• The impact of integrated curriculum on students' comprehension of expository texts.

      Rockwood, Amanda (2015)
      The increasing curricular demand on K-12 students to comprehend expository texts has teachers looking for ways to improve comprehension. An integrated curriculum offers the promise of providing students with a curriculum connected across disciplines and enabling students to increase their comprehension of expository texts. To explore that promise, the research question asked was, what is the impact of an integrated curriculum on K-12 students’ comprehension of expository texts in the content areas? The most appropriate way to answer that question was with a research synthesis. The exhaustive literature review and subsequent research synthesis for this study produced four findings. The first is that a key to comprehension of expository texts at the early elementary grade levels appears to be students’ ability to make personal connections with the material being read across an integrated curriculum; the second finding is that students’ comprehension in the upper elementary to high school grade levels can be significantly impacted by activating prior knowledge for an integrated curriculum. The third finding is that when the integrated curriculum includes hands on, interactive practices for students in grades one through six, the impact on student learning behavior and academic performance, including some literacy performance, is positive. The fourth finding appears to be that integrating literacy with nearly any other subject area may produce a positive impact on student academic performance from grades three to eight. These findings then form the basis of professional development for teachers that takes the form of an information-bearing Google Site.
    • The Impact of Middle School Teachers' Personal Reading Habits on Their Literacy Instruction

      Ruber, Jessica (State University of New York at Fredonia, 2019-05)
      All educators, regardless of subject or grade level taught, are expected to incorporate literacy best practices into their classroom (Huang, 2017). They are also expected to inspire their students to be lifelong readers which can be problematic when teachers do not have positive personal reading habits (Nathanson, et al., 2008). Based on this understanding, this empirical study sought to answer the question: what is the impact of core middle school teachers’ personal reading habits on their classroom literacy practices? Participants consisted of nine middle school teachers. The study used an online survey tool and resulted in three main findings. First, there was no clear connection between the participant’s personal reading habits and their use of literacy best practices in the classroom. Second, the participants mainly valued reading but were not frequent readers themselves. Third, within the qualitative data, there was no connection between the participant’s reading habits and their use of best practices as they value a variety of best practices with an emphasis on more “non-social” strategies. In conclusion, the lack of reading habits of the middle school teachers surveyed did not impact their use of literacy best practices in the classroom.
    • Impact of music on student achievement.

      Szentgyorgyi, Emily A. (2015)
      This study compares the impacts of playing classical and pop music as background music on student achievement in reading. The study took place over a period of four weeks in one elementary classroom, and was conducted in an A-B-A-B Single Subject Design. The target population was 17 students in a general education, 5th grade classroom in a public elementary school within a rural school district. The findings suggested that playing pop music improved student scores more than playing classical music did.
    • The impact of peer tutoring strategies on student learning in social studies.

      Costantini, Scott T. (2015)
      This study investigated how Class Wide Peer tutoring (CWPT) impacted student knowledge and students’ ability to better relate course material to historical themes in an 8th grade social studies classroom. Located in an urban school in Western New York, the classroom was composed of 18 students, eight males and ten females. The mixed method study sought to answer the following central research questions: What effect does CWPT have on students’ academic performance in social studies measured by weekly vocabulary quizzes? What effect does CWPT have on students’ ability to link content to one another using a common theme? Is there a difference in students’ test scores when CWPT is combined with a group oriented motivator compared to a team oriented motivator? What are student’s perceptions of the effectiveness of CWPT and how do these perceptions relate to the finding of the study? Using a mixed method single baseline design, weekly quizzes were given at the end of each intervention for seven weeks. Findings demonstrated that CWPT had a positive impact on student’s content knowledge and on a student’s ability to link course content to historical themes. CWPT was also found to be positively correlated with the academic performance of the 8th grade student’s social studies measured by the weekly quizzes. Findings concluded that there was no statistically significant difference between the group oriented motivators and the team oriented motivators.. The student’s response on a Likert scale-based survey showed that the majority of students believed they were learning more because of CWPT, which is consistent with the data collected during the interventions.
    • The impact of personal loss on Music Therapists' ability to work with clients.

