Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

The relationship between vocabulary development, low socioeconomic status, and teacher discourse
by Pritts, Amy M., Ed.D., Walden University, 2009, 132; 3379869
Abstract (Summary)

Elementary students from low socioeconomic households often begin and remain behind other socioeconomic groups in vocabulary knowledge. Many reasons for this gap, including cognitive, environmental, and educational, have been researched. The current study examined the relationship between vocabulary knowledge, socioeconomic status, and type of teacher discourse within an early elementary setting not yet explored within the research. This concurrent mixed-method research study investigated this relationship using study groups, taped classroom lessons, and the DIBELS word use fluency assessment measure. Interpretative analysis was used for the qualitative data, and correlational analysis was used to determine relationships between the discourse types and the DIBELS word use fluency growth scores. The quantitative results suggested that as two-way teacher-student conversation increased, vocabulary knowledge in students from low socioeconomic households also increased. The qualitative results indicated that lesson reflection alters teachers' perceptions of discourse beliefs. The findings of this study initiate social change by assuring quality professional development methods so that all teachers use effective communication along with best practices. These improved techniques may result in every child gaining an equal opportunity to learn how to read successfully and may assist in closing the socioeconomic achievement gap.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Lang, Lucille
Commitee: Moore, Martha
School: Walden University
Department: Education
School Location: United States -- Minnesota
Source: DAI-A 70/12, Dissertation Abstracts International
Source Type: DISSERTATION
Subjects: Elementary education, Teacher education, Literacy, Reading instruction
Keywords: DIBELS, Dynamic Indicators of Basic Literacy Skills, Professional development, Reading, Socioeconomic status, Teacher discourse, Vocabulary development
Publication Number: 3379869
ISBN: 9781109495690
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