International Science Index

International Journal of Educational and Pedagogical Sciences

Study Habits and Level of Difficulty Encountered by Maltese Students Studying Biology Advanced Level Topics
This research was performed to investigate the study habits and level of difficulty perceived by post-secondary students in Biology at Advanced-level topics after completing their first year of study. At the end of a two-year ‘sixth form’ course, Maltese students sit for the Matriculation and Secondary Education Certificate (MATSEC) Advanced-level biology exam as a requirement to pursue science-related studies at the University of Malta. The sample was composed of 23 students (16 taking Chemistry and 7 taking some ‘Other’ subject at Advanced Level). The cohort comprised 7 males and 16 females. A questionnaire constructed by the authors, was answered anonymously during the last lecture at the end of the first year of study, in May 2016. The Chi square test revealed that gender plays no effect on the various study habits (x² (6) = 5.873, p = 0.438). ‘Reading both notes and textbooks’ was the most common method adopted by males (71.4%), whereas ‘Writing notes on each topic’ was that mostly used by females (81.3%). The Mann-Whitney U test showed no significant difference in the study habits of students and the mean assessment mark obtained at the end of the first year course (p = 0.231). Statistical difference was found with the One-ANOVA test when comparing mean assessment mark obtained at the end of the first year course when students are clustered by their Secondary Education Certificate (SEC) grade (p < 0.001). Those obtaining a SEC grade of 2 and 3 got the highest mean assessment of 68.33% and 66.9%, respectively [SEC grading is 1-7, where 1 is the highest]. The Friedman test was used to compare the mean difficulty rating scores provided for the difficulty of each topic. The mean difficulty rating score ranges from 1 to 4, where the larger the mean rating score the higher is the difficulty. When considering the whole group of students, 9 topics out of 21 were perceived as significantly more difficult than the other topics. Protein synthesis, DNA Replication and Biomolecules were the most difficult, in that order. The Mann-Whitney U test revealed that the perceived level of difficulty in comprehending Biomolecules is significantly lower for students taking Chemistry compared to those not choosing the subject (p = 0.018). Protein Synthesis was claimed as the most difficult by Chemistry students and Biomolecules by those not studying Chemistry. DNA Replication was the second most difficult topic perceived by both groups. The Mann-Whitney U test was used to examine the effect of gender on the perceived level of difficulty in comprehending various topics. It was found that females have significantly more difficulty in comprehending Biomolecules than males (p=0.039). Protein synthesis was perceived as the most difficult topic by males (mean difficulty rating score = 3.14) while Biomolecules, DNA Replication and Protein synthesis were of equal difficulty for females (mean difficulty rating score = 3.00). Males and females perceived DNA Replication as equally difficult (mean difficulty rating score = 3.00). Discovering the students’ study habits and perceived level of difficulty of specific topics is vital for the lecturer to offer guidance that leads to higher academic achievement.
The Characteristics of Quantity Operation for 2nd and 3rd Grade Mathematics Slow Learners
The development of mathematical competency has individual benefits as well as benefits to the wider society. Children who begin school behind their peers in their understanding of number, counting, and simple arithmetic are at high risk of staying behind throughout their schooling. The development of effective strategies for improving the educational trajectory of these individuals will be contingent on identifying areas of early quantitative knowledge that influence later mathematics achievement. A computer-based quantity assessment was developed in this study to investigate the characteristics of 2nd and 3rd grade slow learners in quantity. The concept of quantification involves understanding measurements, counts, magnitudes, units, indicators, relative size, and numerical trends and patterns. Fifty-five tasks of quantitative reasoning—such as number sense, mental calculation, estimation and assessment of reasonableness of results—are included as quantity problem solving. Thus, quantity is defined in this study as applying knowledge of number and number operations in a wide variety of authentic settings. Around 1000 students were tested and categorized into 4 different performance levels. Students’ quantity ability correlated higher with their school math grade than other subjects. Around 20% students are below basic level. The intervention design implications of the preliminary item map constructed are discussed.
Transformational Leadership and Its Effect on Teacher Job Satisfaction
This study aimed to investigate the relationship between teachers’ perceived transformational leadership behaviors and their job satisfaction in China after controlling for teacher self-efficacy. Hierarchical regression analysis (HRA) technique was employed to examine factors’ contributions to teacher job satisfaction with a sample of Chinese high school teachers. The finding of this study provided evidence that teachers’ perceived transformational leadership behaviors accounted for a large percentage (44.9%) of the variance in Chinese teachers’ job satisfaction. Uniquely, school principals’ sense of power was a negative significant predictor of teacher job satisfaction, meaning that the more teachers perceived their principals’ sense of power, the lower of their job satisfaction. Furthermore, this study provided evidence that teacher self-efficacy significantly contributes to teacher job satisfaction. Specifically, teachers’ self-efficacy on student engagement was found to be a significant predictor of teacher job satisfaction. The conclusions were discussed in terms of Chinese cultures. The authors pointed out that how to make teachers involved in school policy making is a challenge for China and that more shared leadership is needed in Chinese schools.
