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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
Partner: UNT Libraries

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
Partner: UNT Libraries

The relationship of racial identity, psychological adjustment, and social capital, and their effects on academic outcomes of Taiwanese aboriginal five-year junior college students.

Description: The study was conducted during November and December 2006, and the participants were Taiwanese aboriginal students at five-year junior colleges in Taiwan. Five hundred students from twenty junior colleges were recruited, and completed data for 226 students were analyzed. The data were collected by scoring the responses on six instruments which measured Taiwanese aboriginal junior college students' potential social capital, racial identity development, academic outcome (expected grade) and their psychological adjustment (stress, social support, self-esteem, and academic engagement). The instruments were designed to gather information on the following: (a) potential social capital scale; (b) multigroup ethnic identity measure; (c) racial identity attitude scale; (d) perceived stress scales; (e) self-esteem scale; (f) social support scale; (g) academic engagement scale; (h) academic outcome (expected grade). This quantitative design used SPSS 12 to analyze the data. Independent t-tests, Pearson correlation coefficient, regression model, ANOVA, ANCOVA were applied in the study. Results from this study indicate racial identity affects academic outcome with the covariate of psychological adjustment. This finding contradicts previous research that racial identity cannot affect students' psychological adjustment and academic achievement in higher education. For social capital, the study provides encouraging evidence that social capital is directly, significantly correlated with academic outcomes and that students with broader social networks develop better academic outcomes. Further, when students encounter challenges and conflicts, the broader social network assets are covariates with the positive psychological adjustment to lead to the greater academic outcomes. For racial identity, a higher perception of racial identity does not directly affect academic outcome in this research. This conforms to previous research that racial identity does not have much influence on Taiwanese aboriginal college students to fit in the Han dominant academic environment.
Date: May 2008
Creator: Lin, Chia Hsun
Partner: UNT Libraries

Readiness scores as indicators of online faculty satisfaction.

Description: The purpose of this study was to determine the relationships between online readiness scores and online faculty job satisfaction. Online readiness was assessed using the Readiness for Education At a Distance Indicator (READI) assessment. The READI assessment tool incorporated the independent variables of learning preference, technical competency, technical knowledge, personal attributes, on-screen reading speed and comprehension, and typing speed and accuracy. Online faculty job satisfaction was assessed using the National Study of Postsecondary Faculty (NSOPF) job satisfaction questions. Analysis of variance was used to determine whether there was a difference in satisfaction based on individual instructor learning preferences. Correlation coefficients were used to analyze the relationships between the remaining independent variables and online instructor satisfaction. The sample population (N=110) consisted of online faculty members at Tarrant County College. Most of the statistical analyses revealed non-significant results at the .05 alpha level. However, a significant difference in satisfaction with equipment and facilities was found based on instructor learning preference. Additionally, a statistically significant negative correlation was found between online instructor technical competency and satisfaction with benefits.
Date: May 2009
Creator: McLawhon, Ryan
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Historical Development of Tertiary Education in the Bahamas: The College of the Bahamas, Past, Present, and Future.

Description: The purpose of this study was to provide a historical overview of the development of the College of the Bahamas, and to examine the development of the College of the Bahamas in light of the College of the Bahamas Act of 1974 and the subsequent Act of 1995. The research was qualitative in nature using historical analysis. The primary means of investigation were analyses of both primary and secondary documents and interviews with key individuals who were important to the development of the College of the Bahamas since the 1960s. The methods of triangulation of data and findings were complemented by member checks to affirm the basic findings of the study. The study was limited in scope to the College of the Bahamas to the exclusion of other tertiary institutions within the country. The College of the Bahamas has advanced greatly and has largely fulfilled the directives and goals of the Act of 1974 and is currently engaged in efforts to meet the goals of the Act of 1995.
Date: May 2010
Creator: Dames, Terren L.
Partner: UNT Libraries

The relationship of student characteristics, help seeking behavior, academic and environmental variables with student course completion in community college online courses: An application of a conceptual model.

