Archives

  • A Survey of Investing and Retirement Knowledge and Preferences of Preservice Teachers

    New teachers are facing lower pay and less generous retirement benefits than the prior generation, yet their financial and retirement knowledge, concerns, and preferences have received little attention. To investigate these areas, the author developed a 39-item survey instrument and administered it to 314 preservice teachers in undergraduate teacher education courses at the University of Central Florida, who were primarily female elementary and early childhood education juniors and seniors ages 18–25. Florida public employees are offered an unusual choice between a traditional pension plan and a defined-contribution plan similar to a 401(k) in which they can select their own investments, and 54% of surveyed preservice teachers preferred the 401(k)-like plan structure. However, their preferences may be ill-advised, given that in a mock portfolio allocation exercise intended to assess retirement investing sophistication, preservice teachers directed more than half their retirement money to low-risk money market and bond funds, which will likely underperform stocks over several decades. Furthermore, they anticipated that low salaries will impede their ability to save for retirement. For comparison, the survey was also administered to 205 U.S. college students or graduates ages 18–25 on the Amazon Mechanical Turk platform for $1.00 each. Worrisomely, preservice teachers had significantly lower financial knowledge and retirement investing sophistication. These findings suggest a need for financial education targeting Florida preservice teachers, particularly given that the Florida Retirement System substantially cut its benefits in 2011.

     
  • Teachers’ Voices in One-to-one Technology Integration Professional Development Programs

    School district administrators implement 1:1 programs into classrooms with the expectation to enhance students’ academic abilities and promote 21st-century skills. The problem was pre-K-12 teachers’ perceptions, practices, and professional development with the newly implemented 1:1 laptop device remained a fertile area of study. Utilizing teachers’ voices in the implementation process of a 1:1 program was vital, as teachers are leading educational stakeholders integrating the devices into classroom instructions. A profusion of literature emphasized the positive impact of 1:1 technology usage in classrooms and educational stakeholders' views, but a gap in the literature concerning the paucity of research remained about teachers’ voices in 1:1 programs. The theory of planned behavior (TPB) was the applied theoretical framework for this study. Using the TPB, administrators may obtain answers about teachers’ perspectives, practices, professional training, and how 1:1 laptops are integrated into classroom instructions to promote students’ success. The purpose of this qualitative instrumental case study was to explore pre-K-12 teachers' perceptions, practices, and professional development with newly implemented 1:1 laptop devices. A need for an exploration of how teachers’ voices in a newly implemented 1:1 program can promote 1:1 program success prompted the study. A purposeful sampling of 14 certified teachers aided in data collection through an open-ended questionnaire, focus group, and individual face-to-face interviews. Data analysis utilized the content analysis approach to understand the data through coding and recognizing themes. Results from the study revealed teachers accepted 1:1 technologies in classrooms as necessary tools for enhancing students’ academic abilities. Teachers utilized 1:1 laptop devices in different ways and expressed a need for teachers’ voices, ongoing professional development, quality devices, and experienced technology support personals for the success of the implementation.

     
  • Determinants of Online Assessment Adoption in Singapore Technical College

    The overarching objective of this research was to identify the factors that predicted lecturers’ adoption of online assessment in one Singapore-based Institute of Technical Education. The factors investigated were system usability and learnability; lecturers’ performance expectancy, social influences and attitudes towards online assessment; and lecturers’ perceptions of the facilitating conditions that support online assessment. Among these factors, usability, learnability and attitude were introduced to the UTAUT model as additional variables. The adoption of online assessment was measured in terms of lecturers’ behavioural intentions to use the online assessment system and their self-reported system usage behaviour. The relationships between these factors were also examined. Four papers are presented in the book. The first reviewed previous literature on the Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology (UTAUT) model, and proposed an extended UTAUT model to examine the factors that influence online assessment adoption. The second reviewed studies in the area of online assessment methods published from 2007 to 2019. In the third paper, an instrument to assess constructs in the extended UTAUT model proposed was developed and validated. In the final paper, the instrument developed in the third study was used to explore relationships among the constructs in the extended UTAUT model. Specifically, path analysis was conducted to examine the various factors that influence lecturers’ acceptance of online assessment within the institution.

