Anda di halaman 1dari 10

Running head: ACTION RESEARCH

Action Research Instructional Implications Dianne J. E. Kraus Wilkes University

ACTION RESEARCH

ABSTRACT The action research project was conducted at Dundee-Crown High School in Carpentersville, Illinois. The students were two classes of Biology students from diverse backgrounds and live in a community where sixty-two percent of families live in poverty. The teacher wants to test the hypothesis that if students track their own learning then there will be a larger percentile growth in achievement because students will take ownership of their learning. It was confirmed that students do become more engaged in their own learning and the experimental group showed an 11.9% greater gain in achievement over the control group as a result of tracking their progress based on clearly stated learning goals.

ACTION RESEARCH

Action Research Instructional Implications The action research project for this study was conducted to determine if there would be a larger percentile growth in achievement when students take ownership of their own learning by tracking their own progress towards student friendly goals. The teacher in this study has worked with colleagues in a professional learning community (PLC) to establish proficiency scales based on the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), and the members of the PLC have a desire to implement the Marzano Art & Science of Teaching design questions into their instructional planning. As a first step to support this implementation based on data the teacher in this study planned to introduce the strategy of tracking student progress based on the NGSS for Ecology and to collect data to test the hypothesis that student tracking of progress will produce a positive percentile gain in achievement. The project was designed by assigning one class of Biology students as a control group and another class as an experimental group. Both classes were to receive the same instruction and instructional strategies throughout the twelve-day unit. In the experimental group the students would write their learning goals into student friendly terms, set their own goals based on the proficiency scales, and they would track their progress based on formative and summative assessments using graphs. The teacher would give daily vocabulary quizzes, collect exit cards, score group presentations and collaborative work on Google Drive, and take observational notes in order to collect data on student achievement. The students were also given a pre-test and a post-test to measure their growth through summative written assessment. The teacher gave the students in both classes the same type of feedback, recognition and encouragement, however, as the students in the experimental class tracked their progress the

ACTION RESEARCH

teacher responded to students questions and needs based on their special requests and responded to student initiated interactions to learn in a new way or to gain feedback from the teacher. During the study the teacher discovered that the dynamics of the classroom changed as the students were observed being more supportive of each others learning and developing a group mentality towards gaining success. The students would share results and were celebrating their group results or encouraging those that needed support. One student said that she wanted to study with a peer and re-take a quiz in the testing center because she did not want to let the other students down in the class progress survey on Socrative.com. Another student said that he liked the grading and tracking because he knew exactly what to do to improve. Another student claimed that she felt that it was easier to learn because she was able to identify what she did not understand. During the study the students in the experimental group asked seventy-five percent more questions regarding their progress in relation to their need for improvement than did the control group who acted passively about their formative assessment scores. The students in the control group did not discuss their goals nor were they aware of their learning. They did not ask for help, and did not seek out assistance. The experimental group was excited to get their results immediately and was disappointed if the teacher did not give immediate feedback. The students in the experimental group were also able to identify the need to re-learn the biomagnification lesson and were requesting help when confused. The control group was unaware of the challenges to their learning and was not demonstrating awareness of their need for help. The students in the experimental group also exceeded the expectations of the teacher when the results of the pre and post test data were compared. The experimental group improved

ACTION RESEARCH

from a mean score of 60.8 on the pre-test to 89.5 on the post test. The control group improved from a mean score of 58.8 on the pre-test to 75.7 on the post test. The experimental group had an 11.9 percentile gain greater than the control group and the standard deviation was less. (Appendix 1) The conclusions that can be made are that student tracking of progress does increase student achievement by giving students ownership of their own learning. The students know what the expectations are for their learning and they know how they are progressing towards those goals. The students get more feedback through student initiated questions, and attempts to succeed as individuals and through a group contingency. The students can explain what they need to do to improve and they take steps to find their own answers and to improve their own results. The strategy is motivating and rewarding to students as they get immediate feedback. There is an awareness of learning and achievement that the students develop and they become more active learners responsible for their own path rather than passively moving through their class. The students are able to explain their goals, their progress and their needs to improve. The research does raise further questions regarding the design of the proficiency scales. Problems in learning became apparent when students did not have their goals broken down into smaller chunks with specific learning goals. In order to clarify the teacher re-designed the learning goals for some lessons. The teacher wonders if there are an optimum number of goals that should be provided to the students. Does this depend on pace and student interest? The implications of using action research as a professional development tool is one of intense reflection and unexpected surprises as a teacher documents and collects data to test the effectiveness of their own instructional choices and to seek professional growth.

ACTION RESEARCH

References
Marzano, R.J. (2007) The art and science of teaching. Alexandria, VA:ASCD

APPENDIX 1 13-14 Dundee-Crown High School


1500 Kings Road, Carpentersville IL 60110 Control Group Pre-test Biology Teacher: Kraus, Dianne J

Mean:58.8 Median:60.0 -1 SD:52.8 +1 SD:64.8

Control Group Post Test

13-14 Dundee-Crown High School


1500 Kings Road, Carpentersville IL 60110

Experimental Group Pre-test

Biology Teacher: Kraus, Dianne J


Group B

Pre Test Ecology Unit HS Semester > Declarative Summative Scores


Score
0

10

15

20

25

30

35

40

50

55

60

65

70

I
80t.4)
(55%) (60%) (70%) (60%) (60%) (60%) (60%) (55%) (60%) (55%) (60%) (60%) (65%) (65%) (60%) (60%)

II
II

5%)

II II

(60%)
(60%) (60%) (60%)

(60%)
(60%) (60%) (60%) (60%) (65%) (65%) (60%) (65%)

I
Mean:60.8 Median:60.0 -1 SD:57.7 +1 SD:63.9

II

13-14 Dundee-Crown High School


1500 Kings Road, Carpentersville IL 60110

Experimental Group Post Test

Biology Teacher: Kraus, Dianne J


Group b

Post test energy and matter/ecosystem HS Semester > Declarative Summative Scores
Score

10

15

ro

oo

100

10

I
Q5t.4) 90%)
(90%) (90%

~=:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::====

(100%) (90%) (100%) (98%) (95%) (80%) (80%) (70%) (90%) (95%) (88%) (90%) (85%) " (85%) (85%)

(90%) " (80%) "' (88%) (85%) (88%) (98%) " (88%) (85%) 100%) "' (90%)
~

(95%)

I
Mean:89.5 Median:90.0 -1 SD:82.8 +1 SD:96.1