Interrogation of the Role of First Year Student Experiences in Student Success at a University of Technology in South Africa
This ongoing research explores what could be the components of a comprehensive First-Year Student Experience (FYSE) at the Durban University of Technology (DUT) and the preferred implementation modalities. In light of the Siyaphumelela project, this interrogation is premised on the need to glean data for the institution that could be used to ascertain the role of FYSE towards enhancing student success. The research proceeds by examining prevalent models from other South African Universities and beyond in its quest to get at pragmatic comprehensive FYSE programme for DUT. As DUT is a student centered institution and amidst the ever shrinking economy, this research would aid higher education practitioners to ascertain if the hard earned finances are being channelled to a worthy academic venture. This research seeks to get inputs from a) students who participated in FYSE and are now in second and third years at DUT b) students who are currently participating in FYSE c) former and present Tutors d) departmental coordinators e) academics and support staff working with the participating students. This exploratory approach is preferred since 2010 DUT has grappled with how to implement an integrated institution-wide FYSE. This findings of this research could provide the much-needed data to ascertain if the current FYSE package is pivotal towards attainment of DUT Strategic Focus Area 1: Building sustainable student communities of living and learning. The ideal is to have DUT FYSE programme become an institution-wide programme that lays the foundation for consolidated and focused student development programmes for subsequent undergraduate and postgraduate levels of study. Also, armed with data from this research, DUT could develop the capacity and systems to ensure that all students get diverse on-time support to enhance their retention and academic success in their tertiary studies. In essence, the preferred FYSE curriculum woven around DUT graduate attributes should contribute towards the reduction in the first-year students’ dropout rates and subsequently in undergraduate studies. Therefore, this on-going research will feed into Siyaphumelela project and would help position 2018-2020 FYSE initiatives at DUT.
Exploring Students Self-Evaluation of Their Learning Outcomes Attainment through an Integrated Cumulative Grade Point Average Reporting Mechanism
Integrated Cumulative Grade Point Average or iCGPA is a mechanism and strategy to ensure the curriculum of an academic programme is constructively aligned to the expected learning outcomes and student performance based on the attainment of those learning outcomes is reported objectively in a spider web. Much effort and time has been spent to develop a viable mechanism and train academics to utilize the platform for reporting. The question is, how well do learners conceive the idea of their achievement via iCGPA and whether quality learner attributes have been nurtured through the iCGPA mechanism? This paper presents the architecture of an integrated CGPA mechanism purported to address a holistic evaluation from the evaluation of courses learning outcomes to aligned programme learning outcomes attainment. The paper then discusses the students’ understanding of the mechanism and evaluation of their achievement from the generated spider web. A set of questionnaire was distributed to a group of students with iCGPA reporting and frequency analysis was used to compare the perspectives of students on their performance. In addition, the questionnaire also explored how they conceive the idea of an integrated, holistic reporting and how it generates their motivation to improve. The iCGPA group was found to be receptive to what they have achieved throughout their study period. They agreed that the achievement level generated from their spider web allows then to develop intervention and enhance the programme learning outcomes before they graduate.
Calculating Productivity and Efficiency of an Educational Product: Transposition of Mario Godard's Method
The office for approval of materials has the task to approve instructional materials. The approval process does not include the use of the material by students. The productivity of educational products is unknown. The goal of this article is to find a way to calculate the productivity and efficiency of an educational product, to improve it in order to provide a truly effective tool. To do this, we were inspired by the book written by Professor Mario Godard (2010). We will propose ways to measure productivity and efficiency of an educational product. Finally, we will discuss the difficulties caused by this calculation.
Use of Concept Maps as a Tool for Evaluating Students' Understanding of Science
This study explores the genesis and development of concept mapping as a useful tool for science education and its effectiveness as technique for teaching and learning and evaluation for secondary science in schools and the role played by National College of Education science teachers. Concept maps, when carefully employed and executed serves as an integral part of teaching method and measure of effectiveness of teaching and tool for evaluation. Research has shown that science concept maps can have positive influence on student learning and motivation. The success of concept maps played in an instruction class depends on the type of theme selected, the development of learning outcomes, and the flexibility of instruction in providing library unit that is equipped with multimedia equipment where learners can interact. The study was restricted to 6 male and 9 female respondents' teachers in third-year internship pre service science teachers in Gampaha district Sri Lanka. Data were collected through 15 item questionnaire provided to learners and in depth interviews and class observations of 18 science classes. The two generated hypotheses for the study were rejected, while the results revealed that significant difference exists between factors influencing teachers' choice of concept maps, its usefulness and problems hindering the effectiveness of concept maps for teaching and learning process of secondary science in schools. It was examined that concept maps can be used as an effective measure to evaluate students understanding of concepts and misconceptions. Even the teacher trainees could not identify, key concept is on top, and subordinate concepts fall below. It is recommended that pre service science teacher trainees should be provided a thorough training using it as an evaluation instrument.
