• Factors That Promote/Inhibit Teaching Gifted Students in a Regular Class: Results from a Professional Development Program for Chemistry Teachers

      Naama Benny; Ron Blonder (Hindawi Limited, 2016-01-01)
      The current study aims at better understanding the factors that promote and hinder chemistry teachers in teaching a gifted student in their regular chemistry class. In addition, it provides evidence of ways that teachers perceive a professional development course dealing with a gifted student in a mixed-abilities science classroom. Eighty-four photonarratives were collected from 14 chemistry teachers that participated in the course about teaching a gifted student in a regular classroom (41 promoting, 43 hindering factors). Factors that concern chemistry education specifically as well as general practices were raised by the teachers. The teachers were asked to “take a picture” (namely, of an external object or person); they considered most of the factors to be internal factors that are dependent on themselves and therefore concluded that they have the power to influence them. The internal factors can be addressed in the PD course; however the external factors should be managed by the school principal and district educational administration.
    • Family Care, Social Services, and Living Arrangements Factors Influencing Psychosocial Well-Being of Elderly from Selected Households in Ibadan, Nigeria

      D. Oladeji (Hindawi Limited, 2011-01-01)
      This study examined family care, social services, and living arrangements factors influencing the psychosocial well-being of the elderly from selected households in Ibadan, Nigeria. The participants for the study consisted of 280 elderly persons randomly drawn from selected households in five local government areas of Ibadan metropolis. A descriptive survey design was employed in collecting the data from the respondents. Data collected were analyzed using chi-square (2) statistics. Results obtained indicated that significant relationships existed between family care (2=127.9, df = 12, <.05), social services (2=191.9, df = 12, <.05), and living arrangements (2=14.4, df = 6, <.05) and psychosocial well-being of elderly. The results implicate the need for the framework on the complex system of the elderly services. These areas of service include economic services, attitudes toward aging, roles played by the elderly, and health care services.
    • Family Factors Associated with Consumption of Spirits: A Comparative Gender-Based Study of Ugandan Students in Public Secondary Schools

      Aloysius Rukundo; David Santson Ayebare; Grace Kibanja; Karl Steffens (Hindawi Limited, 2020-01-01)
      This study aims at investigating family factors associated with consumption of spirits across gender of students in public secondary schools in Uganda. A cross-sectional survey using self-administered questionnaires was used to collect data on consumption of sprits in the past 12 months prior to the study. Of the 1,591 students recruited, the overall prevalence of consumption of spirits was found to be 17.3% (n = 275) with higher consumption of spirits among males (20.3%). Results indicate that unemployed heads of families (aOR = 2.5, 95% CI: 1.30–4.76, p<0.01), fairly religious (aOR = 2.7, 95% CI: 1.08–6.49, p<0.05), and not religious families (aOR = 2.9, 95% CI: 1.17–7.11, p<0.05) were factors associated with consumption of spirits. Early prevention of consumption of spirits could be focused on male students, fathers’ occupation, and family religiosity. In addition, school administrators and authorities could consider these factors during routine school inspections to guard discipline among students in Uganda.
    • Flipping a Dental Anatomy Course: A Retrospective Study Over Four Years

      Mahmoud M. Bakr; Ward L. Massey; Helen M. Massa (Hindawi Limited, 2016-01-01)
      Flipped classrooms have been successfully used to increase student engagement and support student learning in a range of educational fields, including health education. These advantages for student learning supported implementation of the flipped classroom in introductory sciences and preclinical courses in dental education. We report on a 4-year retrospective study which compared two methods of delivery of a first-year dental anatomy course. The first method used the traditional method, consisting of face to face contact teaching hours, which was compared to a partial flipped classroom, where lecture contact was maintained but practical classes were flipped. A series of online videos demonstrating different practical tasks such as wax carving and tooth identification. An online digital library and online quizzes for self-reflected learning were developed and trialled. Students’ Evaluations of Course (SEC) and students’ overall performance in practical and theoretical assessments were used to evaluate the impact on student engagement and success, respectively, after implementation of the modified course offerings. This study evidences the success of the transition to a partially flipped course design. Careful design and consideration of implementation of the flipped classroom method in dental education are recommended to ensure that there is reliable availability of online resources and dedicated teaching staff for construction of resources and delivery of relevant in-class activities.
    • Fostering Achievement of Low-, Average-, and High-Achievers Students in Biology through Structured Cooperative Learning (STAD Method)

