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Hispanic males and AVID: who are they?

Description

Many educators believe that the path to a better future is a college education. Initiatives that promote college-going cultures are quite commonplace in many public high schools with some offering elective college-prep support programs like Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID).

Many educators believe that the path to a better future is a college education. Initiatives that promote college-going cultures are quite commonplace in many public high schools with some offering elective college-prep support programs like Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID). Yet, certain groups of students are not taking advantage of these opportunities. In the initial AVID sections at a metropolitan high school in the American Southwest, the girls out-numbered the boys 2:1, and the Hispanic girls outnumbered the Hispanic boys by almost 3:1. The purpose of this study was to uncover some of the factors that influenced five Hispanic males' participation, or lack thereof, in AVID, and the ways in which those factors connected to their masculine identities. What the participants say about what influenced them to be involved, or not, in the program is reported. Some themes revealed in the interviews include how the participants' scholar identity is connected to their masculine identity, how they balance their "coolness" quotient with their desires to achieve academic success, how they depend on personal relationships and collaboration, and how their families and communities have influenced them. This information may lead to the development of strategies that will increase future representation of Hispanic males in similar programs.

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Date Created
2011

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Teacher stressors in an Arizona urban school district

Description

Teachers have the one of the most difficult, yet most rewarding jobs to guide our impressionable youth into academically prepared independent thinkers. This undertaking requires a commitment, as well as an enormous effort that can oftentimes be overwhelming. Teaching has

Teachers have the one of the most difficult, yet most rewarding jobs to guide our impressionable youth into academically prepared independent thinkers. This undertaking requires a commitment, as well as an enormous effort that can oftentimes be overwhelming. Teaching has been found to be a stressful profession for several decades with the potential concern of negative consequences for both teachers and students. The purpose of this study was to view mutual influences that affected the stress levels of urban teachers, as well as gather possible solutions to help alleviate some areas of stress. This study evaluated an urban school district in Arizona to uncover existing stressors for elementary teachers. Through qualitative analysis, this study utilized focus group interviews within this urban district, which consisted of 20 teachers in various grade levels. Four to five teachers formed each focus group, where participants responded to six open-ended questions in a candid setting. Using the grounded theory, major and minor themes emerged as a result of teacher responses that revealed trends and commonalities. Additionally, participants relayed their suggestions to mitigate some of these stressors. This study revealed that the some of the stressors that surfaced were common to the entire group, while some grade level subgroups differed in areas of stress. The suggestion to implement purposeful support systems to improve the stress of teachers was recommended with the proposal to reexamine the results for their effectiveness in future studies.

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Date Created
2013

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Interpreting critical literacy in a natural history museum

Description

The purpose of this study was to investigate critical literacy practices in two prehistoric exhibits in a natural history museum. Bourdieu's habitus and Bakhtin's dialogism served as theoretical frames to collect and analyze data. Data were collected and triangulated using

The purpose of this study was to investigate critical literacy practices in two prehistoric exhibits in a natural history museum. Bourdieu's habitus and Bakhtin's dialogism served as theoretical frames to collect and analyze data. Data were collected and triangulated using field notes, interview transcriptions, archives, and other data sources to critically scrutinize textual meaning and participant responses. Spradley's (1979) domain analysis was used to sort and categorize data in the early stage. Glaser and Strauss's (1967) constant comparative method was used to code data. My major findings were that museum texts within this context represent embedded beliefs and values that were interwoven with curators` habitus, tastes and capital, as well as institutional policies. The texts in the two Hohokam exhibits endorse a certain viewpoint of learning. Teachers and the public were not aware of the communicative role that the museum played in the society. In addition, museum literacy/ies were still practiced in a fundamental way as current practices in the classroom, which may not support the development of critical literacy. In conclusion, the very goal for critical museum literacy is to help students and teachers develop intellectual strategies to read the word and the world in informal learning environments.

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Date Created
2013

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Addicted to "The Big Book: language, identity & discourse in the literacy practices of Alcoholics Anonymous

Description

The purpose of this study is to investigate the literacy practices of three members of Alcoholics Anonymous (A.A.) and to explore how they use these practices to support and maintain their recovery in their lives. This study also aims to

The purpose of this study is to investigate the literacy practices of three members of Alcoholics Anonymous (A.A.) and to explore how they use these practices to support and maintain their recovery in their lives. This study also aims to examine how each participant used specialist language, enacted certain identities and acquired the secondary Discourse in A.A. through literacy use. This dissertation study is the result of in-depth interviewing in which each participant was interviewed three times for 90-minutes. These interviews were then transcribed and analyzed using discourse analysis. Study results are presented in three chapters, each one designated to one of the participants. Within these chapters is a life history (chronology) of the participant leading up to the point in which they got sober. The chapters also include a thematic discourse analysis of the interview transcripts across themes of literacy practice and topics in A.A. A conclusion is then presented to investigate how literacy was used from a sociocultural perspective in the study. Due to the emotionally charged nature of this dissertation, it has been formatted to present the stories of the participants first, leaving the theoretical framework, literature review and research methods to be included as appendices to the main text.