Modeling Curriculum for High School Students to Learn about Electric Circuits
Recent K–12 Taiwan Science Education Curriculum Guideline emphasize the essential role of modeling curriculum in science learning; however, few modeling curricula have been designed and adopted in current science teaching. Therefore, this study aims to develop modeling curriculum on electric circuits to investigate any learning difficulties students have with modeling curriculum and further enhance modeling teaching. This study was conducted with 44 10th-grade students in Central Taiwan. Data collection included a students’ understanding of models in science (SUMS) survey that explored the students' epistemology of scientific models and modeling and a complex circuit problem to investigate the students’ modeling abilities. Data analysis included the following: (1) Paired sample t-tests were used to examine the improvement of students’ modeling abilities and conceptual understanding before and after the curriculum was taught. (2) Paired sample t-tests were also utilized to determine the students’ modeling abilities before and after the modeling activities, and a Pearson correlation was used to understand the relationship between students’ modeling abilities during the activities and on the posttest. (3) ANOVA analysis was used during different stages of the modeling curriculum to investigate the differences between the students’ who developed microscopic models and macroscopic models after the modeling curriculum was taught. (4) Independent sample t-tests were employed to determine whether the students who changed their models had significantly different understandings of scientific models than the students who did not change their models. The results revealed the following: (1) After the modeling curriculum was taught, the students had made significant progress in both their understanding of the science concept and their modeling abilities. In terms of science concepts, this modeling curriculum helped the students overcome the misconception that electric currents reduce after flowing through light bulbs. In terms of modeling abilities, this modeling curriculum helped students employ macroscopic or microscopic models to explain their observed phenomena. (2) Encouraging the students to explain scientific phenomena in different context prompts during the modeling process allowed them to convert their models to microscopic models, but it did not help them continuously employ microscopic models throughout the whole curriculum. The students finally consistently employed microscopic models when they had help visualizing the microscopic models. (3) During the modeling process, the students who revised their own models better understood that models can be changed than the students who did not revise their own models. Also, the students who revised their models to explain different scientific phenomena tended to regard models as explanatory tools. In short, this study explored different strategies to facilitate students’ modeling processes as well as their difficulties with the modeling process. The findings can be used to design and teach modeling curricula and help students enhance their modeling abilities.
Contextual Variables Affecting Frustration Level in Reading: An Integral Inquiry
This study employs a sequential explanatory mixed method. Quantitatively it investigated the profile of the grade VII students. Qualitatively, the prevailing contextual variables that affect their frustration-level were sought based on their perspective and that of their parents and teachers. These students were categorized as frustration-level in reading based on the data on word list of the Philippine Informal Reading Inventory (Phil-IRI). The researcher-made reading factor instrument translated to local dialect (Hiligaynon) was subjected to cross-cultural translation to address content, semantic, technical, criterion, or conceptual equivalence, the open-ended questions, and the one on one unstructured interview was utilized. In the profile of the 26 participants, the 12 males are categorized as grade 2 and grade 3 frustration-levels. The prevailing contextual variables are personal-’having no interest in reading’, ‘being ashamed and having fear to read in front of others’ for extremely high frustration level; social environmental-’having no regular reading schedule at home’ for very high frustration level and personal- ‘having no interest in reading’ for high frustration level. Kendall Tau inferential statistical tool was used to test the significant relationship in the prevailing contextual variables that affect frustration-level readers when grouped according to perspective. The result showed that significant relationship exists between students-parents perspectives; however, there is no significant relationship between students’ and teachers’, and parents’ and teachers’ perspectives. The themes in the narratives of the participants on frustration-level readers are the existence of speech defects, undesirable attitude, an insufficient amount of reading materials, lack of close supervision from parents, and losing time and focus on the task. The intervention was designed.
Perception of People with a Physical Disability towards Those with a Different Kind of Disability
People with physical disabilities, as with other people with differences in appearance or style of functioning come under negative social mechanisms. Therefore, it is worth asking what the relationship of the group is, who experience psychosocial effects because of their physical disability, towards people with intellectual disabilities, hearing impairments, visual impairments, mental illnesses, and their own physically disabled group. To analyse the perception of people with a physical disability, the study explores three areas: the acceptance or rejection of society’s stigmatization towards persons with disabilities; the importance of their own experience regarding their disability, in relation to another kind of disability; their level of acceptance to social interactions, in relation to various types of disabilities. The research sample consisted of 90 people with physical disabilities, who suffer from damage to the locomotor system. The data was collected using a questionnaire and the Adjective Check List by H. B. Gough and A. B. Heilbrun. This study utilized focus interviews to develop survey items for the questionnaire. The findings highlight that the response from those who were physically disabled agreed with the opinions of general society, not only with the issue of promoting integrated solutions and offering assistance but also having the same preferences and opinions about specific types of disability. However, their perception regarding their own group was noticeably different from that of general society. In the light of the study, for people with physical disabilities, just as for able-bodied people, it can be challenging to develop a meaningful relationship with people who have disabilities. All forms of disability suffer from negative attitudes and opinions that exist in society. The majority of those who were researched were focused primarily on their own problems, this inevitably hinders the integrity of the entire group, making it more difficult for it to find a cohesive voice, in which to promote their place within society.
Perceived Barriers and Benefits of Technology-Based Progress Monitoring for Non-Academic Individual Education Program Goals
In 1975, a free, appropriate public education (FAPE) was granted for all students in the United States regardless of their disabilities. As a result, the special education landscape has been reshaped through new policies and legislation. Progress monitoring, a specific component of an Individual Education Program (IEP) calls, for the use of data collection to determine the appropriateness of services provided to students with disabilities. The recent US Supreme Court ruling in Endrew F. v. Douglas County warrants giving increased attention to student progress, specifically pertaining to improving functional, or non-academic, skills that are addressed outside the general education curriculum. While using technology to enhance data collection has become a common practice for measuring academic growth, its application for non-academic IEP goals is uncertain. A mixed-methods study examined current practices and rationales for implementing technology-based progress monitoring focused on non-academic IEP goals. Fifty-seven participants responded to an online survey regarding their progress monitoring programs for non-academic goals. After isolated analysis and interpretation of quantitative and qualitative results, data were synthesized to produce meta-inferences that drew broader conclusions on the topic. For the purpose of this paper, specific focus will be placed on the perceived barriers and benefits of implementing technology-based progress monitoring protocols for non-academic IEP goals. The findings of this study highlight facts impacting the use of technology-based progress monitoring. Perceived barriers to implementation include: (1) lack of training, (2) access to technology, (3) outdated or inoperable technology, (4) reluctance to change, (5) cost, (6) lack of individualization within technology-based programs, and (7) legal issues in special education; while perceived benefits include: (1) overall ease of use, (2) accessibility, (3) organization, (4) potential for improved presentation of data, (5) streamlining the progress-monitoring process, and (6) legal issues in special education. Based on these conclusions, recommendations are made to IEP teams, school districts, and software developers to improve the progress-monitoring process for functional skills.
