Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

A study of teachers' beliefs and perceptions of flexible mathematics groups and its relationship to the key elements of differentiated instruction
by Sanders, Bre Peeler, Ed.D., University of West Georgia, 2015, 129; 3718983
Abstract (Summary)

Charged with the ensuring that students are meeting and exceeding state and federal expectations, teachers have turned to differentiated instruction as a means of closing the achievement gap and ensuring student success on local and state assessments. Flexible grouping is a recent pedagogical innovation schools are promoting to work to meet the demands of differentiation.

The purpose of this study was to understand how elements of differentiation inform teacher decisions about flexible grouping and how teachers implement differentiated mathematics through flexible grouping. Using a qualitative approach, five third-grade teachers were interviewed and their lesson plans were analyzed.

This study revealed that teachers were not implementing flexible grouping and were struggling to differentiate in other forms. In order for flexible grouping to be implemented with fidelity, teachers must first buy into flexible grouping as an effective strategy for their students. In the current day of high stakes testing, with teachers, schools, and districts focused on content and achievement, differentiating through flexible grouping becomes less of a priority.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Ramanathan, Hema
Commitee: Drake, Jill, Duplechain, Rosalind, Thompson-Barbour, Sharon
School: University of West Georgia
Department: School Improvement
School Location: United States -- Georgia
Source: DAI-A 76/12(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Mathematics education
Keywords: Ability grouping, Differentiation, Flexible grouping, Mathematics, Small group instruction, Student grouping
Publication Number: 3718983
ISBN: 978-1-321-99198-7
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