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Date Created
2013

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Korean parents' perspectives on Korean American children's literature

Description

There are few studies on parents' perspectives on multicultural literature. Most studies on Korean American children's literature have relied on the researchers' content analysis of the books, rather than readers' responses to them. To fill this gap, this study sought

There are few studies on parents' perspectives on multicultural literature. Most studies on Korean American children's literature have relied on the researchers' content analysis of the books, rather than readers' responses to them. To fill this gap, this study sought to understand the Korean/Korean American parents' perspectives on Korean American children's literature by examining their responses to seven picture books on Korean American children. Data were collected for this qualitative study by interviewing ten Koreans/Korean Americans, twice. The first interview focused on stories about their immigration to the U.S., involvement with their children's reading, and experiences reading books related to Korea or Koreans published in the U.S. The second interview focused on their responses to seven Korean American children's literature books. The interviews were recorded, transcribed, coded, and analyzed. The parents' responses, which were infused with their personal, social, and cultural marks, focused on five themes: (a) use of Korean names without specific cultural description, (b) misrepresentation of Korean/Korean American experiences, (c) undesirable illustrations, (d) criteria for good Korean American children's literature, and (e) use of Korean words in English books. The parents' stories about their involvement with their children's reading suggest that to promote multicultural literature, libraries or schools should offer lists of multicultural literature. The parents' responses showed concern about stereotypical images of Korea or Korean American in the U.S. media that often get transferred to stories about Korean Americans in Korean American children's literature. This study confirms the importance of editors and reviewers, who are knowledgeable about the Korean culture and Korean American experience. It also suggests that more books with varied images of Korean Americans, and more stories about Korean Americans children's authentic experiences are necessary in order to represent the complexity and divergence within Korean people and the Korean American culture.

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Date Created
2013

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Using science writing heuristics to increase conceptual understanding of properties of matter and property changes with 8th grade students

Description

This teacher research study examined the effects of utilizing an intervention of Science Writing Heuristics (SWH) as a tool to increase learning during laboratory activities. Five of my eighth grade general science classes participated in this study. Two

This teacher research study examined the effects of utilizing an intervention of Science Writing Heuristics (SWH) as a tool to increase learning during laboratory activities. Five of my eighth grade general science classes participated in this study. Two classes utilized SWH during their laboratory activities (the treatment group) and three classes performed and wrote up their labs in the more traditional, teacher-directed approach (the control group). The assessment scores of the students in the treatment group were compared to the assessment scores of the students in the control group. The post-assessments were analyzed utilizing a t-test. I was teacher in this study and the teacher of all five classes. Data from 41 students were analyzed in this study. A pre-assessment, six laboratory activities, instruction, and a post-assessment occurred within three weeks. The assessments were generated by myself and I performed a t-test using a two-sample analysis, assuming unequal variances (n=16 for treatment group, n=25 for control group) to compare the post-assessments from each group. Results indicated that there was no significant difference between the post-assessment scores of the treatment group with the post-assessment scores of control group (p=0.25). However, the t-test results revealed that when the pre- and post-assessments were compared, there was a significant difference (p=<0.05 for treatment group, p=<0.05 for control group). Each group showed considerable cognitive improvement between pre-assessment (mean scores: 52%-treatment group and 53%-control group) and the post-assessment (mean scores: 72%-treatment group and 80%-control group). This suggests that the presentation of the curriculum lacked a clear distinction between the treatment group and the control group yet benefited most students. Due to circumstances described in the limitations, further research is warranted.

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Date Created
2015

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Bilingual Latino high school boys' reading motivation: seven case studies examining factors that influence motivation to read

Description

This qualitative case study examines seven bilingual Latino boys who were motivated readers. Several theories were examined in relationship to the study: sociocultural theory, reading motivation theories, and gender schema theory. Prior studies involving reading motivation of boys and Latinos

This qualitative case study examines seven bilingual Latino boys who were motivated readers. Several theories were examined in relationship to the study: sociocultural theory, reading motivation theories, and gender schema theory. Prior studies involving reading motivation of boys and Latinos showed a gap between boys and girls in reading achievement, high school completion, and college enrollment. Studies about reading motivation included choice in books, reading amount, social context of reading, habitual reading habits, and out-of-school reading as important factors that influence reading motivation. Additionally, Latino cultural factors such as machismo and familismo were examined as factors that influence motivation to read.

The study participants attended a large, urban school in Arizona and were selected from senior English classes after completing a participant selection survey. On the participant selection survey, boys self-identified their gender, language, and ethnicity; by several questions about attitudes toward reading and reading amount rated on a 10-point Likert scale gauged reading motivation. Each participant participated in an individual interview, completed a 60-question questionnaire/survey, and either attended a group interview or a second individual interview.

