Theses/Dissertations - Educational Psychology

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    Development and validation of the expanded school psychology multicultural competence scale.
    (2023-08) Parker, Brandon S., 1994-; Benson, Nicholas F.
    As the population of the United States becomes increasingly diverse, multicultural competency in school psychological practice grows in salience and importance. Based on previous work done by Malone et al. (2015), the expanded School Psychology Multicultural Competence Scale (SPMCS-E) is intended to give researchers, practitioners, trainers, and supervisors a tool to self-assess multicultural competency as validity evidence is gathered to support its use and interpretation. Areas of competency related to spirituality and religion; lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer or questioning, and other individuals with gender and sexually expansive identities (LGBTQ+ individuals); and social justice are discussed and were added to the SPMCS-E. Validity evidence based on test content and internal structure are included in the present study. A subject matter expert (SME) panel of six experts rated items and domain definition. According to SMEs, the SMPCS-E has strong validity evidence related to test content. To gather validity evidence based on internal structure, the SPMCS-E was distributed to school psychology trainees and professionals (N = 969) and exploratory (EFA) and confirmatory factor analyses (CFA) were conducted. Two factors were retained from EFA with a randomly partitioned sample (n = 386): applied knowledge and skills, and awareness of cultural influences/cultural humility. The two factors were found to have a strong correlation, several items had salient cross loadings, and pattern coefficients tended to be considerably smaller than structure coefficients. This pattern of results suggests the presence of a strong general factor. Based on EFA results, a CFA with a randomly partitioned sample (n = 583) was used to evaluate three competing models: single factor, two correlated factors, and bifactor. Model fit indices and examination of loadings and structure indicated that a two correlated factors structure was the best fitting; however, the two factors were highly correlated and had limited interpretive relevance. Bifactor indices noted that the SPMCS-E is essentially unidimensional and has strong internal consistency. Implications, limitations, and future directions are discussed.
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    Heart rate variability biofeedback therapy as a means of reducing anxiety in a cohort of college students with autism spectrum disorder : a pilot study.
    (2023-08) Coleman, Ryan T., 1995-; Benson, Nicholas F.; Westlake, Garret
    College students with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) are at an increased risk for anxiety disorders, as well as the poor academic, social, health, and economic outcomes that have been linked to heightened anxiety. While there are interventions with proven efficacy in reducing anxiety for individuals with ASD, these interventions do not work as well as they do in typically developing populations. Biofeedback therapy is a technique that has shown preliminary positive results as an intervention to reduce state anxiety in individuals with ASD, though additional research is needed. This study explores the efficacy of using a Heart Rate Variability Biofeedback Therapy (HRVBT) intervention for the treatment of anxiety in a population of college students with ASD (n=4) using a multiple baseline design. Over a ten-week intervention, participants received 20-minute HRVBT sessions weekly. Heart rate variability (HRV) was measured using the emWave software to gauge psychophysiological levels of anxiety, and the State Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI) was administered concurrently to compare perceived levels of anxiety.
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    Teaching social leisure skills to individuals with autism spectrum disorder.
    (August 2022) O'Guinn, Kristin Nicole, 1992-; Akers, Jessica.
    A key component of the diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is difficulties with social engagement, and many individuals with this diagnosis self-report often or always feeling lonely. A promising protective factor against this experience is consistent social engagement with other individuals. One avenue for increasing the social engagement of adolescents with ASD is to teach them skills that will increase opportunities to engage with their peers, such as social leisure skills. In this study, two adolescent boys with ASD increased the number of general comments and appropriate reactions emitted during a popular social leisure activity, video games, following the use of a script-fading intervention. The social validity of this intervention was assessed through brief interviews with each of the participants and their caregivers following their participation in this study.
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    Visual schedules in the home for children with developmental disabilities.
    (August 2022) Avery, Suzannah, 1994-; Akers, Jessica.; Gerow, Stephanie L.
