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Exploring Relationships Among Teacher’s Schema of Effective Practice, Enacted Practice, & Student Learning. A Study of Text-Based Writing Tasks i n Reading Instruction. Elaine Wang University of Pittsburgh Learning Sciences & Policy Ph.D. Program Milestone Two Presentation
Exploring Relationships Among Teacher’s Schema of Effective Practice, Enacted Practice, & Student Learning A Study of Text-Based Writing Tasks in Reading Instruction Elaine Wang University of Pittsburgh Learning Sciences & Policy Ph.D. Program Milestone Two Presentation August 23, 2012
Defining the Issue curricula Schemas for teaching & learning = motives or goals Perceived Constraints policy Enacted Practice Student Learning Image from http://reversethinking.typepad.com/weblog/brain/
Purpose of Study • This study aimed to investigate and generate hypotheses about the relationships among teachers’ schema of effective practice, their enacted practice, and student learning, specifically around text-based writing tasks in reading instruction at the fourth grade. • Some questions the resulting hypotheses might address: • Do particular teacher schemas seem associated with particular student learning? • Which factors might moderate the relationship between teachers’ schema of effective practice and enacted practice? • Which elements of schema of effective practice might be more susceptible to constraints in enacted practice? • What might (mis)alignment between teacher’s schema and enacted practice mean for student learning?
Significance of Study • Better understanding of the relationship between teachers’ schema of effective practice and enacted practice could improve student learning • Identification of constraints that hinder teachers from enacting ideal instruction could lead to interventions or PD that explicitly address these concerns and perceptions • Recognizing role of teachers’ schema has implications for supporting instruction aligned with approach advocated by standards and frameworks
Schema Theory • Schemas help individuals understand the world by organizing one’s assumptions or accumulated knowledge into distinct and strongly interconnected patterns that are later accessed (Anderson, 1977; Bartlett, 1932; Piaget, 1926). • Schemas have the potential to instigate action; they can function as motives or goals (d’Andrade, 1992). • Areas of theoretical work on teaching reflecting this function of schemas: • Mathematics teaching and learning (Ernest, 1988) • Teacher decision-making framework (Bishop & Whitfield 1972) • Policy implementation research (Coburn, 2004; Spillane, Reiser, & Reimer, 2002)
Research on & Frameworks for Examining Writing Tasks • Examination of writing task includes characterizing cognitive demand of prompt, rigor of evaluation criteria, accepted student responses (Doyle, 1983; Matsumura, 2003), and teacher feedback (Hattie & Gan, 2011; Hattie & Timperley, 2007) Prompt Feedback Instruction Writing Task Evaluation Criteria Student Responses
Characterizing Cognitive Demand of Tasks • Ambiguity and risk (Doyle, 1983;Doyle & Carter, 1984) • Cognitive rigor (Matsumura et al.,2003) • Taxonomy of Skills for Reading and Interpreting Fiction (Hillocks& Ludlow, 1984) • Bloom’s Taxonomy Revised (Anderson & Krathwohl, 2011) • Depth of Knowledge (Webb, 2002)
Research Design,Context & Participants • Qualitative exploratory comparative case study (Yin, 1994); theory-building case study (Einsenhardt, 1989) • Three 4th grade language arts teachers from three schools in a public district in mid-Atlantic state • Second-year participants in larger project • Sample representative of larger group of 59 teachers
Data Collection - RTA (class set & focal responses) • What ought to be the role or purpose of text-based writing tasks? • What should an effective text-based writing task look like? • Plus artifact-based q’s • Cover sheet • Task • Assessment scheme • 4 pieces of graded student work (2 med., 2 high) • “Overall, how do you think Otis feels about his decision to hire the Tomcat? Explain…using 3-4 examples” (Correnti et al., 2012)
Qualitative Data Analysis Transcription Multiple re-readings, analytic memos, iterative inductive coding, constant comparative method Descriptive case study write-ups Cross-case comparisons with matrix displays (Eisenhardt, 1989; Glaser & Strauss, 1967; Miles & Huberman, 1994)
Enacted Practice:Sample Category Codes - cognitive demand - skill - form of task - focal literary element - type of writing - required use of text - amount- nature- level - pre-writinginstructional activities Prompt Feedback Instruction Writing Task Evaluation Criteria Student Responses - quality of high vs. medium - variation - form of scheme- criteria- levels
Perceived Constraints: Sample Categories & Codes (Buechler, 1991; Duffy & Roebler, 1986)
Student Learning OutcomeSample Categories • Understanding of nuance of text • Cognitive level at which students approach task • Extent to which prompt is addressed • Claims made • Reasons given in support of claims • Relevance and nature of textual evidence • Explanation of inferences
Perceived Constraints ARLENE CHRIS. CHRIS. ARLENE Arlene Julie JULIE Julie Arlene CHRIS. Julie Julie
Emergent Hypotheses of Relationships Among Constructs • Enacted practice at least partially aligns with or follows from schema of effective practice. • Enacted practice significantly influences student learning. • Perception of high-level policy-oriented constraints is associated with greater inconsistencies between schema of effective instruction and enacted instruction. • The content and form of the prompt (along with the feedback process) are most susceptible to perceived constraints.
…Emergent Hypotheses of Relationships Among Constructs • Coherence among elements of the schema is associated with stronger practice and student outcome. • Prioritizing tasks requiring analysis or interpretation of text is associated with better student outcome. • A schema of effective instruction (and enacted practice) that focuses on providing extensive, explicit guidance on the given prompt hinders students’ development of higher-level thinking skills.
Methodological Limitations • Small sample size • Inter-rater agreement pending • Focus on text-based writing tasks
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Student Responses Prompt Writing Task Evaluation Criteria Instruction
- cognitive demand- skill - form of task - focal literary element - type of writing - required use of text - quality of high vs. medium - variation Student Responses Prompt Writing Task Evaluation Criteria Instruction - pre-writinginstructional activities - criteria- levels