     
  • Evaluating the Effects of Mother Tongue on Math and Science Instruction

    Although Kreyol is the language spoken and understood by the majority of Haitians, French is the language used as the medium for instruction. The use of a foreign language as a means for students to acquire literacy is a practice that has led to an ineffective educational system in Haiti. The aim of the quasi-experimental research study is to study the effects of using Kreyol versus French as the instructional method in math and science classes. Participants were selected from a target population of 246 girls at a private school.  Students from this institution are part of the 29% of people who attend secondary schools in Haiti. The 139 students that were part of the sample were randomly divided into two groups per class (standard and Kreyol condition) and were given a pre-test followed by a lesson then a post-test.  Students in the standard group were taught in French and those in experimental group in Kreyol. Data gathered from the intervention were analyzed and results indicated that pre-test scores of French condition and Kreyol condition groups were normally distributed. When ANCOVA was used as one of the data analysis tools, because it French conditions for pre-test values and allows for observation of post-test scores, results yielded confirmed a significant difference between the French condition and Kreyol condition groups. The results from this quasi-experimental study provided data that aligned with the literature review and demonstrated that there was in fact a significant difference in performance when Kreyol was used as a medium for instruction instead of French.  The results further provide statistical data confirming the important role that Kreyol should play in the improvement of the Haitian education system.  

     
  • Teacher Professional Development Challenges Faced by Rural Superintendents

    Effective teacher professional development is defined as structured professional learning activities which result in changes in teacher practice and improvements in student learning outcomes. Superintendents face common challenges unique to the rural environment which hinder the delivery of effective teacher professional development in rural school districts. These barriers must be addressed to ensure a high-quality education for all rural students. The purpose of this qualitative study was to explore the common experiences and perceptions of superintendents responsible for providing teacher professional development in rural school districts. Social constructivism, interpreted through a transcendental phenomenological lens, was the theoretical framework guiding the research. The investigator interviewed 4 purposefully selected superintendents from rural, remote school districts in Western Washington state. A semistructured interview protocol consisting of open-ended questions aligned to the study’s purpose was utilized to gather data. Results showed superintendents faced inadequate fiscal resources, limited human capital, geographic isolation, and difficulties implementing effective teacher professional development in rural environments. Superintendents overcame challenges by establishing a vision and systems within existing resources and employing aligned professional development practices. Superintendents desired supports which were responsive to the unique needs of rural school districts. The findings may inform the work of rural administrators, professional development consultants, policymakers, regulatory agencies, and rural organizations. The findings may also lead to policy changes, shifts in rural school district resource allocation, and changes in rural teacher professional development delivery to ensure the educational equity of all rural students.

     
  • Internalization of STEM Education

    For many years the need to educate and support our teachers to implement science and mathematics education has been ongoing throughout the world (National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, 2019; Mundry et al., 2009). In more recent years, this call has extended to include teaching through integrated science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) subjects as a vehicle to learn disciplinary core ideas, science and engineering practices, and cross-cutting concepts (NGSS Lead States, 2013). This book includes three sections: Learning Contexts in Teaching of STEM Disciplines, STEM Teacher Education, and Components Related to Students' STEM Learning Experiences. The first section of this book explores two unique contexts in which STEM education is being developed. The first chapter describes the current literature on the application of SocioScientific Issues to teach STEM in inclusive settings. The second chapter describes the development of public residential STEM High Schools in Egypt, completely reimagining how STEM is addressed in that country. The second section will explore aspects of teacher professional development in STEM as well as the motivations for teachers to learn and improve their STEM pedagogy. Specifically, the first chapter illuminates teachers’ motivation and practices in STEM implementation. The second chapter describes the demands on and resources for STEM implementations for teachers and the effect these factors have on their job satisfaction. The third chapter in this section describes the analysis of video reflections and personal reflective accounts of a female preservice teacher, exploring self-efficacy, belonging, and identity in learning STEM content through the lens of gender. The final chapter also explores gender as a variable along with problem solving skills to explore the impact of these variables on STEM awareness levels of classroom teachers. These chapters illuminate challenges faced in preparing and developing STEM educators as well as the mindset and motivations of teachers in these fields. The last section dives into issues related to STEM learning experiences for students. The first chapter reports findings from a meta-analytic study investigating the relationship between self-efficacy and interest in a STEM career and the various student factors that influence this relationship. The second chapter analyzes the STEM identity from an international perspective. The final study investigates the effects of computer simulations on students’ conceptual understanding of physics and scientific ideas.