      Younis, Ashley Marie (2013-07-10)
      Loss and grief are common experiences across age, gender, race, religion, socioeconomic status, sexual orientation, and occupation. However, there is a paucity of research on how loss impacts music therapists’ clinical work. The purpose of this descriptive study was to explore the influence of personal losses on music therapists’ clinical work. Ninety-five music therapists participated in an internet survey via SurveyMonkey®, and answered questions regarding (a) the impact loss has had on their work with clients, (b) self-care techniques they use to work through these losses, and (c) their viewpoints on taking a leave of absence to cope with loss. Relocation, death of a loved one (not otherwise specified), decline in health, loss of a pet, car accident, death of a parent, end of a friendship, end of a romantic relationship, loss of job, and loss of safety were the most reported losses that impacted the music therapists’ clinical work, either positively or negatively. The most commonly reported coping strategies were to talk with friends (92.4%), cry (83.5%), listen to music (81.0%), and talk with family (79.7%). All participants consistently reported that taking a leave of absence to cope with loss may be beneficial depending on the situation, and that music therapists must help themselves before they can help clients, even if that includes a leave of absence. Results are described, and limitations and implications for future research are discussed.
    • The impact of using a bilingual dictionary (English-Arabic) for reading and writing

      Almaliki, Ali (State University of New York College at Fredonia, 2017-12)
      The purpose of this study is to explore the impact of using a bilingual dictionary (English- Arabic) for reading and writing in a Saudi high school and also to explore the Saudi Arabian students' attitudes and EFL teachers' perceptions toward the use of bilingual dictionaries. This study involves 65 EFL students and 5 EFL teachers in one Saudi high school in the city of Alkobar. Mixed methods research is used in which both qualitative and quantitative data are collected. For participating students, pre-test, post-test, and surveys are used to collect quantitative data. For participating teachers and students, in-person interviews are conducted with select teachers and students so as to collect qualitative data. This study has produced eight findings; first is that the use of a bilingual dictionary has a significant effect on the reading and writing scores for both high and low proficiency EFL students. Other findings include that most EFL students feel that using a bilingual dictionary in EFL classrooms is very important to help them translate and learn new vocabulary words but their use of a bilingual dictionary is limited by the strategies for use that students know or are taught, and that both invoice and experienced EFL teachers agree that the use of a bilingual dictionary is important for learning word meaning and vocabulary, but they do not all agree about which grades should use bilingual dictionaries. The results of this study have a potential to alert Saudi policy-makers to the benefits of using bilingual dictionaries in the English curriculum through all grade levels in Saudi schools. [from author's abstract]
    • The impact of “Clickers” on student achievement in second grade math class.

      Alrouqi, Fawaz (2015)
      This thesis sought to answer the question: Does using personal response systems, or "clickers", improve the achievement of second grade students in addition and subtraction facts as measured by their performance on chapter tests? The research was carried out in a school in Makkah, Saudi Arabia, where participants in the study were second grade students and their math teacher. There were two sections of second grade students with a total of 20 student participants, with ten student participants from each section of the class. The technology was introduced and used during instruction centered on addition and subtraction. Students in both sections were given a pretest and post-test consisting of three questions on subtraction and addition, comprising of single, double and triple digit numbers. The data collection period was during the second half of May 2014. Weekly continuous assessments or diagnostic exercises were also conducted. A survey questionnaire was conducted after the instruction and the use of the clickers in order to examine the students’ experience of using clickers. The responses of the students were collected from the class using the clickers. The test results showed the scores in both classes were similar in post and pretests (26 correct answers), compared to 23 and 24 correct answers without the clickers, thus showing a slight advantage with the use of clickers.
    • Implementing WebQuests in the elementary classroom.

      Kicak, Lauren M. (2013-03-25)
      Technology, including computers, is an ever increasing topic within the world today. Since technology is finding its way into classrooms, WebQuests, a particular learning tool that fosters student learning while working with the computer and the Internet are the focus of this curriculum project. The Internet can be a vast, unsecured network with a mix of accurate and inaccurate information. Teachers become responsible for sifting through the information on the Internet to create quality learning environments in the form of WebQuests for their students. Although the research related to this topic is limited, several studies have shown positive outcomes for using computers technology in the classroom. Within this curriculum project is a manual, How to Create a WebQuest for Your Students, designed to provide teachers with a step--by-step guide for creating a WebQuest, implementing the. tool in the classroom, and providing research-based ideologies for its use.-- Author abstract
    • The importance of sound design and its affect on perception.

