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Title: One bad apple : the effect of teacher re-training on low-level disruptive classroom behaviour
Author: Myers, Wendy Regina
ISNI:       0000 0004 2675 7968
Awarding Body: University of Portsmouth
Current Institution: University of Portsmouth
Date of Award: 2007
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A 3-year research study of a behavioural intervention in a UK High School, within an 'inclusive' setting, evaluated whether an in service teacher training programme (INSET), under the Department of Education and Employment Training School (1998) umbrella, resulted in an identifiable improvement in the 'low-level disruptive classroom behaviour (DCB) of Year 9 pupils; in particular those pupils with special educational needs (SEN) and of low educational ability. The focus of the Training School intervention was to train teachers in classroom management techniques to improve the DCB of the more challenging school intake of SEN low ability pupils since the introduction of 'inclusion', and to stop DCB incidents escalating. This mixed method study investigated the problem of DCB from the perspectives of Year 9 pupils, parents and teachers. The intention was fourfold: firstly, to investigate whether the Training School intervention could alter the behaviour of teachers and, in turn alter the behaviour of pupils, in order to replace DCB with a more appropriate behaviour; secondly, to examine whether all children irrespective of ability, social background and 'social capital' could improve their classroom behaviour and performance; thirdly to explore the relationship between ability and DCB; and finally, to conduct an applied evaluative research study with suitable methodological rigour so as to inform educational research, policy and practice. A focus group of Year 9 pupils was convened to explore the attributions and explanations of the causes of DCB, to inform three later questionnaire surveys of Year 9 pupils (n=373), their parents (n=373) and teachers (n=92). The surveys were additionally designed to profile the three populations, to establish the frequency with which DCB was experienced by pupils, and to discover on whom pupils placed the causal attribution of DCB. Analysis by Chi-square of the responses to the teacher and parent surveys showed marked inconsistencies among teachers, in particular with regard to behavioural expectations, pupil referrals, rule infringements, sanctions and rewards and homework. Lack of communication between parents and the school was also highlighted, although this may be due in part to pupils failing to deliver letters home. Analysis by Chi-square of responses to the Year 9 pupil survey indicated that 70% of pupils, of all abilities, experience DCB daily; while a factor analysis of two questions regarding DCB supported the hypothesis that pupils attribute DCB to teacher and school related factors rather than to home or peer factors. Analysis of results from a quasi-experiment in a time series of systematic classroom observations of Training School teachers' 'bottom set' Maths and English classes, together with observations of matched 'control' classes, indicated a rising percentage of pupils 'on-task' throughout the 3-year period. When triangulated with findings from data on Year 9 pupils' (n=1027) classroom behaviour and performance (formative) 'monitoring' throughout the 3- year period, analysed by a series of factorial ANOVAs, indicated a trend towards DCB improvement in the SEN, low-ability pupils, when contrasted with pupils of other abilities. However, high and medium ability pupils did not change their behaviour to the same degree.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available