Description: The purpose of this study was to examine differences and relationships in student definition and background characteristics, help seeking behaviors, academic and environmental variables between and among community college students at a single institution who successfully completed and those who did not complete online courses during a single term. An adapted version of Bean and Metzner's conceptual model of nontraditional student attrition provided the theoretical framework for the study. The results of data analysis revealed statistically significant differences between completers and noncompleters on the basis of definition, gender, ethnicity, experience and prior GPA. Statistically significant relationships were found between definition, ethnicity, gender, experience, prior GPA, orientation and completion and noncompletion. No statistically significant interactions were found between definition and experience and help seeking behaviors. No statistically significant differences, relationships or predictor variables were found by degree seeking, preassessment, or technical help seeking. Additional analyses by defining characteristics revealed statistically significant differences between completers and noncompleters on the basis of residency, age and enrollment status. Predictor variables found to be significant were definition, gender, experience, prior GPA and orientation. The odds of completion increased with nontraditional definition, female gender, higher prior GPA, and orientation participation. The odds of completion decreased with experience.
Date: December 2009
Creator: Schumann, Sherry Haskin
Partner: UNT Libraries

Mentoring in Higher Education Music Study: Are Good Teachers Mentors?

Description: This quantitative study examined the correlation between how college level music students rated their teachers on the Fowler/O'Gorman Mentor Functions Questionnaire and how they perceived two aspects of their private music lessons: 1) to what extent they perceived their relationship with their teachers as positive, and 2) to what extent they perceived their teachers as good. The respondents for this study were 295 undergraduate and graduate music majors studying at 5 private universities or music schools. Positive correlations were found between the scores on the Mentor Functions Questionnaire (MFQ) and good teachers and positive lesson experiences. No correlation was found between the existence of gender congruity or the lack of gender congruity and the mean score on the MFQ. Respondents reported differences among their teachers' behaviors (p < .05): Role Modeling and Coaching behavior were perceived at significantly higher levels than the other six mentoring behaviors, whereas Friendship and Advocacy behavior was found at significantly lower levels. The behaviors of Personal and Emotional Guidance, Career Development Facilitation, Strategies and Systems Advice, and Learning Facilitation were found at levels closer to the mean. When role modeling and coaching behavior are present, students perceive teachers as good and lessons as positive. It is not necessary to be friends with a student in order to provide a positive lesson experience. Fowler and O'Gorman's mentoring behaviors have implications for improving the mentoring of collegiate music students.
Date: August 2010
Creator: McCowen, Heather V.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Declining Participation in Fraternity and Sorority Life: a Comparison of Perceptions of Greek-lettered Organizations Between Affiliated and Non-affiliated Students

Description: This quantitative study was used to determine the perceptions that may have caused a decline in membership in fraternities and sororities and to examine active organization involvement between affiliated and unaffiliated students at a single higher education institution in northeast Texas. Eight perceptions were given regarding fraternity and sorority life and why students chose to remain unaffiliated with fraternities or sororities. The instrument used was a modified version of the Extracurricular Involvement Inventory, created by Winston and Massaro (1987) and was administered to participants online via Survey Monkey. There were 206 participants total: 55.3% were female, and 44.7% were male. Regarding ethnicities, 47.0% were African American, 37.5% were Caucasian, and 15.5% were Hispanic/Latino. Out of the participants, 20.9% were in their freshman or sophomore year, 23.8% were juniors, 33.5% were seniors, and 21.8% were graduate students. Participants’ ages ranged from 18 to 32, with a mean of 22.89 (SD = 2.81). The research questions were analyzed using two techniques: logistic regression for the first question and multiple regression for the second question. Findings for the first research question indicated that lack of values, lack of diversity, poor academic attitudes, and a requirement of too much time were primary reasons unaffiliated students chose not to join a fraternity or sorority. Findings for the second question indicated that Greek-affiliated students averaged higher involvement intensity scores when compared to unaffiliated students. Practical implications and future research are discussed.
Date: May 2014
Creator: Shirley, Zachary E.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Perceived Effects of a Mid-length Study Abroad Program