Reviewing Special Education Preservice Teachers' Reflective Practices over Two Field Experiences: Topics and Changes in Reflection
During pre-service field experiences teacher candidates are often asked to reflect as part of their training and in this investigation candidates’ reflective journal entries were reviewed, coded and analyzed with results suggesting teacher candidates need more direct instruction on how to describe, analyze, and make judgements on their instructional practices so that their practices improve over time. Teacher education programs often incorporate reflective-based activities during field experiences. The purpose of this investigation was to determine if special education teacher candidate’s reflective practices changed as they completed their two supervised field experiences and to determine what topics the candidates focused on in their reflections. The six females graduate students were completing two field experiences in special education classrooms within one academic year as part of their coursework leading to a master’s degree and special education teacher state certification. Each candidate wrote 15 reflection journal entries (approximately 200 words each) per field experience. Each of the journal entries were reviewed sentence by sentence to determine a reflective practice score and to determine the topics discussed. The reflective practice score was calculated using four dimensions of reflection (describe, analyze, judge, and apply) in order to create a continuous variable representing their reflective practice across four points of time. A One-way Repeated Measures Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) suggested that special education teacher candidates did not change their reflective practices over time (i.e., at time-point one the practitioner’s mean score was 56.0 out of 100 (SD = 7.6), 53.8 (SD = 4.3) at time-point two, 51.2 (SD = 4.5) at time-point three, and 57.7 (SD = 8.2) at time-point four). Qualitative findings suggest candidates focused mostly on themselves in their reflections. Conclusions suggest the need for teacher preparation programs to provide more direct instruction on how a teacher should reflect. Specific implications are provided for teacher training and future research.
Developing Educator Cultural Awareness through Critically Reflective Professional Learning Community Collaboration
Developing teachers’ cultural awareness ensures schools are culturally responsive and socially just for diverse and exceptional students. An ideology of ‘normal’ exists in schools, creating boundaries where some students belong and others are marginalized based on difference. It is important that teacher preparation work to create democratic classrooms where teachers foster tolerance of difference and promote critical thinking and social justice. This paper outlines a framework for developing educator cultural awareness through the use of critically reflective professional learning communities (PLCs) drawing from the research on teacher critical reflection, collaborative PLCs, and Engeström’s theory of expansive learning. A case study using the framework was conducted with ten practicing teachers. Participants read and reflected on critical literature to make visible unexamined beliefs, engaged in conversations that pushed them to reflect more deeply and project forward new ideas, and set goals for acting as agents of change in their schools.
Leaving the Traditional College Classroom: The Effects of Novel Class Settings on Student Motivation, Perceived Learning, and Performance
Learning in Higher education does not have to occur within the confines of a traditional classroom.When given the opportunity, instructors might select different class locations because they, for example, want students to collect data, engage with the community, observe course content in action, or to simply bond with each other.Regardless of the reason, conducting class in a new or novel setting may have a positive impact on student outcomes.The purpose of this paper was to test whether students in courses that hold at least one class session outside their traditional classroom will see improvements in their a) motivation, b) perceived learning, and/or c) performance in the class.To test this, 1,641 students at a liberal arts college in the U.S. completed an online survey about a specific course they were currently enrolled in.They were asked to indicate whether they spent time as an entire class outside their assigned classroom, and if so, they were asked to describe those experiences.All students responded to questionnaires assessing their motivation (operationalized as self-reported interest/enjoyment and effort in the class) and perceived learning.Final grades in the course were used to measure student performance.Forty percent of the sample reported being in a course where at least one class period was held outside their traditional classroom.These trips included, but were not limited to, overnight trips (e.g., camping, visiting another state), off-campus day trips (e.g., visiting museums, zoos), on-campus day trips (e.g., visiting campus art centers), and holding class at the professor’s house and/or sharing a meal together.After controlling for student sex, year in school, and grade-point average prior to the start of the class, results reveal that these novel settings are beneficial to students.That is, students in these courses reported greater interest and enjoyment in the course, felt they learned more, and even had higher final grades.There were no statistical differences in self-reported effort.This research suggests that in an effort to improve student motivation, perceived learning, and performance, instructors should, when possible, occasionally hold class in novel settings.Logistically speaking, courses with longer class periods, such as compressed format courses (e.g., block, Maymester, or J-term formats) or courses that meet once a week over a semester, may be better able to incorporate these types of experiences into their course schedules.
