The overarching strategy of this research is to gain an understanding of the relationship between communication skills and student achievement. The theoretical framework is based in the social constructivist theory of learning of Lev Vygotsky. The literature showed that effective communication is important in the learning theory of social constructivism. The literature also showed that the ability to communicate and the ability to pose questions are important attributes of an effective teacher. A survey of one school district's fourth grade teachers was conducted and the student achievement scores of their students were tied to their respective teacher's response. The instrument was developed by Plumeus to measure the communication skills across several sub-scales to include listening, and ability to deliver a concept or idea. This instrument was modified for this research as the sub-scales were initially dependent. Three models were developed from these sub-scales and demographic variables. About two-thirds of the teachers that responded have earned an advanced degree. The research found that teachers with less experience scored somewhat higher on reported communication skills than those teachers with more years of service. The research also found no difference between female and male teachers for self-reported communication skills. The ability to get the message across was significant in explaining the variances for the dependent variable citizenship. Also possessing an advanced degree added about 9 points to the mean student achievement score for citizenship. As for other variables not addressed in the research questions, it appears that female teachers add about 11 points to the mean student achievement scores for Science. Finally the sub-scale that was comparable between the large population of the company and the sub-scale that was significant in explaining the variance of the citizenship achievement scores was ability to get the message across. This was the one sub-scale that was connected to the larger population and the teacher population plus it was significant for the teacher population in explaining variance.
|School:||The Ohio State University|
|Department:||Educational Policy and Leadership|
|School Location:||United States -- Ohio|
|Source:||DAI-A 79/09(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Mathematics education, Educational evaluation|
|Keywords:||Lev Vygotsky, Social constructivism, Student achievement, Teacher communication skills|
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