    Dr. Augusto Z. Macalalag, Dr. Ismail Sahin, Dr. Joseph Johnson, Dr. Ali Bicer
    Editors 

  • Technology-Enhanced Learning Environments in Education

    Welcome to the world of technology-enhanced learning, where the boundaries of education are continually expanding, reshaped by the dynamic interplay of pedagogy, learning theories, and cutting-edge technology. In an era characterized by rapid advancements in digital tools, rapid developments of AI, and the ever-evolving needs of learners, this book aims to explore the transformative potential of technology in education. The field of technology-enhanced learning is a captivating intersection where educators, instructional designers, technologists, and learners themselves come together to delves into the myriad ways in which technology is reshaping traditional educational paradigms, democratizing access to knowledge, and enhancing the learning experiences of learners. It has now become clear that technology is not merely a supplemental tool but an integral part of the learning ecosystem. It is important to remember that technology is a tool, a means to an end. The true power of technology-enhanced learning lies not in the devices themselves but in how we leverage them to inspire, engage, and empower learners. This book is a comprehensive exploration of the multifaceted world of technology-enhanced learning. From the rise of online learning platforms and the integration of artificial intelligence in education to the gamification of learning and the possibilities of virtual reality, each chapter offers a window into the transformative potential of technology. In this book, you will find insights, best practices, and case studies that will equip you to navigate the ever-changing landscape of education in the digital age.

    Omid Noroozi & Ismail Sahin
    The Editors
  • Closing the Gap of the Educational Needs of Homeless Youth

    The number of homeless children and youth in the United States is on the rise (U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, 2016). Between 2016 and 2017 in the Los Angeles County Homeless Count, there was a 41% increase in the number of homeless minors (The Los Angeles Service Authority, 2017). Education is key to bringing people out of poverty and ending the cycle of homelessness. Using a socio-psychological lens, this book presents a case study that examined the perceptions of six of the staff and volunteers at one site of the Griffon Learning Center, an organization trying to close the educational gaps of homeless children and youth. It also includes the perspectives of 12 children and youth who utilized their services. The data of this study include interviews, observations of a participant observer, ethnographic field notes, journal reflections, and document analysis. An examination of the relevant literature is included. Although this study cannot end the cycle of homelessness, it hopes to shed light on the issue and makes recommendations to organizations, school districts, politicians and legislatures, and educational researchers.

     
  • Science Education during the COVID-19 Pandemic: Tales from the Front Lines

    Certainly the year 2020 will be one for the history books, as COVID-19 made its impact globally beginning in that year. While it did not hit the United States substantially until about March of 2020, other countries felt the effects sooner. Eventually it seemed that the globe essentially was shut down due to the COVID-19 outbreak. This type of shutdown was challenging for education and educators. How could we pivot to online forums and teaching methods? Would our students still learn? It was especially concerning for science teachers and science educators who were accustomed to teaching using mostly hands-on inquiry instruction. How could students manipulate materials in these virtual settings? The science educators who have contributed to this book decided to conduct research to determine answers to some of these questions. The book is divided into three sections related to science teaching--COVID-19 science teaching research that involved K-12 teachers, research that explored university science content courses, and research that explored preservice science teacher education. Following each section we include a summary of the outcomes and recommendations. We end the book with conclusions and recommendations from a synthesis of the studies included.


    Dr. Valarie L. Akerson, Dr. Ingrid S. Carter
    Editors

  • Teaching Nature of Science Across Contexts and Grade Levels: Explorations through Action Research and Self Study

    We have structured the book into two sections: Action Research and Self-Studies. Within the Action Research section there are two subsections: In person and Online teaching. In the action research section, teachers describe how they embedded NOS into their instruction and examine students’ conceptions of NOS as a result of that instruction. The Action Research Studies on In-Person Nature of Science Teaching and Learning section contains four chapters. The first chapter is a study of integrating NOS (in particular, observation and inference) into kindergarten curriculum by using fairy tales and a mock crime scene. The second chapter in this section describes a study that explores high school chemistry students’ conceptions of NOS embedded in a unit on The Gas Laws and Kinetic Molecular Theory that is grounded in the NGSS. The third chapter examines how NOS can be highlighted in a unit about evolution, focusing on Darwin’s life and work. The fourth and final chapter in this section examined the NOS views of students at a Christian high school. The second section in this book, which contains three chapters, focuses on Action Research Studies on Online Nature of Science Teaching and Learning The first chapter explored the results of embedded NOS into a unit of fingerprinting within a fully asynchronous online college-level forensic science course. The second and third chapters both examined NOS within fully asynchronous online college-level life science courses. The self-study section contains four chapters, with the first being in a fourth-grade classroom as a former high school science teacher strives to remind herself how to teach elementary science as well as embed NOS into her teaching. In the second chapter a high school chemistry teacher shares how she used Appendix H from NGSS as exemplars to teach her chemistry students about NOS. The third chapter highlights how an online college biology instructor incorporated NOS into her courses, and the struggles and resolutions she encountered. In the fourth chapter, an in-person college biology instructor shared her endeavors in incorporating NOS into her instruction, and how she made changes and improved her teaching about NOS. We hope you enjoy this book as much as we have enjoyed conducting the research and putting it together. We hope it adds to the field, and we hope it will prompt others to explore teaching NOS in various contexts and sharing their outcomes as well. Enjoy the book!

