Date of Award

8-2009

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Legacy Department

Educational Leadership

Advisor

Williams, Frankie K

Committee Member

Williams, Frankie K

Committee Member

Flanigan, Jackson

Committee Member

Martin, Michelle

Committee Member

Satterfield, James

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to investigate administrators' perceptions regarding academic support strategies and the relationships between the academic support strategies and student performance measures in middle college/early college institutions. The predictor variables in this study were (a) location strategies, (b) partnership strategies, (c) teaching and learning strategies, (d) student assessment strategies, (e) student support strategies, (f) democratic school governance strategies, and (g) professional development strategies. The criterion variables in the study were 2007-2008 graduation rates and accumulated college credits. Descriptive statistics were used to report administrators' perceptions regarding occurrences of academic support strategies in their institutions. Pearson's product-moment correlation coefficients were used to describe relationships between (a) academic support strategies and graduation rates, (b) overall academic support strategies and graduation rates, (c) academic support strategies and accumulated college credits, and (d) overall academic support strategies and accumulated college credits. A cross-sectional survey design was used to gather the perceptions of administrators regarding academic support strategies. The researcher-developed Middle College/Early College Academic Support Survey was also used to collect data on the perceptions of administrators regarding academic support strategies. Only administrators of diploma-granting institutions with a 2007-2008 graduation rate were invited to complete the web-based survey. In this study, 64 administrators completed the survey. The survey's response rate was 56%. Findings from the study revealed that location, teaching and learning, assessment, democratic school governance and professional development strategies occurred fairly often in the participants' institutions. Student support strategies occurred close to the survey response of frequently, if not always in the participants' institutions. Partnership strategies occurred close to the survey response of fairly often in the participants' institutions. Findings also revealed little if any correlation between the study's predictor and criterion variables. However, four statistically significant correlations were noted. A low negative correlation (r = -.383, p<.01) was noted between the occurrences of daily bell schedule adjustments when more instructional time was needed and graduation rates. Little if any correlation (r = -.254, p<.05) was noted between the occurrences of heterogeneously mixed high school classes by ability levels and graduation rates. A low, negative correlation (r = -.391, p<.01) was noted between the occurrences of aligned school/college bell schedules that facilitated enrollment in college courses and accumulated college credits. A low negative correlation (r = -.315, p<.05) was reported between the occurrences of students exhibiting subject mastery in ways besides paper and pencil tests and accumulated college credits. Recommendations for further research include replicating the study in five years when a full complement of middle colleges/early colleges graduate senior classes, and adding additional academic support strategies to the survey.

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