      Sangeeta Yaduvanshi; Sunita Singh (Hindawi Limited, 2019-01-01)
      Cooperative learning is one among the most innovative and popular strategies of learning for present century students. It is theoretically grounded and extensively researched teaching-learning practice which is believed to foster the achievement of all types of students. Since cooperative learning is in the nascent stage in India and it is not much trendy method of teaching, the investigator carried out the present study. The present study is an experimental investigation that explores the impact of the structured cooperative learning strategy (STAD method) on the achievement of low-achievers, average-achievers, and high-achievers students in biology at the secondary level. The pretest and posttest experimental design was used, and control and experimental groups are equated on the basis of pretest scores. The sample consisted a total of 63 students of ninth class students from Varanasi city. Data were collected and analyzed with t-test, and analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) was performed to test the hypotheses at 0.05 levels of significance with the use of the biology achievement test (BAT). The results revealed that students taught by the cooperative learning strategy perform better on the BAT at three levels of the cognitive domain of knowledge, understanding, and applying, than those taught using the conventional method of instruction. The study revealed that low-achievers, average-achievers, and high-achievers students of the experimental group outperform the control group. So, it can be concluded from this study that the STAD method of structured cooperative learning fosters the achievement of low-, average-, and high-achievers students in Indian context. It was therefore recommended that teachers should be encouraged to use the cooperative instructional strategy to teach biology and other subjects in secondary schools to facilitate learning of higher levels of cognitive domains to meet challenges of the twenty-first century.
    • Fostering Learners’ Perceived Presence and High-Level Learning Outcomes in Online Learning Environments

      Abbas Taghizade; Javad Hatami; Omid Noroozi; Mohammadreza Farrokhnia; Alireza Hassanzadeh (Hindawi Limited, 2020-01-01)
      This study investigated the effects of using a teaching model enriched with presence on learners’ perceived presence and high-level learning outcomes in online learning environments. The study was conducted in an Iranian state university with 52 higher education students majoring in electronic IT management who were randomly divided into experimental or control group conditions. The research tools included a rubric to measure learner’s perceived presence and the researcher-made survey to measure learner’s high-level learning outcomes. The results showed that the frequency of the produced semantic units in different types of presence (cognitive, social, and teaching presence) was significantly higher for students in the experimental condition than those in the control group condition. In addition, students in the experimental condition showed more progression in the posttest in terms of their high-level learning outcomes as compared to the students in the control group condition.
    • Free Education in Rwanda: Just One Step towards Reducing Gender and Sibling Inequalities

      Joseph Nkurunziza; Annelet Broekhuis; Pieter Hooimeijer (Hindawi Limited, 2012-01-01)
      In 2003, Rwanda introduced free education as part of government policy to improve school enrolment in general and the attendance of deprived children in particular. However, in addition to school fees, other factors hamper school careers of children. Shifts in attendance were analysed using binary logistic regression on data from the 2000 and 2005 Integrated Household Living Conditions Surveys. The results show that although the policy has been very successful, the objective has not been achieved. We find a strong effect of the sibling position of the child in the household and its relation to the household head. Substantial numbers of orphans/foster children in Rwanda do not profit from the free education policy and part of the children leave before completing school, in particular girls. Free education is only one step towards a more equitable distribution of educational opportunities.
    • Hands-On Math and Art Exhibition Promoting Science Attitudes and Educational Plans

      Helena Thuneberg; Hannu Salmi; Kristof Fenyvesi (Hindawi Limited, 2017-01-01)
      The current science, technology, engineering, art, math education (STEAM) approach emphasizes integration of abstract science and mathematical ideas for concrete solutions by art. The main aim was to find out how experience of learning mathematics differed between the contexts of school and an informal Math and Art Exhibition. The study participants (N=256) were 12-13 years old from Finland. Several valid questionnaires and tests were applied (e.g., SRQ-A, RAVEN) in pre- and postdesign showing a good reliability. The results based on General Linear Modeling and Structural Equation Path Modeling underline the motivational effects. The experience of the effectiveness of hands-on learning at school and at the exhibition was not consistent across the subgroups. The lowest achieving group appreciated the exhibition alternative for math learning compared to learning math at school. The boys considered the exhibition to be more useful than the girls as it fostered their science and technology attitudes. However, for the girls, the attractiveness of the exhibition, the experienced situation motivation, was much more strongly connected to the attitudes on science and technology and the worthiness of mathematics. Interestingly, the pupils experienced that even this short informal learning intervention affected their science and technology attitudes and educational plans.
    • How Do School Children and Adolescents Perceive the Nature of Talent Development? A Case Study from Finland