Data were triangulated by using data from these three sources and was coded as it was collected using Nvivo qualitative coding software. Coding began with five, basic categories derived from the study questions: motivation, home experiences, school experiences, school performance, and attitude toward reading. As coding continued, the coding categories expanded to include categories such as location of reading materials, access to books, choices in reading, format of texts, and many others. Eventually, there were four distinct categories that stood out in the findings: reading self-perception, purposes, preferences, and practices. The findings have a correlation to previous studies about reading motivation, but also add to the growing field of literature in the area of Latino boys' reading motivation.

Keywords: reading, motivation, self-efficacy, situational interest, Latino, boys, high school, gender, types of reading, reading purposes

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Agent

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Date Created
2015

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Digital storytelling in the classroom

Description

This study follows three secondary teachers as they facilitate a digital storytelling project with their students for the first time. All three teachers were not specifically trained in digital storytelling in order to investigate what happens when a digital storytelling

This study follows three secondary teachers as they facilitate a digital storytelling project with their students for the first time. All three teachers were not specifically trained in digital storytelling in order to investigate what happens when a digital storytelling novice tries to do a project like this with his or her students. The study follows two high school English teachers and one middle school math teacher. Each teacher's experience is shared in a case study, and all three case studies are compared and contrasted in a cross-case analysis. There is a discussion of the types of projects the teachers conducted and any challenges they faced. Strategies to overcome the challenges are also included. A variety of assessment rubrics are included in the appendix. In the review of literature, the history of digital storytelling is illuminated, as are historical concepts of literacy. There is also an exploration of twenty-first century skills including multiliteracies such as media and technology literacy. Both the teachers and their students offer suggestions to future teachers taking on digital storytelling projects. The dissertation ends with a discussion of future scholarship in educational uses of digital storytelling.

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Date Created
2011

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Children writers: enactments of identity, agency, and power in a third-grade writing workshop

Description

This qualitative study uses the theoretical concepts of identity, agency, and power to explore the ways in which students in their moment-to-moment interactions enact identities, agency, and power as they engage in the activity of writing and participate in a

This qualitative study uses the theoretical concepts of identity, agency, and power to explore the ways in which students in their moment-to-moment interactions enact identities, agency, and power as they engage in the activity of writing and participate in a writing workshop. This research highlights what happens to writers as they engage in writing processes with one another and moves away from interpreting what happens between students as only cognitive or behavioral phenomenon. Additionally, through the lenses of identity, agency, and power, the complexity of what it means to be a writer in a writing workshop is made visible. Data for the study were collected over a five-month period and include observations of children participating in a third-grade writing workshop, written field notes, and detailed recording of the actions and interactions among the students as well as the teacher and students to capture the time, space, and participants' activity during the writing workshop. Whole class and small-group interactions were video and/or audiorecorded daily for later transcription, observation and reflection. Semi-structured informal interviews and informal talks with the students and the teachers were conducted and recorded on a regular basis, and the students' written work and other related artifacts were collected to examine the students' work as writers. The research reveals three major themes: 1) students enact multiple identities to serve a variety of purposes; 2) students enact agency in the ordinary and everyday practices of the writing workshop to change their present interactions, circumstances, and conditions; and 3) in their microlevel interactions, students enact macrolevel notions of power that shift classroom as well as peer relations. Additionally this study reveals the ways in which students use their written texts as evidence to substantiate the claims they are making about themselves and about others as learners and as people.

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Date Created
2010

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Community college readers in their 21st century "transactional zones

Description

ABSTRACT This mixed methods study examines 126 community college students enrolled in developmental reading courses at a mid-sized Southwestern community college. These students participated in a survey-based study regarding their reading experiences and practices, social influence upon those practices, reading

ABSTRACT This mixed methods study examines 126 community college students enrolled in developmental reading courses at a mid-sized Southwestern community college. These students participated in a survey-based study regarding their reading experiences and practices, social influence upon those practices, reading sponsorship, and reading self-efficacy. The survey featured 33 structured response prompts and six free response prompts, allowing for both quantitative and qualitative analysis. The study¡&brkbar;s results reflected the diverse reading interests and practices of developmental college students, revealing four main themes: -the diversity and complexity of their reading practices; -the diversity in reading genre preferences; -the strong influence of family members and teachers as reading sponsors in the past with that influence shifting to friends and college professors in the present; and, -the possible connection between self-efficacy and social engagement with reading. Findings from this study suggest these college students, often depicted as underprepared or developmental readers, are engaging in diverse and sophisticated reading practices and perceive reading as a means to achieve their success-oriented goals and to learn about the real world.This study adds to the limited field of community college literacy research, provides a more nuanced view of what it means to be an underprepared college reader, and points to ways community college educators can better support their students by acknowledging and building upon their socio-culturally influenced literacy practices. At the same time, educators can advantage students academically in terms of building their cultural capital with overt inculcation into disciplinary literacies and related repertoires of practice. Keywords: college students, reading, sponsorship, multimodal reading practices, developmental education, social networking, and literacy

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Date Created
2014