    Dr. Valarie L. Akerson, Dr. Ingrid S. Carter

    Editors 

  • Measuring Student Cognitive Engagement When Using Technology

    “Measuring Student Cognitive Engagement When Using Technology” was designed to determine if students were using the recently purchased Chromebooks as well as if they were cognitively engaged when using the technology. Data collected using the IPI-T process suggested teachers were typically the users of the technology, students were often disengaged, and teachers were asking students to participate in lower-order surface activities. Missing from the process was the implementation of the faculty collaborative sessions. The writer scheduled dates to collect data three times during the 2018-19 school year. In addition, faculty collaborative sessions were planned and facilitated within one week of collection data. Participating in each faculty collaborative session, teachers (a) became familiar with the IPI-T Rubric and Protocols, (b) analyzed and discussed the data, (c) identified high-quality examples of student learning that foster student engagement with technology, (d) designed high-quality lessons that foster student engagement with technology, (e) compared longitudinal data and set goals for future data collection using the IPI-T tool. An analysis of the data revealed when implementing the IPI-T process with fidelity teacher and student technology use increased as did student cognitive engagement when using technology. In addition, it was found that students use technology for information searches the majority of the time rather than media development or to collaborate among peers for example, which are associated with higher-levels of cognitive engagement.  

     
  • Educational Practices during the COVID-19 Viral Outbreak: International Perspectives

    The collection of chapters in this special book examines educational practices during the COVID-19 viral outbreak. This special book brings together a variety of studies and scholars in an effort to exemplify how the COVID-19 shapes the learning and teaching processes in different countries. The twelve chapters selected for this special book present diverse vantage points on the circumstances that influence students, teachers, parents, and schools. The focus of this book is on education, but in the context of broader global effects. Education processes, practices, and outcomes in the time of COVID-19 do not occur in a vacuum. Disruptions to the normal processes and practices of education associated with the novel coronavirus are directly tied, among other considerations, to the societal risk of having students congregating in close quarters, the economic problems encountered by their families, difficulties of food availability, and loss of family cohesion due to death, illness, and lack of proximity and diminished support structures due to social distancing. Any return to “normal” education opportunities and the hope for improving (or at least sustaining) positive student outcomes likely will be impossible without a vaccine that is available worldwide at low or no cost, together with effective repair of the global economy, and the ability of students and adults to engage in larger-group activities. Until that situation becomes reality, many children will be unable to learn effectively and will not be equipped to realize their potential. In summary, the twelve chapters cover the topic of educational practices during the COVID-19 viral outbreak. The chapters are authored by scholars from 10 different countries: the United States, Turkey, the United Kingdom, Spain, Bhutan, Indonesia, Morocco, India, Oman, and the United Arab Emirates. The chapters provide readers with a wide range of international perspectives on educational practices during the COVID-19 pandemic. The reported studies involve research findings from students, teachers, parents, and school administrators at different levels of students’ education experience.

    Dr. Ismail Sahin, Dr. Mack Shelley
    Editors

  • A Pathway to Success? A Longitudinal Study Using Hierarchical Linear Modeling of Student and School Effects on Academic Achievement in a Middle School STEM Program

    This study discusses the effectiveness of a science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) program spanning grades six through eight in a traditional, urban school district located in Northeastern Ohio. The history and expressed need for STEM education within post-steel producing and economically depressed regions are discussed. Important factors describing STEM programming such as curriculum, standards, content delivery, integration, and aspects of implementation are described. This longitudinal study reports Ohio State Test (OST) scores along with the demographic factors of gender, socioeconomic status, student race, and attendance rate to determine the impact of STEM programming. The use of multilevel, statistical analyses through hierarchical linear modeling (HLM) determined integrated STEM had a significant, positive effect on student achievement in both math and science and an even stronger impact isolating science achievement by itself. The predictive results of HLM analysis determined STEM students scored significantly higher on the OST in science and math combined scoring 31.8 points higher on average and 38.2 points higher in science compared to their general education peers. No interaction effects were determined between STEM participation and gender, socioeconomic status, student race, and attendance rate. This research has powerful implications for educational leaders as they need to be aware of the impact integrated STEM programming and project-based learning (PBL) has on student achievement. The results indicate that integrated STEM programming in middle school has a positive effect on student achievement indicating it is indeed a pathway to success.

