Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

The Impact of a Tier 2 Flex-Time Intervention on the Basic Psychological Needs of Incoming Middle School Students: A Mixed Methods Study
by Kennedy, Thomas, Ed.D., Northwest Nazarene University, 2019, 222; 13897400
Abstract (Summary)

There has never been a more important time than now to ensure that all students learn at high levels. Jobs that once existed for students who did not complete high school are decreasing every year. High school dropouts are less likely to be employed or own a home. High school dropouts are more likely be incarcerated and make less money annually and over their lifetime. Education is the key to success for the upward mobility of so many. As such, the mission of each school should be to ensure that all students learn at high levels. Among the predictors of dropping out of high school include a student's grades in middle school, along with motivation to achieve in school. This mixed methods study set out to identify the psychological impact of a flexible, directive intervention time model for students entering middle school. The quantitative part of the mixed methods study involved the assessment of basic psychological needs for a group of incoming middle school students from a suburban district in the northwestern part of the United States. The qualitative portion of the study involved interviewing a sample of two groups of students who took the questionnaire and seventh-grade teachers who observed students participating in the flexible intervention time model in their own classrooms. The theoretical framework around which this study was based included the three motivational theories of Elliot and McGregor’s Achievement Goals Framework, Dweck and Leggett’s Implicit Theories of Intelligence, and Deci and Ryan’s Self-Determination Theory. A theoretical framework including the three theories was developed by the researcher because each represents part of the reason why adolescents might struggle when entering middle school. Middle school students are most likely to be successful when adapting an incremental theory of intelligence with mastery approach goals and with an autonomous orientation based on their basic psychological needs being met. This study sought to determine if a Tier 2 intervention contributed to the level of basic psychological needs satisfaction of incoming middle school students. Because of qualitative data collected from both student and teacher interviews, the researcher found evidence that a Tier 2 intervention does positively impact the basic psychological needs of middle school students and that there were both similarities and differences between the perceptions of teaching faculty and eighth-grade students regarding the intervention. Teaching faculty perceived the time as a positive time to compel students to receive the assistance they need to increase competence, while at the same time strengthening connections with the students with whom teachers struggle connecting during class time. Eighth-grade students perceived the flexibly intervention time as a time to be rewarded for hard work with choices that involve connecting with their peers or provided time to work towards improving their grades with teachers.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Joki, Russell
Commitee: French, N. Shalene, Jorgensen, Christie
School: Northwest Nazarene University
Department: Education
School Location: United States -- Idaho
Source: DAI-A 80/11(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Education philosophy
Keywords: Basic psychological needs, Grades, Intervention, Middle school, Movtivation, Rti
Publication Number: 13897400
ISBN: 978-1-392-25982-5
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