Gender Gap in Education and Empowerment Influenced by Parents' Attitude
This is an undeniable fact that parents are the very first role model for their children and children are the silent observers and followers of their parents. The behavior of parents and their way of dealing with their children have a strong tendency to either build and nurture their personalities or ruin their potential to play a constructive role for the society in future. This paper focuses on the observation particularly in South Asian countries where females have been facing problems in accessing education and getting financially independent or stable. This paper emphasizes on a survey conducted in rural areas of Punjab State in Pakistan. It explains how the parents’ educational background, financial status, conservative and interdependent accommodation style influence a prominent inequality of giving their female child right to study and get empowered. The forces behind this gender discrimination are not limited to parents’ life style impact but also include some major social problems like distant schools, gender-based harassment, and threat, insecurities, employment opportunities, so on. As a grass root level solution, it is proposed to develop an institution which collects data regarding child birth in their region and can contact the parent when their child is ready to start school. Building up trust based relationship with parents is the most crucial and significant factor. Secondly, celebrities and public figures can play an extraordinary role in running a campaign to advocate and encourage people living in rural areas, villages and small towns. All possible solutions can never be implemented without the support of the state government. Therefore, this paper invites more thoughtful actions, proper planned strategies, initiators to take the lead and make a platform for those who are underprivileged and deprived of their basic rights. Any country, where female constitute 49% of its entire population can never progress without promoting female empowerment and their right to compulsory education, and it is never late or impossible to admit the facts and practically start a flexible solution- oriented approach.
Taiwanese Families' Perspectives: Promoting Foundations of Self-Determination Skills for Young Children with Special Needs
Self-determination has been particularly influential in obtaining a better quality of life through successful transition processes for students with disabilities. The development of self-determination through learning has raised attention at an early age. This study used a survey questionnaire to construct the understanding of the self-determination in Taiwan, learn the perspectives about the environmental and situational contexts where the respondents expect children to display self-determination skills in different cultures. Specifically, the research questions are: (a) What are Taiwanese families’ general perspectives about the development of foundations of self-determination for young children with special needs? and (b) how does families’ demographic background (i.e., income level, educational background) and child characteristics (i.e., age, emotional or behavior problems) impact Taiwanese families’ perspectives on the foundations of self-determination across three critical components (i.e., choice-making and problem-solving, self-regulation, and engagement) for young children with special needs? Data from 125 participants were gathered and analyzed. The findings suggested that Taiwanese families showed very positive attitudes toward promoting a foundation of self-determination for young children with special needs. Families’ income level and child’s severity of emotional/behavioral problems were two variables that were found to impact families’ views on their child’s foundational self-determination skills. Implications for future research and practice in supporting families to promote foundations of self-determination for young children with special needs will be provided.
Twice Exceptional: Best Practices for Teaching Gifted Students with Special Needs
This presentation details the methodology for teachers to identify and support a population of students who have historically been overlooked in regards to their educational needs. The twice exceptional (2e) student is a learner who is considered gifted and also has a learning disability, as defined by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). Many of these students remain underserved throughout their educational careers because their exceptionalities may mask each other, resulting in a special population of students who are not achieving to their fullest potential. There are three common scenarios that may make the identification of a 2e student challenging. First, the student may have been identified as gifted, and her disability may go unnoticed. She could also be considered an under-achiever, or she may be able to compensate for her disability under the school works becomes more challenging. In the second scenario, the student may be identified as having a learning disability and is only receiving remedial services where his giftedness will not be highlighted. His overall IQ scores may be misleading because they were impacted by his learning disability. In the third scenario, the student is able to compensate for her ability well enough to maintain average scores, and she goes undetected as both gifted and learning disabled. Research in the area identifies the complexity involved in identifying 2e students, and how multiple forms of assessment are required. It is important for teachers to be aware of the common characteristics exhibited by many 2e students, so these learners can be identified and appropriately served. Once 2e students have been identified, teachers are then challenged to meet the varying needs of these exceptional learners. Strength-based teaching entails simultaneously providing gifted instruction as well as individualized accommodations for those students. Research in this field has yielded strategies that have proven helpful for teaching 2e students, as well as other students who may be struggling academically. Differentiated instruction, while necessary in all classrooms, is especially important for 2e students, as is encouragement for academic success. Teachers who take the time to really know their students will have a better understanding of each student’s strengths and areas for growth, and therefore tailor instruction to extend the intellectual capacities for optimal achievement. Teachers should also understand that some learning activities can prove very frustrating to students, and these activities can be modified based on individual student needs. Because 2e students can often become discouraged by their learning challenges, it is especially important for teachers to assist students in recognizing their own strengths and maintaining motivation for learning. Although research on the needs of 2e students has spanned across two decades, this population remains underserved in many educational institutions. Teacher awareness of the identification of and the support strategies for 2e students is critical for their success.
Ending the Gender Gap in Educational Leadership: A U.S. Goal for a Balanced Administration by 2030
This presentation examines the gender gap in leadership positions at colleges and universities within the United States. Despite the fact that women now outnumber men in earning doctorate degrees, women continue to hold far fewer positions of educational leadership, and still, earn less money than men do at every level. Considering the lack of female representation in positions of leadership, there are clearly outside variables preventing women from attaining these positions, despite their educational attainment. Following this study, the American Council on Education (ACE) set a goal to achieve an equal percentage of females holding college presidency positions by the year 2030. This goal is particularly ambitious, especially when considering the gender disparity at all ranks in higher education. Men still hold nearly 70% of all full professorships at degree-granting institutions. Even when women are equally represented in numbers, men typically hold a higher rank and are more likely to be tenured. Across all four-year colleges and universities in the United States, men earn more money than women at every rank and in every discipline. There are over twice as many men than women represented on governing boards, who help formed and uphold campus policies. The fact that the low percentage of female presidents has remained static for many years deepens the challenge for the ACE. Although emphasizing the need to create greater opportunities for women in educational administration is admirable, it is difficult to simplify the social forces that create and uphold the status quo of male leadership. When aiming to ensure 'women' hold 50% of all college presidency positions, it is important to consider how the intersections of race, social class, and other factors also correlate with lower job status. This presentation explores how gendered notions of leadership begin in a child’s early years and are carried into future careers, and how these conceptualizations impact the creation and upholding of educational policies at every academic level. Current research that emphasizes the importance establishing a bottom-up approach to a gender equity infrastructure for children early in their educational careers will be discussed. A top-down approach starting with female college presidents is incomplete and insufficient if the mindsets of the youth who will one day be entering those institutions of higher education are not also taken into consideration. Although ACE has established this lofty goal for female college presidencies by the year 2030, a road map for this will ensue, has not yet been provided. The talent pool of women who are educated and experienced for such positions is vast, but acknowledging the social barriers existing for women in these positions will be crucial to making the changes necessary for these leadership opportunities to be long lasting and successful.
