Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Top -dog to bottom -dog: A study of middle to high school transition and teachers' philosophies and practices as applied to stage -environment fit theory
by Widner, Carol M., Ph.D., Capella University, 2010, 306; 3396382
Abstract (Summary)

Research on the transition from middle school to high school focuses mainly on student and parent perceptions of the transition process itself. There is little research available on teachers' perceptions of the contribution made to the transition process based on differing teacher philosophies and practices/instructional strategies of middle school and high school teachers. This multiple case study applied the stage-environment fit theory to an investigation of the differences in one school district's eighth- and ninth-grade educators' teaching philosophies and practices/instructional strategies. According to stage-environment fit theory, the differences in teaching philosophies and practices/instructional strategies between the middle school and high school teachers in this study constituted an inappropriate developmental learning environment. Data were collected from three eighth- and three ninth-grade teachers using participant interviews, both formal and informal, observations of the participants in their classroom environments, and unobtrusive artifacts from participants in their daily routines. The findings indicated that the two environments, eighth grade in middle school and ninth grade in high school, were dissimilar based on four themes, including (a) teacher philosophies, (b) teacher practices, (c) instructional strategies, and (d) relationships.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Ray, Forrest T. (Ted)
Commitee: Pasanen, Carol, Shockley, Angela F.
School: Capella University
Department: School of Education
School Location: United States -- Minnesota
Source: DAI-A 71/03, Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Secondary education
Keywords: Eighth-grade, High school transition, Ninth-grade, Stage-environment fit
Publication Number: 3396382
ISBN: 978-1-109-63990-2
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