Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

A Preliminary Investigation into the Effect of Standards-Based Grading on the Academic Performance of African-American Students
by Bradbury-Bailey, Mary, Ed.D., Piedmont College, 2011, 123; 3511593
Abstract (Summary)

With the implementation of No Child Left Behind came a wave of educational reform intended for those working with student populations whose academic performance seemed to indicate an alienation from the educational process. Central to these reforms was the implementation of standards-based instruction and their accompanying standardized assessments; however, in one area reform seemed nonexistent—the teacher's gradebook. (Erickson, 2010, Marzano, 2006; Scriffiny, 2008). Given the link between the grading process and achievement motivation, Ames (1992) suggested the use of practices that promote mastery goal orientation.

The purpose of this study was to examine the impact of standards-based grading system as a factor contributing to mastery goal orientation on the academic performance of urban African American students. To determine the degree of impact, this study first compared the course content averages and End-of-Course-Test (EOCT) scores for science classes using a traditional grading system to those using a standards-based grading system by employing an Analysis of Covariance (ANCOVA). While there was an increase in all grading areas, two showed a significant difference—the Physical Science course content average (p = 0.024) and ix the Biology EOCT scores (p = 0.0876). These gains suggest that standards-based grading can have a positive impact on the academic performance of African American students. Secondly, this study examined the correlation between the course content averages and the EOCT scores for both the traditional and standards-based grading system; for both Physical Science and Biology, there was a stronger correlation between these two scores for the standards-based grading system.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Palmour, Julie
Commitee: Cole, David, Leslie, Ron, Welsh, Jim
School: Piedmont College
Department: School of Education
School Location: United States -- Georgia
Source: DAI-A 73/10(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: African American Studies, Black studies, Secondary education, Science education
Keywords: African American students, African-American, Grading, Mastery goal orientation, Performance goal orientation, Standards-based grading, Standards-based instruction, Traditional grading
Publication Number: 3511593
ISBN: 9781267394897
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