Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Preparing preservice teachers to engage parents through assessment
by Mehlig, Lisa M., Ed.D., Northern Illinois University, 2013, 136; 3567769
Abstract (Summary)

The purpose of this study is to determine the degree to which activities within an undergraduate teacher education course in classroom assessment prepared preservice teachers for engaging parents in their children's education. Research indicates that few preservice teachers enter their first classrooms prepared, specifically in the areas of complex tasks such as assessment and parent engagement. Moreover, sound practices in assessment and parent engagement have been demonstrated to have positive impact on student achievement. If designed appropriately, professional development activities for preservice teachers can develop their knowledge, skills, and professional efficacy to enhance student achievement. To address this, preservice teachers enrolled in a classroom assessment course in an elementary teacher education program in a Midwestern U.S. university were given a set of role-playing activities requiring them to consider and respond to typical assessment conversations teachers often have with parents. These role playing activities included (a) explaining to parents the instructional and assessment frameworks used to address the learning needs of students in a class, (b) discussing a recent change in performance with two parents (one whose child improved and one whose child declined), (c) resolving a complaint from a parent about a child's grade, and (d) explaining and interpreting a child's standardized achievement results with a parent. Through a secondary analysis of data, the degree to which these activities did, indeed, prepare the preservice teachers for engaging parents through assessment was studied. As such, a pre-post measure design was used to test whether the experimental group improved as compared to another section (control group) of the assessment class that did not participate in the role-playing activities. Results indicated that participants in the experimental group gained more knowledge about parent engagement and communicating with parents than the control group but did not change in efficacy as compared to the control. Coding and analysis of the preservice teachers' role-playing assignments demonstrated that most of them gained valuable skills in working with parents on assessment issues, and the preservice teachers in the experimental group endorsed the role-playing activities as being valuable for their education as teachers. Results are discussed in terms of possible implications for teacher education.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Shumow, Lee
Commitee: Cummings, Corenna, Schmidt, Jennifer
School: Northern Illinois University
Department: Leadership, Educational Psychology and Foundations
School Location: United States -- Illinois
Source: DAI-A 74/11(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Elementary education, Teacher education
Keywords: Assessment, Home-school communication, Parent engagement, Preservice teachers, Role playing, Teacher education
Publication Number: 3567769
ISBN: 978-1-303-19893-9
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