Description: The focus of the study was the University of Dallas’ Rome Program, a mid-length study abroad program on the university’s campus in Rome, Italy. The program is designed to provide participants with the opportunity to encounter firsthand Western tradition by integrating the core curriculum through classroom teachings and class excursions, thus solidifying the foundation of the participants’ undergraduate education. Beyond this purpose, the Rome Program does not operate from established goals and objectives for student experience. I consulted relevant research literature to construct a schema of domains of development appropriate to this qualitative study. These domains were intellectual development, global perspective, career development, and spiritual development. I interviewed 20 University of Dallas seniors who participated in the mid-length study abroad program between fall 2009 and spring 2011, using an extended, semi-structured interview protocol. The participants included 11 females and 9 males; 19 White and 1 Hispanic. The findings were supported by subsequent review by 4 of the interviewed students. I found generally strong but inconsistent support for student development in each of the domains. A number of sub-themes are reported. Through the interviews, an additional theme of personal development emerged and is reported. Although the findings generally support the conclusion that the Rome Program is successful, good education practice leads to a recommendation of more explicit setting of goals by higher education program planners and administrators. Such goal setting provides rationale for program construction, provides students with their own goal framework, and establishes a tangible framework for ongoing program evaluation.
Date: May 2012
Creator: Corbin, Jill K.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Establishing Junior-level Colleges in Developing Nations: a Site Selection Process Using Data From Uganda

Description: This research synthesizes data and presents it using mapping software to help to identify potential site locations for community-centered higher education alternatives and more traditional junior-level colleges in Uganda. What factors can be used to quantify one site over another for the location of such an institution and if these factors can be isolated; why should they be used by local authorities? the variables are secured from the Southern and Eastern Africa Consortium for Monitoring Educational Quality (SACMEQ), Afrobarometer, census data, as well as technology reports and surveys. These variables are reduced, grouped and mapped to help determine the best location for a junior-level college. the use of local expert opinion on geopolitical, economic, and educational situations can be interfaced with the database data to identify potential sites for junior-level colleges with the potential to reduce the failure rate of such post-secondary school ventures. These data are analyzed in the context of reported higher education policies and outcomes from the national ministries, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), quality assurances agencies in the region, the World Bank, and national datasets. the final product is a model and tool that can be used by local experts to better select future sites to expand higher education, especially in rural areas in the least developed countries.
Date: May 2012
Creator: Iaeger, Paula Irene
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Impact of a Community College Teacher Education Program on the Success Rate of Minority Teacher Certification Students

Description: The relationship between the mission of community colleges and the increasing teacher shortage has become more transparent as many community colleges have implemented teacher education programs to address community needs, the shortage of qualified teachers, and the lack of diversity among teachers. As the community college's teacher education role has increased, many community colleges have responded by adding associate of arts degrees and certificate programs specific to teacher education to tackle the shortage of teachers and the lack of diversity among teachers in the nation's classrooms. The purpose of this study was to examine the effectiveness of one community college's pre-service teacher education program in transferring minority students to a university teacher education program and the likelihood of the students graduating with both bachelor's degrees and teacher certification. This longitudinal ex post facto causal-comparative mixed methods case study involved tracking a cohort of minority students over a 6-year period. Data were gathered from existing teacher education program records for native and transfer students at one community college and two four-year institutions. Unstructured interviews were conducted with administrators over the community college's program. For data analysis, ?2 and Phi Coefficients were conducted to compare the minority students' university transfer and graduation rates to native university students' transfer and graduation rates. Results of the study demonstrated that the minority students were graduating at an observably higher rate than both the native to university students and their respective ethnic peers who began college at two-year colleges at the national level. This study's findings might help community college teacher education programs to increase enrollments of minority students and to address the needs of surrounding communities. The findings contributed to the relatively scarce literature regarding minority teacher preparation in community colleges. The study's findings might also be useful to community colleges looking toward or already ...
Date: May 2013
Creator: Perkins, Britine Lynee
Partner: UNT Libraries

Student Engagement As a Predictor of Intent to Persist Among Latino Students at Community Colleges in Texas