School Belongingness and Coping with Bullying: Greek Adolescent Students' Experiences
There has been growing interest lately, in the study of victimization among adolescent students in Greece and elsewhere with a view to improve school policies concerning anti-bullying practices. Researchers have recently focused on investigating the relationships between the extent of students’ victimization and the distinct mechanisms that they employ for coping with this particular problem. In particular, the emphasis has been placed on exploring the relationship between the coping strategies students use to counteract bullying, their sense of belonging at school, and extent of their victimization. Methods: Within the research framework outlined above, we set out to: a) examine the frequency of self-reported victimization among secondary school students, b) investigate the coping strategies employed by students when confronted with school bullying and c) explore any differences between bullied and non-bullied students with regard to coping strategies and school belongingness. The sample consisted of 860 from fifteen secondary public schools in central Greece. The schools were typical Greek secondary schools and the principals volunteered to participate in this study. Participants’ age ranged from 12 to 16 years. Measures: a) Exposure to Victimization: The frequency of victimization was directly located by asking students the question: ‘Over the last term, how often have you been bullied or harassed by a student or students at this high school?’ b) Coping Strategies: The ‘Living and Learning at School: Bullying at School’ was administered to students, c) School belongingness was assessed by the Psychological Sense of School Membership Scale, that students completed. Results: Regarding the frequency of self-reported victimization, 1.5% of the students reported being victimized every day, 2.8% most days of the week, 2.1% one or more days a week, 2.9% about once a week, 22.6% less than once a week and 68.1% never. The coping strategies that the participants employed for terminating their victimization included: a) adult support seeking, b) emotional coping/keep away from school, c) keeping healthy and fit, d) demonstrating a positive attitude towards the bully, d) peer support seeking, e) emotional out bursting, f) wishful thinking and self-blaming, g) pretending as if it is not happening, h) displaying assertive behaviors and i) getting away from the bullies. Bullied from non-bullied children did not differ as much in coping, as in feelings of being rejected in school. Discussion: The findings are in accordance with accumulated research evidence which points to a strong relationship between student perceptions of school belongingness and their involvement in bullying behaviors. We agree with the view that a positive school climate is likely to serve as a buffer that mitigates wider adverse societal influences and institutional attitudes which favor violence and harassment among peers.
Identifying the Mindset of Deaf Benildean Students in Learning Anatomy and Physiology
Learning anatomy and physiology among Deaf Non-Science major students is a challenge. They have this mindset that Anatomy and Physiology are difficult and very technical. In this study, nine (9) deaf students who are business majors were considered. Non-conventional teaching strategies and classroom activities were employed such as cooperative learning, virtual lab, Facebook live, big sky, blood typing, mind mapping, reflections, etc. Of all the activities; the deaf students ranked cooperative learning as the best learning activity. This is where they played doctors. They measured the pulse rate, heart rate and blood pressure of their partner classmate. In terms of mindset, 2 out of 9 students have a growth mindset with some fixed ideas while 7 have a fixed mindset with some growth ideas. All the students passed the course. Three out of nine students got a grade of 90% and above. The teacher was evaluated by the deaf students as very satisfactory with a mean score of 3.54. This means that the learner-centered practices in the classroom are manifested to a great extent.
Using Music in the Classroom to Help Syrian Refugees Deal with Post-War Trauma
Millions of Syrian families have been displaced since the beginning of the Syrian war, and the negative effects of post-war trauma have shown detrimental effects on the mental health of the refugee children. While educational strategies have focused on vocational training and academic achievement, little has been done to include music in the school curriculum to help these children improve their mental health. The literature of music education and psychology, on the other hand, shows the positive effects of music on traumatized children, especially when it comes to dealing with stress. This paper presents a brief literature review of trauma, music therapy, and music in the classroom, after having introduced the Syrian war and refugee situation. Furthermore, the paper highlights the benefits of using music with traumatized children from the literature and offers strategies for teachers (such as singing, playing an instrument, songwriting, and others) to include music in their classrooms to help the Syrian refugee children deal with post-war trauma.
The Six 'P' Model: Principles of Inclusive Practice for Inclusion Coaches
The research presented is from a small school district in Ontario, Canada, that has made a transition from self-contained classes for students with exceptionalities to inclusive classroom placements for all students with their age-appropriate peers. The school board aided this transition by hiring Inclusion Coaches with a background in special education to work alongside teachers as partners and inform their inclusive practice. Based on qualitative data from four focus groups conducted with Inclusion Coaches, as well as four blog-style reflections collected at various points over two years, six principles of inclusive practice were identified for coaches. The six principals form a model during transition: pre-requisite, process, precipice, promotion, proof and promise. These principles are encapsulated in a visual model of a cascading staircase displaying the conditions that exist prior to coaching, during coaching interactions and considerations for the sustainability of coaching. These six principles are re-iterative and should be re-visited each time a coaching interaction is initiated. Exploring inclusion coaching as a model emulates coaching in other contexts and allows us to examine an established process through a new lens. This research becomes increasingly important as more school boards transition toward inclusive classrooms, The Six ‘P’ Model: Principles of Inclusive Practice for Inclusion Coaches allows for a unique look into a scaffolding model of building educator capacity in an inclusive setting.