     
  • Empowering Education: Exploring the Potential of Artificial Intelligence

    Welcome to the enlightening journey of “Empowering Education: Exploring the Potential of Artificial Intelligence.” Our purpose is to embark on a profound exploration of the profound impact of artificial intelligence on the field of education, revealing the boundless possibilities, invaluable insights, and exciting opportunities that await within these pages. This book serves as a guiding beacon through the ever-evolving intersection of education and artificial intelligence. We cordially invite you to embark on this enlightening journey of discovery, encouraging you to explore your pivotal role in shaping the future of education within the boundless realms of knowledge offered within these pages.

    Assoc. Prof. Dr. Abdullatif Kaban and Prof. Dr. Agata Stachowicz-Stanusch

    Editors 

  • Middle School Parents’ Beliefs Regarding Learning Management System Use in Mathematics

    Middle school is a critical time in students’ learning of mathematics, something a Learning Management System (LMS) is designed to help parents support. What remains unknown is how parents use an LMS to monitor their children’s progress in mathematics. This qualitative case study explored how parents from one midAtlantic middle school with 543 students used an LMS, EdLine, to support their children’s autonomous achievement in mathematics. Expectancy-value theory and social cognitive theory made up the conceptual framework used to evaluate study findings. A criterion-based process was used to select nine middle school parents from grades 6, 7, and 8 as participants. Data sources included structured interviews and follow-up questions, EdLine spreadsheets, and parent reflective journals. Data were analyzed through a priori codes based on the literature review.  Themes that emerged from the analysis included reoccurring learner autonomy and parents benefiting from their ability to use EdLine to monitor grades, check progress, and provide strategies to support mathematical achievement. Parents indicated they could encourage their children, teach them, and expect them to use EdLine to monitor and manage their grades and achievement in mathematics. This research contributes to positive social change by explaining how administrators can help middle school parents use an LMS to become engaged with their children’s mathematics studies and set expectations for their mathematics task completion and achievement.

     
  • Online Education during the COVID-19 Pandemic: Issues, Benefits, Challenges, and Strategies

    The COVID-19 Pandemic impacted world society in many ways. The virus rode our interconnected transit systems and exploited a globally connected world where a person can traverse the planet within a day; far shorter a time than the incubation period. The virus challenged our assumptions on communicability of disease and transmission vectors. It challenged our medical systems; in the treatment of the infected, and an evolving understanding of the protocols needed for preserving the health of the vulnerable, and defining who is most vulnerable. COVID-19 challenged our social behaviors, our trust of one another, and the belief we had in our scientific systems to combat such a pandemic. Further, it stalled our educational systems. Unable to hold in-person classes, all levels of education were forced to utilize online platforms. Educators worldwide in disparate disciplines from elementary education through post-graduate study, in every field imaginable were forced to redefine their approaches and learn to adapt the technology we possess to the demands of maintaining progress in education. This pandemic has been no easy challenge. There is an old Chinese saying, “In the midst of adversity is opportunity.” So it has been in this pandemic. Scientists and medical providers around the globe have fought the virus and in record time produced protocols and vaccinations against it. Governments have shared information and pooled resources. Educators have developed new and impressive methods to not only maintain the education of students, but to ignite potentials and inspire the minds of learners despite having a “new normal.” This volume is a collection from educators around the planet who adapted to the changed landscape of education during COVID-19. Each of the contributors refused to accept that education would be stalled, that students would flounder, and that the virus’ impact would dim the lamp of learning. Rather each chapter brings a new and powerful adaption, which was implemented during the pandemic. The authors bring lessons, pitfalls, success, and failure to inform the reader of what worked, what did not, and what holds promise for online education long after the COVID-19 Pandemic is resigned to the history books.


    Dr. Stephen Jackowicz, Dr. Ismail Sahin
    Editors

  • Digital Games and Gamification in Education

    In the "Digital Games and Gamification in Education" pages, readers embark on a captivating journey through a landscape where traditional education converges with the engaging world of digital games and gamification. This comprehensive volume is designed to provide a rich and multifaceted exploration of this transformative trend reshaping our educational systems' very fabric. As readers journey through the chapters of "Digital Games and Gamification in Education," they are invited to explore the dynamic fusion of play and education that holds the potential to revolutionize the future of learning. This book is an essential guide for educators, scholars, and enthusiasts, offering insights, strategies, and practical examples that illuminate the path to a more engaging and practical educational experience.

     

    Dr. Nurullah Taş and Dr. Yusuf İslam Bolat

    Editors