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Title: School Processes in Providing Reading Support in GCSEExaminations
Author: Griffiths, Dominic Guy Morgan
ISNI:       0000 0004 2678 8385
Awarding Body: The University of Manchester
Current Institution: University of Manchester
Date of Award: 2008
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Though secondary schools in England and Wales are having to manage a significant increase in the numbers of students now eligible for access arrangements in examinations, particularly in GCSE examinations, there is a dearth of research evidence, firstly on the systems forthe provision of access arrangements in examinations and secondly, the responses of key stakeholders (staff and students) to such systems. . To investigate these two issues, four urban secondary schools were studied'as a caseseries. These four schools represented different permutations ofreading support mode (hands-up to request help or all text read) and location (in the main examination hall, in a group withdrawal room or in individual rooms). Semi-structured interviews were conducted with students (n =32) as well staff involved in managing and delivering reading support (n = 12), alongside observations ofexamination sessions, followed by semi-structured group interviews with staff involved in the delivery of the reading support ill each session. . Quantitative data from the student interviews found nosigriificantpattems of association between the within-student variables of reading support, self-perception ofreading skills, test anxiety and motivation on the one hand and pref~rences for reading support, location or staffing, on the other. Whilst a significant association was found between student prefe~encesJor reading support mode and its location (X? p = 0.(136) student preferences for support seemed otherwise to be idiosyncratic in respect ofthese variables. However their desire to be consulted on their preferences for examination support conditions was found to be strong and widespread. From both quantitative and qualitative data analysed, eight 'themes' were drawn inductively, representing key 'drivers' in the dynamics ofthe provision and use of reading support in GCSE examinations: 'confidence and competence'; 'worthiness'; . 'unfair advantage'; 'relationships'; 'judgements'; access arrangements asawholeschool issue; resourcing and 'the researcher's influence (as critical friend) upon the research setting'. These eight themes were then located in the framework ofRoeser and Shun's (2002) model ofthe dynamic interactive relationship between contextual educational features and adolescent students' reactions to these, based upon the goodness-of-fit between these features and adolescent developmental psychological needs. . Conclusions set out implications for practice in the provision of examination access arrangements. In particular, a case was made for the central importance of consulting students themselves, as the end-users of that provision, if systems for providing such support are to be optimally effective.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Not available Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available