      Elina Kuusisto; Sonja Laine; KIRSI TIRRI (Hindawi Limited, 2017-01-01)
      This article examines how school children and adolescents (N=607) perceive the nature of talent development. More particularly it is investigated whether students perceive intelligence and giftedness as developing or as inherent and how students’ perspectives on talent development are related to their learning outcomes. Participants were students in elementary (n=200), lower secondary (n=256), and upper secondary school (n=151). The results showed that students perceived the nature of intelligence as more malleable than giftedness. Along with this domain-specific variance, there were also age and gender related differences in students’ perceptions. By examining the relation between implicit beliefs and students’ academic achievements, it was found that growth-oriented views about intelligence, but fixed ideas about giftedness, indicated higher math grades. The results suggest that the relationship between implicit beliefs and academic outcomes might not be as straightforward as previous studies have suggested.
    • How Environmental Attitudes Interact with Cognitive Learning in a Science Lesson Module

      Maximiliane F. Schumm; Franz X. Bogner (Hindawi Limited, 2016-01-01)
      As cognitive knowledge plays a major role in supporting proenvironmental behavior, identification of individual aspects related to knowledge acquisition is essential. Our study monitored knowledge levels before and after a science-based lesson set in relation to self-reported behavior and attitudinal preferences (attitudes towards environmental Preservation and Utilization) of 190 students (Mage  ± SD: 15.96 ± 0.55; 51.1% female). A knowledge questionnaire was completed once before and twice after participation. Additionally, (i) the 2-MEV (two Major Environmental Values) and (ii) the GEB (General Ecological Behavior) were applied. Girls showed higher Preservation but lower Utilization attitudes than boys did. Learning success was positively related to Preservation preferences (for girls) as well as to behavior-based scores (for girls and boys). For boys, high preferences in Utilization were negatively correlated with learning achievement.
    • How Teachers Understand and Use Power in Alternative Assessment

      Kelvin H. K. Tan (Hindawi Limited, 2012-01-01)
      “Alternative assessment” is an increasingly common and popular discourse in education. The potential benefit of alternative assessment practices is premised on significant changes in assessment practices. However, assessment practices embody power relations between institutions, teachers and students, and these power relationships determine the possibility and the extent of actual changes in assessment practices. Labelling a practice as “alternative assessment does not guarantee meaningful departure from existing practice. Recent research has warned that assessment practices in education cannot be presumed to empower students in ways that enhance their learning. This is partly due to a tendency to speak of power in assessment in undefined terms. Hence, it would be useful to identify the types of power present in assessment practices and the contexts which give rise to them. This paper seeks to examine power in the context of different ways that alternative assessment is practiced and understood by teachers. Research on teachers’ conceptions of alternative assessment is presented, and each of the conceptions is then analysed for insights into teachers’ meanings and practices of power. In particular, instances of sovereign, epistemological and disciplinary power in alternative assessment are identified to illuminate new ways of understanding and using alternative assessment.
    • How to Support Children with Mathematical Learning Disabilities Learning to Play an Instrument?

      Annemie Desoete (Hindawi Limited, 2012-01-01)
      In this study, children with a mathematical learning disability (=14) and age-matched peers without learning disabilities (=14) as well as their parents and teachers were interviewed on how they experienced playing an instrument (guitar, drum, flute, violin, trombone, horn, and piano) and on what helped them using a qualitative interactive interview with a flexible agenda to discover the interviewee’s own framework of meanings. Thematic analyses mentioned intrinsic motivation, extrinsic motivation, and self-efficacy as important. Some children with MLD were found to have a real musical talent and a very good musical ear and memory for sounds. However, all children with MLD seemed more dependent on the aid of parents, sibling, peers, and teachers. They had to study harder and needed more time to study, more practice, and a more structured approach.
    • ICT Adoption Impact on Students’ Academic Performance: Evidence from Saudi Universities

      Wael Sh. Basri; Jehan A. Alandejani; Feras M. Almadani (Hindawi Limited, 2018-01-01)
      This study investigates and explores the adoption of information communication technology by the universities and the impact it makes on the university students’ academic performance. The study also examines the moderators’ effect of gender, GPA, and student majors on the relationship between ICT and academic achievement. By using a quantitative research approach and a sample size of 1000 students, data were collected about the ICT adoption in universities and the relative performance of students belonging to four Saudi universities. Structure equation modelling was chosen to determine the validity of the research model. The Analysis of Moment Structures (AMOS), specially used for structural equation modelling and path analysis, was used as the research tool. The findings reveal that there exists a relationship between ICT adoption and academic performance in a conservative environment. An additional finding also stated that ICT adoption resulted in the improvement of the performance of female students more than the male. However, students’ IT major was found to be making no impact on students’ academic achievement. A discussion of findings, limitations, and suggestions for future research has been provided in the study. Finally, it also provides implications of the current study to the existing knowledge.
    • Identification of Hispanic English Language Learners in Special Education

