Date of Award

Spring 5-9-2015

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)

Department

Educational Policy Studies

First Advisor

Hayward Richardson

Second Advisor

Janice Fournillier

Third Advisor

Sally Krisel

Abstract

The purpose of this quantitative study was to determine the effectiveness of professional learning with teachers on the Core Six Essential Strategies (CSES) within a gifted multicultural context. Criterion sampling was employed to identify the participants for the study. All participants were teachers of gifted and talented students within a large southeastern urban district. All participants met the gifted endorsement state credentialing criteria. A pre-experimental, single-group pretest-posttest design was constructed. Instruments employed in the study were the Association of Supervision and Curriculum Development’s Core Six Pre-Post Assessment (ASCD, 2012) and a modified participant reaction questionnaire. Four research questions were explored in the study. Guskey and Spark’s Model of Relationship between Professional Development and Improvements in Student Learning was the research paradigm employed to analyze the results of the study.

A dependent samples t-test was used to find if there was a significant difference between the pre and posttest means of teacher knowledge on the Core Six Essential Strategies. To explore implementation, a dependent samples t-test was used to find if there was a significant difference between the index of intended frequency of use and the actual use of strategies. Descriptive statistics including the count and mean were examined to show which aspects of the professional learning have most value. Descriptive statistics indicating the count, mean, and variance were used to examine to what extent the professional learning prepared teachers to instruct within a multicultural gifted urban context.

Findings indicated a significant difference in knowledge of the CSES; the participants intended to implement the strategies significantly more than they did; and several aspects of the professional learning were valuable and prepared them to teach in a multicultural gifted urban context. In summary, the research was significant to the field of gifted education because the results will inform future professional learning decisions, curriculum writing, and program implementation designed to improve student learning outcomes.

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