• A Case Study Of Policies And Procedures To Address Cyberbullying At A Technology-based Middle School

      Tate, Bettina Polite
      ABSTRACT BETTINA POLITE TATE A CASE STUDY OF POLICIES AND PROCEDURES TO ADDRESS CYBERBULLYING AT A TECHNOLOGY-BASED MIDDLE SCHOOL Under the direction of OLIVIA M. BOGGS, Ed. D. This qualitative case study explored the policies and procedures used to effectively address cyberbullying at a technology-based middle school. The purpose of the study was to gain an in-depth understanding of policies and procedures used to address cyberbullying at a technology-based middle school in the southern United States. The study sought to understand educators’ experience with addressing the problem. The study explored how educators discipline students for cyberbullying, the actions they take to protect students who are cyberbullied, and the actions they take to decrease or prevent cyberbullying in their schools. Further, the study explored the challenges educators face and the procedures they follow to address and prevent cyberbullying at a technology-based middle school. The study was guided by the question, what policies and procedures are in place to effectively address cyberbullying at a technology based middle school? Albert Bandura’s Social Learning Theory and John Rawls’ Social Justice Theory were used to as a guide to explain cyberbullying and how the phenomenon is addressed. Data were collected through open ended interview protocol with the school’s principal, assistant principal, and counselors, focus groups with teachers, and a document analysis of relevant school and school district documents. Data analysis revealed major findings aligned to nine distinct themes: 1. Address Incidents Immediately, 2. Be Proactive: Students Are Taught Netiquette, 3. Challenges, 4. Consistent Procedures When Addressing Cyberbullying, 5. Counselors are Key People, 6. Discipline for the Cyberbully is Incremental and Progressive, 7. Protect the Victim, 8. Loving School Culture, and 9. Teachers are the Frontline. The conclusions drawn from the research findings presented in Chapter 4 and discussed in Chapter 5 suggest that utilizing policies and procedures suggested by the nine themes are effective in addressing cyberbullying at a technology based middle school. The policies and procedures used by the school were aligned to the current research about cyberbullying and how the phenomenon should be addressed by educators. Implications for future research include exploring the policies and procedures at different education levels, from the perceptions of parents and students, and among multiple cases.
    • A Comparative Analysis Of The Achievement Gap And International Baccalaureate Curriculum With Implications For School Leaders

      Grandison, Ayesha Odessa
      ABSTRACT A COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS OF THE ACHIEVEMENT GAP AND INTERNATIONAL BACCALAUREATE CURRICULUM WITH IMPLICATIONS FOR SCHOOL LEADERS There is limited evidence on how school-based international curriculum (International Baccalaureate-Primary Years Program) impacts achievement gaps in U.S. elementary schools in comparison to implementation of standards-based curriculum using common core standards and, more specifically, the Georgia Standards of Excellence. The purpose of this research was to determine if a significant difference exists in the rate of achievement on the English Language Arts and Mathematics End of Grade Georgia Milestones Assessments between fifth-grade students enrolled in an International Baccalaureate (IB-PYP) school curriculum as compared to those not enrolled in an International Baccalaureate (IB-PYP) school curriculum for the 2017-2018 school year. An ex post facto analysis was conducted using ELA and math proficiency rate data for IB and nonIB schools with Title I distinction. Conclusions about the appropriateness of the International Baccalaureate Primary Years Program as a sole instructional model for economically disadvantaged student populations cannot be drawn from this study. The study revealed that, although no significant difference in ELA and math achievement rates between IB and nonIB schools existed, IB schools are making a positive difference in content mastery among Title I public school fifth-grade students. Furthermore, the positive movement of proficiency rate in ELA and math is encouraging. Several avenues for further research were identified. Other researchers could examine school characteristics and individual differences as they pertain to achievement across grade levels, enrollment practices, family engagement, and transiency in relation to IB-PYP program participation. In addition, an examination of the implementation of standards-based curriculum, professional learning, and instructional resources of nonIB-PYP schools would be beneficial as a comparative measure to IB-PYP curriculum implementation, professional learning, and instructional resources. Since the International Baccalaureate Organization offers a learning continuum that supports early childhood education through high school (Primary Years Program, Middle Years Program, Diploma Program), examining school systems that utilize the full continuum as opposed to school systems who do not may be beneficial. A qualitative study examining implementation of global competencies in relation to core academics in both IB and nonIB Title I schools would also add to the body of literature concerning IB-PYP curriculum and economically disadvantaged students.
    • A Concurrent Transformative Examination Of The Experiences Of Transfer Students

