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Exhibit Room Louisiana St. Supp. Rep. SPA Reports  

 

LIST OF EXHIBITS FOR STANDARD 2

EXHIBIT  2c.10

Board of Regents grant notice

This document includes a notice of the Board of Regents grant on differentiated instruction and the final report submitted to the Board of Regents.

[MS WORD] Southeastern Louisiana University

... survey. Dr. Edwards added that this eventually led to a BoR grant to improve
the program to better meet the needs of candidates. ...
www2.selu.edu/orgs/NCATE/ncate/ExhibitRoom/Std2/2c31/NCATE%2... - 2007-12-03 - Text Version

 

 

The 3 Dimensions of Diversity for Inclusion

Final Report~LEQSF (2003-2004)-ENH-TR-58

One Year Enhancement Grant with a Contract Extension 

A.  Accomplishments in Meeting Stated Goals and Objectives of the Project

Compare goals and objectives with those set forth in the original proposal and explain. Also describe variances, if any, from the original plan described in the original proposal.  

      The Board of Regents funded grant project, “The 3 Dimensions (3D) of Diversity for Inclusion,” began in the summer of 2003 and continued through December 2004.  In the spring of 2004, a request for extension was approved to allow the completion of all objectives through December of 2004.  From the beginning to the final report date, the proposed objectives for the funded project were achieved. 

Outcome #1: Membership in the 3D Task Force on Inclusion expanded its membership since the beginning of the project.  Eight new members were added to the original ten task force members.  Primarily through the workshops, we identified two more Region II teachers, an elementary school principal, a former teacher candidate trained in differentiated instruction, and a faculty member who serves as a supervisor of student teachers.  Task force membership will always represent schools that are practicing differentiated instruction. Minimally, quarterly meetings are held. While the training sessions were being planned, more frequent meetings were held. Members receive e-mail notification of meetings and updates on the project.     

Outcome #2: The 3D Task Force on Inclusion created an action plan at the beginning of the project. Most tasks were completed according to the initial action plan. An extension was requested and granted to complete research and a report on the differentiated instruction workshops.  In addition to completing a questionnaire prior to the workshops, participants completed the questionnaire again at the end of the school year. Findings were reported in a paper that was presented at the SERA Annual Meeting in February 2005. A manuscript will be submitted for publication during the summer of 2005.

Since the extension was granted, the action plan was revised to reflect minor changes, which are referenced in this report.

Outcome #3:  The literature on differentiated instruction was reviewed to develop a self-report survey instrument to measure educators’ knowledge and pedagogical practices for meeting the needs of diverse learners in classrooms.  This instrument was administered to participants prior to the differentiated instruction workshops (pre-survey) and to the same individuals at the end of the 2003-2004 school year (post-survey).  A code was also developed to identify survey subjects, so the results for each can be compared.  Before administration, the instrument was approved by Southeastern’s Institutional Review Board (IRB).  The grant extension provided the additional time needed during the summer and fall to complete and disseminate the report on the survey findings.  Findings were reported at the SERA Annual Meeting in February 2005, and the paper is included on the project website.

Outcome #4: Through the survey, the task force identified knowledge and pedagogical practices of Southeastern’s teacher educators, elementary school teachers, and teacher candidates. This information was used by the task force to identify resources for purchase and to plan additional tasks to be completed during the 2004-2005 and 2005-2006 school  years.

Outcome #5: The task force designed professional development workshops for faculty, elementary school teachers and principals, and teacher candidates.  The workshops were based on findings from a literature review and findings of an informal survey of faculty. Outcome #6:  The task force implemented professional development workshops on February 16-18, 2004. This highlight of the project’s accomplishments was conducted by Dr. Marcia Imbeau, a training consultant with the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development. About 100 persons participated in the workshops. School teams of teachers and principals from ten Region II elementary schools participated in the workshops.  Discussions among task force members and a review of literature led the task force to invite school teams, rather than individual teachers and administrators, to participate as it was proposed that school teams are more likely to follow through on ideas and activities learned a the workshops.  Another highlight was a workshop presented by 3D members Dr. C. Edwards, Dr. S. Carr, and Dr. W. Siegel at the annual meeting of the Southwest Educational Research Association (SERA). An article will be forthcoming on findings of the research conducted in association with this project.