      Drake, Jessica Ryan (2013-01-17)
      The purpose of this research is to clearly define the importance of sound design in film, television, and movies, with emphasis on how the audience is affected by the use of sound. Sound design is the overall aural image of a production, from pre-production to post-production. Sound designing is a process that greatly influences the outcome of a production. Sound is the secret emotional messenger in narrative Western film making and without it a film falls flat. However, to fully influence the perception of the audience, sound and visuals need to work together in a symbiotic relationship, where each element benefits from each other. Sound and picture should never compete for dominance, but in our Western visual culture, sound often fights for its right to belong. Filmmakers need to realize and fully understand the importance of sound design and how it can greatly improve their production. Without sound, narrative Western Films, only have moving pictures that are absent of depth and lack connection with the audience.
    • Improving English pronunciation among Arabic EFL school-age students using minimal pairs.

      Altamimi, Ali K. (2015)
      This study investigated whether the use of the minimal pairs’ strategy improves English pronunciation of unfamiliar consonant sounds for native Arab student in a 2nd intermediate grade in Saudi Arabia. The minimal pair defines as patterns of words which sound similar but are in fact different in only one sound (phoneme). Thirteen of participants in this study were male Arabian school students who had been studying English as a foreign language. The type of research used in this study was action research which was designed to enhance teaching in the classroom. The researcher had used four phases in conducting this study; plan, act, observe and reflect. The intervention (use of minimal pairs) was used in this study for approximately fifteen minutes each time, four times per week over a four-week period. Three instruments were used in this study: pretest, post test and oral assessment (based on observation). This research was designed using pretest and post test to determine if there was any improvement with the pronunciation of specific English consonant phonemes (/p/, /ʒ/, /v/, /tʃ/ and /ŋ/) by the study participants. Finally, the findings revealed that teaching strategy, minimal pairs, is effective in improving the pronunciation of the 2nd intermediate grade Arab speakers.
    • Improving home-school relations for Spanish speaking families

      Robertson, Jane (State University of New York College at Fredonia, 2016-05)
      Parental involvement in the education of their children has been a widely popular area of study in the past. There is general consensus among many scholars as to the importance and potential positive outcomes of effective parental involvement. Educational researchers such as Lee and Bowen (2006), Marschall (2006), and Jeynes (2007) agree that high levels of parental involvement can result in the improvement of students' academic achievement and improve their attitudes toward education. This area of educational research can be especially impactful among typically lower achieving subgroups of students, such as students of low socioeconomic status (SES) or English Language Learners (ELLs). That makes this issue particularly important for researchers studying English Language Learners or related fields, because parental involvement could have the potential to help diminish the achievement gap for them. The purpose of this research study is to investigate parental attitudes to and perceptions of their involvement in their child's education in a middle school setting in a small city school district in Western New York. It also seeks to delineate specific factors that parents at this school perceive to positively or negatively impact their involvement at the middle school level, specifically those related to language or cultural differences. The goal of this study is to determine specific ways this school can improve parental involvement and home-school relationships for Spanish-speaking parents' based on their own perceptions, in turn, improving the educational outcomes of their children. [from author's abstract]
    • Improving reading comprehension for Saudi Students by using the Reading Aloud Strategy.

      Alshehri, Mohammed (2014)
      Reading is important to help students gain access to many different kinds of knowledge, information, and ideas. The reading aloud strategy can be used to reach effective outcomes and increase students’ reading comprehension. The purpose of this study is to provide support for the reading aloud strategy to improve reading comprehension. The study was conducted during the summer of 2014 in Saudi Arabia. The participants of this study were 41 male students in the 5th grade. The researcher explained the reading aloud strategy to the participants to increase their reading comprehension. Then the students employed the intended strategy during the reading lessons in order to increase their reading comprehension. This research study used the 5th grade textbook to determine if the use of the reading aloud strategy improved reading comprehension for students. This was measured by a comparison of pre and post intervention reading comprehension tests. In addition, a survey created and designed by the researcher for this study measured if students’ enjoyment of reading increased through the use of the read aloud strategy. Lastly, the researcher conducted observations and recorded field notes on students’ behavior during reading lessons. According to the results, the reading aloud strategy showed positive effects on the development and improvement of Saudi students’ comprehension. The participants were able to connect their own experiences and personal knowledge with the daily texts to share their opinions and demonstrate a high level of understanding.
    • Increasing students' participation by using cooperative learning in library and research course.

