This mixed-method research study looked at the effects service-learning had on student classroom engagement levels. The research questions that drove this study were: 1.Did teachers and students find service-learning to be a positive experience? 2.What impact did service-learning have on student classroom engagement?
This study was conducted in 12 different science classrooms and included 267 eighth grade students at Seckman Middle School. The study compared the levels of student engagement in six classrooms that incorporated service-learning within their study of the environment with the level of student engagement in the other six classrooms that did not participate in service-learning. Student surveys done at the beginning and conclusion of the study, along with the student focus group, were used as qualitative data along with the teacher survey. Classroom observations done daily throughout this study were used to gather quantitative data on the different levels of student engagement in the service-learning classrooms as compared to the non-service-learning classrooms. The limitations to this study were the limited amount of time to gather the classroom observation data as well as the limited data sampling included in this study. The qualitative data collected through the teacher surveys and the student surveys, as well as the student focus group, supported the first research hypothesis that teachers and students found service-learning to be a positive experience. The classroom observation data that were collected in the quantitative part of this study showed that the service-learning students had higher levels of engagement when compared to the non-service-learning students. While some tests supported the hypothesis that service-learning students do have higher levels of classroom engagement, some of the tests did not support this. With the analysis of the data collected on the five different statistical tests, the results were inconclusive based on this sample.
|Commitee:||Christensen, Emily, Pelster, Kristen|
|School:||Missouri Baptist University|
|School Location:||United States -- Missouri|
|Source:||DAI-A 74/10(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Educational evaluation, Middle School education, Science education|
|Keywords:||Character education, Eighth grade, Engagement, Science, Service learning, Student engagement|
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