The differential trajectories of high school dropouts and graduates
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The Differential Trajectories of High School Dropouts and Graduates. By: Gregory P. Hickman, Ph.D. Mitchell Bartholomew Jennifer Mathwig Randy Heinrich, Ph.D. The Rodel Community Scholars Arizona State University at the West Campus . Research Questions.

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The differential trajectories of high school dropouts and graduates
The Differential Trajectories of High School Dropouts and Graduates

By:

Gregory P. Hickman, Ph.D.

Mitchell Bartholomew

Jennifer Mathwig

Randy Heinrich, Ph.D.

The Rodel Community Scholars

Arizona State University at the West Campus


Research questions
Research Questions Graduates

  • Are there differences in the developmental trajectories of high school

  • graduates compared to high school dropouts?

  • If so, where do these differences occur developmentally in time and

  • across which variables?

  • If differences do exist developmentally in time and across variables

  • which variables exhibit the greatest differences between high school

  • graduates and dropouts?

  • Of the variables that exhibit the greatest differences between high

  • school graduates and dropouts which of these variables accounts for

  • the most variance for dropping out of high school?

  • Do high school graduates and dropouts academically perform in the

  • classroom with equal rigor parallel to standardized testing?


Method of study
Method of Study Graduates

  • Obtained familial, disciplinary, and educational data

  • All data were from student K-12 files

  • Partnered with County Juvenile Probation Office for official data

  • Sampled 4 cohorts (2002-2005)

  • Randomly selected 60 graduates and 60 dropouts from 4 cohorts

  • n=119 (one student was disqualified from study – no data)

  • n represents approximately 25% of total population of 4 cohorts

  • Examined the longitudinal developmental trajectory of both

  • graduates and dropouts across time and all variables of study.

  • Independent t-tests examined mean differences between groups

  • Regression Analysis examined the predictive nature of variables

  • between high school dropouts and graduates


Family demographics
Family & Demographics Graduates

0=Married, Female, Born in AZ, and Caucasian

1=Divorced, Male, Not born in AZ, and all other ethnic backgrounds



Vocational courses
Vocational Courses Graduates

0=Yes, 1=No


Non core courses 1 st 2 nd semester 9 th grade
Non-Core Courses Graduates1st & 2nd Semester 9th Grade


Retained k 8
Retained K-8? Graduates

0=Yes, 1=No


Absenteeism k 8
Absenteeism K-8 Graduates



Qualitative reading grades k 2
Qualitative Reading Grades K-2 Graduates

0=Satisfactory, 1=Needs Improvement, 2=Unsatisfactory



Qualitative spelling grades k 2
Qualitative Spelling Grades K-2 Graduates

0=Satisfactory, 1=Needs Improvement, 2=Unsatisfactory



Qualitative english grades k 2
Qualitative English Grades K-2 Graduates

0=Satisfactory, 1=Needs Improvement, 2=Unsatisfactory



Qualitative writing grades k 2
Qualitative Writing Grades K-2 Graduates

0=Satisfactory, 1=Needs Improvement, 2=Unsatisfactory



Qualitative math grades k 2
Qualitative Math Grades K-2 Graduates

0=Satisfactory, 1=Needs Improvement, 2=Unsatisfactory



Qualitative social studies grades k 2
Qualitative Social Studies Grades K-2 Graduates

Graduates & Dropouts all performed at Satisfactory

from Kindergarten through 2nd Grade



Qualitative science grades k 2
Qualitative Science Grades K-2 Graduates

Graduates & Dropouts all performed at Satisfactory from Kindergarten

through 2nd Grade



Stanford grades 5 9 nce total reading scores
Stanford Grades 5-9 GraduatesNCE Total Reading Scores


Stanford grades 5 9 nce total math scores
Stanford Grades 5-9 GraduatesNCE Total Math Scores






Stanford grades 5 9 nce mechanics usage of language
Stanford Grades 5-9 NCE Mechanics/Usage of Language Graduates

0=Below Average, 1=Average, 2=Above Average


Stanford grades 5 9 nce interpretation of reading language
Stanford Grades 5-9 NCE Interpretation of Reading/Language Graduates

0=Below Average, 1=Average, 2=Above Average





Grade level dropped out of high school
Grade Level Dropped Out Graduatesof High School?