Outcome #7:  Since the initial task force was established, two years prior to applying for a Board of Regents Education Enhancement Grant, many educational materials on differentiated instruction and related topics had been collected for the resource library of books, articles, videotapes, software and Internet references.  The resources purchased through the grant will be held in the Create Lab, a location in the Teacher Education Center.  These resources are available to teacher candidates, faculty, and teachers.  The resources and schedules for training opportunities are listed on the 3D website. Through this site, information will be available to all educators and other interested persons.  The task force expanded its resource library of books, articles, videotapes, and Internet weblings on differentiated instruction.  Primarily books were purchased with Board of Regents grant funds. The resources are housed in the Create Lab in the Cate Teacher Education Center at Southeastern. The resources will be listed on the 3D Task Force for Inclusion website and will be available for loan to educators.

Outcome #8:  The task force established a website to provide information, resources, and opportunities for the exchange of ideas on differentiated instruction. The website is a link on the Department of Teaching and Learning’s website and is accessible by all educators at Southeastern and schools.

Outcome #9: The initial task force plan included objectives focused on providing opportunities for educators to observe classroom teachers practicing differentiated instruction.  Two of the school teams participating in the workshops, for instance, adopted differentiated instruction as the focus of their faculty studies. While it will be possible for visitors to observe classes, the focus has been changed to videotaping lessons that exemplify differentiated instruction, as this approach would reach a larger number of educators over time. These videotapes will then be available.  Releases for videotaping will be secured before videotapes are offered for the preservice and inservice education of teachers, administrators, and university faculty.  During 2005-2006, at least two teachers in area schools will be videotaped.

Outcome #10: Related to Outcome #9, mentors will continue to be identified to provide workshops and individual assistance to teachers and candidates interested in differentiating instruction.  Identifying mentor teachers is an ongoing goal. As teachers are identified, their names and those of university faculty will be made available to interested parties.

Outcome #11: The task force prepared a report on the project’s activities, findings, and recommendations that will guide future plans for better meeting the needs of diverse learners in inclusive elementary school classrooms.  The report was not copied and disseminated as originally planned.  Instead, the report will be available on the website.  The 3D project generated and disseminated research findings.  A workshop presented at the SERA annual meeting detailed the project and research findings. An article is being prepared for submission to an education journal. Additionally, Dr. C. Edwards and Dr. S. Carr presented activities for differentiated instruction at a meeting of approximately 100 student teachers. An article will be submitted for publication over the summer of 2005.

B.  Accomplishments in Enhancing the Quality of the Involved Department(s)/Units:  Explain how the implementation of this project made significant advances in enhancing the quality of the department(s) or unit(s) involved. Provide specific evidence.

      Meeting the needs of all learners is a fundamental purpose of schools.  The 3 Dimensions (3D) of Diversity for Inclusion project, representing 1. academic diversity, 2. behavioral diversity, and 3. cultural diversity, is consistent with NCATE, No Child Left Behind, Louisiana’s Blue Ribbon Commission, and other reform initiatives founded on research, standards, and accountability.  The project was designed to contribute to the preparation of educators to meet the needs of a full spectrum of students in inclusive elementary classrooms. 

        The project addressed a need identified two years prior to the application for funding.  Results of the student teacher exit survey evidenced a continuing need to better prepare candidates to meet the needs of diverse learners in schools. A group of faculty members decided on their own to form a task force to address this need. After a few months, during which more information was collected, it became clear that formal training was needed to focus attention on differentiated instruction; to educate large groups of faculty, teachers; and boost participation in this effort.

       Since the project’s inception, a collection of resources (primarily books and tapes) has grown.  The materials purchased with funds from the grant and other resources are located in the Create Lab, a location in the Teacher Education Center that is easily accessible for all teachers, teacher educators, and candidates. A plan was developed to identify specific materials for each undergraduate and graduate course. Faculty teaching the identified courses are encouraged to incorporate the materials in their curricula, which would provide a developmental approach for preparing candidates to use differentiated instruction to meet the needs and interests of their own students.

       The website created for the 3D project is a link on the Department of Teaching and Learning website, making information on differentiated instruction a click away. As teacher educators, teachers, and candidates become familiar with the site, we plan to promote interaction among educators to further expand and enhance the use of differentiated instruction.

C.  Accomplishments in Enhancing Louisiana’s Economic Development and Diversification:  Describe the impact of this project on economic development and/or diversification in the State, now and in the near future.  Provide specific evidence.

