Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

A Qualitative Case Study Exploring Self-Efficacy and Its Influence on Fourth Grade Mathematics Students
by Prindle, Catherine M., Ed.D., Northcentral University, 2014, 201; 3579831
Abstract (Summary)

The perception of higher self-efficacy in young children has been determined to be a better predictor of intellectual and academic performance than simply the acquisition of skills alone. This empirical qualitative single-case study was conducted in order to explore the influence of self-efficacy instruction on perceptions toward and achievement in mathematics among a class of fourth grade students in rural Oregon. Pre- and post-intervention assessments of students' self-efficacy were employed using the Six Seconds Emotional Intelligence Assessment-Youth Version (SEI-YV). The SEI-YV was used to ascertain the status and possible growth in the three self-efficacy competencies of exercising optimism, enhancing emotional literacy, and engaging intrinsic motivation (Six Seconds, 2011). Student and parent pre-and post-intervention surveys, daily student journals, and field notes were used to triangulate and support outcomes. The Oregon Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (OAKS) was used to measure possible growth in mathematics skills. This case study was conducted for three months and involved students in lessons specifically designed for fourth graders. Student self-efficacy scores rose by an average of five points. Students' active participation in this intervention contributed to their academic success as evidenced by the OAKS and sample OAKS. The number of students passing the pre-intervention OAKS equaled five. The number of students passing the post-intervention sample OAKS was 13, more than double that of the pre-intervention number of students. This study may offer a basis from which to launch other researchers into investigating the use of self-efficacy at varying intervals for mathematics instruction with elementary level students. Adjustments to various conditions used in this research as well as the incorporation of additional variables not used here could provide valuable data and insights into the specifics of self-efficacy and, perhaps, the entire range of social emotional learning. It may be that the development of self-efficacy competencies in the earlier years of formalized schooling leads to greater academic success in mathematics than if done in later years. The social and academic changes possible through this type of mathematics coursework at the fourth-grade level has far-reaching and intriguing ramifications.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Stillman, Susan
School: Northcentral University
School Location: United States -- Arizona
Source: DAI-A 75/07(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Mathematics education, Education, Elementary education
Keywords: Academic growth, Emotional intelligence, Fourth grade, Mathematics, Self-efficacy, Social emotional learning
Publication Number: 3579831
ISBN: 978-1-303-82549-1
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