    Visual supports are often used during interventions for individuals with developmental disabilities to increase independence in the home (Rutherford et al., 2020). Previous reviews of the visual support literature for individuals with developmental and/or intellectual disabilities suggest that visual supports are effective at increasing independence with tasks, such as daily living skills, in the home for children with developmental disabilities; however, caregiver-implemented visual supports may produce different outcomes than non-caregiver implemented visual supports. The purpose of Study One was to synthesize the research on caregiver-implemented visual supports in the home for individuals with developmental disabilities. This search yielded 16 studies which evaluated the use of caregiver-implemented visual support interventions for individuals with developmental disabilities in the home setting. We evaluated the included articles against the What Works Clearinghouse Single-Case Design Standards (WWC, 2017, 2020) and the social validity quality indicators (Horner et al., 2005; Reichow et al., 2008). Across these studies, researchers identified two predominantly used visual supports, visual schedules and social interaction supports. The findings of this literature review support the use of caregiver-implemented visual supports for children with developmental disabilities. Furthermore, the results endorse the use of visual supports for promoting independence in routines and for decreasing the amount of challenging behavior during these routines. In Study Two, researchers evaluated the efficacy of coaching caregivers to teach their child to follow high-tech visual schedules to promote the independent completion of leisure activities via videoconferencing technology. Further, researchers explored the extent to which children continue to complete these leisure activities in the absence of their caregiver. The results from this study indicate that researchers can effectively coach caregivers via videoconferencing technology to teach their child to follow high-tech visual schedules to learn how to complete leisure activities and demonstrates that individuals will continue to complete these leisure activities even when caregiver support is withdrawn. In Study Three, researchers conducted a phenomenological case study to better understand caregiver experiences with teaching their child follow visual schedules to complete leisure activities in the home. Researchers conducted semi-structured interviews and collected data through field and personal notes using the theoretical framework guided by the works of Wolf (1978), Horner et al. (2005), and Reichow et al. (2008). Interviews provided the researcher the opportunity to understand the essence of this phenomenon from the caregivers’ point of view and to describe the meaning of their experiences (Fox, 2009).
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    Teaching children with autism spectrum disorder to mand for answers to questions via telehealth : a caregiver implementation.
    (2022-05-04) Swensson, Remington M., 1997-; Akers, Jessica.
    Information is a valuable part of learning and interacting with our environment as it allows us to behave more effectively (i.e., access reinforcement). Information can be gained by engaging in social interactions with others. However, individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) often have difficulties engaging in back-and-forth conversation and initiating social interactions with other individuals. There are several interventions that target teaching individuals with ASD to mand (i.e., request) for information that we identified after conducting a review of the literature. Echoic prompting and naturalistic teaching are the most frequently used interventions to teach mands for information. However, no studies found were implemented by a caregiver or via telehealth. In the current study, we systematically replicated and extended the findings of Ingvarsson and Hollobough (2010) by having caregivers implement the intervention, while receiving coaching provided via telehealth, to teach two boys and a girl diagnosed with ASD to mand for information.
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    Misclassification errors informed by response time in item factor analysis.
    (2022-03-25) Padgett, Robert Noah, 1995-; Morgan, Grant B.
    The measurement process necessarily leads to observations measured with error to a degree. In education, researchers often want to obtain measurements of difficult-to-measure constructs such as content knowledge, motivation, affect, and personality. A scale is created using multiple items to triangulate the measurement of the construct of interest using the common information across items. One source of error that is not often accounted for is measurement error in the item response itself. In this study, I propose an approach for measuring latent traits while accounting for item-level measurement error. The proposed approach differentially weighs responses by how long an individual takes to respond to the item, i.e., response time as an absolute measure of time taken on each item−weighing responses by response time discounts the information provided by individuals responding rapidly to items. The result is that individuals with longer response times more heavily inform the estimation of the model, and more highly weighted responses are theorized to more accurately reflect the construct of interest. Utilizing more reliable information provides a foundational step in finding validity evidence for inferences made using scales. The purpose of this study was two-fold. First, simulation studies were conducted to show how the proposed measurement can be estimated and demonstrate the effects of estimating traditional item-factor models when data are prone to item-level measurement error. In these studies, I show that the parameter estimates (e.g., factor loadings, residual variances, etc.) may be severely upwardly or downwardly biased. The coverage rates for interval estimates of the parameters were also highly variable across conditions studied and parameters. The results showed that researchers’ ability to make valid inferences about the underlying model is limited by how item-level measurement error is modeled. Secondly, the applied studies used data from the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) 2017 math assessment and an open-source dataset on extroversion. The results from these applied studies demonstrate the applicability of the proposed model and how inferences about reliability may be highly dependent on how item-level measurement error is modeled. Finally, implications and applications to educational research using the proposed methods are discussed.
