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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Middle school teacher satisfaction with response to intervention (RtI): An assessment between inception and implementation
by Zahedi, Karynn Jensen, Ph.D., State University of New York at Albany, 2010, 144; 3402684
Abstract (Summary)

Response to intervention (RtI) is a multi-tiered process of monitoring student responses to remediation that is designed to help struggling learners succeed within the purview of regular education. Under the RtI model, students are referred to special education only after a series of documented interventions have been attempted. This study involved analysis of a teacher satisfaction survey on the implementation process, combined with interviews of principals of five focus schools in the study.

This two part study was comprised of quantitative and qualitative queries into teacher satisfaction levels in the early implementation of RtI. The first part, The Teacher Survey, utilized quantitative measures to gain information and conduct analysis on the areas of job change that impact teacher job satisfaction. The second part, The Principal Interview, consisted of interviews of principals of five of the twelve schools involved in the teacher survey and compared teacher responses about their satisfaction with the comments of the principals from those schools.

Results indicate that overall, teachers are neutral to slightly positive about RtI on all areas assessed. The only significant difference that was revealed between types of teachers was found between regular and special education teachers in satisfaction with the balance of work under RtI. Specifically, regular education teachers were significantly less satisfied than special education teachers with the impact of RtI on the distribution of work between types of teachers involved in the RtI model.

Correlations were found between satisfaction with RtI and all five dimensions of The Job Diagnostic Survey (Hackman and Oldham 1976). That is, the more positive that teachers said they felt toward RtI, the more they agreed with positive statements on each of the five JDS dimensions. Teachers were relatively more satisfied with impact on (1) task significance and (2) task variety, they were neutral on (3) task identity and (4) task completion and relatively less satisfied with the impact of the Rt model on (5) autonomy.

Further correlations were found between satisfaction with RtI and some of the composite variables made up of questions about impact of RtI on the balance of work, consultation, and the perceived benefit of RtI for students. No correlation was found between satisfaction with RtI and the composite variable made up of questions about time use. As such, even though teachers reported that RtI took more of their time than the previous model, this finding did not correlate with the reported satisfaction with the RtI model.

Findings of the Principal Survey showed no significant difference between schools, but did reveal similar concerns about teacher satisfaction with RtI and mandated reform, in general. Senior principals, concerned about teacher satisfaction with changes, were more taciturn in the early stages. Since notable differences were not found between schools, the interview of the leaders of the focus schools provided interesting themes common to the schools and resonant with the questions of the study. The Principal Interview comments were also viewed in relation to the responses of the school's teachers on the teacher survey.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Meyer, Heniz-Dieter
Commitee: Hammond, Jan, Schiller, Kathryn
School: State University of New York at Albany
Department: Educational Administration and Policy Studies
School Location: United States -- New York
Source: DAI-A 71/05, Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Education Policy, School administration
Keywords: Change, Job satisfaction, Reform, Remedial education, Response to intervention, Teacher satisfaction
Publication Number: 3402684
ISBN: 978-1-109-75037-9
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