Description: The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationship of student-faculty interactions, student-staff interactions, and student-peer interactions of Latino students to their intent to persist toward graduation in community colleges in Texas. Parental educational level (for both mother and father), first generation status, gender, and English as a second language served as additional predictor variables. The existing data used for this investigation were collected by the Center for Community College Student Engagement and included longitudinal data from the years 2012, 2011, and 2010. Data from 12,488 randomly selected Latino students enrolled in Texas community colleges were obtained and used for the study. The research design method was non-experimental using extant data. To assess the relationships between student engagement variables and Latino student intent to persist, correlations and logistic regression were used. Though no relationship was found between intent to persist and student-faculty interactions (r = -.017, p = .066, n= 11,824) or student peer interactions, (r = -.012, p = .208, n = 11,766), a positive relationship was found between intent to persist and student-staff interaction (r = .048, p = .000, n = 10,794) with an extremely small effect size (r2 = .002). Among the variables of parental level of education, first generation college student status, gender, and English as a second language status, only mother's educational level emerged as a significant predictor for intent to persist, R2 = .048, ?2 (8, N = 7,862) = 62.606, p < .0001. The findings suggest the possibility that staff availability and accessibility is important for Latino student persistence. In order to retain Latino community college students, knowledgeable staff able to facilitate students' successful navigation of the educational system is recommended to be a part of the community college's student success strategies. In addition the findings regarding parental education indicate that ...
Date: May 2013
Creator: Del Rio, Roxanne
Partner: UNT Libraries

Face-to-face Versus Online Gender Roles: the Effect of Psychological Identity on the Characteristics and Circumstances of Online Disinhibition

Description: Human behaviors and social norms are transferred to the Internet in complex and divergent ways. The term online disinhibition has been coined to describe situations when Internet users seem to behave more openly and unrestrained online, often acting in ways they would not dare to act in the face-to-face world. According to Suler, there is a need for future research to "focus on which people, under what circumstances, are more predisposed to the various elements of online disinhibition." With this in mind, this descriptive study sought to determine whether or not people are more true to their authentic psychological identities (i.e., genders) during online interaction or create completely new identities because of the more permissive social norms created by cyberspace. Through video recorded face-to-face discussions, reflective online discussions, open-ended online surveys, and semi-structured interviews, qualitative data was collected for analysis. The results and findings demonstrated that some personality traits are magnified during online interaction, but individuals ultimately stay true to their established gender roles.
Date: August 2013
Creator: Greene, Amy L.
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Academic and Athletic Experiences of African-american Males in a Division I (Fbs) Football Program

Description: This study investigated the academic and athletic experiences of African-American males in a Division I football bowl subdivision football program. Critical race theory, identity development model, and social learning model were the theoretical frameworks used as the critical lenses in a qualitative design to examine the participants. The participants’ responses were analyzed and interpreted using thematic analysis. A qualitative research design, which included individual interviews with 10 second year African-American male football players, was used to address this research problem. The goal was to bring together both the psychological and sociological perspectives and to challenge participants to candidly describe their academic and athletic experiences and attitudes toward obtaining an undergraduate degree. Four themes were determined in the data analysis: differential treatment and determining oneself, time management, relationships, and career aspirations. In relation to the theoretical frameworks, the development of self-confidence and knowledge of balancing their academic and athletic schedules was critical for all participants. The sense of feeling different and challenged because of the differences in culture and experience was evident. From this study, university and collegiate athletics administrators may better understand the backgrounds, challenges, and learning needs of this population. As a result, higher education personnel may improve the services they provide these young men in hopes of educating and developing whole persons—physically, emotionally, intellectually, socially, and spiritually—to become well-rounded and functional in contemporary society.
Date: December 2013
Creator: Salinas, Silvia M.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Student Experiences and Expectations Related to the Vertical Transfer Process From Two Feeder Community Colleges of a Senior Institution

