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  • About
  • The Global ETD Search service is a free service for researchers to find electronic theses and dissertations. This service is provided by the Networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations.
    Our metadata is collected from universities around the world. If you manage a university/consortium/country archive and want to be added, details can be found on the NDLTD website.

A developmental study of sign-differentiated and non-sign-differentiated conditional discrimination learning

Grogg, Tommy Michael, January 1969 (has links)
Thesis (M.S.)--University of Wisconsin--Madison, 1969. / eContent provider-neutral record in process. Description based on print version record. Includes bibliographical references.


Brotz, William Joseph 30 June 2006 (has links)
A technology-enhanced course has many components that contribute to student satisfaction. Although technology plays a role in the delivery of instruction, the focus of this study was to identify student satisfaction with several Components: modes of discussion, modes of research, types of learning activities, modes of submitting assignments, modes of testing, and format of course materials. Additionally, the study described relationships between the learning styles and self-reported measures of student satisfaction for the 19 students in the study. Results from this study indicated that participants were more satisfied with chat room discussions, web-based research, web-based testing, and online availability of course materials and grades than with techniques used in traditional classrooms. Based upon these results, a teacher who is concerned about student satisfaction in technology-enhanced courses should be aware that these teaching techniques were more satisfying to students in a technology-enhanced astronomy course. It would be useful to do more study of the characteristics of technology-enhanced courses that affect student satisfaction and related outcomes.


Kennedy, Nancy George 28 September 2006 (has links)
The purpose of this exploratory study was to determine which dimensions of teacher preparation contribute to creating effective reading specialists. These dimensions include educational factors, such as certification (Darling-Hammond, 1999), educational experience which points to teacher quality (Ferguson, 1991) and demographic factors such as age, type of teacher preparation programfour year, five year, or Master of Arts in Teaching. Participants were the reading specialist candidates during the 2002-2003 school year at a metropolitan university. This study used reading specialist candidates Grade Point Average, Praxis test scores, teaching experience, class performance rating, and performance rating in the field to examine what background, characteristics, and instruction contribute to the preparation of effective reading specialists. Analyses of data showed that teaching experience, age of candidate, and Praxis certification tests correlated with the outcome measures of coursework, performance rating, and Praxis reading specialist scores. Interviews of reading specialist candidates provided in-depth understanding of how candidates viewed the program. Results of the study contribute to a better understanding of the individual dimensions of the reading specialist candidate. This understanding, in turn, provides further information for the improvement and evaluation of the program, and adds to research about the preparation of reading specialists.

The Decision-making Utility and Predictive Power of DIBELS for Students' Reading Achievement in Pennsylvania's Reading First Schools

Kloo, Amanda M. 29 January 2007 (has links)
The purpose of this study was to examine the predictive strength and decision-making utility of the Dynamic Indicators of Early Literacy Skills (DIBELS). Specifically, the study examined whether DIBELS benchmarks correctly differentiated among students who were at-risk for reading failure and those who were not as measured by end-of-third-grade achievement on the Pennsylvania System of School Assessment (PSSA) in Reading First schools. More broadly, this study addressed the effectiveness of DIBELS for early identification of children considered to be at-risk for reading failure using the author-recommended benchmarks. Additionally, data were analyzed to determine whether first grade cut-points were appropriately sensitive and specific in relation to long-term predictions (end of third grade) of special education status. When comparing within-year achievement trends, results indicated that DIBELS was generally predictive of first through third grade students Fall to Spring achievement. However, some students did demonstrate erratic achievement. Receiver Operating Characteristic (ROC) analyses revealed that the author-recommended cut-points for the Fall subtests resulted in concerning numbers of false negative and false positive predictions of reading achievement. In fact, the cut-points for the phoneme segmentation fluency (PSF) subtest were found to have a statistically inappropriate balance of sensitivity and specificity. Hierarchical Linear Modeling (HLM) analyses of students long-term achievement showed that the DIBELS measures administered early in first grade were generally not predictive of third grade reading achievement for students in these Reading First schools. In fact, first grade results explained only 18% of the variability in students third grade reading scores on the PSSA. Finally, logistic regression results suggest that students socio-economic status and race were more accurate predictors of end-of-third grade special education status than their first grade reading achievement on the DIBELS. The overall limited predictive value of DIBELS on students long-term reading achievement raises important concerns about over-reliance on DIBELS in an early intervention framework like Pennsylvanias Reading First initiative and in school-wide educational decision making systems such as Response-to-Intervention (RTI).