Mobile Physics Education Using Diracma Series Apps for Smartphones
Smartphone apps for physics experiments of mechanics and sound wave have been developed as Diracma series such as DiracmaA, DiracmaJump, and DiracmaS. The effect of using these apps on education was evaluated in classes of a high school using force concept inventory (FCI), which is generally used as an evaluation method for mechanics. The gain g (an indicator of the effectiveness for evaluations) in this FCI test has the same value as that in an active learning with a computer and sensor system, such as Real Time Physics and Interactive Lecture Demonstrations, when students had a deviation value of 60 or more in a periodic examination at the high school. It is possible to obtain the same effect as general active learning in an environment more suited to experiments on a smartphone can be arranged.
Documentary Project as an Active Learning Strategy in a Developmental Psychology Course
Recent studies in active-learning focus on how student experience varies based on the content (e.g. STEM versus Humanities) and the medium (e.g. in-class exercises versus off-campus activities) of experiential learning. However, little is known whether the variation in classroom time and space within the same active learning context affects student experience. This study manipulated the use of classroom time for the active learning component of a developmental psychology course that is offered at a four-year university in the South-West Region of United States. The course uses a blended model: traditional and active learning. In the traditional learning component of the course, students do weekly readings, listen to lectures, and take midterms. In the active learning component, students make a documentary on a developmental topic as a final project. Students used the classroom time and space for the documentary in two ways: regular classroom time slots that were dedicated to the making of the documentary outside without the supervision of the professor (Classroom-time Outside) and lectures that offered basic instructions about how to make a documentary (Documentary Lectures). The study used the public teaching evaluations that are administered by the Office of Registrar’s. A total of two hundred and seven student evaluations were available across six semesters. Because the Office of Registrar’s presented the data separately without personal identifiers, One-Way ANOVA with four groups (Traditional, Experiential-Heavy: 19% Classroom-time Outside, 12% for Documentary Lectures, Experiential-Moderate: 5-7% for Classroom-time Outside, 16-19% for Documentary Lectures, Experiential Light: 4-7% for Classroom-time Outside, 7% for Documentary Lectures) was conducted on five key features (Organization, Quality, Assignments Contribution, Intellectual Curiosity, Teaching Effectiveness). Each measure used a five-point reverse-coded scale (1-Outstanding, 5-Poor). For all experiential conditions, the documentary counted towards 30% of the final grade. Organization (‘The instructors preparation for class was’), Quality (’Overall, I would rate the quality of this course as’) and Assignment Contribution (’The contribution of the graded work that made to the learning experience was’) did not yield any significant differences across four course types (F (3, 202)=1.72, p > .05, F(3, 200)=.32, p > .05, F(3, 203)=.43, p > .05, respectively). Intellectual Curiosity (’The instructor’s ability to stimulate intellectual curiosity was’) yielded a marginal effect (F (3, 201)=2.61, p = .053). Tukey’s HSD (p < .05) indicated that the Experiential-Heavy (M = 1.94, SD = .82) condition was significantly different than all other three conditions (M =1.57, 1.51, 1.58; SD = .68, .66, .77, respectively) showing that heavily active class-time did not elicit intellectual curiosity as much as others. Finally, Teaching Effectiveness (’Overall, I feel that the instructor’s effectiveness as a teacher was’) was significant (F (3, 198)=3.32, p
The Changing Role of the Chief Academic Officer in American Higher Education: Causes and Consequences
The landscape of higher education in the United States has undergone significant changes in the last 25 years. What was once a domain of competition among prospective students for a limited number of college and university seats has become a marketplace in which institutions vie for the enrollment of educational consumers. A central figure in this paradigm shift has been the Chief Academic Officer (CAO), whose institutional role has also evolved beyond academics to include such disparate responsibilities as strategic planning, fiscal oversight, student recruitment, fundraising and personnel management. This paper explores the scope and impact of this transition by, first, explaining its context: the intersection of key social, economic and political factors in neo-conservative, late 20th Century America that redefined the value and accountability of institutions of higher learning. This context, in turn, is shown to have redefined the role and function of the CAO from a traditional academic leader to one centered on the successful application of corporate principles of organizational and fiscal management. Information gathered from a number of sitting Provosts, Vice-Presidents of Academic Affairs and Deans of Faculty is presented to illustrate the parameters of this change, as well as the extent to which today’s academic officers feel prepared and equipped to fulfill this broader institutional role. The paper concludes with a discussion of the impact of this transition on the American academy and whether it serves as a portend of change to come in higher education systems around the globe.