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    The effect of STEM education on the academic success and social-emotional development of gifted students.
    (2021-07-14) Ozkan, Fatih, 1987-; Kettler, Todd.
    STEM education, accepted as one of the most significant educational movements of recent years, is an approach that aims to educate students, including gifted students, in the disciplines of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics as a whole. This research aims to provide a general framework of the effect of STEM education on academic success and social-emotional development using the meta-analysis and metasynthesis method related to the work done for gifted students. In this study, a total of 62 studies between 2010 and 2020 have been examined. The findings are presented under specific themes by going through the stages included in the meta-synthesis and metaanalysis research method. In combining and analyzing the results of research on STEM education in the field of gifted education, the view that STEM education positively affects gifted students' academic and social-emotional development has once again been proven through quantitative and qualitative data.
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    Video activity schedules to support academic learning for children with autism spectrum disorder.
    (2021-07-23) Kirkpatrick, Marie, 1989-; Akers, Jessica.; Davis, Tonya Nichole, 1979-
    Individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) have deficits in communication and engage in restrictive and repetitive behaviors that may impede their ability to learn, particularly in school environments. Evidence-based practices such as visual supports and video modeling have been used to support individuals with ASD. Activity schedules, a type of visual support and video modeling have both demonstrated effectiveness across a variety of skills and settings. However, less is known about what skills or contexts are appropriate for combining the two interventions, known as a video activity schedule. A systematic review was conducted to understand the current research regarding video activity schedules to support skill acquisition (i.e., learning) for individuals with ASD. The results of the review and areas for future research can be found in Chapter Two. Based on the results, a limited number of studies evaluated use of video activity schedules to support academic tasks in general education classrooms. Furthermore, no studies evaluated its use with peers. Therefore, research in this area seems warranted. Chapter Three describes an experimental study that evaluates use of video activity schedules to complete math center activities with young children with ASD and typically developing peers, including one participant in a general education classroom. Chapter Four contains the results of the experimental study, and Chapter Five provides a discussion of the results noting areas for future research. Overall, video activity schedules improved activity completion and on-task behavior for children with ASD and their peers during academic learning activities, but some concerns may need to be considered before using them. Additional research in this area is warranted.
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    Phonemic awareness instruction with children at risk of reading failure.
    (2021-07-27) Rehfeld, David M., 1990-; Sulak, Tracey N., 1975-
    Although reading is a set of skills critical to long term educational and vocational outcomes, many children in the United States are at risk of reading failure for a variety of reasons. For these children, establishing sufficient levels of phonemic awareness in the early grades is critical for the successful development of word reading skills and, indirectly, reading comprehension. The present dissertation combines the results of a systematic review and meta-analysis of the existing literature on the use of phonemic awareness interventions with children at risk of reading failure with a single case investigation of one such intervention used with second grade students struggling to read. Based on a review of the existing literature, the effects of phonemic awareness interventions used with at-risk children are significant but the magnitude of these effects vary with respect to the target outcome, with average Hedge’s g values ranging from .25 to .57. The results continue to indicate that phonemic awareness instruction is generally the most effective when graphemes are incorporated appropriately and intervention is provided sooner rather than later. Instruction can be effective when provided by a variety of school personnel, though the strongest outcomes were produced by interventions implemented by speech-language pathologists. Intervention has also been demonstrated to be efficacious when delivered individually, in small groups, or in larger groups such as through whole class instruction. The adjoining single case investigation of contextualized phonemic awareness instruction provided to second grade students also indicates that phonemic awareness instruction conducted over a relatively short period of time can affect significant substantial change. Based on the results of the included single case research, contextualizing phonemic awareness instruction might help affect generalized change across multiple outcomes related to children’s ability to successfully read. Together, this meta-analysis and single case investigation continue to support the provision of appropriately designed phonemic awareness instruction children at risk of reading failure to support the acquisition of basic reading skills necessary to engage in the general education curriculum.
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    Implementing multiple schedules after functional communication training in natural settings with natural change agents and natural stimuli.