The effects of teachers' questioning patterns on learners' outcomes.

Capalongo-Bernadowski, Carianne 29 January 2007 (has links)
The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of middle school social studies teachers questioning patterns on learners outcomes. Using a strategy developed by Beck, McKeown, Sandora, Kucan, & Worthy (1996), Questioning the Author, participants were trained in the implementation of this effective questioning strategy in an effort to improve classroom questioning and students responses to text. Two volunteer social studies teachers from an inner city middle school in western Pennsylvania were the participants in the study. The investigator served as the primary observer using a case study format. The primary instrument used to gather data was observations. The investigator observed and audio taped each lesson. Once the lessons were audio taped, the observations were transcribed and categorized using an observation tool based on the work of Beck, McKeown, Sandora, Kucan, & Worthy (1996). Four social studies texts were used and each was taught by the participants during a separate 45-minute class period. Together the investigator and the participants pre selected these texts based on curriculum criteria. Once the chosen texts were taught to the students, the investigator trained the subjects in the implementation of Questioning the Author (Beck, I. L., McKeown, M. G., Hamilton, R. L., & Kucan, L., 1997; Beck, McKeown, Sandora, Kucan, & Worthy, 1996) strategies. The investigator then observed the subjects teaching the same four texts. The data obtained from the audio tapes and observations were analyzed using tables and descriptive narratives. In addition, participants kept reflective teaching journals, which were also categorized and analyzed. Additional instruments used to gather data included the Survey: Teaching Questioning Survey and interviews with participants. The survey was distributed prior to the study and sought after information about the participants general knowledge of questioning strategies. Interviews were conducted before and during the study with information obtained woven into the analysis and conclusions. The study concluded that the intervention staff development strategy, Questioning the Author (Beck, I. L., McKeown, M. G., Hamilton, R. L., & Kucan, L., 1997; Beck, McKeown, Sandora, Kucan, & Worthy, 1996) resulted in an increased ability of teachers to ask questions that prompted higher student engagement with text. Similarly, the increase in text engagement resulted in elevated levels of comprehension.


Donne, Vicki JoAnne 29 January 2007 (has links)
Observational studies of reading instruction for hearing students with and without a disability have provided valuable descriptive information on reading instruction; however, similar studies involving students who are deaf/hard of hearing have not been reported. Thus, an observational study of reading instruction, using the MS-CISSAR protocol, was conducted in general education classrooms, resource classrooms, and self-contained special education classrooms in grades 1-4 in public schools within the tri-state area of OH, PA, and WV. Participants included 24 students (with and without concomitant conditions and with varying levels of hearing loss) and 17 teachers of reading for these students. Results indicated that reading activities varied by reading curriculum grade level, grade level enrolled, instructional setting, and presence of concomitant disability.

The Effect of Self-Assessment in the Self-Efficacy of Students Studying Spanish as a Foreign Language

Coronado-Aliegro, Javier 29 January 2007 (has links)
Self-efficacy, the belief that one can complete a specific learning task effectively, is of vital importance for students studying Spanish as a foreign language. In prior research increased self-efficacy has been correlated with enhanced learner motivation, academic performance, and overall achievement. Theoretically, learners ability to self-assess their own strengths and limitations during the learning process may be linked to overall self-efficacy. However, this association has not been tested empirically. The purpose of this study was to investigate the influence of a continuous self-assessment component on the self-efficacy of undergraduate students studying Spanish as a foreign language. 104 undergraduate students from two different universities participated in this experimental study. 62 participants were in a treatment group, and 42 participants were in the control group. All participants completed the Spanish as a Foreign Language Self-Efficacy Questionnaire (SFL-SEQ) during the second week of the semester (i.e., pre-test) and during the final week of the semester (i.e., post-test). Participants in the treatment group also completed weekly Self-Assessment Questionnaires throughout the semester. Results of an Analysis of Covariance, which tested whether inter-group differences in self-efficacy were different between the control and treatments group at post-test after controlling for participants pre-test self-efficacy scores (i.e., the covariate) were not statistically significant (F [1,86]=1.77, p=.19). However, results of a follow-up 2X2 Analysis of Variance, which tested whether intra-group self-efficacy increased from pre-test to post-test, were statistically significant (F [1,87]=12.40, p<.01). Pairwise t-tests for dependent measures showed that self-efficacy scores did increase significantly from pre-test to post-test for treatment group participants (t = -7.18 [df=53], p<.001), but self-efficacy scores did not significantly increase from pre-test to post-test for control group participants (t = -.90 [df=34], p=.38). Therefore, Spanish undergraduate students self-efficacy seemed to be heightened significantly more with continuous self-assessment than without it. In addition, Pearson correlations revealed that participants Self-Assessment Questionnaire scores were significantly positively correlated with their SFL-SEQ scores. That is, when students rated themselves as learning and knowing more during the course, their self-efficacy scores proportionately increased as well. A detailed interpretation of these results, as well as implications for foreign language education, is provided.