      Strong-Green, Ashley
      Increasingly, college students are transferring between schools in an effort to achieve their higher education goals. However, many transfer students find themselves significant challenges navigate the transfer process and longer paths to graduation as a direct result of transferring. This concurrent transformative study sought to better understand the ways in which a student’s first higher education institution influenced the student’s perception of the process of transferring between colleges and universities. The study used a modified version of the College Student Experience Questionnaire guided by Tinto’s theories of student departure and engagement as a theoretical framework to measure student effort based on 7 quality of engagement scales. These results were analyzed using factorial analysis of variance (ANOVAS). Data was analyzed from 112 participants, and the results were reported based on the student’s first higher education institution, the case sites utilized in the study, and the students perception of the transfer process as positive or negative. The results of this study indicated that the majority of students are satisfied with the transfer process. Data analysis also revealed there are disparities in the types of resources students are using based on their pre-transfer institutions. Finally, analysis revealed no statistical significance or effect based on quality of engagement scales.
    • A Critical Examination Of Senior Executive Leadership Succession Planning And Management With Implications For Underrepresented Minorities / By Lekeisha D. Jackson

      Jackson, LeKeisha D.
      Guided by the research questions, this study utilized a sequential explanatory mixed methods research design to examine senior executive leadership succession planning at four-year, predominately white, doctoral universities in the state of Georgia. Utilizing the Representative Bureaucracy theory and the Mateso SPM conceptual model, this study employed a pragmatic epistemology coupled with the critical inquiry to collect and analyze data. The purpose of this study was to explore succession planning and management of senior executive leadership by examining the SPM practices and processes surrounding the nomination of successors, with implications for diversifying senior executive leadership. Included in this study is an extensive literature review including the following: Leadership crisis in higher education, historical perspectives, diversity in higher education, diversity management, succession planning, succession planning and management, ending with succession planning and management theoretical consideration. This research study explored the effectiveness of SPM practices at the institutional and divisional levels at four subject universities. Associated factors and perceptions were examined to identify patterns that facilitate an inclusive leadership environment. The study employed an explanatory mixed methods research design as suggested by Creswell (2015). Data findings are summarized in the following categories:Unit Driven Informal Practices (SPM Practices), Professional Development (leadership commitment), Decentralized organization (organizational culture), and Diversity management and various factors.
    • A Curriculum Evaluation Of Matesol Degrees And Tesol Graduate Certificates In The United States

      Miller, Alicia Joy
      The field of Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) is the culmination of the fields of applied linguistics, education, and second language acquisition. Due to the influence of so many fields' ideologies, no standard for TESOL curriculum exists in higher education. Palmer (1995) suggested that without a standard curriculum, prospective employers of TESOL graduates are left to accept without question what higher education institutions deem acceptable. However, TESOL Inc.’s (2007) stance on graduate studies is that master’s degrees and graduate certificates are equally terminal for the profession. Researchers for the past 20 years (Bagwell, 2013; Govardhan, Nayar, & Sheorey, 1999; Palmer, 1995; Stapleton & Shao, 2018) have attempted to create a baseline curriculum using the frequency of TESOL course titles and programmatic elements, such as instructional methods. Yet, none of these researchers looked for relationships within the data. Thus, this study used TwoStep Cluster Analysis along with descriptive statistics to evaluate master's degree TESOL (MATESOL) curriculum and TESOL graduate certificate curriculum in the United States to determine what relationships existed among the course titles and descriptions (required and elective) as well as the programmatic elements of departmental location, degree type (MA, MAT, MEd, certificate), student population, method of instruction (brick and mortar, online, hybrid) and accreditation type. Additionally, the researcher used the data to examine the curriculum for links to pedagogy because Govardhan et al. (1999) asserted that they could not “identify any [MATESOL] program that is quintessentially geared toward preparing ESL/EFL [English as a Second Language/English as a Foreign Language] teachers for teaching�? (p. 122). This study resulted in two main findings. First, MATESOL degrees and TESOL graduate certificates may share some similarities, but are quite different in actuality. Second, within both the master’s degrees and the graduate certificates that education-based coursework was the most common type of coursework. Thus, the researcher suggested implications for (a) building TESOL curriculum with intersectionality between education and other TESOL-related skills as well as for (b) creating a baseline of current MATESOL curriculum and TESOL graduate certificate curriculum.