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Anita Welch, Claudette Peterson, Chris Ray, North Dakota State University; PowerPoint Presentation
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Anita Welch, Claudette Peterson, Chris Ray, North Dakota State University;

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  1. The Technology-Rich Outcomes-Focused Learning Environment Inventory (TROFLEI): A Cross-Cultural Validation Project Overview Overview: This project was conducted by researchers from the School of Education at NDSU and Marmara University in Istanbul, Turkey, over an eighteen month period. This collaboration focuses on factors relating to secondary education within the US and Turkey. The current study is the first of several ongoing projects which center around secondary education and assessment in the two countries. Background:Studies exploring the relationship between students’ achievement and the quality of the classroom learning environments have shown that there is a strong relationship between these two concepts. Learning environment instruments are constantly being revised and updated, including for use in different cultures, which requires continued validation efforts. Purpose: The purpose of this study was to establish cross-cultural reliability and validity of the Technology-Rich Outcomes-Focused Learning Environment Inventory (TROFLEI) in both Turkey and the United States. Sample: Approximately 980 students attending grades 9-12 in Turkey and 130 students attending grades 9-12 in the United States participated in the study. Design and Methods: Scale reliability analyses and confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) were performed separately for Turkish and U.S. participants for both actual and preferred responses to each scale to confirm the structure of the TROFLEI across these two distinct samples. • Results and Conclusions • Results: Cronbach’s alpha reliability coefficients, ranging from α = .820 to .931 for Turkish participants and from α = .778 to .939 for U.S. participants, indicated that all scales have satisfactory internal consistency for both samples. Additionally, confirmatory factor analyses also resulted in evidence of adequate model fit across both samples for both actual and preferred responses, with the root mean square error of approximation (RMSEA) ranging from 0.052 to 0.057 and the comparative fit index (CFI) ranging from 0.920 to 0.982. • Conclusions: This study provides initial evidence that the TROFLEI is valid for use in both the Turkish and U.S. high school populations (grades 9-12). However, the psychometric properties should be examined further with different populations, such as middle school (grades 6-8). Translation Process Internal Consistency Reliability and Scale Statistics The RMSEA and CFI statistics are the same for both models. According to Kline (2005), model modifications can be made on theoretical grounds even if there is no statistical difference between the models. In this case, we compared the chi square statistic for both models, and determined there is a significant difference, and specifically that the revised model with 9 first-order factors is a better overall fit [Chi-Square (Difference) = 1727.51, p <.001]. Revised Model Comparisons: Goodness of Fit Statistics It is generally accepted that RSMEA should be below .05 and that CFI be above .90 (Schumacker & Lomax, 2010; Byrne, 1998; Kelloway, 1998). The statistics shown above indicate a good fit to the data and confirm the 10-scale structure of the TROFLEI in both countries for both the actual and preferred versions of the instrument. Multi-Sample Model Comparison: Goodness of Fit Statistics Note: Student Cohesiveness (SC), Teacher Support (TS), Involvement (IN), Task Orientation (TO), Investigation (IV), Cooperation (CO), Equity (EQ), Differentiation (DI), Computer Usage (CU), Young Adult Ethos (YA) Anita Welch, Claudette Peterson, Chris Ray, North Dakota State University; Mustafa Cakir, Marmara University, Turkey Instrumentation: TOSRA The Test of Science-Related Attitude (TOSRA) was used to assess students’ attitudes toward science (Fraser, 1981). The TOSRA is designed to measure seven distinct science related attitudes among secondary school students: Social Implications of Science, Normality of Scientists, Attitude toward Scientific Inquiry, Adoption of Scientific Attitudes, Enjoyment of Science Lessons, Leisure Interest in Science, and Career Interest in Science (Fraser, 1981). The TOSRA is designed to be used by educators and researchers to monitor student progress towards achieving attitudinal aims (Fraser, 1981). In his handbook for TORSA, Fraser states “TORSA is likely to be most useful for examining the performance of groups or classes of students” (Frasier, 1981, p. 1). Each scale on TOSRA contains ten items, while the total instrument contains 70 items. A sample of questions from the TOSRA in listed in the Appendix. The response scale is a five point Likert scale with responses ranging from Strongly Agree (1) to Strongly Disagree (5). Within each scale, five are positive items and five are negative, with respect to their position on science and science related issues. Discussion The study has important implications for the field of science education. The results imply that programs that engage students in authentic scientific problems can significantly improve students’ attitudes and views of science. The FIRST program appears to be helping students value science and technology. Positive views toward science are often viewed as an important correlate to achievement in science, and as a result, programs like FIRST that can help improve students’ attitudes and interest in science may be an important part of helping students achieve in science. The positive attitudes and interest may also lead to future careers in science related fields, but more research will be needed to better understand the long term impact of the program such as this on students.