Welcome to Baylor University's Digital Repository! If you are a Baylor researcher who wants to contribute content to BEARdocs, or if you are a member of a Baylor Department that is interested in setting up a community in BEARdocs, please contact:

Quick Links:
Electronic Theses and Dissertations Collection
Honors College Theses
Museum Studies Internships
Museum Studies Projects
Truett Seminary Projects

Communities in DSpace

Select a community to browse its collections.

Recent Submissions

Can you see me now? The perceived impact of a virtual instructional coaching partnership applied through the lens of the partnership principles on first-year teacher professional growth : an explanatory sequential mixed-methods study.
(May 2023) Layton, Tiffany D., 1973-; Kaul, Corina R., 1969-
While coaching exists as a widely accepted employee development practice in the business world, the coaching mindset has not firmly taken hold in K–12 education. According to the 2015–2016 National Teacher and Principal Survey, the average percentage of public schools with at least one on-site instructional coach is 37% (United States Department of Education, 2016). In rural settings, the average percentage of schools with instructional coaches drops to 27% (United States Department of Education, 2016). Lack of instructional coaching creates a hardship for teachers as they remain subject to one-size-fits-all learning that does not meet their individual professional learning needs and goals. As Karlberg and Bezzina explained (2020), this hardship is especially true for first-year teachers. This explanatory sequential mixed-methods study aimed to explore coaches’ and teachers’ perceived impact of virtual instructional coaching partnerships on first-year teachers applied through the lens of the partnership principles. In the quantitative phase of this study, I surveyed first-year teachers and coaches participating in the Oklahoma State Department of Education First Class Program using two complementary surveys, the Teacher Reflection and Impact Survey and the Coach Reflection and Impact Survey (Yopp et al., 2010). I analyzed teacher and coach survey data at the mid-point and the end-point of the program. I also compared matched pairs of first-year teachers and instructional coaches who completed end-of-program surveys. Only one factor, Student-Centered Discussions, produced statistically and practically significant results. However, one additional factor, Impact of Coaching, resulted in practical significance. In the qualitative phase of the study, two teachers and their coaches who completed both the mid-program and end-of-program surveys participated in semi-structured interviews to share further insight into the impact of virtual coaching. The qualitative data revealed that six of seven partnership principles (equality, voice, choice, praxis, dialogue, and reflection) positively impacted virtual coaching partnerships. Additionally, mentoring and gratitude emerged as themes outside of the theoretical framework. When applied together, the identified partnership principles and student-centered discussions positively impacted first-year teachers’ professional growth.
Analyzing effectiveness of image repair theory through social media responses : a case study of Dan Snyder and the Washington Commanders.
(May 2023) Burkley Jr., Kerry, 1999-; Tefertiller, Alec C.
The following study provides an analysis of user generated responses on social media reflecting a timeline of scandals that occurred in the last two years involving the Washington Commanders and their owner, Dan Snyder. The organization has experienced crises regarding workplace sexual harassment allegations, electronic mail containing verbal abuse, and mismanagement. Using the framework of William Benoit’s Image Repair Theory (IRT), this study seeks to measure the effectiveness of the Commanders response to investigations of their franchise amid a two year long organizational crisis through reactions to a statement reported on Twitter. Through a thematic analysis and analyzing the statement through Benoit’s five image repair strategies of 626 tweet reactions, the study concluded that the Commanders’ statement was ineffective in reducing offensiveness of their organization’s investigation and instead dealt more damage towards the organization’s image, as four themes regarding the Commanders’ image, reputation capital, and team ownership were concluded as significant, negative factors.
Exploring the principal perspective on teacher attrition in urban education : a single case study.
(May 2023) Burroughs, Danielle L., 1982-; Shelton, Ryann N.
Teachers at all educational levels and disciplines are leaving the profession at a rapid rate across the United States with numbers increasing since the COVID-19 pandemic. Retention tools and strategies are critical to the success of a school and school district. The purpose of this single case study was to explore urban high school principals’ perceptions of why teachers leave the teaching profession and to identify the methods used by principals to retain teachers. I conducted this single case study to answer two research questions rooted in Frederick Herzberg’s Two Factor Theory. The research questions were first, according to urban high school principals, for what reasons do urban high school teachers leave the teaching profession? Second, what policies, procedures, or strategies do urban high school principals use to retain teachers? I collected data using semi-structured interviews with four principals, conducted a focus group discussion, and collected related artifacts. I analyzed the data using the data analysis spiral (Creswell & Poth, 2018). Analyzing the lived experiences of principals navigating teacher attrition allowed me to identify commonalities among their experiences, their perceived reasons for teachers leaving the profession, and the methods they used to retain teachers. As a result, I uncovered five findings. First, the principal participants in this study perceived compensation, performance pay, and workload balance as critical to teacher decisions related to remaining or leaving the profession in different ways. Second, the principal participants in this study identified leader support and relationships as reasons why teachers stay in the profession. Third, the principal participants in this study identified classroom management and negative student behaviors lead to teacher dissatisfaction. Fourth, the principal participants in this study recognized growth opportunities within the charter network as a reason teachers stay in the field. Fifth and finally, the principal participants in this study identified relationships as the leading retention strategy they used. This research benefits principals, district administrators, and teachers as it highlights principals’ perceptions related to teacher dissatisfaction and their perception of the necessity of building meaningful relationships with teachers to reduce attrition.