    (2021-05-04) Exline, Emily P., 1997-; Davis, Tonya Nichole, 1979-
    Individuals with autism spectrum disorder are much more likely to engage in challenging behavior than their typically developing peers. Challenging behavior is not only problematic for the individual, but also the key people in their life, such as their caregivers. Functional communication training is an effective intervention to decrease challenging behavior and increase communication skills. However, the intervention is difficult to implement in natural settings where reinforcers may not always be available. There is a significant amount of research on techniques to thin the schedule of reinforcement, but the majority of those study are done in clinical environments with therapist-arranged stimuli. The current study investigates implementing multiple schedules in the home setting via telehealth. In this study, we plan to fade the therapist-arranged stimuli to naturally occurring stimuli. FCT has been effective in reducing our participant’s challenging behavior. We are currently preparing to fade the therapist-arranged stimuli. Data collection is still ongoing.
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    Parent-implemented interventions for children with developmental disabilities and delays : challenging behavior and parenting stress.
    (2021-04-19) Radhakrishnan, Supriya, 1990-; Gerow, Stephanie L.
    In Study 1, we synthesized the current literature on challenging behavior interventions in community settings and evaluated the intervention effects using the What Works Clearinghouse Single-Case Design Standards (WWC, 2020). The systematic literature review identified 16 studies that evaluated the efficacy of challenging behavior intervention in community settings for children with developmental disabilities. The majority of the studies implemented the challenging behavior interventions in food-based settings (e.g., restaurants and cafeterias), and parents were the primary implementers of these interventions. Of 23 experiments, only one experiment met WWC SCD Standards. In Study 2, we evaluated the effect of parent-implemented functional communication training (FCT) for three participants using a nonconcurrent multiple baseline design. We coached parents of children with developmental delays to implement FCT in the home via telehealth. The study results showed that the parents accurately implemented the assessment and intervention procedures with coaching via telehealth. In addition, parent-implemented FCT effectively reduced challenging behavior and increased manding. In Study 3, we examined the correlation between the Total Stress score, Parental Distress, Parent-Child Dysfunctional Interaction, and Difficult Child subscales of the Parenting Stress Index-4-Short Form (PSI-4-SF) and the Daily Living Skills domain, Internalizing subdomain, Externalizing subdomain, and Critical Items subdomain of the Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scale, Third Edition (Vineland-3). We also examined the correlation between the PSI-4-SF subscales and the child’s age. Finally, we examined whether scores on PSI-4-SF subscales differed based on child diagnosis and family’s socioeconomic status (SES). The study results showed that higher scores on the Externalizing subdomain of the Vineland-3 were significantly correlated with higher scores on the Parent-Child Dysfunctional Interaction subscale of the PSI-4-SF. In addition, higher scores on the Internalizing subdomain of the Vineland-3 were significantly correlated with higher scores on the Difficult Child subscale of the PSI-4-SF. Finally, the Total Stress score and scores on the Difficult Child subscale of the PSI-4-SF differed significantly between the two SES groups. However, due to the relatively small sample size (i.e., 20 families), the results should be interpreted with caution, and there is a need for additional research.
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    Content validity evidence for the Verbal Behavior Milestones Assessment and Placement Program.
    (2020-07-14) Padilla, Kristen L., 1981-; Akers, Jessica.
    Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) affects one in 54 children in the United States and the prevalence has increased by exponentially in the last decade (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention [CDC]). With the rising prevalence, evidence-based treatment is critical for this population. Interventions based in applied behavior analysis (ABA) are the most effective research-based strategies for individuals with ASD (Axelrod, McElrath, & Wine, 2012; Foxx, 2008; Lovaas, 1987). In order to develop optimal treatment plans with accurately identified goals and intervention strategies, individuals must undergo a comprehensive assessment that includes the use of research-based instruments. The Verbal Behavior Milestones Assessment and Placement Program (VB-MAPP) is the most widely used instrument for curriculum development and treatment planning in the field of ABA. However, there is currently no validity or reliability studies to support its widespread use. The purpose of this study is to address this gap in the literature by providing content validity evidence for the VB-MAPP. A national panel of 13 subject matter experts (SMEs) provided an evaluation of the domain relevance, age appropriateness, method of measurement appropriateness, and domain representation across the three levels of the Milestones Assessment, Early Echoic Skills Assessment (EESA), and the Barriers Assessment. Overall, the content validity evidence for the VB-MAPP Milestones, EESA, and Barriers Assessment was moderate to strong across the evaluated areas although there were areas with limited or conflicting support. The evidence suggests that the scores of the VB-MAPP provide information relevant to the target behaviors of interest but a few domains may not be fully represented by their specific items. When the VB-MAPP is used by itself, researchers and practitioners can have reasonable confidence in the results for many domains but should exercise caution for some domains across levels. That said, it is recommended that the VB-MAPP be used in conjunction with other sources of assessment information, which is recommended for assessment in general. The results of this study could inform revisions to future editions of the VB-MAPP. With some targeted revisions, the VB-MAPP could serve as a comprehensive assessment with strong validity evidence for this developmental age range.
