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Title: From teacher-regulation to self-regulation in early childhood : an analysis of Tools of the Mind's curricular effects
Author: Baron, Alexander Macomber
ISNI:       0000 0004 6421 4593
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2017
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The aim of my DPhil is to identify educational practices predictive of students' self-regulation development during early childhood. Specifically, I will analyze the Tools of the Mind preschool curriculum (Tools), which emphasizes students' self-regulation cultivation as its paramount aim. Since its development in 1993, Tools has spread to schools in the United States, Canada, and South America. In the face of Tools' proliferation, two questions emerge: does Tools significantly improve children's self-regulation skills? And, if so, then which of its effective elements could be applied across various educational contexts? This dissertation contains two studies. In the first, I will systematically review extant Tools research and then execute a multilevel meta-analysis of the quantitative results. Study one serves three purposes: 1) to identify all studies in the existing Tools evidence base, 2) to estimate an aggregate curricular effect, and 3) to determine how that effect varies across contexts and student characteristics. Thus, study one will assess whether Tools, at the curricular level, improves students' self-regulation. By contrast, study two will involve more granular analyses of the discrete learning activities that collectively comprise Tools. Specifically, study two will analyze child-level self-regulation and teacher-level Tools implementation data for 1145 preschool children in 80 classrooms across six American school districts. I will employ multilevel structural equation models to assess which Tools activities are associated with students' self-regulation growth, which are associated with decline, and which exhibit no association at all. Ultimately, this dissertation features the first Tools meta-analysis as well as the first analysis of specific Tools instructional activities. It is hoped that these analyses will identify educational practices predictive of self-regulation development both within and beyond the Tools curricular context.
Supervisor: Malmberg, Lars-Erik ; Evangelou, Maria Sponsor: Economic and Social Research Council
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Education ; Preschool--Curricula ; Self-actualization (Psychology) in children ; Children--Conduct of life--Study and teaching (Elementary)--Activity programs