High School Dropouts exited school

at grade level 10.43



Other high school english data
Other High School English Data Graduates

Grade in Highest English

Course Taken

Highest English Course Taken


Other high school math data
Other High School Math Data Graduates

0=Pre-Algebra, 1=Algebra 1, 2=Geometry, 3=Algebra 2,

4=Trigonometry, 5=Calculus



Personal data
Personal Data Graduates

0=No, 1=Yes


Personal data1
Personal Data Graduates

0=No, 1=Yes


Did the student have discipline issues
Did the Student Have GraduatesDiscipline Issues?

0=No, 1=Yes



Was student placed in diversion programs standard probation or intense probation
Was Student Placed in Diversion Programs, Standard Probation, or Intense Probation?

0=No, 1=Yes


First statistically significant differences between high school graduates dropouts
First Statistically Significant Differences Between High School Graduates & Dropouts

Absenteeism – Kindergarten

Reading – Kindergarten

Spelling – 2nd Grade

English – 2nd Grade

Writing – Kindergarten

Math – Kindergarten

Social Studies – 3rd Grade

Science – 4th Grade

Stanford 6 – All strands of test

Iowa Basic Skills Test – 3rd Grade Reading & Math

All High School variables from 9th grade 1st semester


10 largest statistical differences between graduates dropouts
10 Largest Statistical Differences Between Graduates & Dropouts

  • Did they take a foreign language?

  • GPA 9th Grade 1st Semester

  • Did they have discipline issues?

  • 7th Grade Reading grade

  • 8th Grade English grade

  • 8th Grade Absenteeism

  • 7th Grade Math grade

  • Total Non-Core classes taken in 9th Grade

  • Did they participate in extra curricular activities?

  • Were they retained?


Which top 10 variables have most predictive power
Which Top 10 Variables Have Most Predictive Power? Dropouts

  • Foreign Language

  • English 8th Grade

  • Absenteeism 8th Grade

  • Total Non-Core Classes 9th Grade Year

  • Extra Curricular Activities

  • These 5 variables account for 78% of the variance of high school

  • dropouts


Grade subject performance vs standardized testing
Grade Subject Performance vs. Standardized Testing Dropouts

SubjectDropouts Graduates

Iowa 1st Grade Reading -.27 .09

1st Grade Reading Grade -.80 .33

Iowa 6th Grade Reading -.55 .20

6th Grade Reading Grade -.63 .36

Standardized Values

Dropouts perform significantly lower in the classroom compared to their standardized testing ability in 1st grade reading. Whereas, graduates perform significantly higher in the classroom compared to their standardized testing ability. The same holds true for dropouts in 6th grade, however the margin is not significant. Finally, while dropouts make slight improvements in their classroom grades they decrease significantly in their standardized testing over time.


Grade subject performance vs standardized testing1
Grade Subject Performance vs. Standardized Testing Dropouts

SubjectDropouts Graduates

Stanford 5th Grade Math -.28 .24

5th Grade Math Grade -.35 .19

Stanford 8th Grade Math -.57 .29

8th Grade Math Grade -.73 .30

Standardized Values

Dropouts perform slightly lower in the classroom compared to their standardized testing ability in 5th grade math. Whereas, graduates perform slightly higher in the classroom compared to their standardized testing ability. As time progresses graduates achieve with equal rigor on standardized testing and in the classroom, whereas dropouts significantly achieve less in the classroom overtime compared to their standardized testing ability. Not only do dropouts decrease in their classroom and standardized performances over time, but the gap in classroom performance

becomes further behind their standardized testing ability.


Key findings of study
Key Findings of Study Dropouts

  • Academic differences between high school dropouts and graduates seem to surface well before students enter high school. In fact, according to these results, differences between the two groups are profound even in Kindergarten.

  • While the two groups appear to start out with measurable differences, academic differences seem to diverge even more in middle school grades

  • The differences between the two groups seem to be most apparent in:

    • Attendance and absenteeism in middle school

    • Standardized testing

    • Discipline records (probation and diversion)

    • Aspects of family life such as presence of siblings and parents’ marital status

    • Student characteristics such as ELL and SPED status, SES and mobility

    • High school course choices (registering for core vs. non core classes)

    • Measurable gaps in GPA across all grades (K-12)


Take 5
Take 5 Dropouts

  • Pre-Kindergarten

  • Middle School

  • Attendance

  • Class choices 9th grade year

  • Student/Family Demographics


Conclusion
Conclusion Dropouts

The analysis of this study provided a better understanding of the long-term impacts of early childhood educational progress on high school retention. By doing so, germane areas of success and failure throughout a students academic tenure were identified, informing educators about appropriate implementation strategies for education programs and interventions that could increase the likelihood of high school graduation.


Thank You! Dropouts

Any Questions ?