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    Teaching Spanish-speaking parents to implement challenging behavior interventions.
    (2020-07-28) Zambrano, Jacqueline, 1995-; Gerow, Stephanie L.
    Research evaluating the efficacy and social validity of challenging behavior interventions with parents who speak languages other than English is limited. Coaching Spanish speaking parents in Spanish resulted in high fidelity implementation of challenging behavior interventions. Additionally, parent-implemented interventions led to a decrease in both child’s engagement of challenging behaviors. Both parents reported the procedures used were acceptable and feasible to implement at home.
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    Perceived stress in gifted adolescents : an exploratory study.
    (2020-07-21) Tipton, Rebecca J., 1993-; Robinson, Eric L.
    High school aged adolescents face many challenges, including academic, social, athletic, and personal obstacles that can be forms of eustress (i.e. “good stress”) which promote growth and development across domains, however these chronic stressors can also pose the threat (i.e. “distress”) of undermining success and mental health. Psychological health has been rated at an all-time low in high school adolescents, and nearly one-third report high levels of daily stress. Despite some empirical exploration of stress in adolescent populations, one subset of teens that has garnered relatively little attention is gifted adolescents. It is possible that gifted students may be vulnerable to the ‘culture of achievement’ and performance expectations. It is also possible that they may be able to problem solve and cope with stress better than their peers. However, this is an area of limited research. This study will provide novel insight into this relatively unexplored field because it not only considers global perceptions of stress in gifted adolescents, but adolescents in general. It is important to understand if gifted students perceive stress differently, as this cognitive mechanism may be an effective target for intervention.
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    Investigating the McNair Program and alumni outcomes.
    (2020-01-28) Renbarger, Rachel L., 1991-; Saxon, Terrill F.
    The Ronald E. McNair Postbaccalaureate Achievement Program is a federal program designed to support students from first-generation, low-income, and racial or ethnic minority households. However, little research has been conducted to determine how effective this program is in helping these marginalized students succeed in enrolling, persisting, or graduating from graduate school. For this reason, this dissertation will provide two studies to investigate if and to what extent the program supports students. The first paper is a systematic literature review that synthesizes all peer-reviewed work regarding the program’s effectiveness. Findings from this review suggest that the program does benefit participants. Specifically, the program provides academic, financial, social, and affective benefits to current and former alumni. From this review, multiple gaps were found. Few studies examine student progress through a graduate student theoretical lens and over a long period of time. As such, the second paper is an embedded explanatory case study to examine how the program supported students throughout the phases of doctoral study. Twelve alumni from one top program participated in the study, indicating that the program benefited them during their undergraduate degree until after they attained their doctoral degree. These supports were in four major areas: academic, financial, social (peers), and social (faculty/staff). Supports varied in type and intensity depending on the phase of the doctoral program. Results suggest the program should continue to be funded and programs should incorporate formal and informal programming to reap the most benefits for its students.
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    Teaching children with autism spectrum disorder to engage in reciprocal conversations using text-message prompting.
    (2019-11-19) Canestaro, Vida Montserrat, 1995-; Akers, Jessica.
    Individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) often have difficulties maintaining conversations. Although there are several established interventions which target initiations and responses to questions made by others, there are fewer interventions which target sustaining conversations with multiple exchanges. A review of the literature revealed that scripting procedures were the most common method to teach individuals to engage in a multi-exchange conversation. However, traditional paper scripts are an intrusive prompting strategy and are inflexible to an everchanging social environment. Text-message prompting via an Apple Watch®️ creates a wearable electronic script that can be prompted from a distance and are malleable to form organic conversations within a social setting.
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    Review of assessment and training strategies for preservice behavior analysts.