      Alhabeedi, Ezdehar (2015)
      The purpose of this study was to determine the impact of cooperative learning strategies on students' participation in a high school library and research course in Saudi Arabia. Increased student participation provides social, psychological and academic advantages to students. The review of the literature focuses on four primary frameworks. The first section addresses Vygotsky's theory of social constructivism. Second, previous studies completed in regards to cooperative learning are presented including definitions, benefits, potential drawbacks, elements and strategies, as well as the role of the teacher in cooperative learning. The third section focuses on student development while the last section focuses on curriculum of the library and research course. This research specifically targeted female first grade high school students who were 16 years old from an urban high school in Western Saudi Arabia during the fall semester of 2015. The experimental group was 15 students working in three cooperative groups while the other 15 students in the control group were taught in a traditional teacher centered method. Data was collected using quantitative techniques of participation tallies. The results showed students who were taught by the cooperative learning strategy increased their participation as compared to the students who were taught by a lecture approach. Therefore, the conclusion of this study is that cooperative learning had a positive impact on increasing students' participation in Saudi Arabia.
    • Influence of cooperative learning strategies for English Language Learners with disabilities

      Langworthy, Allison L. (2015)
      Research has shown the amounts of English Language Learners (ELLS) with disabilities are on the rise in the United States. Parallel to the rise of ELLs with disabilities, are the struggles these types of students endure in the classroom. This study investigated the use of specific Kagan cooperative learning structures in the classroom with ELLs with disabilities and if students’ engagement, motivation, and other positive outcomes were affected by these strategies. This study also investigated teacher perspectives in regards to Kagan cooperative learning strategies. Further, a case study was conducted evaluating the use of Kagan cooperative learning structures in the classroom, when implemented by two special education teachers. Overall, findings distinguished that when specific Kagan strategies were implemented in a classroom with ELLs with disabilities, these students experienced increased motivation, engagement, self-esteem, confidence, and peer-acceptance. Findings also determined the teacher perspectives were conclusive with previous literature and were affirmative. Implications for further research are discussed in regards to Kagan cooperative learning strategies use in the classroom.
    • The influence of society on the roles of African Americans, [and] Gays and Lesbians in film.

      Platt, Andrew J. (2013-01-14)
      Minorities, specifically African Americans, and gays and lesbians have been widely represented by negative stereotypes in film. These stereotypical roles have been strongly influenced by society. While these stereotypes may represent some individuals they do not represent the community as a whole. Films such as Birth of a Nation, Gone With the Wind, Imitation of Life, Foxy Brown, Chicago, Different from the Others, These Three, Victim, Making Love and Brokeback Mountain were researched and screened to determine how African Americans and the gay and lesbian individuals were portrayed. Throughout history, the roles played by these minorities have changed. How the majority of society views those minorities has been how they were represented in the films during their time. It should be the goal of Hollywood to represent minority characters with substance and not focus only on the stereotypical roles for financial profitability. More independent studios and filmmakers are needed to create positive images. These types of roles played by minorities may not change until the audiences are willing to pay to see films that have positive roles for minority characters.
    • The influence of students' perceptions of writing on academic writing performance

      LiPuma, Kelsey (State University of New York College at Fredonia, 2016)
      Analysis of The Nation's Report Card (NAEP, 2011) indicates low performance by adolescent students in the area of academic writing, which in turn suggests that students in the elementary grades are not developing the writing skills that will enable them to write successfully as adolescents. Academic writing involves specific expectations for structure, content, and conventions. While students learn these expectations, students' perceptions of writing may also impact their academic writing performance. Therefore, to address this problem of students' low academic writing performance, an appropriate research question is, what are fourth grade students' perceptions of writing and what is the influence of those perceptions on their academic writing performance? This question of perception and influence is appropriately addressed by conducting an empirical study with fourth grade participants and a mixed methodology to determine specific perceptions and their relationship to writing performance. After measuring academic writing performance and collecting data on perception attitude, self-efficacy, and writing knowledge, analysis has produced three findings. First is that although these participants all had the same teachers and writing instruction throughout their elementary schooling, their perceptions of writing are not consistent with each other but range as do their academic writing performances. Second is that their knowledge of "writing" appears to be primarily focused on an academic concept of writing, and the third finding is that the relationship between perception and performance appears to have a linear correlation, with neutral attitude and neutral self-efficacy producing below average to average writing performance. [from abstract]
    • Information content of house cricket (Acheta domesticus) songs and the evolution of multiple signals.