      Gail I. Becker; Aaron R. Deris (Hindawi Limited, 2019-01-01)
      Overrepresentation of English language learners (ELLs) in special education is a current problem. Urban school professionals indicated that inappropriate placement is linked to a multiplicity of factors. Scarce data exist regarding the relationship between school professional efficacy beliefs, the availability of bilingual programs and personnel for ELLs, and successful academic outcomes. School employees are still confused about the proper placement of English language learners (ELLs). What is enough time to acquire a second language and learn with success? Without other substantial program choices, children are referred to special education. Furthermore, many students in need of special education may be overlooked and remain in ESL programs for their entire school career. The aim of this study was to identify the role staff member’s efficacy plays in the proper determination of an ELL with a language difference or disability. Child study team (CST) members (n=14) working with a large Hispanic ELL population participated in semistructured interviews to determine the role their efficacy beliefs exert during assessment of linguistically diverse students. Overwhelmingly, staff members noted that they did not feel competent when making decisions regarding ELLs. Therefore, staff members placed the children into special education each time. The practice implications come from the prominent themes that include significant in-district professional development on second language acquisition, facilitation of second language through use of first language through bilingual staff, and committed bilingual programs to meet ELL needs. Additionally, universities must provide coursework that furthers second language acquisition theories and strategies for all teacher candidate programs.
    • Identification of the Most Commonly Used Laboratory Techniques in Regenerative Medicine: A Roadmap for Developing a Competency Based Education Curriculum

      Stephen L. Rego; Cheryl Burrell; Melissa Nielsen; Tatjana Grove; Amritha Kidiyoor; Vatashea Flournoy; Cheri Silverman; Shawn Hill; Grady Beard; Dwaine Davis (Hindawi Limited, 2016-01-01)
      Here, we are proposing and testing the use of literature reviews as a method to identify essential competencies for specific fields. This has implications in how educators develop and structure both traditional and competency based curricula. Our focus will be on utilizing this method to identify the most relevant and commonly used techniques in the field of regenerative medicine. This publication review method may be used to develop competency based education (CBE) programs that focus on commonly utilized skills. CBE is an emerging trend in higher education that will greatly enhance student learning experiences. CBE works by providing students with field specific skills and knowledge; thus, it is imperative for educators to identify the most essential competencies in a given field. Therefore, we reason that a literature review of the techniques performed in studies published in prevalent peer reviewed journals for a given field offers an ideal method to identify and rank competencies that should be delivered to students by a respective curriculum. Here, we reviewed recent articles published on topics in the field of regenerative medicine as a proof of concept for the use of literature reviews as a guide for the development of a regenerative medicine CBE curriculum.
    • Impact of a Social Constructivist Instructional Strategy on Performance in Algebra with a Focus on Secondary School Students

      Umar A. Ginga; Yusuf F. Zakariya (Hindawi Limited, 2020-01-01)
      There have been perennial concerns on the low academic performance of students among researchers and other education stakeholders. Innovative teaching strategies have, therefore, gained prominence in the field of mathematics education. The purpose of this study is to investigate the impact of a social constructivist instructional strategy on students’ performance in algebra. The present study is quasi-experimental, and its type is a posttest control group involving 154 secondary school students that are randomly selected across four intact classes. The random selection of students to treatment and control controls is assumed to improve the validity of the results. Two research questions are raised, and two null hypotheses are formulated and tested at p≤0.05 level of significance. One research instrument, algebra performance test (APT), was developed, pilot-tested (test-retest reliability coefficient of 0.897), and used to measure students’ performance in both treatment and control groups. The data are analyzed using independent sample t-tests. The findings indicate that there are significant differences in the mean performance scores between experimental (mean = 16.05, SD = 2.74) and control (mean = 11.46, SD = 2.49) groups, t(152) = 10.83, p<0.05. These findings may be interpreted to be evidence of the effectiveness of the social constructivist instructional strategy in improving performance in algebra better than the conventional teaching method. Also, a significant difference exists between the mean performance scores of males (mean = 17.83, SD = 2.82) and females (mean = 14.72, SD = 1.77) in the experimental group (t(80) = 6.11, p<0.05). Thus, the effect of the social constructivist instructional strategy on students’ performance in algebra is gender-sensitive. Based on these findings, some recommendations are made to students, teachers, parents, administrators, and other stakeholders.
    • Impact of Cooperative Learning Approaches on Students’ Academic Achievement and Laboratory Proficiency in Biology Subject in Selected Rural Schools, Ethiopia