Description: The purpose of this study was to understand the experiences and expectations of community college students attending Temple College and Central Texas College regarding what they may expect as part of the vertical transfer process in order to improve the likelihood of their persistence to graduation at Texas A&M University-Central Texas (TAMUCT). The target population was approximately 700 students enrolled in two feeder Texas community colleges who had expressed intent to transfer to TAMUCT. The response rate was 19%, and 136 useable surveys were used for analysis. The sample was 74% female, 45% White with the majority minority. To assess the relationships between community college experiences and transfer expectation variables, correlations and logistic regression were used. No linear relationships were found regarding gender, age, ethnicity, highest level of parents' education, the aspirational variables of highest academic degree intend to obtain at any college or university and at TAMUCT, and the feeder community college attended and the two scales. A statistically significant relationship was found between parental income level and reported community college experiences (F(4, 79) = 2.612, p = .042) and vertical transfer expectations (F(4, 52) = 3.318, p = .017). Community college students from lower socioeconomic backgrounds may utilize the community college to upper-level institution vertical transfer pathway as a way to obtain an affordable baccalaureate degree. Community colleges and university administrators need to continue working together to establish unique and creative ways to create seamless transitions for vertical transfer students utilizing the community college to upper-level institution pathway to degree completion.
Date: August 2013
Creator: Miller, Brandon B. A.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Exploring the Impact on Self-regulated Learning: a Comparative Analysis of Learner Experiences Using Problem-based Learning, Game Play, and Computer-based Instruction

Description: The ability to transfer what you know to new and different contexts is a sign of successful learning. While students often graduate from college with the required number of courses many lack the skills necessary to apply appropriate strategies to solve problems in different contexts, to reason, and think critically. More than a decade ago the Boyer Report (1995) pointed to this fact as a sign that Universities were falling short in adequately supporting their undergraduate populations. As a result, it is not uncommon to see educational institutions introducing new courses and programs geared towards helping students learn better. This study explores learner experiences and the impact on self-regulated learning within a distributed learning setting when motivated by problem-based learning, game play, and computer-based instruction. In this study the instructional design of the course introduced undergraduate students to authentic learning experiences in which students engaged in collaborative problem solving and learning activities framed within the narrative of an alternate reality game. Fifteen self-regulated learning constructs were examined. The comparison group engaged with problem solving tasks and computer-based instruction. Additionally, the study used the theory Learning and Teaching as Communicative Action and its four communicative actions as a lens to understand the full range of student interactions and how they constructed knowledge. The research design employed computer-mediated discourse analysis to examine qualitative data. Data was triangulated through constant-comparative coding of student communication in the form of web logs, emails, student assignments, and semi-structured interviews. Review and consensus building was embedded in the process of identifying emerging codes and categories, and used to support emergent inferences before the final themes were identified and mutually agreed upon. Finally, to evaluate the outcome of the instructional design, pre and posttest measures were used among groups using a two-sample t-test. Statistical significance was used to ...
Date: August 2013
Creator: Najmi, Anjum A.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Comparison of Learning Performance Between Students Who Do and Students Who Do Not Use Mobile Technology-based Activities

Description: This study examined if using mobile technology-based activities would increase student performance in biological science courses. The study compared two groups of students in lectures and labs. Each group had about 20 students. The mobile group had mobile technology-based activities and the non-mobile group received conventional instruction. The mobile group used links to the website, or a QR Code to access the activities. The non-mobile group had handouts and worksheets over the same content. The research methodology for this study was mixed method. The study was a quasi-experimental design that used instruction method as the independent variable between two groups. The study used formative and summative assessment to compare the performance of the mobile group and non-mobile group in lecture and lab. The student in the mobile group had statistically significantly higher lab exam scores than students in the non-mobile group. Additionally, Students were surveyed about their performance expectancy and effort expectancy using mobile technology for learning, and they were asked about their self-management of learning. Analysis indicated that both groups had similar performance and effort expectancy using mobile technology for learning, but the two groups differed on self-management of learning responses to the survey. Focus groups from the mobile group and the non-mobile group were interviewed about issues related to benefits and challenges encountered learning with mobile technology-based activities.
Date: August 2013
Creator: Stowe Jr., William A.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Alternative Certification Teaching Programs in Texas: A Historical Analysis