      Covey, Andrea J. (2013-01-11)
      Despite the extensive literature on cricket bioacoustics, little collective understanding has been established that compares the structural and functional significance of the three distinct gryllid song types: calling song, courtship song, and aggressive song. Here, we compile recent work on all three song types that underscores the importance of song in communicating aspects of male phenotype to receivers (females and rival males). In doing so, we uncover similarities and differences between both the information content of each song type and the acoustic structures through which this content is communicated. By placing these comparisons into the context of multiple signaling theory, we can begin to understand how and why male gryllids make use of multiple acoustic signals. -- Author abstract (leaf 2) Despite the extensive literature on cricket bioacoustics, little collective understanding has been established that compares the structural and functional significance of the three distinct gryllid song types: calling song, courtship song, and aggressive song. Here, we measured all three song types from a cohort of male house crickets (Acheta domesticus) throughout their natural lifespan in order to make direct comparisons of song structure and phenotypic information content between the calling, courtship, and aggressive songs. Through statistical analysis of eight acoustic parameters of song, we established that there are significant structural differences between the three song types. By looking for correlations between phenotype and song structure, we also determined the phenotypic information content present in all three house cricket songs and that the distribution of information content may differ depending on song type. This suggests that the evolutionary persistence of three song types in the gryllid family may be due to the presence of multiple messages. -- Author abstract (leaf 45)
    • Introduction of native tree species in sites invaded by Japanese Knotweed Taxa and a study of its affect of the seedbank.

      Toews, Hans-Peter C. (2013-01-15)
      The invasion of three closely related taxa of knotweeds: (Japanese knotweed) Polygonum cuspidatum, (giant knotweed) Polygonum sachalinensis, and their hybrid Polygonum x bohemica in riparian corridors throughout the eastern U.S. has a negative impact on native plant communities. In the study the following research objectives were addressed: 1) To determine if forms of mechanical control (cutting and tilling) could be used to allow tree saplings to become established in knotweed invaded sites. 2) To compare height and leaf number of saplings of four native tree species inside and outside of Japanese knotweed stands. 3) To compare the soil seed bank density and composition in knotweed invaded versus noninvaded sites. No significant differences were found in the growth or survival among the saplings of four native tree species across treatments. Although treatments did not significantly affect sapling growth trends showed that saplings in the tilled treatment had the greatest growth across treatments over the growing season. A longer running experiment is needed to establish any emerging patterns in the data. Significantly greater densities of seedlings were observed in non-invaded than invaded sites and significantly greater densities of native seedlings were observed in non-invaded than invaded sites. Knotweed invasion does significantly affect the seedbank.
    • An investigation of the relationship between sleep and college achievement

      Lilga, Justin (State University of New York College at Fredonia, 2016)
      An experiment was conducted at a small university to investigate the effects of sleep patterns on academic achievement of undergraduate students. Undergraduate students were given a self-reporting questionnaire and the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index to help track their sleep habits during the academic semester. The sleep habits that were tracked include subjective sleep quality, sleep latency, sleep duration, habitual sleep efficiency, sleep disturbances, sleep medication, and daytime dysfunction. The participants were asked to return the self-reporting instruments, which were used to determine their eligibility for a second round of self-reporting. The students were asked to submit a second self-reporting questionnaire designed to target if their sleep patterns had played a role in their midterm grade point average. Participants were asked to turn in a copy of their spring 2016 midterm academic information. The sleep patterns and academic achievement of each participant were used for analysis. In conclusion, there was a slight decrease in grade point average for students who were reported to have a worse sleep quality according to the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index. [from abstract]