      Eyayu Molla; Meseret Muche (Hindawi Limited, 2018-01-01)
      The main objective of this study was to evaluate the impact of cooperative learning methods on students’ academic achievement and laboratory proficiency in biology subject. Quasi-experimental control group interrupted time series design was employed. Data pertaining to these variables were collected from 369 students and 18 biology teachers in three schools. A series of biological tests and semistructured questionnaire were used to collect data. Multivariate analysis (two-way ANOVA) was used to analyze the test scores exposed by teaching methods, and semistructured questionnaire was administered to comprehend factors that hamper the successive execution of CL. Hence, multivariate analysis revealed that there was no significant (P>0.05) difference in the pretest score of the learner academic performance; however, there were significant differences (P<0.01) in the posttest results by teaching methods, but not by schools. Correspondingly, there were significant differences in the pretest P<0.05 and posttest (P<0.01) results of the students’ laboratory proficiency by teaching methods. The results exemplify that there was significant learning gain obtained via CLAD followed by cooperative discussion group (CDG). The result from the questionnaire survey showed that the number of students, lack of laboratory equipment, and so on hamper consecutive execution of CL.
    • Implementation of Cooperative Learning in Science: A Developmental-cum-Experimental Study

      Sonam Mehta; A. K. Kulshrestha (Hindawi Limited, 2014-01-01)
      This research paper is designed to set forth ideas on how to implement cooperative learning and examine its effect on social and cooperative skills while imparting science education at the Secondary Level. The strategy used is Jigsaw Technique making heterogeneous groups based on intelligence and gender. Instructional material and observation schedule were constructed by researchers. The cooperative skills of the students were found improving during the experimental period, and they developed positive interdependence, face-to-face interaction skills, and feeling of individual accountability, as compared by Mann Whitney U test. The students developed the feeling of working in a group in the classroom of science, and it also improved performance, as the discussion always leads to a considerable degree of clarity of concepts.
    • Improving Study Skills by Combining a Study Skill Module and Repeated Reflection Seminars

      Björn Hedin; Viggo Kann (Hindawi Limited, 2019-01-01)
      If students have a broad spectrum of study skills, learning will likely be positively affected, since they can adapt the way they learn in different situations. Such study skills can be learned in, for example, learning-to-learn courses. Several studies of such courses have been done over the years, but few of these have been carried out in longitudinal naturalistic settings, where the effect has been evaluated over several years in nonexperimental settings. In this paper, we present a novel approach for learning study skills, as a part of a course running over three years. The course starts with a learning-to-learn module, followed by 11 follow-ups that include, among other things, peer discussions about learning strategies with the aim of promoting self-regulated learning. This evaluation shows which study skills the students were most interested in trying, how successful they were in continuing to use the study skills, and which effects the students believed the study skills had after trying them. No significant change was found in how satisfied the students were with their overall study technique immediately after the initial module, but in the long term, 78% of the students believed the course had promoted their ability to analyze and adapt their study habits. We conclude that our approach could be a useful way to get the students to improve their repertoire and use of study skills, and we believe that the students also will improve general self-regulated learning skills.
    • In Search of Alignment: A Review of Impact Studies in Entrepreneurship Education

      Uladzimir Kamovich; Lene Foss (Hindawi Limited, 2017-01-01)
      This study uses the concept of alignment as a framework to examine empirical research on the impact of entrepreneurship education interventions on students. Alignment assumes that effective instruction requires congruence between three instructional components: intended outcomes, instructional processes, and assessment criteria. Given the extant diversity and complexity of entrepreneurship education impact, scholars have not been able to explain how teaching approaches and methods are being adjusted to the variety of expected outcomes. In order to address this gap, we critically reviewed the published empirical studies on entrepreneurship education impact in 20 journals over a 15-year period (2000–2015). We found 16 empirical studies that met our inclusion criteria. Our findings revealed that teaching objectives, teaching methods, and teaching content receive scant attention from researchers. This study will be of value to scholars researching the impact of heterogeneous entrepreneurship education practices and approaches on individuals. Our analytical framework could contribute to less contradictory findings of entrepreneurship education impact studies. We also identify research limitations and suggest avenues for future research.