“I think I can, I think I can” : a case study that explores the perspective of single mothers and their ability to become self sufficient.
(May 2023) Ormes-Ripley, Kandyce L., 1983-; Howell, Leanne.
Single mothers continue to face barriers that prevent them from being self-sufficient. The lack of fundamental resources including education, childcare, housing, and mental health are primary concerns that create challenges for single mothers (Hirschl, 2015; Wester-Stratton, 2011; Baker et al., 2010; Lewis & Hayes, 2020; The Aspen Institute, 2021). Many programs are available to help single mothers; however, most focus on only one of the two areas of concern: economic or psychological self-sufficiency. The lack of literature on the influence of the combination of both support systems led to the need for this research study. In this qualitative descriptive case study, I explored the long-term impact of single mothers and their children when provided with bi-dimensional supports. I utilized five former participants of the Buckner Family Pathways program in Dallas, Texas. All five participants completed the program successfully and agreed to participate in a semi-structured interview and a focus group interview. I also analyzed documents and artifacts. The interviews and focus group drew detailed descriptions of participants’ lived experiences and provided rich insights into their struggles and their successes to self-sufficiency. I utilized the theoretical framework of Hong’s Psychological Self-Sufficiency to address the problem that too few single mothers are self-sufficient. Hong’s framework drove the primary and secondary research questions that addressed the concern of self-sufficiency within the single mother population. This research further supported Hong’s theory and provided evidence that single mothers are more likely to reach self-sufficiency when both economic and psychological support systems are present. Four key findings emerged from this research study. First, both financial and psychological supports are necessary elements on the journey to self-sufficiency. Second, barriers that single mothers face are related to both economical and psychological challenges. Third, sustainable self-sufficiency requires a mindset shift; and finally, Buckner Family Pathways is an impactful program for single mothers. These findings are important to community, organizations, and program leaders, researchers, and mothers and their children.
STEM integration in elementary classrooms : a quantitative study exploring impediments and improvements.
(May 2023) Neuman, Erika Y., 1979-; Kaul, Corina R., 1969-
As the need for a STEM-literate workforce grows, educators must prepare to develop STEM-literate thinkers. American educators must modernize teaching practices and utilize the best research-based STEM pedagogy. STEM education can no longer be a novelty or supplement to classroom instruction, and this is especially true in elementary classrooms. Early exposure to STEM and the need for quality STEM instruction is imperative to capitalize on the innate curiosity and creativity of young learners. However, elementary educators are generalists and are not adequately trained to teach integrative STEM. Furthermore, state testing and lack of materials and funding make integrative STEM and other innovative teaching practices next to impossible. Elementary teachers need to be efficacious in STEM content and supported in integrating STEM instruction in their classrooms. This quantitative study utilized a cross-sectional survey to identify the teaching self-efficacy of elementary educators in elementary classrooms and identify variables that might predict their STEM instruction. I used an online survey for data collection to access a broad range of data, including teaching self-efficacy in mathematics and science, student technology use, STEM instruction, 21st-century learning attitudes, and interest in STEM-related professional development. Bandura’s self-efficacy theory was the theoretical framework used for this study. This theoretical framework asserts a teacher’s self-efficacy beliefs are related to the effort they invest in teaching, the goals they set for their students, and their perceived capability to learn new instructional strategies. Based on the results of this study, participants’ self-efficacy in teaching mathematics and science has very little relationship with interest in STEM-related professional development. Collectively, mathematics teaching self-efficacy, science teaching self-efficacy, student technology use, and hours of STEM-related professional development are statistically significant predictors of a teacher’s STEM instruction score. Student technology use is the most prominent individual predictor of a teacher’s STEM instruction score. To bring about positive change in elementary STEM instruction, administrators must promote integrative STEM professional development, professional development leaders must make learning opportunities purposeful, classroom teachers must embrace integrative STEM instruction as a teaching method, and educators in preservice teacher programs must expose integrative STEM to aspiring teachers as often as possible.