        The impact of the project on Louisiana’s economic development and diversification is indirect and long-range. Specific contributions are the project’s underlying intent to build a strong foundation to educate all elementary school students for their future roles as citizens and contributing members of society, and to enable them to adequately support themselves and their families and have an otherwise fulfilling life. All students must have opportunities for an education that meets their diverse needs and provides them the wherewithal to meet these life goals.  It is hoped that by helping teachers meet the needs of all learners they will experience more success in the classroom and remain in the profession. 

D.  Statement of Objectives: Describe plans related to this project to be accomplished within the next five years.  Include any pertinent evidence to support your projections. 

        There has been progress in the realization of the project’s vision: Graduates of Southeastern Louisiana University’s teacher preparation program and Region II teachers are Effective Educators who meet the needs of the full spectrum of learners in inclusive classrooms.  And, the project goals were achieved. Faculty of the Department of Teaching and Learning have been educated on the principles and practices of differentiated instruction to help them better prepare candidates to meet the needs of their students.  Teacher candidates, teachers, and administrators were also educated. The achievement of the goals was limited to the number of educators who could be educated, but since the funded project was completed, more educators have learned about differentiated instruction.

        I expect this project, which was begun in 2001, will continue to function for the purpose of promoting differentiating instruction to better meet the needs and interests of all students. The findings of our research, survey results, observations, and discussions corroborate research we reviewed to prepare the BoR grant application.  In general, teachers have difficulty meeting the needs of all students in their classes, which can affect students’ academic achievement and teachers’ success.

         The one-size-fits-all model of education has been shown to be an ineffective approach to teaching, because the needs and interests of all students are not being met.  It seems that everywhere we look we see some variation of the diversity theme.  Louisiana’s Components of Effective Teaching, No Child Left Behind, and specialized learning association (SPAs) call attention to teaching all learners—as individuals.  The drumbeat can be overwhelming for teachers, if they perceive the directive as a huge whole—another thing—added immediately to an already jam-packed school day.  Differentiated instruction is not something else to be added to the curriculum. Differentiated instruction is a concept—an approach to teaching and learning. There are many but ways teachers can differentiate instruction to meet the needs of learners.  Moreover, teachers can choose to begin by implementing one way of differentiating instruction. Others can be added as they become comfortable with the some aspect of the approach.

        Some teachers will reject differentiated instruction outright, but I expect others to at least try.  When teachers experience some modicum of success, others learn about possibilities and have models to follow.  While the number of teachers differentiating instruction is still small, it’s growing, as evidenced by the school faculties that are addressing the topic and requests for information from teachers and administrators.  The task force will encourage faculty and graduate students, in particular, to focus on differentiated instruction as a subject for action research. As we learn more from research conducted at Southeastern, other universities, departments of education, and school systems, some ways of differentiating instruction will be supported and others will be changed or eliminated.

        With new courses focusing on diversity in the redesigned undergraduate and graduate programs and the incorporation of differentiated instruction in more courses, candidates and teachers will be afforded opportunities for learning ways to meet the needs of diverse learners in their classes. Time and effort will determine the path of differentiated instruction—if it is adopted by teachers and if their experiences indicate its effectiveness.  If teachers in a school differentiate instruction, it is more likely that new teachers, educated on differentiated instruction at the university, will adopt the approach with their own classes.

F.  Other Comments:  Comment briefly on any pertinent topic not listed which you believe are important in adequately and completely describing the results and accomplishments of your Support Fund Enhancement project. 

       One topic that comes to mind is broadening the concept of diversity to include all types of difference among students.  Diversity is usually associated with ethnic and cultural groups. Special education focuses on students with academic deficits and behavioral problems. But diversity, as it relates to differentiated instruction, considers needs of these students, but also those with special talents, giftedness, and differences in learning styles, types of intelligence, interests, and more. Educating teachers to create student profiles is one way they can enhance their students’ academic achievement and overall success in school. Also, through this project, we have learned that many candidates and teachers misundertand the meanings of modifications and accommodations. This project will provide another source of information about these concepts, by contrasting them and providing examples.  In the workshop presented by two task force members to all student teachers at the end of the 2004-2005 school year, both student profiles and modifications and accommodations were featured. We will encourage other presenters to incorporate these topics in their workshops. 

G.  Complete necessary forms found on the Welcome page.  The Cover Page and Personnel forms MUST be completed.  Complete Presentations, Publications, Patents, External Funding Activity, and Nuggests forms if applicable to your contract.  See each item for specific instructions.  

The online forms have been completed. 

The paper presented at the 2005 SERA annual meeting follows this report.  An article on the study was also published in a national refereed journal.



 

  

 


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