multiple case study aims to describe the experiences of two Black women who chose to leave the classroom and transition to other roles within the field of education. Using metaphorical analysis, this study employed the four-capital theoretical framework. This framework connects human capital, structural capital, social capital, and positive psychological capital as factors related to teacher attrition and retention. This study illustrates how the participants' experiences fit into the four-capital theoretical framework and highlights the metaphors the participants use to describe their transition. The researcher conducted two semi-structured open-ended interviews in which the participants were asked to describe their experiences in the classroom as well as their experiences in their new positions. The researcher analyzed the metaphors used by the participants and categorized their responses based on the four capitals. The identified metaphors offered a vivid description of the participants' experiences. The results indicated that although the experiences of the participants are similar to those found throughout the literature, the four-capital theory helps describe their experiences more holistically. Rather than having isolated reasons for leaving the classroom, the attrition of the participants can be explained by examining the interconnectedness of the various capitals. These findings suggest that teacher retention and attrition be studied by looking at a variety of causes as opposed to isolated factors.
Date: May 2018
Creator: Booker, Standra Nicole
Partner: UNT Libraries

Perceptions about Student Diversity and Equity in Early Childhood Science Education: A Teacher Preparation Study

Description: Using a mixed-methods approach, the current study examined the relationship between early childhood preservice teachers' cultural awareness and their self-efficacy in equitable science education. It further aimed to determine if the relationship between these two constructs was moderated by their race/ethnicity or the number of languages they speak. Finally, it sought to identify preservice teachers' understanding of equity in science education, as well as how they planned to incorporate the equity concept into their future science teaching practices for diverse learners in early childhood classrooms. Data for this study were drawn from 380 preservice teachers who self-enrolled in a science methods course as part of a teacher preparation program. To measure the preservice teachers' cultural awareness and self-efficacy in equitable science education, two Likert-scale instruments, Cultural Diversity Awareness Inventory (CDAI) and Self-Efficacy Beliefs about Equitable Science Teaching and Learning (SEBEST), were employed. Qualitative data were collected by administering six open-ended questions. For quantitative results, statistically significant findings indicated that when the participants were more aware of creating a multicultural environment and instruction and/or when they were less biased and were more sensitive/knowledgeable about diversity of students and families, their expectations about science learning of students from diverse backgrounds would be higher. Furthermore, when the participants were more aware of creating a multicultural environment and instruction and/or when they felt more comfortable about confronting students or parents whose cultures and languages were different from their own, they tended to have a stronger sense of efficacy in teaching science to those students. In addition, when the participants were less biased and were also sensitive and knowledgeable about students' and families' diverse backgrounds, they were more likely to have a strong sense of science teaching efficacy. Along with these findings, participants' race/ethnicity was a statistically significant moderator affecting the relationship between their sense ...
Date: May 2018
Creator: Lee, Eun Young
Partner: UNT Libraries

Elementary Teacher Candidate Perceptions of Hip-Hop Pedagogy in the Mathematics Classroom

Description: This dissertation examines elementary teacher candidates' perceptions of hip-hop culture and utilizing hip-hop pedagogy in a mathematics classroom. This study demonstrates how elements of hip-hop may be integrated into an elementary mathematics methods course to develop pedagogical knowledge that challenges teacher candidates to explore the benefits of utilizing hip-hop as a tool in the classroom. This study contributes to the growing body of research that investigates the use of hip-hop pedagogy in educator preparatory programs. Participants in this study were teacher candidates at a large university in Texas enrolled in the final year of their educator preparatory program. This research shows that as a result of integrating hip-hop pedagogy in the mathematics methods course, teacher candidates had increased knowledge and more positive perceptions of hip-hop culture, and they demonstrated a greater willingness to integrate hip-hop pedagogy in their future classrooms.
Date: August 2018
Creator: Cason, Marti B.
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Status and Challenges of Online Distance Education Programs in Post-Secondary Institutions in Ghana

Description: The purpose of this study was to identify the status and challenges of online distance education programs in post-secondary institutions in Ghana. This study was a replication of a similar study conducted in Kenya in 2009, at the University of Nairobi and Kenyatta University. This present study was conducted with an online survey using Google survey assessment. The survey requested responses from six post-secondary institutions in Ghana. Out of a total of 450 projected student responses, 309 responses were received with a 69% participation rate. A total of 14 responses were received for instructors out of a projected 30 resulting in 47% participation rate. And for administrators, 8 responses were received out of a projected 12 resulting in a 67% participation rate. Overall the study revealed that Ghana post-secondary institutions have established and incorporated online distance education into their programs, offering both online and blended courses. Some of these institutions established regional centers across the country and incorporated foreign instructors into their programs. The survey also revealed that students were satisfied with the overall online distance education program in their institutions which included the level of instruction, feedback and evaluation. However, there were still challenges revealed from the study that included the high cost of education, frequent power outages, school stoppages as a result of instructor strikes and the need to restructure courses to include projects.
Date: May 2017
Creator: Adjabeng, Stanley Kafui Kofi
Partner: UNT Libraries

Framing the DREAM Act: An Analysis of Congressional Speeches

Description: Initially proposed in 2001, the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors Act (DREAM Act) continues to be relevant after nearly 20 years of debate. The year 2010 was significant because there seemed to be some possibility of passage. This study investigated the ways in which the DREAM Act discourse was framed that year by supporters and opponents. Selected Congressional speeches of three supporters and three opponents were analyzed using the approach to frame analysis developed by Schön and Rein. Accordingly, attention went to each individual's metacultural frame (i.e., culturally shared beliefs), policy frame (i.e., identification of problem and presentation of possible solution), and rhetorical frame (i.e., means of persuading the audience). Attention also went to the shared framing among supporters and the shared framing among opponents as well as differences in framing across the two groups. Although speakers varied in framing the issue, there were commonalities within groups and contrasts between groups. For supporters, the metacultural frame emphasized equity/equal opportunity, fairness, and rule of law; for opponents, the metacultural frame stressed rule of law, patriotism, and national security. For supporters, the policy frame underscored unfairness as the problem and the DREAM Act as the solution; for opponents, the policy frame emphasized the DREAM Act as the problem and defeating the DREAM Act as the solution. Rhetorical frames also differed, with the supporters making much use of testimonial examples and the opponents making much use of hyperbole. The study illustrates (1) how the same named values and beliefs can have dramatically different interpretations in metacultural framing, as were the case for rule of law and American dream in this discourse; (2) how the crux of an issue and its intractability can be seen by looking at how the problem is posed and how the solution is argued, and (3) how ...
Date: May 2018
Creator: Koo, Yilmin
Partner: UNT Libraries