Description: Before 1984, nearly 975 of teachers entered the teaching profession after graduating from a traditional university-based program. However, beginning in the mid-1980s, alternative routes leading to teacher certification began to emerge in the United States. As of 2010, nearly one-third of all new teachers graduated from an alternative preparation program. As alternative certification (AC) routes approach 30 years since establishment, programs continue to evolve and increase in enrollment. This study focused on the changes that have come about in the maturation of alternative certification programs in Texas since legislation was passed in 1985. The purpose of the study was to delineate the evolution of AC programs using a historical approach, the study used both primary and secondary resources as research tools and employed the use of eight interviews and the literature review for the collection of data. The prediction of future teacher shortages, the need for diversity in the profession the political view to privatize education, and economic recessions were all motivating factors for establishing alternative teacher programs. In the beginning, graduation from AC programs were perceived as not authentic teachers and not as prepared for teaching as graduates from traditional programs. AC programs have become a legitimate and viable option for educator preparation programs as they offer greater flexibility, staff/instructor diversity, and multiple approaches to instruction. This data suggests that AC programs in Texas have emerged as a real and sustainable option to traditional certification programs leading to certification and licensure.
Date: May 2015
Creator: Etheredge, David K.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Sovereign Immunity: a Study of Higher Education Cases

Description: This study explored the legal parameters of sovereign immunity and its waivers for employees of public institutions of higher education in the state of Texas. This empirical study examined the decisions of the Texas Judiciary concerning public university litigation in the area of sovereign immunity, with a review of major state court decisions. Legal research methodology was used in this study. The data for this study included case study review of six cases decided by the Texas judiciary. Information about each of the cases and the important legal inferences from the cases was discussed. A review of the history of sovereign immunity and the current status of the application of the Texas Tort Claims Act was also included. Based on the review of the relevant case law and scholarly commentary, the study findings suggest that a) Texas courts recognize and apply the doctrine of sovereign immunity, unless the application of the doctrine is restricted by the Texas Tort Claims Act; b) the Texas Tort Claims Act establishes limited waivers to sovereign immunity applicable only under specified circumstances and subjects; c) Texas courts were consistent in applying the circumstances by which an institution or its actors waived sovereign immunity. Practice recommendations are included for education professionals at Texas state institutions of higher education.
Date: May 2015
Creator: Mancone, Nichole A.
Partner: UNT Libraries

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.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Establishing a History and Trajectory of LGBT and Queer Studies Programs in the American Research University: Context for Advancing Academic Diversity and Social Transformation

Description: The system of higher education in the United States of America has retained some of its original character yet it has also grown in many ways. Among the contemporary priorities of colleges and universities are undergraduate student learning outcomes and success along with a growing focus on diversity. As a result, there has been a growing focus on ways to achieve compositional diversity and a greater sense of inclusion with meaningful advances through better access and resources for individuals from non-dominant populations. The clearest result of these advances for sexual and gender diversity has been a normalization of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) identities through positive visibility and greater acceptance on campus. However, it appears that relatively few institutions have focused on improving academic diversity and students’ cognitive growth around LGBTQ issues. Through historical inquiry and a qualitative approach, this study explored the fundamental aspects of formal LGBTQ studies academic programs at some of the leading American research universities, including Cornell University, the University of Maryland, College Park, and the University of Texas at Austin – a purposeful sample chosen from the Association of American Universities (AAU) member institutions with organized curricula focused on the study of sexual and gender diversity. The analysis of primary and secondary sources, including documents and interviews, helped create historical narratives that revealed: a cultural shift was necessary to launch a formal academic program in LGBTQ studies; this formalization of LGBTQ studies programs has been part of the larger effort to improve the campus climate for sexual and gender diversity; and there has been a common pattern to the administration and operation of LGBTQ studies. Clearly, the research shows that LGBTQ studies, as a field of study and formal curriculum, has become institutionalized at the American research university. A key outcome of this ...
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Date: August 2015
Creator: Kessler, M. David
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Relationships Between the TeacherInsight Score and Student Performance As Measured by Student TAKS Academic Change Scores