    (2019-07-10) Weston, Regan Michelle, 1987-; Davis, Tonya Nichole, 1979-
    The need for behavior analytic services is rapidly growing, resulting in a demand for a greater number of practitioners to provide services to consumers. To ensure training is sufficient to produce competent practitioners, strategies should be evaluated through research to determine both the effectiveness and efficiency of the strategy. This manuscript includes an overview of the history of the field of behavior analysis, highlighting the growth of the field and how an evaluation of the way current standards are met and maintained would be beneficial, a review of the relevant literature, an experimental study evaluating a strategy to teach preservice behavior analysts to graph, and a discussion focused on how an analysis of the education and training of these students is warranted in order to fit within the conceptual systems of the discipline. The review of the literature was conducted to identify existing studies that examined training strategies for preservice behavior analysts. Specifically, research conducted within the context of a graduate level behavior analysis classroom, teaching skills that aligned with the Behavior Analysis Certification Board® 4th Edition Task List were included. The results of this study are reported and discussed. Finally, general implications and next steps are suggested in the final chapter. An analysis of the training and education of preservice behavior analysts, adhering to the seven dimensions of applied behavior analysis is recommended to promote continued excellence within the field of behavior analysis as it grows and expands.
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    Factor analysis in educational settings : a simulation study comparing fit statistics across robust estimators.
    (2019-05-07) Padgett, Robert Noah, 1995-; Morgan, Grant B.
    In education and social science, data often arise from nested data structures, meaning that students are nested within teachers or schools. Traditional factor analytic approaches to measuring latent traits do not account for the nested structure of these data. The logic and potential issues of using multilevel confirmatory factor analysis were discussed. The ability of commonly used fit statistics to discriminate between a correctly specified model and models with omitted factor loading(s) were investigated with receiver-operating-characteristics (ROC) analyses. Combining ROC analyses with traditional methods of investigating fit statistic performance resulted in converging evidence for the utility of these common fit statistics. In general, these fit statistics performed poorly and should not be heavily relied upon for evidence of the factor structures specified. Recommendations were given for which commonly reported fit statistics to use, cut-off criteria to use for which estimators, and cautions about the use of the suggested cut-off criteria.
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    Using structural equation modeling to examine the relationships between environmental characteristics, intrapersonal characteristics, and adult numeracy achievement.
    (2019-04-02) Kaul, Corina R., 1969-; Johnsen, Susan K.
    Quantitative literacy or numeracy skills are increasingly important at every level in a knowledge-based society. The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationships between numeracy achievement, environmental and intrapersonal characteristics. Although the sample for this study included 5,862 U.S. adults (aged 16-65) from the Program for International Assessment of Adult Competencies (PIAAC), the results were weighted to represent the population. According to descriptive statistics, significant differences were found for multiple variables. The top 10% were more likely to have a foreign-born father, higher levels of parent education, more books in their childhood home, more years of formal schooling, be employed, and earn more money. Individuals with the following characteristics were more likely to be in the high numeracy group: male, native-English speaking, White, age 25 to 34, very good to excellent health, and no learning disability. Confirmatory Factor Analysis (CFA) and Structural Equation Modeling (SEM) were conducted on a new Adult Numeracy Achievement Model. The second-order Intrapersonal factor predicted numeracy achievement in the top 10%; however, the second-order Environmental factor did not. Intrapersonal characteristics with small indirect effects on numeracy achievement included gender, age, race, native language, learning disability, health, and participation in ongoing training or education outside of a degree program. Findings were used to support suggestions for future methodological and future numeracy research. Implications for parents, adults, educators, and policymakers are suggested which include greater emphasis on mathematical learning, understanding, and application at all levels including school, home, and workplace.
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    Implementation intention as a cognitive strategy in STEM education : assessing pre-algebraic performance in 8th grade math instruction.
    (2016-08-03) Nguyen, Megan, 1991-; Saxon, Terrill F.
    Conceptualization of STEM has been a challenge due to varying perspectives within schools, school districts, and instructors. Implementation intention refers to a memory encoding strategy in which individuals explicitly specify retrieval cues to help them remember to perform goal directed actions. This study’s objective was to examine if the integration of implementation intention encoding would differ from STEM students to students in a traditional classroom. Moreover, comparing math performance between students trained and not trained in an implementation intention strategy. Results from a 2 X 2 ANOVA test and reported means indicate that participants in the treatment groups at both schools performed better than their control counterparts. Additionally, there is a significant main effect for the STEM school participants overall compared to the traditional school participants. Effectiveness of implementation intention encoding suggests that it would be beneficial for educators to incorporate the strategy into instruction to produce self-regulated mathematical learners.