The Roles and Responsibilities of Special Education Teachers

Katsafanas, Jodi D. 29 January 2007 (has links)
The purpose of this study was to describe the roles and responsibilities of 17 special education teachers and the challenges they encountered in the areas of planning, instructing, and monitoring of student progress of elementary students in 4 school districts in Western Pennsylvania. This study was conducted by collecting data through focus group discussions, written weekly logs, and personal interviews. Focus group questions regarding the teaching practices of special educators were guided by the review of the literature and the conceptual framework of this study, based in part on Dukes 1987 vision of teaching excellence in the areas of planning, instructing, and monitoring student progress. Findings revealed five challenges and impacts of the challenges they encountered in their daily work, together explaining the role dissonance experienced by many special education teachers in todays schools. Real life examples of how teachers cope with the challenges of their daily work were revealed through the stories they told in this study. The collective knowledge and experiences of these teachers stand as examples for others in their own practices.

Differentiated Reading Instruction in One Exemplary Teacher's Classroom: A Case Study

Ankrum, Julie Winneur 29 January 2007 (has links)
A single case study design was employed to describe the nature of one exemplary second grade teachers differentiated reading instruction. The teacher participant was selected from a group of exemplary teachers nominated from one rural school district in southwestern Pennsylvania. Data collection consisted of classroom observations, teacher interviews, and classroom artifacts. An analysis of the data revealed that the participating teacher differentiated the following aspects of small group reading instruction: materials, time spent in small group meetings, lesson structure and focus, teacher talk, and post-reading assignments. Ongoing assessments were used as the basis for decision-making about how to differentiate each lesson. A microanalysis of teacher talk was conducted to provide insight regarding the nature of verbal scaffolding in the classroom. Teacher-student interactions were analyzed and coded at the level of utterance. The following categories were used to define the different types of talk used by the teacher to promote the independent use of strategies in reading: direct explanation, explicit modeling, invitations to participate, clarification, verification, and telling. This analysis revealed that the needs of the children created changes in the way the teacher interacted with group members.

Ability or Access-ability: Test Item Functioning and Accommodations for Students with Visual Impairments on Pennsylvania's Alternate Assessment

Zebehazy, Kim T. 29 January 2007 (has links)
This study explored issues surrounding the validity of Pennsylvanias Alternate System of Assessment (PASA) for students with visual impairments. The PASA is a performance-based assessment that assesses a sub-set of math and reading skills delineated by the States alternate standards. Data from 286 students with visual impairments who took the 2005 Level A PASA at grades 3/4 or 7/8 were analyzed. Descriptive and statistical analyses compared achievement on the PASA between three groups of students with visual impairments at different levels of functional vision as well as to a matched group of peers without visual impairments. The latter comparison investigated differential item functioning (DIF) on each individual test item using the Wilcoxon Signed Ranks test. In addition, types of accommodations made for students with visual impairments to provide access to the assessment and potential factors contributing to test bias were documented. Overall, the study confirmed expected patterns of accommodation selection by functional vision level with layout/set-up accommodations being the most frequently used. It also revealed a set of test items flagged for DIF statistically that did not always coincide with the test items judgmental reviewers would expect to be problematic or different for students with visual impairments. Among the three functional levels and the students with visual impairments as a whole, 29 instances of DIF in which a test item may have been potentially harder were found. In addition, there were 12 instances where a test item may have potentially been easier. A qualitative logical analysis highlighted a variety of variables that interact with the decision-making process to pinpoint potential reasons for the presence of DIF. Under-accommodation, the frequency of lucky guesses, score change patterns, and experience level with content were all factors suspected of contributing to performance on different types of test items. Discussion of these variables as well as interesting patterns in accommodation selection or the absence of accommodation selection is included. Challenges of and recommendations for adapting the PASA for students with visual impairments are provided as well as general discussion regarding aspects of assessing this population of students.

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