Date of Award

8-10-2018

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EDD)

Degree Program

Educational Leadership

Department

College of Education

First Advisor

Suzanne King

Second Advisor

James W. Guthrie

Third Advisor

Nancy Kline

Abstract

The development of policies ensuring regular examination of American students has been one approach to the mandate of accountability within the United States. While the face of assessment in education and the subsequent policies continue to evolve, the method to which classrooms approach preparing students for these examinations does so as well, though not in concert. Although some research has attempted to connect the two, particularly in the fields of mathematics and reading, a clear link between pedagogy in science classrooms and student achievement on standardized exams has not yet been established. Using qualitative and quantitative data gathered through surveys and mining of historical public domains, the researcher has attempted to determine if an existing correlation between the predominant pedagogy of middle schools in a large, urban district in South Florida and achievement of students on the Florida Grade Eight Statewide Science Assessment can be substantiated. Significant differences were identified with regard to student achievement on this assessment and whole-class teacher demonstrations, students working in collaborative groups, and formative assessment use in the classroom, as well as with respect to the school-wide category of pedagogy and the school’s socioeconomic label. The impact of such information could be widespread, allowing for the reformation of pedagogy in science classrooms, professional development for current educators, and educator training provided at the collegiate level as well as policy maintenance and development.

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