Online Video-Based Pragmatic Awareness Training for Beginner-Level Learners of Japanese
This paper explores the way online video-based lessons help beginner-level learners of Japanese to acquire pragmatic skills. Pragmatic competence is the ability to use language appropriately according to the situation. It is a teachable skill and instruction is necessary, even in study-abroad contexts where learners are exposed to the target language on a daily basis. A key concept in pragmatics training is activating learners’ consciousness, or their noticing ability so that they pay attention to pragmatic cues. The use of authentic materials in the form of video clips, along with suitable consciousness-raising tasks, have been found to be beneficial in this respect. Since time constraints can be a limiting factor in classroom instruction, one potential solution is to make pragmatics materials available online for learners to access during their own time. In this study, participants were given a pre-test and post-test consisting of written discourse tasks, where scenarios were given to elicit the expected response. During the intervening weeks, they received web-based lessons that they accessed on their own, in addition to the usual classroom instruction. The video clips used in the lessons were taken from movies that depicted realistic interactions in Japanese everyday life. Exercises based on these video clips were explicitly designed to allow participants to discover by themselves the appropriate expressions to be used in certain situations, and the factors that influence the choice of those expressions. Among the exercises were predicting the type of expressions based on a scenario, and explaining the reason why one expression is more appropriate than another. Quantitative data analysis was done on the test results, while qualitative data was provided by written reflections, interviews and task responses, which were useful in elucidating the participants’ discovery process. Feedback from the participants showed that they found the lessons helpful and enjoyable, and their improved test results indicated greater pragmatic awareness, translating into more appropriate Japanese language production.
Algerian EFL Students' Perceptions towards the Development of Writing through Weblog Storytelling
Weblog as a form of internet-based resources has become popular as an authentic and constructive learning tool, especially in the language classroom. This research explores the use of weblog storytelling as a pedagogical tool to develop Algerian EFL students’ creative writing. This study aims to investigate the effectiveness of weblog- writing and the attitudes of both Algerian EFL students and teachers towards weblog storytelling. It also seeks to explore the potential benefits and problems that may affect the use of weblog and investigate the possible solutions to overcome the problems encountered. The research work relies on a mixed-method approach which combines both qualitative and quantitative methods. A questionnaire will be applied to both EFL teachers and students as a means to obtain preliminary data. Interviews will be integrated in accordance with the primary data that will be gathered from the questionnaire with the aim of validating its accuracy or as a strategy to follow up any unexpected results. An intervention will take place on the integration of weblog- writing among 15 Algerian EFL students for a period of two months where students are required to write five narrative essays about their personal experiences, give feedback through the use of a rubric to two or three of their peers, and edit their work based on the feedback. After completion, questionnaires and interviews will also take place as a medium to obtain both the students’ perspectives towards the use of weblog as an innovative teaching approach. This study is interesting because weblog storytelling has recently been emerged as a new form of digital communication and it is a new concept within Algerian context. Furthermore, the students will not just develop their writing skill through weblog storytelling but it can also serve as a tool to develop students’ critical thinking, creativity, and autonomy.
Impact of International Collaboration through Web 2.0 Technologies in the Primary School Classroom
The rapid expansion of the social web (Web 2.0) allows teachers to provide rich learning experiences to develop students’ intercultural communication competence through synchronous and asynchronous web tools. The Melbourne Declaration and the Australian Curriculum highlights intercultural understanding as a key competency and capability for students to be successful in the twenty-first century. Through students’ interaction with tools and each other, the extension of human capabilities are promoted. The aim of this study is to identify the intercultural communication competence that primary school students develop through participating in an intercultural collaborative online project using Web 2.0 tools and the effectiveness of these web tools when collaborating with a remote school in a different country that speaks a different language. This study is conducted in two phases. Phase One is being conducted between a metropolitan school in Australia and schools in Spain. Phase Two is being conducted with the same school in Australia and a remote school in Thailand. The students from the school in Thailand speak Thai while the schools in Spain speak English as a second language and conduct weekly lessons in another learning area, such as Science, to improve their English speaking and writing skills. Phase One employs a mixed methods approach to collect data exercising both quantitative and qualitative methodologies. Phase Two utilises qualitative data through collaborative student responses, teacher interviews, and a student focus group interview. Qualitative methods from both phases of the study will be analysed to identify the effectiveness of the web tools when collaborating on a learning task with students from different countries. The findings from the research provide insight into intercultural understandings and strategies to promote them using technology in the classroom. The use of Web 2.0 tools to communicate and collaborate to complete a learning task requires the students in Thailand and Australia to use digital translation tools. The findings from this phase of the study examine the technical and practical limits of cutting-edge cross-cultural collaboration tools available for use to connect schools globally.
Creating and Using Videos in a Teacher Education Programme: Success Stories in a Mexican Public University
In an era where teacher educators and student teachers have almost unrestricted access to all kinds of sources through the internet, a research project carried out with a group of student-teachers has revealed how self-made videos are an exciting new way to motivate and engage students. The project was carried out at Universidad de Sonora, a public university in Northern Mexico, where 39 students of the Bachelor in Arts in English Language Teaching (B.A. in ELT) programme participated creating their own videos. In the process, they worked collaboratively, they exploited their creativity, they were highly motivated and showed more interest in the subject. The videos were shared in a private YouTube channel where students had the opportunity to review their peers’ work and where videos are available at any time for later viewing. This experience has led course instructor to face the challenge of planning and designing meaningful tasks that can and to find ways of exploiting the use of these resources for learning and training purposes.
Development of Active Learning Calculus Course for Biomedical Program
The paper reviews design and implementation of Calculus Course required for the Biomedical Competency Based Program developed as a joint project between The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, and the University of Texas’ Institute for Transformational Learning, from the theoretical perspective as presented in scholarly work on active learning, formative assessment, and on-line teaching. Following four stage curriculum development process (objective, content, delivery, and assessment), and theoretical recommendations that guarantee effectiveness and efficiency of assessment in active learning, we discuss the practical recommendations on how to incorporate strong formative assessment component to address disciplines’ needs, and students’ major needs. In design and implementation of this project, we used Constructivism and Stage-by-Stage Development of Mental Actions Theory recommendations.