Description: The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationship between TeacherInsight™ (TI) scores and student performance as measured by student academic change scores on the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) test. School district administrators, particularly district personnel administrators, are continually faced with the task of screening and hiring potential teacher applicants who are expected to influence student achievement outcomes directly. Efforts to make the screening, selection, and hiring process more efficient and effective have led to the use of certain teacher prescreening selection instruments that provide a research-based assessment of teachers’ affective attributes, which purportedly predicts teacher effectiveness. This study addressed this concern using a teacher screening and selection tool, the TI, design by the Gallup Organization. According to the Gallup Organization, the TI is a predictor of teacher affective attributes or talents. The state of Texas uses a student evaluation process called the TAKS to measure student academic gains in certain subject areas. This study examined the relationship between the TI and teacher effectiveness as measured by student academic TAKS change scores in mathematics in fourth and fifth grade. I used data obtained from a single school district in north central Texas. The specific targeted population consisted of 874 students enrolled in mathematics and 44 fourth- and fifth-grade teachers hired over a 3-year period (20082011). I applied a quantitative causal-comparative research design. Descriptive statistics for all variables were presented and bivariate relationships between continuous variables were examined. A two-level linear regression model was used to predict student performance on state-mandated assessments using teachers’ TI scores while controlling for relevant covariates. The statistical significance level throughout the study was set at α = .05. A major finding of this study revealed that teachers’ TI scores were not significant predictors of student achievement in the final model (p ...
Date: August 2014
Creator: Stewart, Robert L. (Robert Lee), 1960-
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Correlates of Number of Minority Faculty, Minority Student Organizations, Diversity Course Offerings, and Geographic Location to Minority Student Enrollment in Texas Colleges

Description: This study examined the correlates between the dependent variables African-American and Hispanic student enrollment in Texas public higher education to the independent variables institution type, education region, faculty demographics, curricular offerings and student organizations. Data for African-American (n = 124,000) and Hispanic enrollment (n = 314,000) in all Texas public higher education institutions (n = 109) for the 2008 academic year were examined. Significant results, using a statistical significance of p = .005, were reported for two of the variables. A correlation of Pearson's r = .946 and statistical significance of p = .000 was observed between African-American student enrollment and the percentage representation of African-American faculty in the same institution. A correlation of Pearson's r = .982 and statistical significance of p = .000 was observed between Hispanic student enrollment and the percentage representation of Hispanic faculty in the same institution. The results of this study found significant relationships between the presence of African-American and Hispanic faculty and enrollment of African-American and Hispanic students. Recommendations are made for exploring these findings in further detail.
Date: August 2010
Creator: Kraus, Charles
Partner: UNT Libraries

Examining Self-efficacy in Community College Adjunct Faculty

Description: Though professional development interventions are widespread in higher education, administrators often do not formally assess their effectiveness, particularly in relation to teacher self-efficacy. The purposes of this study were to determine if any statistically significant difference existed between the self-efficacy scores of adjunct faculty participants in a community college’s professional development program and nonparticipants and to identify the variables with a statistically significant relationship with self-efficacy. A modified version of the Teachers’ Sense of Efficacy Scale (TSES) was administered to 21 adjunct faculty participants in Lone Star College’s Adjunct Certification Program (ACP) and 312 adjunct faculty not currently participating in the program. A demographic questionnaire development by the researcher was also administered. Independent variables of the demographic questionnaire included gender, ethnicity, age, K-12 teaching experience, highest degree earned, subject taught, years of college teaching experience, and number of courses taught each semester. Paired t-test results indicated statistically significant differences in Efficacy in Instructional Strategies for adjunct participants in the ACP program. No significant differences were found for Efficacy in Student Engagement and Efficacy in Classroom Management. Multiple regression analyses indicated that gender has a statistically significant relationship to Efficacy Instructional Strategies. A statistically significant relationship was found for race for Efficacy in Classroom Management. Finally, analysis also indicated a positive relationship between race and gender for Efficacy in Student Engagement. No other statistically significant relationships were found across the other demographic variables. Findings of this study revealed that the ACP increased teacher self-efficacy across two of the three dimensions of the TSES indicating that the professional development intervention had a positive effect on the efficacy of its participants. The present study contributes to the research on teacher self-efficacy, adjunct faculty and professional development interventions.
Date: May 2015
Creator: Weisel, Jessica W.
Partner: UNT Libraries